GLOSS Issue 20 FEB 2015 - Page 51

So as I was saying, we met in old fashioned times in the old fashioned way. Unlike one of my very best mates, who met his now wife through the internet dating site RSVP; and just the other day I found out another friend - in the same age bracket as myself mind you - met his partner through Tinder! Tinder (for those over the age of 30) is well known for its ‘hook ups’, rather than its long-term love affairs. Using your Facebook profile and details, it then matches you with other people. If you both ‘swipe right’ (signifying mutual physical attraction) then it puts you in contact, where you can organise an um, errrrrr, ahem ‘physical’ meeting. But this was a new usage of Tinder in my eyes a true emotional connection. Tinder has completely disrupted the casual dating scene by focusing on the physical aspects of first attraction, and then going from there. It many respects, it has bypassed all that pesky ‘getting-to-know-you-before-we-jump-into-bed-and-have-sex’ stuff that we used to mess around with. You know, dating. But what if we could really disrupt things and go straight from swipe right to intimacy? In 1997, Arthur Aron found that there were 36 questions that accelerate intimacy under certain controlled conditions. Put two people together - known or unknown to each other - and he stated that they would, with these 36 questions, fall in love. Questions that ranged from the inane ‘When did you last sing to yourself? To someone else?’ through to the deeper ‘What is your most terrible memory?’ to the deepest ‘Of all the people in your family, whose death would you find most disturbing? Why?’. All this is followed by the deeply confronting effort of staring into the other person’s eyes for four minutes. Non. Stop. Of course, one condition that didn’t get tested was mutual attraction. So if technology combined with these questions, could we eliminate the notion of romantic love? Could we eliminate speed dating, awkward blind dates with your great aunt’s twice removed cousin and his mate who may or may not look like Brad Pitt (may not most likely)? Could the world of the dating future be two people swiping right, staring into a FaceTime video conference and answering 36 questions? Where would the biggest disruption for all of this be? Who would be most sad about this? Would it be the smug married couples (me) living vicariously through our single friends? Would it be the romantics who walk amongst us, hoping eternally to meet ‘the one’ ? No - the person who would potentially be the most sad about this would be the out of work actor Ryan Gosling, without a single Notebook sty H[ݚYH