-“Doctor…I was right-swiped by more than 1,500 men—I just want one.”

Veronica X. is a dashing young post-doctoral student in a local college that does not know whether she wants to stay in Miami after her graduation. As she did not want to engage in a serious relationship that would limit her choices, she decided to try a dating app for some temporary company. She tried an application called Bumble where women have to make the 1st move.

For such a knockout gal the dating scene is full of choices of various kinds with instant gratification and the possibility to change anytime she wants. In the safe environment of her dorm, she enthusiastically whizzed through hundreds of profiles until she decided to “separate” four or five she liked. She contacted the first one and set up a date. Halfway through the date he was already propositioning her to skip dessert in order to hook up earlier. She was so disgusted that she picked up her belongings and skedaddled out.

The second one turned out to be married…The third one was a closeted gay. One of her recurrent complaints is that the scant content allowed by Tweeter does not enable a woman to fully appraise if her planned date is worth it. She has to take a good guess and cross her fingers that he will be “the one.” Moreover the possibility of having so many choices tempts women to go out with different dates in order “to see if there’s something better out there.” Forsaking traditional monogamy, the dating apps encourage “having flings.”

In my novel, Emily, the main character, shares her emotional frustration with Annie, her cousin and confidante, after she started dating again upon becoming a young widow.

 –“Where are all the men?” Emily asked. “Where are they hiding?”

-“Men? What men?” Annie retorted.

-“Nice single guys that like the company of women—that’s who.”

As the last glimmer of light was slanting behind the yard’s pine tree line—in the 10th anniversary of William’s death—they were sharing a cup of coffee.  Emily was feeling progressively less and less satisfaction from her material possessions, replaced by a widening spiritual void. Hedonic adaptation.

Emily grabbed her I-phone to scroll through her latest social feeds.

She shoved the apparatus into Annie’s face, practically fogging the screen.

-“Tell me the truth—is she really prettier than me, eh?”

-“What the fuck? Still following that asshole?”

-“Don’t want him to think that he still matters so—“

-“But he does… Gimme that!” said Annie, grabbing Emily’s phone.

Annie clicked “unfollow’ and then “unfriend” in Emily’s Facebook page.

-“There you are…End of story.” Annie said, handing her the phone back.

-“Can still follow him in Twitter—“

-“Whatever—what you’re looking for does not fit in a tart tweet.”

What do you think? Please tell us.

Don’t leave me alone.







6 thoughts on “Too big for 140

  1. In Africa, you know our culture. Women may make advances, but it is men that must voice out. What is the implication of this? It just means young women should make themselves approachable with a lot of patience; with prayer also if I may say. Additionally, one has to be careful when it comes to Socials….. Facebook, Twitter, Instagram…… All the likes!

    1. Good morning and thanks for your good commentary. May I dare to suggest that perhaps what we call Africa is fast becoming “different Africas” due to the large number of young people with great expectations, and oftentimes little socio-economic opportunities to match them, that are entering the market. They are pushing hard the boundaries of their social systems to foster meaningful change. I am very familiar with the demographics and culture of French-speaking Senegal and I can assure you that the young ladies do not behave meekly in their sexual relations there. If you have a chance please check my blog titled “The Mbarane phenomenon” where I discuss it. Thank you for starting to follow me; I will check your page and reciprocate the courtesy. Au revoir.

  2. Paradoxically, it seems that the more choice we have today with the advancement of technology, social networks and dating sites, the fewer alternatives we have, maybe because of the freaks we often encounter in this wonderland. I thought the movies about “online dating” without actually going on a date are fictional but lately I’ve heard so many stories confirming it that it makes me wonder if we’re progressing or regressing.

    I read an article about a 24-year-old New Yorker who has been “online dating” for three years without seeing the guy’s….you know what, except on the screen, describing her experience as ‘ insanely overwhelming.’

    So many online sites and apps make it worse, or so it seems. What should make dating easier than ever looks pretty stressful. Psychology calls it the paradox of choice. We have so many choices that we can’t feel satisfied about/when making them, and how many or which ones, that is the question.
    Is that the reason why millennials marry at a significantly lower rate and at later ages than previous generations?! Could be because the world has never been so full of singles.

    One tweet sums it up perfectly: Sometimes I worry that the love of my life is on a different dating app. Alas!

    How are you doing, dottore?

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