WARNING – this post contains explicit topics. For further background on why I’m writing this, please see my previous post.
I shouldn’t give Grindr so much credit in the title, but they were the first app that introduced me to the world of social “dating” apps. As per my previous post, this was something I was a little unsure about getting into, but I did feel that if I was going to do it I really should do it now. Time waits for no man…
I have found it extremely difficult to put myself into the marketplace. If you’d read my previous post (I know you haven’t, but you should), you’d know that I am a somewhat reluctant bisexual. I don’t like all of the stereotypes that attach to being gay. I don’t wish for people to think of me differently because I tell them that I am gay. I would rather live a lie – a lie that hurts no one and has no effect on me personally – than to have to suffer people’s outdated prejudices, or stupid cultural associations. No, I don’t like Shirley Bassey.
But into the marketplace I went anyway. I’ve had some interesting experiences, despite never actually meeting anyone, and may never do so.
For archive purposes, and maybe because someone somewhere might find this amusing, here follows a non-exhaustive list of the categories of guys you might meet on social apps…
The “Straight” Guy
Despite all available evidence, insists on being straight, but just so happens to like you. Usually youngish, aged 18-29, spends most of their time trying to get you to send your most private pictures, and sending very few of their own. Very unlikely to actually commit to any form of meeting. Probably actually a 50 year old. Usually disappears after they’ve got your pictures.
The Cheating “Bi” Guy
The guy who is married or in some form of relationship with a woman and wants to “explore”. Pleads that you should ignore their questionable morality, but usually moved quickly to aggression if continually challenged. Can be quite aggressive in wanting to meet, and will attack relentlessly if you deny them. Will send dozens of pictures freely and willingly.
The “Straight Acting” Guy
Guys aged 20-40 who are aggressively anti-gay, despite being gay themselves. Will often come out with outrageously vitriolic or bigoted statements if backed into a corner. Won’t meet unless you can also confirm your non-gay gayness by behaving in a macho/butch fashion, whatever that is. Into muscles, roughness, the gym, usually tattooed, probably wants you to do drugs with them.
The Picture Curating Guy
Can be any age, but never into any form of meeting ever. Goes straight in with the picture chat, and adds them to his personal conquest collection. May actually block the minute the deed is done. Possibly a 14 year old searching for pictures, more likely a 60 year old getting their rocks off.
The Not Out Guy
May be bi, “straight” or curious, will only show you their face reluctantly, and will often ask questions and be very frank with you regarding their feelings. Often unwilling to meet.
The Surly Young Guy
Aged 18-21 and won’t even countenance a conversation with anyone 22 or older; assumes everyone beyond this age is a paedophile. Forgets that age will hit them too. Extraordinarily arrogant and cocksure, will block or ignore you if you attempt to speak with them. Has presumably blocked so many people that their “marketplace” is empty bar three other profiles.
The Shy Young Guy
Incredibly socially awkward, unable to hold any conversation or reciprocate small talk in any way. Is a step up from the surly young guy because at least they have an open mind, but they will not show any interest in meeting in any form. Immature.
The Arrogant/Rude Guy
Curt and impolite, doesn’t do small talk and gets straight to the point. Thinks they are God’s gift to men but actually aren’t particularly physically attractive, and have very few mental attractive qualities. Will usually block or ignore you if you don’t meet their standards.
The Incredibly Attractive Guy
Like the Arrogant guy, but actually is undescribably attractive and looking for same. Blocks the minute you talk to them if your face does not meet their ludicrously high standards. Socially inadequate.
The Fake Picture Guy
Pretends to be young, attractive and looking for same. Is using the pictures of a young, attractive guy, but is actually old and unattractive. May be a sexual deviant. Looking to speak to young guys and enter into their confidence. Pathological liar. Hard to spot until you realise they refuse any meetings, and never send any live pictures.
The Uncommunicative Guy
He spends all of his time surfing through pictures and never responds. May occasionally send an xD or similar if you try to flirt with them, but appears to show no interest in ever taking things any further. Possibly underage. Possibly with Asperger’s Syndrome or somewhere on the autistic spectrum.
The Intellectually Impaired Guy
I hate to say this one, but there are some guys out there who are looking but may never be bought. Unable to hold any sort of conversation, may often come out with non-sequiturs or seek continuous reassurance as to their attractiveness.
The Lurking Guy
Just looking, as they say. Never does anything more than that. Never replies. Never starts conversations. Presumably nervous and anxious, or not 100% confident in their sexuality.
The Unavailable Guy
You spend a whole day talking to them and you both seem to like each other, and yet there just never is quite a window in the diary for you both to meet. Presumably either a workaholic, with an active social life, or a liar. Don’t waste your time, give up now.
The Flashing Guy
Prefers to open conversations with a picture of their equipment. Can be an effective tool in getting straight to the point, but usually results in ignorance or blocking. Many of these people can actually be surprisingly normal if you give them a chance.
The Fun Guy
Aged 20-40, just wants to meet for “fun” and nothing else. Surprisingly difficult to pin down to an actual date and time. Issues such as travelling and accomodation are usually the stumbling blocks, but may resort to suggesting “going for a drive” or “outdoors”. Sitting in a car at the side of the A1 is hardly the most romantic locale.
The Fanboy Guy
Seems to like you, and you seem to get on with them, but in reality you don’t want to meet them, though they want to meet you. You feel awkward about letting them down, but let them down you must, or they will keep begging you. One step away from stalking.
The Stalking Guy
Makes creepy comments about how close they are. Usually doesn’t actually do anything, but if they take a shine to you can try to track you down. Some variants of this guy will actually spot you in public if you’re in a busy area like a train station. Then they’ll message you to say “I’m behind you!”. Beware.
The Horny Old Guy
Guys 50+ who are into younger guys, but don’t realise how desperately unattractive they are to them. Can be very good pen pals if they’re into that kind of thing, but usually want to meet for “fun”. It might be fun for them but not for the other guy. Are usually very polite.
The Freaky Fetish Guy
Into chains, whips, leather, but usually worse, probably involving bodily evacuations. Will plead with you to join in but often won’t take the hint. Sometimes into wearing adult nappies. A real eye-opener. (PS: that’s probably another fetish they like)
The Aggressively Out Guy
Won’t talk to anyone who is bi, is as camp as Christmas, and wonders why every other guy can’t be the same. Fundamentalist. Blocks relentlessly if you don’t meet their criteria.
You chat them up and they appear to reciprocate. You get excited about just how well the relationship is developing. They appear to be extremely open to the idea of meeting. Suddenly money comes into the equation. Blocked.
The Normal Guy
Believe it or not, they actually exist. In my experience, out of hundreds of conversations, I can honestly say that I have found someone normal once. By normal I mean they exhibited no signs of deviancy, utter social or intellectual inadequacy, or were extremely blessed in the physical goods department. Just normal and sane.
After all the time I’ve spent on these apps, I start to wonder why I even bother. I have resorted to not even starting conversations any more and seeing what happens.
Some guys exhibit characteristics of multiple categories, of course. And it’s even possible to exhibit different categories to different people. It’s the beauty of the internet. Reinvent yourself every time.
I think that, ultimately, is the reason why they can be so addictive. And to guys who are used to having difficulty even identifying who is gay and who is not, they are a real breath of fresh air. Suddenly everyone is a victim, erm, I mean target.
All I can say, having the benefit of my experience, is that I wish people were nicer and more polite. Manners cost nothing. Honesty is always the best policy. If someone is not attractive to you, just say – “Sorry mate, not my type”. Don’t just ignore them or block them. You can’t do that in real life. You have to actually speak to people. We know it will happen all the time, so be confident that you can say “sorry” and they will move on.
But don’t just say sorry and get rid of them without giving them a chance. In fact, sometimes, you can find people who will be friends, even if they are not attractive to you. Friends don’t have to be attractive, remember? I think some guys forget that.
If you are looking for fun or chat or mates or whatever, just say it. No one should be offended, and if they are they are prissy idiots not actually worthy of your effort.
We’re all in the same boat. We’re all looking for something. It’s better to be really clear about it, and save everyone time.
There are nice people out there, and there are nasty ones. The only way you can tell them apart is by talking to them.
Have fun out there.