The Non-Adventures of Electra Maple

The Non-Adventures of Electra Maple

A couple months ago, with full knowledge of my spouse and children, I signed up for an account on Tinder. I was looking for interesting things to write about and as someone fascinated by human nature, Tinder offers ripe fodder.

If you aren’t familiar with Tinder, at its best, it is a dating app.

I made an account with a fake name. And the pictures I used were of clothing, including this t-shirt made by Teresa.

I could only stand to be on the platform for a couple weeks. Buds and I would swipe through profiles of eligible men, intrigued by how men presented themselves to the world.

It was a vast spectrum of humanity, as expected. Husbands who were in town for the weekend, looking for a hook-up, men who were disappointed that they weren’t receiving any matches, people looking for friends to go hiking or to watch sports or go boating with, and men truly looking for love. Some sounded kind, some needy, some tender, some douchy. About like the people you meet in your day to day.

I was vastly interested in the number of “likes” I received for my profile. Remember, I had only shown pieces of clothing for my pictures. I had knocked a couple years off my age, and I indicated an acceptable age range for men from 45-55.

I was intrigued by the story they had to be painting in their heads to even indicate interest. My “favorite aunt” t-shirt meant I didn’t have kids? That I loved family? That I was fun-loving?

To see who “liked” me, I would have had to sign up for a paid account and Buds and I agreed that was a step too far for comfort. Since you control the geographic circle of your interest, there was also a concern I’d see someone we knew and that would have been a can of worms of a totally different sort.

I also realized this wasn’t actually essay fodder for me. I wanted to know much more about the individuals than my limited information allowed and I ended up feeling sorry for some of them. We all just want to be loved, just as we are. And setting someone up to think I was a viable love interest felt cruel.

With that reminder, I shut down my fake account, ending my not so secret life as Electra Maple, favorite aunt.