Let me begin by saying something that probably seems pretty obvious: don’t ditch your hometown friends that you only see every-so-often for a Tinder date that isn’t set in stone. Did I do this last weekend? Why yes I did. Am I ashamed of doing so? Eh, not really.
This tale began a week prior as stories like this always seem to do. It was Saturday afternoon and I was mindlessly scrolling through my phone, checking Twitter, Instagram and perusing the talent on Tinder before a friend came over to head to see a local cover band that night. As is the norm, I began to wash down a few Mich Ultras (get on the movement or get left behind) while turning on the SEC game of the week on CBS, because who the hell doesn’t love Verne Lundquist?
Amidst the mindless scrolling on my phone Tinder notified me that I had a new match. Much to my satisfaction, this young woman was rather cute, yet I noticed she was a couple years younger. Fast forward several hours and many Mich Ultras and Bud Lights later I find myself messaging this girl, who we’ll call Annie, while at the concert. My initial guess about her age was correct: another girl home from college for Thanksgiving, but hell, what do I care? I ask if she’s going out to the bars, she says yes, and numbers are soon exchanged. What follows is a story as old as time itself: we try to meet up, yet she can’t get her friends on the same page. We text on and off the next few days and then it stops, just another 48 hours in our world of online dating apps.
Things soon change, however, come Black Wednesday. Having left Chicago and gone home a few hours away, I find myself 10-12 beers deep at the local country club bar with a buddy surrounded by my parents and the older couples whose golf clubs I must’ve cleaned a hundred times in high school. As midnight approaches and I check my phone, I have a text from none other Annie herself after a several day hiatus.
Not the most engaging way to start a conversation but I’ll give it a pass since it is in fact Black Wednesday.
– “Are you still in the city?”
Everyone has been in this position before, and if you haven’t, then you don’t know the drunk thrill that comes with this receiving a text from someone you didn’t expect but wanted to hear from. Just a few days before I thought I was down and out. Done. Another one gone by. Might as well have been the Cavaliers or Cubs trailing 3-1, because there’s no chance I’m getting back into this. It’s just not happening.
– “Ah shoot, I’m actually a few hours away back home. I’ll be back Friday though, want to go out then?”
This, by the way, is complete bullshit. I knew I had plans with my hometown buddies Friday night but offered to come back to the city anyways in hopes of meeting up.
“Yeah you should come back! Let’s do it.”
Boom. Mind made up, I’m coming back to Chicago baby. I rocked through the rest of that night and Thanksgiving day with the swagger of Ferris Bueller himself. I told my parents I’d be leaving the next afternoon to head back because I had plans. As I find myself on the train almost back into the city, the group text with the guys starts to flood with messages concerning the plans that had been made for Friday night. I, as you could guess, was not quick to respond.
Trent- “Yo Pat am I gonna have to send the mafia after your ass or what?”
“Yes…I left because I didn’t think tonight was happening.”
Trent- “I will murder your next 5 tinder dates.”
My friends know me too well.
Matt- “FUCK you Pat.”
Zach- “Pat is still a head ass.”
Q- “Wish I could watch Nate and Pat rip cigs tonight.”
Yeah, so I ditched my friends for a Tinder date and I occasionally rip cigs. To quote Jared Vennett (an all-time great movie character, by the way) I can feel you judging me. That’s palpable.
Anxiously I sat on the train back into the city, shooting Annie texts asking if she’s still down to go out. She says yes and that she will talk to her friends. Five hours later….no text back. Come 8 p.m. I ask if we’re just going meet up at the bars, knowing damn well I probably came back for a Tinder date that won’t happen. She says yes, so I make alternative plans to start the evening.
What were those alternative plans you may ask? Well, in short, going to an overpriced tapas place for dinner with a girl I hang out with every now and then and her two friends, only for them to get so drunk at our raucous four person pregame that one falls asleep, one changes into pajamas and orders pizza and one is on the phone with her ex. All by 11:15 p.m. At this point I’m so consumed trying to meet up with this girl from Tinder that I just let the three stooges guess where I ventured off to.
Attempts are made to meet up, but the texts become fewer and farther between as the night wears on. At this point, I head back to my one-bedroom apartment, flip on some late night college football and continue to crush beers. I fall asleep, only to wake up to a text saying she wishes we could have met up and we’ll try again tonight. I shoot her a text Saturday afternoon asking what the plan is and she claims to still be hungover and needing to see how she feels. We all know how this story ends, and we never meet up. Another short lived week of hope and anticipation in our digital dating world only to be for naught.
So, am I an idiot for ditching my hometown friends I only see every-so-often in favor of going back to the city for a Tinder date that never happened? Probably. For a brief moment, I thought I was back in the game, but am I down and out now? Most likely.
As I sit through work on Monday, still tired and hung-over from the four-day bender that is Thanksgiving week, I take a moment to look down at my phone. Wait… what? I have a Snapchat from Annie? Well I’ll be damned. I suppose she will be back home again in a few weeks for Christmas break…whoever said a Cubs fan couldn’t have faith? I may be down, but I’m sure as hell not out of it yet..
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