5: How Tinder works

‘We didn’t start the fire, It was always burning, Since the world’s been turning, We didn’t start the fire, No we didn’t light it, But we tried to fight it’ – Billy Joel

Before you start reading this, I must do a disclaimer:


Well, not strictly true. I mean, I have some idea, like, you have to put a photograph on it, and a little description, and you have to swipe left and right, but let me tell you how things went when I started out on the app…

The first thing I noticed: the picture on the app looks like a fire.

That should be the first warning.

Yes, I can see it: the name Tinder comes from the material used to kindle a fire, hence the picture of a fire in their app. It’s red as well, which is the colour of passion, and of a heart. Overall, I think, a pretty good job done by their marketing team, though, inevitably, it also brings me to think about what ‘Tinder’ and ‘fire’ actually mean.

These are the descriptions I have:

What is tinder: a dry material which burns easily, used for lighting a fire.

What is a fire:

  1. An instance of burning in which something is destroyed
  2. Wood or coal that is burning in a hearth or stove for heating or cooking
  3. Passionate emotion or enthusiasm
  4. Dismiss an employee from a job
  5. Direct a rapid series of questions of statements towards someone
  6. To stimulate.

So, overall, a fire is something that can be stimulating, and passionate, and can be used for cooking, though more noticeably brings destruction and devastation, after a heated set of unwanted questions before being dumped.

Yep – that’s sounds like just the kind of woman for me…

So, the last time I was on here, I had the app downloaded. The next thing I did was to forego trivialities like good profile pictures and writing an online dating profile, and went straight to looking at pictures of the women that were on there.

Now, women are not going to like this part, but a man’s view of a woman is not that much different to a women’s view of a man, and what I mean by this is, and I am talking about at the deepest, most subconscious level you could get, Tinder’s method seems to fit perfectly with how the law of attraction works in real life.

That is, when a man or woman walks into a room full of people, and sees members of the opposite sex, they do an instant evaluation of everyone they see.

We’ve all done it, probably without even knowing it; been in a room and looked around and your subconscious is looking at the faces and bodies and going: ‘Yes, yes, no, yes, no, no, yes, no, etc…’

When you’re using Tinder, for all its modernity, you are doing exactly the same thing that humans have done throughout history, except instead of being a mental ‘yes’ or ‘no’, it is called ‘swipe right’ or ‘swipe left’.

An instant evaluation, in about a second, based on nothing but the way the person looks in a photograph.


And a lot of them…? Well, I wonder what they’re doing on there. I’ve seen pictures on Tinder of women who are beautiful, and some who are not so, and the beautiful ones, they could be anywhere, at any time, and get hit on by any number of men, yet here they are, on a dating website, opening themselves up to all the kooks and weirdos who are on that website because they cannot get a woman in the real world.

I am, of course, one of those kooks and weirdos now, which immediately makes me think in a different way, i.e. hold on, I am not a kook or a weirdo, I am a normal man that is starting on a long or short journey towards new romance, and need somewhere to start, and if that is the case for me, then it is probably the case for most other people on there as well.

It’s like, a dating starter pack, where you can harmlessly check out hundreds of single women in your area (without them knowing), and swipe right on the ones you like the look of, then don’t have to have any contact at all if you don’t want to, even if they match with you, and when they do match with you, it’s mostly the same as in the real world, that being, the man has to talk first.

So, in two weeks, I have matched with fifteen women, and not sent any of them a message, and now they’re not matched with me anymore.

Again, like the real world, if there’s a spark (there’s that ‘tinder’ link again), you have to move to do something with her, and when you don’t, you’re under the bus forever, rejected without even trying.

I know. I’ve already noticed it. I’m thinking of calling the next blog post ‘How to behave in the world when you’ve had your balls removed’. I won’t, though.

It’s called ‘How to make a profile on Tinder for (absolute) beginners’.


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Author: Andrew Culyer

For good or bad, am just trying to get through this...

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