A 30-something guy discovers a hidden trove of older women on Tinder
A true story from the frontiers of Toronto's app-enabled dating scene
My name is Paul. I’m a 35-year-old photographer, and I’ve worked in the media industry. I’ve been using Tinder on and off for a couple years.
I actually don’t know what the lower age limit on Tinder is, because I’m not a creep. I set mine at 26, because I figured, that’s when I felt like I wanted to be in a relationship that could last longer than the next semester. And then I thought, “Where do I set the upper limit?” I’ve met women in their mid-40s who would be perfect matches for me. So I decided to open it up. I set my upper age limit to the maximum, 55-plus.
About a month later, I was flipping through my new matches, and I started seeing quite a few people whose ages were listed as over 100. And then I clicked on them and looked at their photos, and I realized they were clearly in their 20s. I think it has something to do with the way Tinder imports people’s biographical information from Facebook. Something goes wrong, a 23-year-old is listed as 100, and they have no idea how to change it.
I realized I’d stumbled on a group of women who were probably being ignored by a lot of other men on Tinder. I said to myself, “I’m not going to miss out on these 100-year-olds.”
One night I was at home, swiping away. To be honest, I sometimes don’t read the profiles, and I doubt I’m the only one. I just look at that first photo and go, “Yes. No. Yes. No,” like flipping through a magazine in a waiting room.
I was flipping through, and I landed on someone. She was like 49. A fair bit older than me. But we started chatting. She seemed nice, and we got along very well. Sometimes it’s nice just to chat with someone. Then all of a sudden, she’s like, “What are you doing right now?”
I’m like, “I’m at home.”
She’s like, “Come drink some wine with me?”
It was 11 p.m. I’m like, “Oookay.”
And she’s like, “But you have to bring two things. You have to bring me tulips, because I like tulips. And you have to bring me Kit-Kat bars.” I think she just wanted to class it up. She told me, “I’m not calling you over here to sleep with you, but if it happens, it happens. So don’t think this is some sort of guarantee.”
So I found a 24-hour grocery store, got the stuff and went to her house. We ended up having a really nice chat. She told me she’d just come from folding laundry at her ex’s house. It was a very strange thing to bring up, but she was very nice. We were sitting on the couch, and within the short span of time it takes to figure out that someone is totally okay, we hooked up. And it wasn’t an issue.
It was entirely unexpected and kind of cool. And it was this thing that wouldn’t have happened in my day-to-day life if Tinder didn’t exist, because I probably wouldn’t approach someone who was older than I am. It was a little bit Mrs. Robinson-y.
She un-matched with me after, but before un-matching with me she sent me a message that said something like, “Oh, some of your change fell out of your pockets and into my couch. I guess that’s like a tip.”
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