Another weekend, another bout of trying to ameliorate my singledom via the wonderful world of gay “social” apps. I was checking out dudes on one of said apps (not Grindr, because just no). Now, I will be the first to acknowledge that many of the users of this particular app are looking for interactions that are primarily physical and fleeting – which is fine, but not my cup of tea. Sap that I am, I’m actually looking to meet someone who might want to do something like go out for a drink, have some dinner or go for a bike ride. And I’ve had some limited success.
But anyhow, I saw some guy’s profile. He was a handsome sort and this was the extent of his description:
Now, I probably have only myself to blame here, given that of the seven photos included in his profile, six of them showed him shirtless. Far be it from me to generalize, but this is not typically an indicator of a person who is, for lack of a better phrase, my kind of people. But respond I did, thusly:
Not exactly Wilde-esque, I admit, but innocuous enough. Just a friendly hello, with a winky emoticon to keep it easy-breezy-beautiful. No “DTF?” or “Sup” or blatant sexual solicitation – a simple greeting. So, here’s his response:
Word to the wise: a sentence starting with the modifier “This will sound totally awful…” is a strong indicator that what is to follow might be best left unexpressed (this also applies to sentences starting with “I don’t mean to sound racist but…” and “Well, to be perfectly honest…”). Also, as a general rule, people do not take kindly to criticisms of their physical appearance from strangers. I know, it’s crazy! But people just don’t care for it!
Of course at this point, I should have just moved on – but if you note the time, you’ll realize that I was at the tail end of a bottle of my favorite moderately-priced Spanish rosé. And thus probably more loquacious than was appropriate. So I wrote back:
OK, yes, it was smart-ass response. And including a phrase en français may not have been the best choice (though both my Francophilia and pretension are well-known) – but it was, if you’ll (literally) pardon my French, le mot juste, non? I don’t think it was a particularly nasty reply – but it did call him out on being kind of dickish without actually using the word “dickish.” Plus, a smiley face! Easy-breezy!
Anyhoo, off to bed, didn’t give it a second thought, whatevs. But apparently he was still reflecting on things the next day and treated me to this charming response the following evening:
Oh man, there is a lot to parse here!
“The stylist inside of me” – well, the stylist inside of you seems to have an aversion to shirts, so I’m not fully on board with this stylist’s qualifications.
“if you’re interested in attracting a man like me…” – “which you are” Um, no.
“sans ink and jewelry” Oh, so you know French too? Formidable!
“(even though I LOVE it when it works)” Yes, I get it – it doesn’t work on me. You are a true master of subtlety.
“props and trinkets” Look, just because I was wearing my Mardi Gras beads and holding one of my Precious Moments™ figurines in my profile photo is no reason to judge me!
Anyway, it was awfully tempting to respond – but really what would be the point? Though with that being said, here are just a few of the responses that popped into my head:
- Thanks for the advice! I’ll be sure to contact you again when I’ve remodeled my physical appearance to adhere to your standards.
- My cat’s name is Mittens.
- tl; dr
- Dale Carnegie, I presume?
- I’m also ugly on the inside!
- Go fuck yourself.
- Oh, you’re a stylist? How can you find the time to message me, what with your busy schedule dressing JLo?
- Somebody hold my jewelry…
- I can assure you unreservedly, I have no interest whatsoever in attracting a man like you.
- My nipples explode with delight!
- “If you liked it then you should’ve put a ring on it.” Were truer words ever spoken? I think not…
- What’s the longest book you’ve ever read? And, no, the September issue of Vogue doesn’t count.
And while I suppose the fact that I’m posting this somewhat belies my claiming to take the high road here, I think I do deserve a bit of credit for not posting this fellow’s photo or screen name. And, for the record, here’s the entirety of our interaction. I wouldn’t want to be accused of editing this to portray myself in a more favorable light!