It’s been a hot minute since I’ve been seen or heard from on any kind of dating app. And, while it may be hard to tell from my healthy relationship, non-sexy sleepwear and shared toilet habits, I’ve been on many a dating app in my time.

You are looking at the slightly (3 lbs, give or take) heavier, makeupless remains of what used to be a Tinderella. I was queen of swiping. I was also the queen of disappointment, sore thumbs and hearing “I just want you to know I’m not looking for a thing right now.”

I even met my boyfriend/roommate/butt-touching partner on Tinder- but that took a lot of digging on multiple platforms. We even realized later on that we previously matched on Bumble but nothing had happened because I was too lazy that day to try to start a conversation. Sorry, babe.

I had it down to a science. I knew which apps worked and which didn’t. I knew what to say and how to play it and what pictures would get the most swipes. Quantity had never been my primary goal, but boy did that attention sure feel good.

And I want to impart some of that on you today. Both to the singles of the world, with cramped, buttless hands and to the tech gods who hold our horny fates in their clammy palms like an ergonomic mouse.

We’re going to start with app-selection advice for you singles. And yeah, I’m going to skip the part where I try to argue whether or not it’s good for dating because dating has always sucked but this time I get to swipe around for a dude with dark hair and a good butt instead of my dad selling me to the old, wonky-eyed neighbor two cottages down for some goats and peat moss.

Everyone has a dating app. Websites have app components. My ex-boyfriend had a dating app that he was developing with his friend from college who didn’t like me and a programmer in India he was paying $5 an hour to animate a heart-shaped arrow. Dating apps are a thing now and if you don’t like it, you can join every other holier-than-thou geezer sharing that cartoon of people falling into a manhole while staring at their phones in the last functioning Blockbuster.

Anyway, where were we? Oh, yeah, FantASStic Apps and Where to Find Them.

(Sorry Jo, but if I didn’t make the joke first, Vivid sure are shit would have)

Bumble:

I mean, I like the idea of a man not being able to talk to me before I deign him worthy but also it feels like a lot of those men are just stock photos taken from back when Abercrombie and Fitch still had dicks in their catalog. Also not a fan of the time limit. Sometimes I can’t pull myself out of the anxiety hole I fall into every time I think about talking to an attractive man in less than 24 hours- 18 hours in I’m still thinking about all the ways I could mess up potentially meeting his mother so a grace period would be nice.

Match:

Holy shit, so many dads. Is there an AYSO soccer game in West Covina you’re all missing?

Happn:

That’s cool, if I wanted to go out with someone who was staring at me on the subway, I’d just go out with the homeless man who tried to lick me. At least he’s upfront about it.

OkCupid:

Very good app for meeting men who want to know if you “masterbate” and tell you about fistfights they’ve gotten into in Downtown Disney. 10/10 would recommend to lonely serial killers.

Hinge:

Okay, like I get that you’re trying to rebrand or whatever but you’re missing the point of dating apps. I don’t want to date friends of friends. Also why is every mutual friend some kid named Ben (if he went to Milliken for High School) or Matt (if he went to Loyola for high school) who “just finished up” at USC with a degree in film management? Is every single person actually just a replicant? Hinge makes me question a lot of things and I don’t like that.

Coffee Meets Bagel:

The app equivalent of closing up at a cafe and turning the corner to lock the back door and go home and you realize there’s one dude that’s been just sitting there for a full hour while you closed up shop and you’re like, “Oh shit, you’re still here?”

Tinder:

Honestly, to this day, I love Tinder. Like, I owe it so much. My lease is proof-positive that Tinder can be more than just another way for dudes to be awful (though, God love them, they sure do try). But, for the one keeper I found, I had to seemingly swipe my way through the dregs of the Los Angeles dating scene.

Tinder is great, but Tinder (and the rest of the apps) could use a tweak.

Not a large one. I think it’s pretty simple. In fact, I wrote in this very same suggestion to every single app I deactivated after making my relationship facebook-offish.

Filters, guys. You need filters.

And not just age filters. If I only want to see men over 6’ who have never said the phrase “You’re not like other girls” and love dogs, I should be able to- it’s 2016. If they can make fake dragon dongs for the shadows of the internet, then you can do this. I believe in you.

I’ll even do it for you. I will personally come up with all the filters I wish I’d had when I was single.

On/Off Toggle Filters:

Raiders Fans

Men named Edgar

Actors

“Actors”

Men who will wait until we are in a remote village in Switzerland to ask “Is it okay if I gave my friend a handjob when we first started going out? Because I did.”

Men who will wait until we are in a remote village in Switzerland to say, “So I’m going back to nursing school next year and I’m not sure if I will be able to swing a relationship as well.”

Dudes that think an acceptable first date story is telling me about the time they haggled with a Las Vegas masseuse for a “Happy Ending”.

Men named “Devin”, “Devyn”, “Devan”, “Devaugn”, “Defaahn” or any other permutations therein. Devon is a place in England. It’s pronounced “Dev-uhn” and has its own wikipedia page. There is literally no excuse for this level of buffoonery. You are only making my life harder.

Men with the same name as male family members.

Smug Bicyclists

Faux-Woke Bros

Sliding Scale Filters:

Sliding scale from “Men with traditional names purposefully spelled incorrectly” from “Shawn” to “Jefri”.

Sliding scale of acceptable tattoos from “high-quality portraits or culturally significant designs” to “half-finished stick-and-poke portrait of Baphomet from the week he read the Satanic Bible”.

A scale just for photographers that goes from “Is legitimately paid to photograph weddings and lookbooks” to “photographs sickly-looking redheads spread-eagle in their dirty Palms apartment with a disposable camera”.


And, yes I realize I’m coming at this from a pretty cishet angle so, by all means, please feel free to add anything I’ve missed. Together we might make dating just a little less shitty, dates a little less awkward and maybe one day we can all find someone to dutch oven in the middle of the night.

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