I Got 1,000 Tinder Matches And Lost My Faith In Humanity

by Daniel A.

In a misguided attempt to find love, I actually ended up enjoying my own slow shift into the dull, endless ether of existence.

My journey began long ago — over what could have been a year, but was more likely eons of moral attrition — and it has finally come to an end.

Yet, I feel as though I may never return home.

Even if I do, I definitely won’t be the same.

There is an innocence born within you, meant to be weathered by the storms you choose to brave.

However, thanks to Tinder, I don't have the need to chase these storms.

I can instead call hurricanes into my home, eroding my emotions with the gale force of another poorly written bio saying you "enjoy movies."

I set my toned, callus-tipped index finger upon the battered glass of my phone, using pure muscle memory to throw yet another profile picture to the right like a wet paper towel, hoping it sticks upon the wall of my heart.

It was not unlike shaking hands with the devil himself.

My simple stroke was enough of a signature to sign over my soul.

I reached my 1,000th match, roughly twice the population of Vatican City.

How fitting that upon this gray, melancholy milestone, my God has forsaken me.

I have left-swiped my eternal spirit, setting me adrift on an iron clad sea of apathetic jade.

Man was not made to lead an army, yet I find myself cursed with a legion.

It was through hubris that I attained it, gathering myself like a bear upon a rock day after night, roaring into the mountains as if expecting the forest to bow.

How many echoes can the mountains ring back before they grow silent?

How many roars can a bear roar before he learns to speak?

How many Tinder swipes will it take until I am full?

Can I stop?

Though the light may have left and my conscious may have grown cynical, climbing out of this hole would be just as dangers as digging deeper.

The Earth greets me with a familiarity.

It asks if I would like to send a message or continue playing.

It knows I no longer care about the quality of the soil, and I only wish to find the light at the end of the tunnel.

It's the same light I lost along the way.

My mind has worn thin.

Though my attempts at connection in the past may resemble carefully casting a fishing line, but now, they are more akin to drunkenly shooting a crossbow.

You asked if I “was looking for something casual."

I was confused and replied, “You mean like wearing blue jeans to work on a Friday?” knowing full well this had nothing to do with pre-weekend apparel.

I changed my biography to a lengthy story about two butts who walk into a bar to talk about divorce and farts.

It has been called “humorous” and “funny," but never “an obvious cry for help, you shriveled husk of a Casanova.”

Once I asked if someone could explain the entire plot of "Friday Night Lights" to me over message, as I hadn’t seen the show and felt curious to know the story.

Someone did, and in great detail.

It was then I realized I had become both the captain and his son, and I had to decide whether to brave the harbor or the sea.

Oh captain, my captain!

When did I become the Walt Whitman of the ocean?

They say there is always other fish to the sea, but how does that help me, a commercial fisherman who has grown tired of sailing?

Perhaps I am just an Ishmael who has never seen my white whale, but believes in it nonetheless.

Still, I lie awake at night.

The phone’s glow haunts my face as I swipe, sorting people into categories like the grown-up leaders of a young adult novel’s dystopian society.

My phone may buzz with a match, and what used to fill me with optimism and endorphins is now nothing but another notification.

I know it only to be another drop in the bucket, and I’m not even that thirsty.