Saturday, 9 August 2014

I'm yelling Tinder

As we all know, in this life there are the haves and the have nots, something that has been well documented in various ways on this blog.* In what could be seen as a microcosm of that on some levels, there are those who have a smartphone and those who do not.

Tinder -- the best app in town?
Time to yell 'Tinder'..? (Image from Facebook.)
At the moment I fall into that latter category. The reasons for this are chiefly split between personal choice and to a lesser extent economic circumstances.

The fact that much of my work currently revolves around technology (whose doesn't?) or at least staring at a screen, in my downtime, of which there has been a lot of late, I like to try and remove myself from such things. Hence, heretofore at least, I've been pretty content with my basic phone or flechita (literally, 'little dart') as they call it in Colombia. My thinking has been that with that, people can call and text me if they need to and I can do likewise if I want to. No more, no less. For all other technology and social media related issues, I can use my laptop at specified times of the day. Who needs to have Facebook or Twitter by their side 24/7?
A simple yet effective mobile phone. If only it had Tinder...
The simple life: A 'flechita'. (Photo from Phone Outlet.)

Indeed one of my bugbears when one goes out to socialise in person these days, something I've touched on before, is that you'll find a host of people with their heads stuck in their smartphones, preferring to virtually interact with people rather than engage physically with the person next to them. Perhaps that just happens to me though?

Nonetheless, I'm slowly beginning to think that it may be time to 'take the plunge' and invest in a smartphone. From a work point of view, considering plenty of hours are lost commuting across Bogotá going from one class to the next, having a compact device/phone that would allow me do some additional research and writing while in transit would be handy and probably time-saving. Of course, there is always the dar papaya risk in flashing your smartphone in public,** giving would-be robbers an even greater incentive to have a go at the 'rich' (if only they knew) westerner.

That aside, a more compelling reason to join the smartphone revolution, if some people's experiences are to be believed, is the dating application (or 'app' as they say) Tinder. According to those in the know, it's basically a sure-fire way of at least securing a one-night stand. Not only that but in Bogotá for western men in any case, what's on offer is of pretty decent quality – superficially anyway. I imagine that's replicated throughout Colombia.

So for single and, apparently, not-so-single people, Tinder is proving to be a great place to get that much-coveted hookup. Word on the (virtual) street is that it takes a lot of the tedious small talk out of the equation. Both parties can just cut to the chase.
Beyoncé: Swiping to the left.
Beyoncé: She'd get a swipe. (Photo from Facebook.)

Now if 'the chase' is something you actually enjoy, then Tinder might leave you feeling a little empty – fish in a barrel kind of thing you might say. Yet if you're tired of the games that some potential partners play after you've had an initial rendezvous, Tinder could be just what you need to avoid becoming frustrated.

Thus, maybe it's time for Wrong Way to delve into the smartphone world and see how those swanky 'haves' live. If it saves time and effort across a range of activities it could prove to be a valuable asset.

And as it is with all of these things, there's always an off button. That, however, might not be as easy to find on whoever you happen to pick up on Tinder.
*See last week's Chasing a star(bucks) for starters on that.

**To get the 'dar papaya' reference and meaning, read 'Dar papaya' - letting the guard down.


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