Tag Archives: Queer Dating

The Guysexual’s Brutally Honest Review Of Tinder

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Online dating will always be shunned and sniggered at, like the fat kid from school that no one spoke to. Dating apps are usually hidden, stacked between photo-editing apps and to-do lists, away from prying eyes, pudgy fingers and awkward questions.

Why so?

It’s simple. It’s completely against the idea of a textbook romance — meeting someone at a party or at the local bookshop, bumping into each other, and falling head-over-heels in love with each other at first sight.

But that’s where you are wrong.

If you think your next big love isn’t hidden behind a mesh of profiles on the dating app of your choice, there’s a very big chance he’s not waiting for you at the bar with free drinks (and if he is, there’s a chance he might give you chlamydia). Conventional ways of finding love are dying out and for good reason, because we just don’t have the time (or the hope to leave things to chance).

So as we traverse through the desert of online dating with pit stops over at GrindrScruff and Hinge, here’s presenting the oasis at the end of many (many) dating dust storms.

Say hi to Tinder. She’s swiping right on you already.

What it is: Tinder is the It-girl of dating apps, the one that all the others want to be like, and secretly hate. Like the nagging aunt, it shows you picture after picture of suitable men (and women) – because perfection doesn’t come easy, and here, it can come more than once. But what sets it apart from the nagging aunt in question?

Tinder has a strict ‘no-judgments-passed’ policy, which comes to play as you test-drive your way through the sea of suitable men. Well, no one said that finding a potential mate was easy. They aren’t all Planet Romeo.

How it works: You can swipe right to ‘Like’, or turn left to ‘Oh-I-don’t-think-so’. Tinder is a clearance sale of Facebook profile pictures. You collect the ones you love, and ignore the ones you don’t. But then, the pile keeps on growing, and you don’t know what to do. Unless someone collects you too.

Intellectually, can Tinder be considered as the online dating app for the people who have given up on online dating?

Truly so. Unless you are my friend, Kartik.

Last month, the 29-year-old copywriter came across Rajeev — he was handsome, gay (and not sexually fluid like the boys on Bro), ran his own start-up, and at 6’ 2” (Rajeev’s profile told him), he was a lot taller than Kartik was. Was he the light at the end of a tunnel of d*****bags and dimwits? More importantly, could their mutual love for Rihanna, Banksy and Humans Of New York account for total compatibility in the romance department? Probably not, but maybe Tinder could help them meet halfway there (not literally, like in the case of Happn).

Kartik (super) liked right and waited.

And waited. And waited. He waited for all of 23 days, seven hours and 42 minutes. Rajeev never matched back. Obsessing over a text message is a little crazy, but when you’re in an online relationship (or not), that’s really all you have. Are you allowed to feel heartbroken if you’ve never met someone in person?

If real-life relationships are taxing and nerve-wracking, the ones you find here are only better – every curve ball that life throws at you, Tinder throws two. The biggest of them all: How do you answer the classic – ‘How did you two meet?’ – milestone that every couple that meets through Tinder dreads.

It’s simple. You tell them you met each other at Starbucks.

What I like about it: Unlike most dating apps for queer men (and women), Tinder doesn’t allow immediate, unfiltered communication. No more message requests. No more unsolicited dick pics. No more ‘I-see-that-you-are-50-metres-away-wanna-hook-up?’

Chat (and ultimately cuddle up) with only people you match with – not that there’s a guarantee a man won’t turn out to be a d*****bag after 50 texts full of witty prose.

What I don’t like about it: Like most good things in life, finding true love on Tinder doesn’t come free. See, Tinder might be your best bet to meet your future plus one, But Tinder Plus (or Gold for the select few who can afford it) is where you strike gold, no puns intended.

Unlimited right swipes? Hell yes. Rewind the accidental ones? Obviously. That one-off (brilliant) chance to skip the queue? Definitely. 3X chances of finding a soul mate? That’s a third of the catfishes you have to wade through before you find your Prince Charming.

Now I was always good at math, but these numbers don’t make any sense at all.

Bonus feature: They say a picture speaks a thousand words, but Tinder’s extensive library of GIFs and customised emojis can write a book. Cat got your tongue as you flirt your way with the hot travel photojournalist who you (super) liked? There’s an appropriate ‘wanderlust’ GIF in there somewhere.

Tips to follow: As a single gay man, do you still think that the quintessential dating app is the only speed bump on your journey towards finding a fulfilling NSA (no-stress at all) relationship?

Make an effort with your profile. Your vital stats and sexual preferences might get you sex in 30 minutes or less, but a soul mate? Not so much.

Stop using the app only after midnight – you are not fooling anyone when you want to meet for a date in the middle of the night. In your bedroom.

Stop tlking lyk dis 2 ppl online.

Be nice, be charming, be yourself – but most importantly, be kind, rewind.

Who is it for: Because the worst of us need a fairy tale to believe in.

For all the times you don’t find a Fairy Godmother to help you on your quest to seek true love, Tinder swipes right in and saves the day. She’d even give you a makeover if you have Tinder Gold.

But that’s another story.

Guysexual’s Grade-o-meter

Hookability: 8/10

Compatibility: 9/10

Usability: 8/10

Downloadability: 9/10

The Guysexual’s Brutally Honest Review of Grindr

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Before our smart phones took over and we started swiping right for Mr Right, meeting gay men was as difficult as trying to fit into your five-year-old denims — it required a trip to gay bar nights or connecting via dubious chat rooms on now-forgotten chat portals. Do you want the complete gist? You probably skipped the introductory class of Queer Culture 101.

But, technology has now allowed us to come together and spread our glorious wings (and sometimes, even our legs) wide. If you can order a cab through your phone, why can’t you go cruising too?

The gay dating app is thus, every homosexual man’s paradise: a one-way ticket to companionship, without the hassles of getting your friends or family involved. While there might be multiple dating apps that let you find your potential soul mate based on your picks and your preferences (and sometimes, even fetishes), I’ve decided to start off this new series with Grindr, because it’s the one most gay men would swipe right on, no puns intended (also I am lazy with research).

Don’t know what Grindr is?

I’m here to help. Just keep your notifications on.

What it is: Grindr, in its unfiltered GPS-based glory, presents a wide spectrum of gay culture. Here you can find every type of man; there is every shape, size, colour, and age represented within its Cartesian geo-limits. It’s like an online Pride parade, without the police permissions (unless you are into that) and the long speeches (or into that).

See, the thing with Grindr is that there are smart men, there are witty men, there are hot men, but most importantly there are men who want to meet other men, no strings attached.

How it works: With Grindr, it’s all there already — your facts and figures presented like a supermodel’s vital statistics — men are measured in d*ck pics and distances. There are no surprises here, except the ones you are lying about.

Kartik, a 28-year-old copywriter, met a handsome guy on the app just three months ago — an investment banker, with a plush two-bedroom sea-facing apartment in downtown Mumbai, and a face that could have been on a billboard. The man was gorgeous, had dimples that were deeper than the Mariana trench, and cheekbones so high, they could be on meth — rightly said, he was 30 going on 16 — and everything a guy could ever want to be with (or be). They sent each other flames and devils and whatnots, and literally ‘tapped’ at each other through the night.

The only glitch in the plan?

The banker was only five feet tall — a detail they had both overlooked (the banker forgot to mention it on his profile, Kartik forgot to ask). My copywriter friend never saw him again, and his digits were forever lost in Kartik’s sea of deleted phone numbers, along with all thoughts of moving into his picturesque bachelor pad.

Shallow friends aside, we can’t deny that Grindr demands supreme body confidence — row upon row of glistening torsos (some with heads attached, others cut off just above the Adam’s apple) for your perusal. If a guy doesn’t have a profile picture, it means one of two things — there’s probably nothing worth seeing or your subject is shy. Here, abs after abs dance before your tired, jaded eyes — the bodies melding into one mass of skin-coloured blot, and charisma is squeezed into a short bio, 150 characters or less.

So how do you differentiate between the torsos on ‘the Internet’s most popular gay dating app’? How can you tell whether the six-pack of your choice belongs to your potential Prince Charming or the pervert that everyone rain checks on?

You take your chances, and go meet him. What happens if it doesn’t work out?

Next, please.

When do you use it: While there’s no right time to be on Grindr, it’s advisable that you keep your phones away at bedtime, (only) if you are hoping to find the One — because any man who pings you post-midnight, wanting to ‘get to know you a little bit better’, is only interested in getting to know your sexual fetishes.

On the other hand, if you are looking for something on the side, here’s when to reach out to all the Romeos in your neighborhood:

6 am to 9 am:

Looking for someone to work out with? Hit him up when his morning motivation is up and flaring, and he’s ready to hit the bench press (or the sheets, if you are looking for a different type of cardio) all morning long.

Noon to 3 pm:

Interested in a quickie? The afternoon blues are perfect for an after-lunch liaison — this is when your will to work is at an all-time low, and your need to find a distraction is at an all-time high. Plus, you’ve got to work off those greasy rotis from lunch, don’t you?

5 pm to 8 pm:

Are you thirsty for a quick drink at the local pub? Ring up a boy for a spontaneous date in the evening, because it always beats going back home to an empty apartment.

And if things go well, you won’t.

11 pm and beyond:

Four words. No strings attached sex.

What do I like about it: Finding instant gratification is as easy as making instant noodles.

What I don’t like about it: Finding instant gratification is also as unhealthy as making instant noodles.

Who is it for: Everyone’s favourite dating app is perfect, if you are looking for something beyond companionship and compatibility, unless it’s the sort of compatibility you seek in bed.  Do you want a one-night stand that you can potentially network with in the future?

Say hello to Grindr.

It’s buzzing. Someone’s probably sent you a devil emoji.