AN OPEN LETTER TO THE MEN OF TINDER

tinder2

This past weekend, surrounded by booze, basketball and friends who were singing the praises – and pitfalls – of Tinder, Miss Wingman finally broke down and installed the app that all the kids are using these days. And yes, that statement makes me sound like my parents (“What is this, the Tinder?”)

In the ensuing days, I’ve spent more time than I’d like to admit down the Tinder rabbit hole, perusing the man-ventory and taking stock of the culture. And what I’ve learned, in the words of Jay-Z, is “That shit cray” (in a good way.) Still, I thought it best to provide a Public Service Announcement to the men of Tinder, for your sake and for the sake of all the females out there who may or may not be suffering from Swiping PTSD. Here goes…

Dear Dudes of Tinder,

Congratulations on completing the rigorous task of downloading a mobile app in your pursuit of some female companionship! How very gallant of you. I’m sure you’re having a blast, but just in case you’re finding that your courtships aren’t as fruitful as you’d like them to be, I thought I’d provide you with some do’s and don’ts to aid you in your search. Sorry to be a Negative Nelly, but let’s start with the Don’ts, shall we? Boys, kindly avoid these types of photos:

The Group Fake Out - Every shot has more dudes in it than the first string of a football team. Which one are you? Who of this group looks like a Doug? The fuck if I know.
Photo Disappointment - This is what results from group shots. It’s not a good idea to surround yourself with your hot friends, FYI. It just bums us out when we realize you’re not the one with the cute dimples, but the one rocking the Jeter fade.
Weaponry - I love shooting, too. But what part of seeming approachable to total strangers who are smaller than you involves a .38 or a .20 gauge? Confused.
Foreigners - Just curious, “Englishman in NYC,” Irish dude or ambiguously South American guy, is there anything other than soccer in your country? Nice jersey.
Cats - So many guys posing with cats! Why why why? Least sexy visual ever…unless it’s a jungle cat.
Wounds, gore or blood - I don’t get it, are you trying to pick up a triage nurse?
Profile shots of objects/landscapes instead of, like, you – You’ve just told us that there’s a strong likelihood that you may or may not be a total mutant. Thanks for the heads up!
Girlfriends, wedding rings - Seriously? Not interested in being a sister wife, sorry.
Visibly f**ked up - Just a thought here, but you might want to try to appear sober in at least one of your photos. Maybe?
Eating – nay, inhaling, food - Things I’ve never thought: “Damn, that guy looks really sexy destroying that Big Mac.” True story.
“Look At How Manly I Am” shots - Ironmans are badass, fine. Tough Mudders? Ever since your little sister and her friends started doing them, eh, not so much.
Excessive muscles and/or tattoos - Sends the same message as the above. Also, a surefire way to half your female prospects. Giant lats aren’t for everyone.
The Hot Girl Heram - Congrats. Being surrounded by 9′s showcases your extraordinary ability to… be in close physical proximity to attractive people. Impressive, bro.
Extreme landscapes (read: the desert, bottom of the ocean, atop a mountain or in front of one of the 7 Wonders of the World) – There’s a fine line between being adventurous, and being a one-man National Geographic. Your living room would’ve been fine.

Unabashedly douchey settings - The red pants, popped collar group shot with girls in tennis skirts = us not being able to tell if the theme of your party was “preppy white people of privilege,” or if you’re just like that.
The Peen - Dick pics, really? WTF is wrong with you people?
Selfies in your car, hotel room or (God help me) shirtless in the bathroom mirror - Do I even need to explain? Just. Stop.

I hope that helps clear things up a bit? Alright then. With regard to quotes, gentlemen, please avoid:

The “Don’t worry, I’ll tell people we met at Whole Foods, a book store, or fill in the blank location” joke - Wasn’t funny the first 5 times we read it! Also, what’s wrong with meeting people on Tinder anyway?
Philosophical bullshit - Thanks for that borrowed Nietsche quote. If I wanted to be enlightened, I’d have one of those black, framed Successories jawns on my desk.
Literary quotes - See above, and swap out Nietsche for Camus.
Being a Regulation Asshole - Saying, “Why does every girl I meet on here want to get married? Whatever, most of them are fatter in person anyway,” shockingly does not endear you to us. Crazy, I know.

But since Miss Wingman doesn’t love excessive finger wagging, here are some Do’s to serve as helpful tips to the slightly Tinder Challenged. Do:

Have more than 1 photo - Let’s face it, any 4 can get lucky and look like a 7 just once if the camera angle is just right. Prove it’s not a fluke. However…
Limit photos to 3 - More than that can work against you. As in, “Ooh, he was so close until I saw him in that deep V-neck tee and rosary necklace.” (Left swipe.)
Make your face actually visible - Because we’re not interested in the Here’s-what-I-look-like-as-seen-through-a-telescope-from-outerspace portrait. Sorry.
Add useful information - Like your (hopefully socially acceptable) height, and phrases like, “Not my kid.” Thanks for clearing that up, bro. Speaking of height…
Remember size matters - It sucks, I know, but if you’re vertically challenged, you’re in luck! We can’t tell until we meet you in person, when you’ll be in a solid position to win us over with your wit and charm anyway. You’re just not doing yourself any favors by standing next to two of your 6’3″ buddies (or, like, a petite chick) and tipping us off ahead of time.

Also remember, dudes of Tinder, this rule: Things that don’t automatically make us like you? Boat shots, saying you’re a “Princeton grad” and expensive cars. Especially if the car has “Maserati of Manhattan” stenciled on the side. But don’t sweat it! There’re plenty of possibilities to make a successful connection on Tinder. That’s where savvy messaging and a nice smile comes in handy.

In reality, no “About me” section is necessary, and frankly it sometimes works against you. When emailing, don’t be afraid to get to the “Let’s meet up” point quickly, since by swiping right we’ve basically already admitted that we’d entertain sleeping with you. Or at least, that we don’t find the idea to be abhorrent. Score! So go out there, have some fun with it, and find your next hot date (er, hookup. whatever.) Just don’t swipe left by accident.

Cheers,
Miss WingmanTHAT’S WHAT SHE SAID

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THE MISS WINGMAN GUIDE TO BEING A MAN

Happy New Year, Wingman faithful. And I mean that literally. The beginning of 2014 has leapt way past “happy” and kicked some serious ass so far. It helps that I spent it in paradise, though.

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(It’s OK, side eye all you want. I’d hate me too.)

But now I’m back and ready do dole out more life lessons, female musings, and wisdom of the “WTF are you doing, bro?” kind. So I thought I’d start with my response to an article I’d seen a while back from the douchebag dude behind the GS Elevator account. I’m usually equal parts amused by and skeptical of it, as it’s pretty much the definition of trolling. But if Goldman Sachs can put out life rules for men, then so can this broad.

I give you Miss Wingman’s Guide To Being A Man, which may serve double duty as your set of resolutions for 2014, if you’re so inclined.

Some of these can apply to the ladies, too, but all of them should be gospel truth. Now good luck, god speed, and may your year be full of love and free of D-bags.

*The car you drive and the suit you wear aren’t the measure of a man. How you treat the valet, the waiter and the guy who shines your shoes are stronger indicators.

*Never ask the woman at the bar if the scotch she just ordered is for her. It probably is, and she’ll definitely hate you for it.

*You are never above doing your own laundry.

*Obey the rule of 3′s: be with a girl who makes you a better version of yourself, makes you laugh, and most importantly, won’t take any of your shit.

*Learn how to dance, how to throw a decent hook, and how to change your oil. Even if you never use any of the three.

*Tattoos and whiskey shots may be a source of regret, but that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t partake.

*Know the difference between making a living and creating a life.

*To that end, a good woman will be more concerned that you do something fulfilling for a living than something that looks good on paper. Money comes and goes, but you can’t put a price on peace of mind.

*Never be the guy who laughs the loudest in the room, or who wears the most cologne. Especially the latter.

*Regret is a terrible thing. Appreciate her, or someone else will.

*Return the favor. And yes, that means what you think it does.

*Tell the truth, even if it’ll hurt someone. Don’t let cowardice be your legacy.

*Offer your elbow to old ladies crossing the street, and your coat to shivering females. Both will be appreciated.

*Find your passion. And a decent tailor.

*Stop calculating your life so much. Saying you’ll do something when your job looks this way, or your relationship looks that way is a crutch. The perfect time to do anything may never come, sometimes you just have to act.

*Don’t own shorts that go past your knees. Or white footwear, unless you’re on a tennis court.

*Keep your phone in your pocket while at dinner or out with a woman. If you must check it, excuse yourself and apologize. There are few things as appreciated as your undivided attention.

*Late night pizza is always a good idea. Drunk grilling is not.

*Loyalty is a lost art. If you find people who possess it, hold on with two hands.

*If you start a sentence with “I swear I’m not racist, but…” or “I don’t mean to be a jerk, but…” probably don’t finish it.

*Call your mother. And your grandparents.

*Perfect the art of the wink. And the dance floor dip.

*If she seems high maintenance – especially in the beginning – she probably is.

*Never take a bet that involves sriracha, tequila or cinnamon.

*Own a hard copy of your favorite book. And at least some of the classics (but not for our benefit, for yours.)

*Ask her parents.

*Long car rides are for singing out loud to good music. And if you get caught by another driver, smile and keep singing.

*Know how to cook at least 3 things well. And no, boiling pasta doesn’t count.

*If you’re lucky enough to have a woman in your bed, don’t sleep with your back facing her.

*Run a marathon.

*Offer up at least one of your Saturdays to help people less fortunate. You’ll get more out of it than they will.

*Don’t own a “going out shirt.” And if you do, burn it.

*Know when you’ve stayed too long at the party.

*If the bartender buys you a round, double his tip AND learn his name.

*No bathroom mirror selfies. Also, never use the word “selfie.”

*Don’t download games on your phone or multiple dating apps. They’re a time suck, and you could be doing something better with that time.

*Relationships take effort and require you to Never. Stop. Trying. The trick is to find the woman who’s worth the inconvenience.

*Clip your nails. (For the love of God, boys, clip your nails.)

*Own a sturdy umbrella, a quality overcoat, a good set of steak knives AND a vacuum. Especially the last one.

*It is your god-given right to watch that playoff game, nap on Sunday, or crack open a cold beer after mowing the lawn. Don’t ever let anyone tell you otherwise.

*Never use emoticons or pet names with a girl. Or at least don’t admit to it.

*When you have children, take them hunting and fishing (sorry, PETA.) Both teach them to have patience, and neither’s gender specific.

*And finally, the only one I’ll borrow from GS: Gentlemen, when in doubt, always kiss the girl.THAT’S WHAT SHE SAID

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HOW TO TELL IF SHE REALLY LIKES YOUR GIFT

Elitedaily.com

Elitedaily.com

Women aren’t easy to read the other 364 days of the year, so don’t expect her reaction to your present be any more transparent during the holidays. It’s not that we’re inauthentic, it’s just that sometimes we care about you so much we don’t have the heart to tell you that your gift, well…sucks.

There’s a difference between the thanks-this-is-nice-but-I’m-kinda-meh-about-it and damn-this-is-perfect-you-totally-nailed-it girl gift reaction, and only those who are paying careful attention can tell the difference. So if you’ll be exchanging presents any time soon, gentlemen, here are some telltale signs that you knocked it out of the park.

She uses/wears/talks about it more than just once after the initial gift exchange. Sure, it’s easy enough to wear the ugly earrings or rock the sweater that’s just not our style in the days immediately following the holiday, we’ve all done that. But the true sign that it’s actually her taste is if it crops up again and again, even when you’re not there to see it.

The eyes have it. Watch her facial expression closely when she opens your gift. If her eyes narrow at all, or if she’s nodding that yes, she likes it a little too enthusiastically, these could belie her true feelings. But if her eyes light up, tear up or just dart around your present excitedly, you’ve done well, sir.

She displays it at eye level. If we really hated that framed print/wine rack/set of glasses, we wouldn’t set them out where everyone could see. They’d be stowed up high or way in the back of the closet, with all the other misfit presents.

Her voice stays level when she tells someone else about your gift. The surest sign that she’s overcompensating is if her voice goes up a few octaves at the end. Like a female falsetto version of “Yes, John gave me the nicest umbrella holder/paper shredder/domestic appliance for my apartment, I just love it!” And yes, I’ve gotten a paper shredder as a Christmas gift from a boyfriend.

So what are some signs she really, really hated what you picked out? If she uses the words “unusual,” “different” or “useful” in her reaction. If you hear any of those adjectives, fellas, you might want to consider returning it

Truthfully, if she’s a keeper and really cares about you, she wouldn’t dream of exchanging your gift (unless it doesn’t fit.) It’s a cold chick who can trample an otherwise thoughtful gesture, even if it’s misguided. If you’re still scrambling, Miss Wingman has posted no less than a million gift guides in the past to guide you in your search and spark some inspiration. And if that still doesn’t work, there’s always next year, bro.THAT’S WHAT SHE SAID

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3 RULES OF POST-HOLIDAY PARTY COURTSHIP

Esquire.com

Esquire.com

Congrats, bro. Somewhere between grinding to Kesha and Pitbull and spilling no less than four Fireball shots on your sweater, you met a girl at that holiday party. And if memory serves, she was pretty cute. Unless that’s the Fireball talking – which is a distinct possibility. But you got her number anyway, good for you.

So now what?

Whether you realize it or not, holiday party hookups (or potential hookups) come with a slightly different set of guidelines than your run of the mill encounter. Why? Because if you don’t act on it fast enough – the right way – you miss out on the chance to turn it into something more (a New Year’s Date perhaps?) So observe the following:

Hit her up before the actual holiday. Chances are, one or both of you will be traveling for at least a few days, more if you have vacation time. This means if you don’t send that “Hey, it’s so-and-so from the other night, wanna grab a drink this week?” text soon, you’ll miss out on a crucial window to see if she really is as cool as you remember. Digit exchanges come with a shelf life, after all.

And even if you’re slammed with work and tying up loose ends before the end of the year (as many of us are), you can always drop a “Really enjoyed meeting you the other night. Things are kinda chaotic right now but would love to grab a drink after New Years if you’re down?” message. It’ll keep you in the game, and show her that you haven’t lost interest.

Confirm basic information. Like, for instance, her name. “Karen” and “Karly” aren’t interchangeable, no matter how many eggnogs you threw back. Also, remind her who you were (“Hey it’s Ryan, the charming, handsome guy in the red pants…” *Also, don’t wear red pants). Dudes aren’t the only ones who work multiple leads at at time, sorry.

And finally, approach it with a clean slate. There’s something about fancy clothing and flowing liquor that makes people do crazy things. So if she – or you – did anything embarrassing or said something questionable, disregard it. We promise not to hold spilling a glass of mulled wine on our favorite skirt against you, if you cut us some slack for ignoring you while tending to our too-drunk friend.ETIQUETTE WINGMAN

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NOW YOU CAN OUTSOURCE YOUR PROPOSAL… IF YOU’RE A TERRIBLE PERSON.

marriage-proposal

There are few things in life that, no matter how much money you have, you should really just do yourself. Like wiping your own arse (classy, I know), writing someone’s eulogy or, you know, PLANNING A WEDDING PROPOSAL.

Or, you can be lazy, thoughtless and entitled and pay a woman like this up to $10,000 to do it for you. That’s right, if you just can’t be bothered to think up a sufficiently overblown, inauthentic way to ask your beloved to marry you, now you can punt that job to a total stranger.

How. Fucking. Romantic.

So who is this proposal planner for hire? Sorry fellas, I find the idea of men who would do this even more unsavory than a woman who would be opportunistic enough to make a career out of it, so I’m not going to plug her any more than I have already. But I will say that the blame isn’t solely hers. If there wasn’t a market out there of men who don’t feel inspired or impassioned enough to put some thought behind asking someone the most important request of their lives, then we wouldn’t even be discussing this story. Sadly, though, this service is in demand.

So why the Miss Wingman tirade? Why the disdain? The problem with dudes hiring someone else to plan their wedding proposal is that it takes everything that’s intimate and personal out of one of the most momentous occasions in a woman’s life (and hopefully, a man’s too.) Even the least romantic, least sentimental chicks among us have daydreamed about what it would be like when the person we love takes a knee and pops that box open.

We envision you thinking about it ahead of time, orchestrating just the right moment and incorporating something that’s unique to our relationship. Something meaningful, that helps you convey how you feel about us. Not farming it out like dry cleaning.

We do not, however, envision you cutting a check to some Hitch-meets-Olivia-Pope lady and her “team” after answering a lengthy survey about our likes and interests. Seriously, gentlemen, set the bar higher. Not flash mob higher, sincerity higher. So, if you’re inclined to jump on the “engagement season” bandwagon any time soon (Vom.It.), heed this advice: it’s only special if it seems so quintessentially you. And authenticity trumps pageantry any day.ETIQUETTE WINGMAN

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HOW TO SURVIVE THE HOLIDAYS SINGLE

Courtesy: Redditor Moth_ladder

Courtesy: Redditor Moth_ladder

Ahh the holidays. The perfect time of year for snuggling by fireplaces, sipping hot cider with the one you love, and the feeling of “Ho Ho Hope all you happy couples choke on your candy canes” if you’re currently single.

Just kidding. Bitterness doesn’t suit anyone. Definitely don’t go that route.

But it is an especially cruel time of year to be solo. So just in case you’ve been feeling like Santa is kicking you in the junk lately, I’ve got your back.

Here’re Miss Wingman’s Top 10 Tips For Surviving The Holidays As A Party of 1. Good luck, godspeed, and may January get here soon, goddammit.

Drink. That may not be the politically correct thing to say, but fuck it. Drink. Whiskey, eggnog, wine, whatever. You’ve earned the right to throw a few back. So imbibe early, and often (just not at work).

Hit up holiday parties. Your own company’s, friends of friends’, or just crash a few outright. Chances are, everyone will be too drunk to ask who the random is double fisting in the corner.

Stay off of social media. Why? Two words. Engagement Season.

Retail therapy. Think this is only for chicks? Think again. Also, buy yourself something nice. Scratch that – two somethings.

Drink.

Sweat it out. Two-a-days, motherf**ker. They work. Also, they serve double duty: fitness therapy, and getting a jump on all those pathetic New Year’s resolution saps that’ll be invading your gym soon. And speaking of New Year’s…

Get the heck outta dodge. Even if it’ll break the bank, when the ball drops, if you have your toes in the sand you won’t even notice all the couples kissing around you. Promise.

Do something you love. Every day. Scratch that – two somethings you love. Whether it’s playing that guitar that’s been gathering dust, hitting up NHL games (shut it, hockey haters), or Face-Timing with people you care about, surround yourself with people and things that remind you why you’re pretty kickass in the first place.

Download new music. If there’s one thing I’ve learned, it’s that there are few things in life that a solid playlist and singing at the top of your lungs can’t fix.  Also, hope you don’t like your neighbors.

Drink.THAT’S WHAT SHE SAID

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MORE TEXT MESSAGE MISTAKES MEN MAKE

If I’ve said it once I’ve said it a thousand times: it’s easy to blow it via text.

On the one hand, texting should work in your favor. Guys with Average Joe looks but who have above average wit can make themselves more attractive during these digital dalliances. But on the flip side, guys who were otherwise attractive-slash-marginally-well-spoken can shoot themselves in the foot if they exhibit less than stellar text etiquette.

It’s a Catch-22 if you don’t know how to play it.

Face it, texting isn’t going anywhere any time soon. It’s the sole form of communication for singles, and in an age when actually (gasp!) calling someone is considered borderline stalker behavior, you need your cell game to be on point, gentlemen.

So as a tandem argument to the no body part photos and no emojis rule (Seriously, are you a 12-year-old girl? No? Then cut it out with the smiley faces), allow Miss WIngman to offer up one more caveat: the two week rule. That’s right, 14 days – give or take – is all you have to hold our attention before we assume you’re indifferent about us. Anything longer and we’ll think you have better offers on the table.

If you’ve been texting a girl for two weeks since meeting her and you still haven’t played the “So when can I see you again?” card, you may be dead where you stand. Barring any extenuating work/family/travel circumstances, that is. Make plans to hang out, or just. stop. texting.

Why? Because back and forth banter has a shelf life, bro. If we wanted a f**king pen pal, we’d still be exchanging letters with Suki, our Japanese exchange student from 4th grade. If she wasn’t willing to go out with you, she wouldn’t have responded to your texts. In fact, she’s probably waiting for you to pull the trigger. A telltale sign of digits offered up out of politeness or guilt would be radio silence after you reach out, so don’t sweat it.

And finally, the lengthy breaks that typically accompany this type of lazy exchange make it hard to remember what we were even talking about to begin with (Scrolling all the way up? Bitch please.) I’ve had easier to follow conversations with my 3-year-old nephew, and he speaks like an ESL student most of the time. So if you don’t want to send the message that you’re luke warm about her, take some initiative, man. She may or may not be as cute/normal/fun as you remember, but there’s only one way to find out.ETIQUETTE WINGMAN

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