I have to occupy my brain with some superficial stupidity so I thought I’d share some of said stupidity with you. You’re welcome.
I very rarely go into my DMs on Instagram, but occasionally I wander in there to see what’s going on.
This happened yesterday.
Look at all the men who popped up in recent days. I’m so lucky! 🙄
Let’s analyze these guys, ok?
Mr. moudtarih has no picture, but he says hello. I have zero desire or intent to find out more so I barely registered him. (Blocked)
Mr. Ralf Winkel could be real, but probably isn’t. His picture is most likely fake. He also says hello, like moudtarih, but for extra effect he claps his hands. Is this some online-emoji-dating-app-speak I’m unaware of? Does it mean something? (Blocked)
Mr. John raymond spells his last name with a small r. Is this intentional? Is he a submissive man looking for a dominatrix? (Nothing wrong with that, just not my thing.) His picture might be real, or not, it’s neither here nor there. He also says hello, calls me pretty, and adds not one but two emojis letting me know just how friendly and impressed he is with me. (Blocked)
Mr. Carson Jason might be real or might not be. He calls me angel which is either a cultural/regional thing which I can accept under the right circumstances or just plain creepy. Seems a bit odd given he doesn’t know me. Do you think I’m an angel? 😀 Anyway, he is quite clever because he asks me an unsolicited question in order to get me to engage. I didn’t click the question because I don’t give a hoot what he’s asking me. (Blocked)
Mr. Michael Bencomo might have a real picture but he begins with an apology (of sorts) in which he lets me know he doesn’t mean to infringe on me about something. I clicked that one as I was curious what he was going to say given he was, in fact, infringing. 🙄
Here’s my problem:
On the one hand he might just be a lonely man and writing a message like this is, in his mind, a polite way to engage with someone he sees online and finds attractive. His grammatical/literary skills are lacking which I won’t hold against someone in theory, but it’s not an attractive feature to me. I’m a sapiosexual (intelligence in others is sexually attractive or arousing). I’m attracted to intelligence; grammar, spelling and linguistic skills are part of that, for me. (I know I’m not perfect, and the spelling and grammar police point this out to me every so often.)
Point is, the man is a virtual stranger trying to engage with someone who calls herself “writer of words” – the fact that he doesn’t clue in right from the get-go that we are absolutely incompatible based on just this one obvious little piece of information is a little maddening. I mean, really? I’m “charming” and “irresistible” based on what? He mentions my profile; did he look at anything else besides my profile picture? Did he read the Instagram stories? Did he click on my blog? Ugh. (Blocked)
Most women (if I may be so assuming and bold), including me, don’t see this method of trying to find a companion as appropriate or, ultimately, effective. Reaching out to a stranger by dishing out perceived compliments as a way to engage and hopefully (in their mind) hook up is inappropriate and creepy.
If you have followed and got to know me for some time then you know the way to get to me is with words. Intelligent, grammatically correct, clever words, not superficial compliments based on seeing a picture online and immediately imagining a friendship (or worse).
Obviously I blocked him, too, but let’s stay with this for a moment.
I have learned a lot about how men act online over the years of blogging and social media-ing. Not much surprises me anymore. There are very few people I allow into my online life outside of this blog (private email or messaging), and if you are one of these people, you can rest assured that our friendship, no matter its state (IRL or virtual) is real to me. Virtual friendships mean something to me, I don’t care about geographical distance as much as I care about how we communicate (with words).
However, the dating apps saga interests me. I had a friend who gave me snippets from his perspective at times, but I am no longer privy to his insights. I still have my own, though, so here goes.
My dating app history over the past year
I loaded (and have since deleted again) a former dating app again recently. I stayed with it 4 days. Here’s the timeline of my dating app use over the past year:
Loaded a year ago to familiarize myself with how it works. Stayed with it a couple of months. Did not pay or interact with anyone. Saw hundreds of men, but only about 3 profiles with pictures that appealed on some level. Took note of how men presented themselves on an app like that, but I did nothing. Watched with horror how, within minutes (MINUTES!), I had accumulated 89 men who clicked ‘like’ or tried to message me. Deleted the app after a while because I don’t feel suited to meet strange men on an app.
Reloaded a few months later. Saw many new faces in my desired age demographic, and many old ones. The old ones became familiar, as in, I recognized not just their pictures (which in many cases had not changed in 3, 4 months) but also their general information in the profiles themselves. I wondered, are they dating multiple women actively and/or rejected constantly? Are they rejecting the women? Why are they still on the app after so many months? Are the women as uninterested in these men as I am, x-ing them off as regularly as I did? Or vice-versa?
Part of me felt sad. People in Toronto were subjected to multiple heavy lockdowns and loneliness is a epidemic. I get it.
There were a few men who looked interesting to me. Like, possible, maybe, if I was in the right frame of mind. But I did not justify spending money on an app like this so I did nothing but memorized their profiles and pictures and stored them. I had an intuitive feeling that these men would resurface again at some point. One was a teacher and hobby handyman, one was a firefighter, and one was a widowed, semi-retired wordsmith. I figured they’d get snatched up quickly, and it looked like they did during the time I was surfing the app. I deleted the app after a few weeks sometime in the summer and had several months of peace.
I reloaded the app just prior to Christmas. It’s a lonely time for many, right? Well, lo and behold, all my “friends” were still there, same pics, same profiles. All the non-appealing ones, that is. The ones I had no interest in. But, because I had seen them twice before, over several weeks, they became ‘familiar’ if you know what I mean. But there was an interesting tidbit that was different this time: some of these men added a nifty request (demand?) into the top of their profile indicating that they had, in fact, been actively dating. They said, in all caps and bold text, NO DRAMA.
I appreciate that many women are drama queens. But at this point I’m beginning to think that perhaps the men bring their own drama to the table (or bed). Why is it always assumed the women bring the drama? I remember men who said and did all the right things but remained emotionally unavailable and so focused on the honeymoon period (thrill of the chase) that as soon as life events began to affect the romance, they checked out and moved on. Yet, they wanted no drama… Huh. It was enlightening to read about this.
I was pretty disillusioned by this time and deleted the app again shortly after the new year began. I did not miss it.
Before I loaded the app again (late March) for a few days, I remembered someone who mentioned in late February that spring dating was about to begin. My apps were still deleted and I didn’t care about spring dating, but it stayed with me in the back corner of my brain. So when I reloaded the one app a few days ago, I recalled that statement and started browsing the app out of sheer curiosity. Who will I see on there?
Well well well. 😀
The first few dozen men who appeared were oh so familiar to me. I quickly glanced at their pictures and profiles and noticed nothing has changed. It’s been a year since I started this journey, and these lonely men who claimed to look for their forever person were still on there, in the same capacity, looking for the perfect woman to ride into the sunset with.
And then, a surprise.
2 out of the 3 ‘desirable’ men from a year ago (the retired widower and the firefighter) were back. The widower changed his photo slightly (but it was clearly one of a series someone took for him for the purpose of advertising on an app) and he still looked relatively attractive (to me). Maybe he met someone and made a go of it, and then it didn’t work out, so now he’s back. The firefighter didn’t change anything, expect he added a NO DRAMA to his profile. Guess he had sex with a/several drama queen(s)…
Then, I saw the teacher handyman. He completely changed his pictures and profile which is why I didn’t recognize him at first, but he seems to also be back in circulation. Maybe some fortunate woman got a new kitchen, he got some sex, and now he’s back on the market. 😛
I stayed with the app and watched the men surf for their girl-of-their-dreams for four days. I thought, at least some of them are getting sex – we all know that’s a front and center concern for most people – but the app did nothing to reassure me that so-called ‘desirable men’ will learn about emotional availability inside a dating app, and so I deleted it again.
Bye bye, men. I’m sorry true love isn’t happening for you (I really am. Loneliness is hard.)
And so ends another trek through the dating app fiasco. Except… now I discover I have a built-in dating app in my Instagram account. 🙄
Isn’t the internet fun?
Thank you for reading my post. See you in the comments!