I’ve been neglecting the blog again, as I have a tendency to do when life gets busy and I spend considerably more time doing than thinking.
Ah, summertime. The days are long, the weather is warm, the calendar is overflowing with more social engagements than my introverted little brain can handle. We’re going to parties and meeting new people, and inevitably, some of them are cute and charming enough that I want to rip their clothes of. Lovers from far-away lands come to stay and we go to visit. It’s mating season.
Throughout all of it, I’m enjoying the flirting and dating, but I’m finding myself less and less interested in one-off hook ups, especially through connections made online. The apps and websites have their place, even more so in areas that are less gay than Boston, but they’re no longer for me. Quite simply, I’m sick of the behavior of within the apps, and even more sick of the way they’ve become a sort of barycenter for gay culture.
I hear it all the time, in person and online: lamentations from men seeking boyfriends and complaining that every Grindr hookup has been a disappointment, and has never led to anything more. I sympathize. I really do. Gay dating can be intimidating in a heterosexist society, and hookup apps can seem like the easy way to go. You know everyone you chat with is gay and available, and rejecting someone is as simple as ignoring his message.
But it’s a meat market, or like puppies in a pet store. You pick the cute one, or the body that looks like the ones you jerk off to. Maybe, if you’re looking for a real connection, you’ll write to the guy who’s wearing a Batman T-shirt because hey, you’re a “geek” too. You filter them by arbitrary and ill-defined types.
You message him and chat just long enough to decide that he’s not a serial killer and meet up for a fuck.
Not impossible, but unlikely. You know nothing about these guys, and your initial attraction will be based off the physical and sexual compatibility you share, bolstered by a post-orgasmic endorphin rush. When that burns off and you start to really get to know one another, often the relationship fizzles.
Instead, do what you love. Sometimes gay clubs and sports leagues get a bad rap, especially in more gay-friendly areas, because it feels self-segregating and like fulfilling a stereotype. But having a gay social network is healthy regardless of where you live and how supportive your straight friends are. You get to do things you love and meet people who share your interests who are also potential partners.
You get to know them first, and then attraction might develop. Or maybe they introduce you to their friends, and one of them catches your eye. You get the opportunity to have a crush on a person rather than lust after a photo.
So put your damn phone down and stop making faces into the front-facing camera.
Make new friends.
Fall in love.
After all, it’s mating season.