Remember the anxiety attacks you had when dialing a girls’ phone number? Or waiting by the phone expectantly for a boy’s call?
No? Then you must be part of the Millenial’s Cupid 2.0 Generation.
This means you missed out on long hours on the phone (not a mobile phone, a landline phone, connected with wires, and real, solid buttons), where saying “bye” only means hanging up 2 hours later (“you hang up” “no, you hang” “no, you…”), and the “3 Day Rule” is long obsolete.
Now, you get to know your potential date first by Googling her name, adding her on Facebook, following her on Twitter, exchanging a few coy and flirty messages on WhatsApp or iMesssage, before finally going out on that first date.
A recent video by comedian Aziz Ansari griping about the woes of being single in this day and age, got me thinking – has technology taken all the fun out of dating?
People build up a bravado front, allowing them to project a confident, witty, and successful online persona – they take their time in crafting a perfect response to your text, filter their selfies, and spruce up their “About Me” sections. In real life, he or she is a shadow of his Social Media self.
I can say this with authority because I, myself, am a Millenial. I love, and am heavily dependent on the Internet. I have an account on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Linkedin and now, even ultra-hip Snapchat. I scroll through each of the feeds on my iPhone 5 a lot more often than I should.
Of course it’s definitely helped in forging and then building connections, both on a personal and professional level, but, (and this is not to discredit the lovely 93 people following my personal ramblings on Twitter and 893 “friends” on Facebook) whether dating, doing business or getting to know someone in general, I’m with Gen X. I think it should be kept traditional.
Where’s the fun in dating without face-to-face conversations, dinners, drinks, and long walks? Grilled seafood dinner by the beach at East Coast Park for a first date, or sharing an ice-kacang at Adam Road hawker Centre (it’s the best), make for lasting memories, rather than, “Remember that one post I liked on your Facebook wall?”
Just as dating is better in person, so is business. Directors will fly to all parts of the world for a face-to-face meeting, and to ply one another with the finest of wines – all to close that business deal.
That drive to woo someone over with solid skill and charm, in real life, does not seem to exist anymore. It’s just a flurry of connection requests on Linkedin, followed by a flirty “I viewed your profile” then an “I endorsed you for your SEO prowess” thrown in for good measure. Shouldn’t you put in that bit of an effort into fixing a date to meet, in person, too?
Nobody takes their time to meet anymore. Nowadays, efficiency is all about doing more things, with more speed. Siri allows you to dictate your text, so you don’t have to type them out. You can check-in for your flight on your phone, instead of joining the queue.
The recent news of SnapChat, and its ballsy (silly?) rejection of USD three billion (or more) offer from Facebook (because obviously it’s got its eyes on something bigger), further affirms the current generation’s obsession for instant gratification. It’s about living in the moment, because, YOLO.
I am not saying that dating, or business exchanges should be devoid of all things tech and social media. Exchanging sweet nothings on text, and putting up photos of a date night are perfectly fine, but if you want something to actually happen – you’ve still got to meet face-to-face..
Here’s a challenge to try out on your next date – romantic, or otherwise – try leaving both of your phones at home, or even in your briefcase, and see how that goes. Bearing with each other’s company for an entire meal, or even coffee, shouldn’t’ be so bad.