The age of text-dating: Just say no
Published: Tuesday, February 26, 2013
Updated: Tuesday, February 26, 2013 08:02
Whatever happened to the good old days of meeting a guy sitting on a park bench? What about the local coffee shop? Nothing says innate bond like two strangers who both order a tall half-caf one percent extra hot latte, hold the whip. I hear the produce aisle is also an adorable meeting place.
Because we live in the ever-changing Internet age, even our love-lives seem to be taken over by online interaction as our primary method of communication. In the 2009 flick “He’s Just Not That Into You,” Drew Barrymore insightfully proclaims, “Things have changed. People don’t meet each other organically anymore. If I want to seem attractive to the opposite sex, I wouldn’t go get a new haircut, I’d update my profile. It’s just the way it is.”
A sad truth, but people really don’t meet each other organically anymore. Well, perhaps they might meet organically, but courting interactions beyond the initial meeting are now generally contained to electronic mediums. If you hit it off with a guy at a bookstore, he may get your number, but this will be the extent of the non-readable communication until that date you planned (he did ask you on a date, right?).
However, technology usage is not completely horrid and useless. Ladies will be surprised to know they aren’t the only ones who “Facebook stalk.” Men will shamelessly Google the living daylights out of you, and I don’t mean that in a sexy way.
“Actually, we Google you, Twitter you, Facebook you, and if we had a friend in the FBI, we’d FBI you too,” Cosmopolitan contributor Jon Wilde said.
Apparently men want to know all there is to know about the girl they are interested in, and they like to keep their Sherlock Holmes skills sharp while they’re at it. None of this would be possible if it weren’t for, you guessed it, technology.
You boys want to know what kind of music a girl likes? Here’s a crazy idea: Ask her. In person. Do as your mother taught you and use your words, and I don’t mean the kind your thumbs can type.
People today are so accustomed to having barriers of thousands of miles between them when they communicate that it is hard to readjust to life in the presence of an actual, tangible human being. We’ve learned that we can hide behind our little glowing phones and computer screens instead of engaging in face-to-face interaction.
Chris, 21, says, “[Technology] makes it easier, but not in a good way. People don’t have to make as much of an effort, and it is so much more ambiguous than face-to-face conversations.”
Given all of this hard-hitting journalistic analysis, I pose the following question: How have we managed to become a generation so attuned to technology that we have forgotten how to interact with people without it?
My rhetorical answer? Laziness. After all, that’s what the advent of new technology was meant to feed. Perhaps that wasn’t the intrinsic intent, but it is supposed to make our lives easier, which naturally would make a person more lazy, would it not? Those of us who are old enough to remember a time when texting didn’t come standard on a cell phone (or, gasp, a time before cell phones were essential to life at all) are old enough to appreciate a nice phone call or better yet, conversation in person.
David Wygant of the Huffington Post agrees.
“Life is about experiencing emotions,” Wygant said. “Life is about getting on the phone and learning about each other. It’s not about having short, choppy little text sentences (or more often than not text phrases) going back and forth.”
Dating via unconventional means like texting, Facebook and even dating sites where initial attraction is based solely on Internet impressions has changed the dating game, but not necessarily for the better. Many times innovations that are meant to make our lives easier end up producing the opposite effect. And while sending a text to a cutie might be the easiest way to say hello, it is also the most cowardly and impersonal.
Feel like going against the courting grain? Ditch Facebook. No more Skyping. And to those namby-pambies who ask you out with a measly text message at 9 p.m., just say no and head to the produce aisle for some real-life suitor scouting.