While I've had my share of ridiculous, pointless come-ons, I've also met men interested in real dating.
In the past year, I've dated two different men that I met on Tinder. Our first date was in a left-wing cooperative bookstore and cafe.
One man went from asking me about spelunking to suggesting we would make beautiful babies.
Needless to say, it was an abrupt shift in our conversation. They sit in my matches folder like unexplored potential. Maybe we'd have great chemistry – if only one of us made the next move. I'm usually called away by mothering, chores, and paid work.
Then we looked for a place to continue the conversation, gave up, and he brought me home, walked me to the door and gave me a goodnight kiss.
He had a wonderful combination of piercing and wide-ranging intelligence, a sense of humor, and a good job –he played guitar in a metal band.
In my late 40s, I never thought I would turn to a "hook-up" app for romance. After my marriage of 12 years ended, I spent most of the past decade building a successful career that allowed me the time and flexibility I needed to raise my son and assembling a close-knit circle of friends.
Although my ex-husband and I co-parent our now 12-year old son, my son spends 75% of his time at my home.
The schedule makes intimacy difficult and the dating (and mating) dance tends to be, well, not very easy.
Dating in my twenties and thirties made me feel like Odysseus, trying to choose between dashing myself on the ego-bruising rocks of casual romps or a slow death from unrequited lust for garbage humans.
There was the ex who brutally dumped me but wouldn't stop emailing me for months, whose presence at dorky work gatherings made me dizzy; the sociopathic film critic whose shoulder I virtually cried on; the go-nowhere first dates; and the great, wide swaths of time spent single, usually pining after some unavailable director or writer who'd relish my attention and nothing else. There were a few things that sent me into a panic about turning 40, but the biggest — looming larger than the golden ring of a book deal or a staff job or, like, finally going back to yoga — was what it meant for me to still be single and actively looking for a partner at that age. If you're not familiar with the exciting world of online dating, sites and apps let you set search parameters that range from location to body type to education and, yes, age range.
As we sipped wine and gazed out at the hotel's infinity pool and the lights of the city, we talked about how nice it would be have to have a date with us.
Naturally, the topic turned to men and the atmosphere in the room began to resemble a slumber party. We sat side by side, swiping right and left, exclaiming with glee when we matched with someone. I had tried (and still use) other dating applications but the pool of men I had been meeting began to feel limited.