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can't light the Tinder without a spark

I started using Tinder about a month ago, hoping to do some dating.

Seattle women on Tinder like: travel, tall men, the outdoors, no hookups*, hiking, camping, climbing, the Seahawks, sports, wine, music, dogs, beer.
*(I'd say at least 50% make a point of emphasizing no hookups, and really, who can blame them.)

Seattle women on Tinder do not like: me, apparently.

I mean, I suppose probably some people have liked me but I've passed on them—the way Tinder works, you only get notified when there's a match, so I have no way of knowing if I've missed anyone that way. But I haven't had any matches yet, so no one that I've liked has also liked me.

I kind of like the immediacy of Tinder. In the main view, you see just one photo, and you can swipe left to pass on them, swipe right to like them, or tap on the photo to see more in their profile. The profile has one to six photos, a brief blurb (up to 550 characters) if they choose to write one, any Facebook friends you have in common, and any interests (Facebook pages you've both liked) in common. Oh, and some Instagram photos if they've connected their account. Again, you either like them or pass on them; either way, they disappear and you'll never see them again unless they like you back, in which case it's a match and then you can start chatting through the app.

So that encourages quick decisions and discourages worrying about what you'll say to them. If they seem at all appealing, swipe right, and if they match, then it's time to think about what to say. It's an advantage over OK Cupid, where because there can be a lot more information up front, you can get caught up fussing over whether they really seem like a possibility, or over what to say in your opening message to catch their attention.

Because it's easy and quick to use, encourages taking chances to talk to people, and feels kind of like a game, I'll probably keep using Tinder for a while still. It's not like there's much downside for me to do so. It is kind of discouraging to have no matches so far—though perhaps less discouraging than taking the time to send a message to someone on OK Cupid who seems like a great match only to never hear back. With Tinder, there's little investment, so little reason to give up; but with no matches so far, my question right now is whether that's enough to keep bothering.


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