“Do you know…

where you’re going to?

Do you like the things

that life is showing you?

Where are you going to?

Do you know?

— Diana Ross


So, I did it: the thing I said I’d never do. I took the dare, rose to the challenge, and dove straight into the deep end of the cesspool of online dating that is Tinder.

And, you know what? I don’t think it’s deep enough for me. I know: You’re thinking, “Tinder? Shallow? SHOCKING!!!”

This is not to say that I’m looking to delve deeper into the dark side of online dating, or that I’m giving up on the “swipe-life”. Indeed, I think I may just be scratching the surface there…

That said, I’m also fully aware that “surface” may be all that Tinder has to offer.

When I began this, the point was simply to “get back out there” and get my “feet wet” in the world of online dating–which I hadn’t visited in almost a decade. Well, I’ve been splashing around in puddles for almost two months now, so I think it’s safe to say that my feet are–at the very least–damp. I also think it might be time to…diversify my interests, so to speak.

Besides, what’s the point of so many of you living vicariously through my dating drama, if I’m not going anywhere you’d ever actually deign to visit?

So, here’s what’s going to happen now: before I take things to the next level with any of my current (and swiftly dwindling) prospects, I’m going to kick this thing up a notch. Actually, I’m going to kick it up several notches. I’m going to take this show on the road…through some of your favorite dating sites.

Now this is going to be tricky, because although I eventually hope to fall madly in love again and ultimately find a suitable and committed partner, I’m still fairly convinced that the Internet is the end of romance, and therefore, have a hard time believing that my perfect match could actually be on Match.com.

I’m not sure if my lack of faith is a strength or a weakness in the online arena, but I do know that this is a whole lot more proactive than dining solo at my local, hoping Prince Charming will just magically appear at the bar beside me, sans date.

I also know that while I’m neither an “Insert-Husband-HERE” girl, nor the “Happy Hook-up”-type, placing myself on a sliding scale between “LetsGetMarried.com” (otherwise known as eHarmony) and Tinder is bound to force me to answer the question: What do I really want?

So, here goes me: spreading myself all over the internet. Okay, that just sounded…wrong.

Yes, I’m staying on Tinder, since it’s now the baseline. And despite the fact that my particularly liberal set of family values are apparently very at odds with Dr. Neil Warren’s, I’m also re-upping my now decade-dormant (and yet, strangely not expired) subscription to eHarmony, simply because I can’t find anything more commitment-oriented, outside of an actual matchmaker.

But, I’ll also be joining a few sites firmly in the middle. The jury’s still out on which ones are best (feel free to comment below), but I’m thinking something firmly pedestrian, like a Match or OkCupid. And then, how about something newer, like Happn or Hinge (though the idea of having too many people in common sounds strangely claustrophobic to me)?

And because I’m a womanist, I’m also going to sign up for Bumble–which is similar to Tinder, but female-initiated, contact-wise. Interestingly, the female founder was also initially a founder of Tinder, who departed after making a sexual harassment allegation against one of her partners.

Bumble will undoubtedly pose a tremendous challenge to my preference that men make the first move; but as Chaka said, “I’m a woman, and I’m a backbone.” I can take it.

Do you think I should perhaps try something more niche, too? I patently refuse to do SoulSwipe (the name alone makes me itch), but I’m an avid reader; should I search for a bookish boyfriend on Alikewise? Then again, I’ve also had an unfortunate tendency to date dudes even broker than me. Should I go for broke on MillionaireMatch?

Questions, questions…

Honestly, I have no idea where I’ll even find the time–let alone, the stamina–to cast a wider net, since I already find Tinder utterly exhausting and time-consuming. But what I don’t want to do is look up in another seven weeks–or seven months–and find myself simply a well-seasoned first-and-second dater. I may not know what I want yet (I still believe I’ll know it when I see it), but I at least want to feel like I’m getting somewhere…

So, let’s go.

  • Hassan El-Gendi

    “I’m not sure if my lack of faith is a strength or a weakness in the online arena..” – i think what happens (or doesn’t) is greatly contingent on what possibilities you believe are most likely to occur. i’ve found that what we believe about a person, place or thing colors our attitudes towards said thing in my experience. so sometimes faith (or lack of it) can become a self fulfilling prophesy.

    • You know…I’m not sure if I entirely agree. Most of the best things that have ever happened to me were things entirely outside of the scope of my expectations at the time, and a few things I had every reason to expect would succeed crashed and burned horribly.
      So…is it the worst thing in the world to remain firmly in neutral, for the time being?

      • Hassan El-Gendi

        “firmly neutral” is far from the worst thing in the world… i’ve also watched well laid plans crash and burn and haphazardly formed (and executed) ideas transform into sublime moments of joy for good reason at all.. i’m not necessarily advocating for pie-in-the-sky optimism either.. i guess i’m saying the odds of gaining something useful out of an experience are increased when expectations of the experience aren’t negative.. and neutral is most definitely not negative.

        • Mai

          Yeah, so maybe I misspoke. I may not be moving through this with a ton of blind optimism or faith, but I’m not negative on it, either–otherwise, I wouldn’t even be bothering with such a time-consuming and potentially loaded experiment.
          And after all, I’ve met primarily cool people, so…I suppose anything could happen; I’m just not expecting it to.

          • Hassan El-Gendi

            i feel the same way about Tinder actually. haven’t had anything horrible happen, but nothing magical either. my takeaway is that it’s been a far more useful tool for self-exploration than match making.

          • Mai

            That’s definitely what it’s been shaping up to be for me, thus far.

  • mojilove

    Wait, there is a dating site for the bookish?

  • Rah One Love

    If you’re going on a lot of first dates, I don’t see what more you can do to meet people. I guess it’s just a matter of time before you find someone you like.

    See if you want to try Coffee Meets Bagel which is a more refined version of Tinder. One possible match per day. If you both match then a message system is set up and you have seven days to message each other and either set up a date or exchange real contact info.

    Good luck. Try not to burn yourself out.

    • Mai

      Avoiding burnout is definitely the key in all this chaos. Thanks for the encouragement, and suggestion. I’ll check it out.

  • Meredith R. Fitzpatrick

    I used to watch millionaire match maker…I didn’t totally get it, but I like the woman owner’s “tv character.” What about “it’s just lunch” I dont know anyone who has used it…might make for an interesting story. I do agree that you should pace yourself. Love the graphic on the blog!

    • Mai

      Yeah…that was a (mostly) facetious suggestion, but I’ve heard at least one success story, so…it’s working for someone!

  • MsK_NY

    One of my friends met her “match” on tinder and they moved in together after like 3-4 months so it can happen even though I think that she is an exception to the rule. Love your blog!!

About the author

Who me? I’m just your average Grammy-nominated goddess next door. May I borrow a cup of sugar?

But seriously: I’m a musician, model, writer, all-around creative and devoted auntie. Like you, I’m just out here in the universe, trying to make it happen…whatever that is.