Princess seeking prince
I’m 21 and I’ve never been in a relationship.
Last year, before I turned legal (to enter the casino), I took a gap year in New York. My cousins who were based there found amusement in my NBSB (no boyfriend since birth) status and made it their mission to find me a boyfriend. By Thanksgiving Day, they had hacked my phone, installed Tinder and practically thrown me to the virtual jungle of dating.
My cousins took over the account. I didn’t really mind, except for the constant kinky messages I received from strangers like “Sit on my face,” or crappy pickup lines like “I can be the stuffing to your turkey” and “Like hiking? I know a lot of secret spots in North Jersey. I think you’d like it when it’s warm. I also have a Starbucks gold card.” Please, you can’t buy me love with Starbucks.
There was this one guy (who probably caught the yellow fever) who sent me this message: “Well, hello you beautiful Asian princess. What’s your story lovely? What are you doing here? We should hook up.” He tried to flatter me with reverence to my heritage, but alas, it’s still a no.
Tinder is a modern-day hookup venue for people who are too lazy to go to a bar and meet people. It’s as simple as swiping right for the adventurous boy-next-door type or swiping left for the not-so-cute and quite-creepy type. It’s easy and certainly not messy, and, to be honest, it does emulate the physical dating world. Let’s face it, we don’t strike a conversation with a person we don’t find physically attractive. The image is always the initial gauge, and then we find common ground with that person—maybe sports, books, even schools. It’s only after a few dates, conversations or months that we get to know a person. Hell, even the people we’ve known for years still surprise us from time to time.
However, like any other dating platform, Tinder offers no assurance that the person at the other end of the line is the real deal, regardless if the account is synched with the Facebook profile. A Facebook profile is carefully constructed with VSCO Cam-edited selfies to earn ego-boosting likes, which, in turn, get high approval ratings on Tinder. More than hookups, we turn to Tinder to find assurance that we are indeed desirable. In this “technosexual” age where we are so busy with careers that we barely have time for ourselves, we seek validation that we are attractive and needed.
I know only a few people who were successful on Tinder, and I’m happy for them, but this secretly hopeless-romantic girl still believes in seeing someone across a crowded room, meeting his gaze—and fireworks! Yes, it’s crazy, but I’m told that clichés persist because they’re true.
I want a “how we met” tale worthy of being storied, a relationship that Joaquin, Austen, or Brontë would have found worthwhile to write about. I know how the dating world works, and while I’m fully aware that there’s no such thing as a perfect guy (hey, no such thing as a perfect girl either), I won’t settle for a guy who doesn’t know the difference between “your” and “you’re.” I want a fairy tale story like Kate Middleton’s or Grace Kelly’s. I want to be somebody’s princess, and I want my prince to know the proper use of punctuation and the importance of syntax.
Yes, Tinder is tempting because of its accessibility; it puts us out in the market without investing too much emotion. But this is dating. It takes two people to make the connection, not two superficial profiles.
So this NBSB is signing off.
Here’s “Tinderella,” 21: “Everything I know about love and dating I learned from ‘How I Met your Mother,’ so yeah, I know nothing like Jon Snow.”
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