Dating Diary: The Tinder Carpool Program [Reader Submission]

The following story was submitted by a reader:

This story begins like every other fairy tale. Girl sees guy. Guy sees girl. They both swipe right. A match made in Heaven Tinder. This is how my story begins. Simple and easy to follow, but of course, the road winds a bit before the happily ever after.

 I, like most every other single woman my age have become a victim of the dating app era. There are so many to choose from, and really no valid reason not to at least try them. I decided that the one that worked best for me was Tinder because men could only talk to me if I was interested in them too. Sure, it’s the most superficial of them all, but I prefer being able to control who I talked to.

Now back to the story. I see a guy (we’ll call him Dan) on Tinder and I think to myself, “Holy catfish! This guy is so hot. There is no way he is real.” So obviously I swipe right. Much to my surprise and excitement my phone screen comes to life telling me it’s a match. Dan sends me a message almost immediately telling me he is just passing through on his way to Tokyo, but that I should text him and sends me his number. The rational woman in me thinks, “oh yeah, this is definitely a catfish.” The 13-year-old girl in me thinks, “What a great idea.” So I text him. We exchange some texts, and he explains to me that he is en route to Tokyo because he is in the military. A very likely story, I tell myself. He asks me if I’m on Facebook, and I tell him I am (who isn’t). I tell him the information he needs to find me, and I automatically have a friend request pop up on my phone. I tell myself this is looking good, because what kind of Tinder catfish would also have the same Facebook information. Obviously I don’t watch the show much, because I have since learned that the lengths that people will go through to hide the truth is CRAZY! I begin to stalk peruse his Facebook like any normal person would do to search for signs that he is not who he says he is, and I don’t see any, so I feel ok.

To save time I will skip forward a few weeks. We have been chatting every now and then via Facebook, and my Tinderoni says he wants to FaceTime. Finally it was the moment of truth. I say okay. My phone begins to ring alerting me that he is calling, I answer the phone and I see the most beautiful blue eyes looking at me and greeting me with the biggest smile. I silently thanked God saying, “Yes! He’s not a catfish, and he is every bit as gorgeous as his pictures. More so, even.”  I’m automatically smitten. From this moment on we talk almost every day. Mostly on Facebook chat, but every now and then we FaceTime. There are the occasional pet names used, and that gave me the school girl crush feeling. He was far away, but would be moving back in a year. I could handle that.

One day Dan asks me if I would like to have a visitor from Tokyo. I am ecstatic, but keep my cool, and say, “Sure, why not?” He tells me he will be in the states in a few months, and would love to meet me. I immediately started eating lettuce to prepare for his arrival. We decide that since he has some friends in Dallas I will drive from Houston, where I live, to meet him and hang out with him and his friends for an evening. I decided that seemed like the safest idea, in case he was a full on creeper.

The week before we are about to meet, Dan texts me and tells me he needs to ask me something. I say okay, and he says he’s not sure how to ask me. These are words the can stop a girl in her tracks. I tell him to just tell me, and I’m sure it’s not that big of a deal. He starts by telling me that he met another girl in the same way he met me. He continues, saying she’s a nurse and they have a lot in common. She also lives in Houston. Then he says, “She also wants to meet me and hang out. Can she ride with you to Dallas?” At this point the conversation comes to a screeching halt, and I am thinking he has GOT to be kidding. Did this fool really just ask me to bring another girl with me to meet him?! I wait for a moment for him to tell me he’s joking, but that admission never comes.

Because I respect myself, I tell him no. He tries to explain himself, and the next words he types are, “It could be a friendly competition.” Um. Last time I checked, I didn’t sign up for the bachelor. I told him I didn’t compete for the attention of men. He told me I would if the guy was worth it. I swiftly let him know that NO man was worth it. He tries to counter by telling me that the other girl was cool with it. I responded by telling him that if that was the case, she was the one for him because she is much more easy going than I am. I would like to know who this girl is so that I could give her a hug and tell her she shouldn’t let men treat her that way. He continued to try to persuade me to change my mind, and explain that he should be able to hang out with both of us. Homeboy was gorgeous, but there’s no way in hell I was down with that. I told him that we should just remain friends on Facebook and that would be it.

I ended up keeping him as a friend on Facebook for a few weeks, simply so that I could post pictures of myself looking great and having fun like the petty human being that I am capable of being. I have since deleted him. I should have known better than to fall for the guy on Tinder, but I’ve heard stories of it actually working out. I thought maybe that could be me too. Joke’s on me. Now I’ve got an interesting story to tell, but please believe that Tinder no longer lives on my phone. I do still have my self-respect though, and that’s all I need to live happily ever after.

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