So during my absence from this here Intarwebz thingy, apparently there came into being an application (“app”) called “Tinder”, which allows men and women in close proximity to each other to “hook up” (i.e. have casual sex — quit laughing, I’m trying to keep up here). “Swipe Left” (on one’s phone screen) means “get lost” and “Swipe Right” means “I allow you access to my genitalia”. (I’m using as many euphemisms as I can dream up, but I’m running out pretty quickly.)
Back in the Olde Tymes, right after we discovered fire (or maybe it was the wheel, I forget), the equivalent to this was walking up to your object of desire and saying the immortal words, “Your place or mine?” without so much as an introduction, and was almost always uttered by a man to a woman. Needless to say, this approach was generally met with scorn, horror and/or a slap in the face — unless the speaker was a Bad Boy, a Handsome Man, a Wealthy Man,a Celebrity or some other type which seems to make women lose their modesty, loosen their panty-elastic and turn their legs into margarine.
Now, with Tinder, the approachee can look at the photo of the approacher and make a snap judgement as to whether a more intimate encounter can occur (swipe right) or not (swipe left). As this decision is made based purely on a photograph, the outcome can often be dire, and there have been many right-swiping stories with tragic outcomes. I imagine that Jack The Ripper would have wept tears of joy had he had Tinder available in late-Victorian London, for example.
Even as little as a few years ago, I would have been shocked / disgusted / appalled at this situation, but now I look on the whole thing with a more jaundiced eye. If there is a way to fuck your life up — in this case, exposing yourself to venereal disease, danger and worse for a quick, empty thrill — then people are going to find it. That this process can now be facilitated with the aid of technology occasions from me no more than a shrug. It’s just the same as “Your place or mine?” but with less intimacy (in that the approacher / approachee are never actually close to each other until the right-swiping outcome), and there’s also less chance of hurt feelings and a sore cheek. In other words, it’s a perfect Millennial-snowflake encounter.
I can understand why a man would use Tinder, because generally speaking, we’re assholes looking for an easy lay. Why any woman would use Tinder is quite beyond me; but then again, as any fule kno, I am rather old-fashioned about this kind of thing in that I actually prefer a little romance before penetration, as it were, and I persist in thinking that women are the gentler sex, despite all evidence to the contrary in today’s world.
So flirting has been replaced by an impersonal mechanism. Whatever. Just as I prefer my battered old 1911 to a modern gun loaded with plastic doodads, I prefer old-fashioned romance to soulless coupling. To put it in artistic terms:
Eugene De Blaas
over Felicien Rops
Your opinion may vary, but I’m not really interested in hearing it.