Shuffle Around Life: Chapter 4 (2, Q, 4), Dating App Tips Series: Hinge and the Holiday Season

What’s up everyone and welcome to Part 2 of our DAT TRP Series. We already covered OkCupid so if you’re curious about the issue you can click here or work your way from the Beginning of the Shuffle Around Life series.

Hinge is an app that was popularized in New York, gained traction in LA and slowly crept and crawled throughout the country. One of the key differences with this app compared to OkCupid is it’s minimalist settings. Originally you had to sync your Facebook account in order to “acquire the friends of friends network aka your prospective dating pool” to see what you’re working with. As of the writing of this article, you can now sign up with just an email. You can do either way, however for me I started with Sync’ing my own FB account and went from there.

When you first start you need to set your Preferences, who are you interested in (are you interested in the same sex, opposite sex, or you like to grab from both genders). Unfortunately for certain LGBT individuals this may be off putting. Afterwards you need to turn on Location Settings because you need to “Claim your hood.” Then you have to set all the other demographic data: Age Range, Maximum Distance and more. One of the key features that stand out as a filter is the “Is this a Dealbreaker?”

If you’re one of those people that likes to sample the entire world’s buffet, then never turn on that option. However if Religion, Maximum Distance (which only covers 100 miles, talk about limited parameters) and more are truly important for you, then by all means switch on and indicate “It is a Dealbreaker?” It will be marked with ‘Dealbreaker’ in the preference setting, so you can set it and forget it. Now me personally, unlike OkCupid you cannot filter by fitness preferences (seems superficial and probably better for overall user experience) but for those of us who want someone a bit more active, than average (and that’s not asking much) this is one of my few qualms about it. One other thing to note is, while OkCupid still has a slant (no pun intended) to favor Caucasian Males and Asian Females. This app caters to a similar audience (it’s not to throw shade it’s the facts), so if you love Basic Becky/Techies (70%) then you’re probably in Nirvana. There are a portion of Minority Females but the breakdown before I placed my filters were (20% Asian and 5-10% Latino/Hispanic or African American given your geographic location). You don’t have to fill out everything but you should definitely address everything, if you want to take this thing seriously. Your mileage may vary and as an Asian-American male my experience is much more unique than let’s say someone who is Caucasian or African-American. When thinking about how you want to convey yourself to your dating prospects be mindful to:

It’s very important to setup your profile sections, you need to optimize: six pictures, three answer prompts, seven virtues, eight vitals, four vices, and the option of syncing your Instagram (sounds like the 12 days of Christmas song, doesn’t it?). I’ll break it down by each section mentioned:

Six Pictures

You have six pictures to make an ideal impression on your would-be prospect. I’ve seen both my friend’s profiles and some acquaintances. If you don’t like taking pictures either befriend (or pay) for professional photography headshots. If you’re crafty (or gutsy like I was), you can have someone take them for you and take a chance. For my recommendations you should have a split, three photos of you: One clear headshot, one full body shot, and one action shot (pick your ideal activity: climbing, racing, dancing, etc.) The other three, should showcase your personality/interests: Do you like dogs, have a specific passion, have an “urge” to travel (which is very common in dating apps)?

Once you pick those photos you can put it in order, now there’s another three ways you can break this out:

  1. Treat your dating profile like a page from your life story, infographic style and easy to follow, top to bottom
  2. While creating PR highlights about yourself in between the snippet

Three Answer Prompts

English majors, Hinge will make you shine so hard, it’s not even funny (maybe even OkCupid), very few know how to entertain those with a tap of the keyboard. In any event, if you’re a man of few words, use your concise language effectively. My recommendations are: Two Truths/One Lie (if you live an interesting life, are a good liar, entertaining storyteller, or all of the above), I’m looking for (you can be as blunt or witty, e.g. I like tongue and cheeks…. tongue twisters and baby cheeks to pinch, you pervert), & Ideal first date (to set the tone of the first encounter).

Seven Virtues

This is your personal/impersonal background. You don’t have to give out your life story like a business card, of the seven, I would say: Work, Job Title, and Education Level are the most important. A tie for forth is Religious Beliefs/Politics, if that truly matters to you.

Eight Vitals

These are your sports stats, get ready to flex (or not flex) your biological prowess. As for the important ones in this list: Gender, Age, Height, Ethnicity, Family Plans and Location. If you’re concerned about stalking safety (yes ladies, it happens to guys as well), then change your Location setting to what’s reasonable and within the area you’d like to be. Just note, if you place yourself into some “perceived rich metropolitan area” you could be cat fishing those along, who might be looking for a lifestyle that doesn’t equate to your standards. 

My Four Vice

This particular section is all about which vices resonate or deal break the entire experience. Do you sip, get lit, hit the bong, or go off the grid?

Instagram feed Syncing is optional. If you decide to sync it, think of it like your first pictures but people will be able to “Hinge comment or  heart like” (I’ll explain this in a bit). your photos via IG (up to the most recent 27 entries). Again, think of these recent entries as part of “What’s going on in my Social Media life recently?”


Now that your profile is set you’re ready to engage. When you encounter a profile, you’ll see their name in the top left corner. And you’ll begin to notice the choices people make on their photos, prompts, and etc. The heart icons enable you to “like” a specific part of that profile (why I encouraged optimizing your profile from the beginning). While scrolling top-bottom you’ll see a pink-red ‘X’ notating you can outright reject the current profile (a swipe left in Tinder/OkCupid land) and movie onto the next. If you did your due diligence, once you like this person and they review your awesome profile, they’ll like you back and “maybe comment'” about whatever picture or content you wrote about.

Like most dating websites, there are stereotypes both regionally/nationally/globally about genders. For instance,  women on dating apps “love to travel” (I get it, you have not only disposable income but you’d also like to explore a buffet of men and destinations before settling down, men feel the same way). Whereas guys love to “Rock Climb, go Camping, Racing, or “Raving.” etc. Pick your poison and if you want to make it a drinking game, play dating app bingo and see how many stereotypes you come across. Also note, didn’t realize women we’re already ahead of the curve, case in point (however the insecurities of putting dating effort into the app, definitely hit her hard) as well as a few others who came into this realization.

Overall, you get what you put into any experience and dating apps are no exception to this rule. Sure, there are some things you might want to hold back on your first few dates. However over time people will eventually see if you’re worthwhile or not, which I stumbled upon content creator George Bruno and his timely video here, said this in his script “Women marry a lifestyle, a man marries a body.” 

This really hit close to home because as I get older, I do fear in some respects that could be a possibility. And with the advent of Social Media, more and more people are “conforming/settling” for a specific lifestyle, I wonder why that may be the case? Side note aside, Hinge as a dating app (like everything else in the market) gives you an opportunity to meet new people. Some of you are expecting 100% effectiveness with these tips, unfortunately it may not work for some of you at all. I’m merely sharing my experience because I had to learn the hard way, there were no resources for Asian-American males and the things that were taught to me, didn’t apply (or I didn’t have the “model look” to pull it off like some of my peers LOL).  

All I do hope is whether it’s this holiday season, you’re trying to get an extra ‘snack’ to stay warm with or are truly looking for something meaningful. I hope these few tidbits can help you one step closer in your journey to happiness. Merry Christmahanukwanzaa to all and The Relationship Podcast will be ready to ring in 2019 with a brand new season! Thank you for the support as always and take care, the only single guy on the panel signing off!

-R.M. 2018 DAT TRP



Shuffle Around Life: Chapter 3 (7, 6, 5), Dating App Tips Series: OkCupid and More

Here’s my explanation for this long-overdue Chapter, I wanted to create a bit more coherence between posts (beyond Cartomancy and the general theme of top, middle, and bottom) and introduce a small mini series called Dating App Tips The RelationshiPodcast Series (or DAT TRP)

This series is a build up to the Dating Project I mentioned a few episodes back and I’ll start with a semi-popular and somewhat relevant app of today, OkCupid. There are many reviews of this app, you can read Mashable’s, Ask Men’s, or Dating Scout’s version. However my review is different because I will share with you the few tips you need to have the most optimal experience. One other thing to keep in mind, this is coming from a heterosexual minority (Asian-American) male so your experience and mileage may vary.

Let’s get started!

Unlike Tinder and Bumble what sets this specific app apart is the long form survey questionnaires. People get real lazy and from my experience if a woman really appreciates your “aesthetic” chances are she didn’t read your profile for jack shit. So you’re probably gonna ask, “How can I get my own bae?” Welp, here are some best practices and specific questions to look out for:

  1. Be yourself (write your profile as if you had a girlfriend/wife).
    1. I know this shit sounds weird but when I first created my profile a long time ago, I thought about it like a “Marketer/Youtube Clickbait writer.” Trust me it works, the more genuine your tone and candor you provide. Your personality shines bright like a diamond and the chances you’ll be matched with someone will increase (even if you feel like your ugly as sin itself).
  2. Watch out for specific questions that could indicate incompatibility based on your lifestyle and core values
    1. Ethnic/Race preference Question: Probably the biggest indicator (if your ideal mate) likes to stick with their own kind. Even OkCupid Christian Rudder reference’s in his book Cataclysm, that this question is supposed to indicate some sliding scale of Racial preferences. A 95% of the woman I swiped on thankfully answered in this manner:
      1. Would you Strongly prefer to date someone of your own skin color/racial background?
        1. You answer: Whatever
        2. She answers: No
          1. There are a few profiles I encountered that say “Yes” and majority of those were Caucasian and Asian women (no big surprises there given our previous podcast episodes and historical data).
      2. Would you ever consider ending a relationship because a parent, family, member or close friend didn’t approve of your partner in terms of attractiveness, race, nationality, gender, age, or other factors beyond their control?
        1. You answer: Whatever
        2. She answers: No
      3. If you were going to have a child would you want the other parent to be of the same ethnicity as you?
        1. You answer: Whatever
        2. She answers: No
          1. Fun fact, if she says “Yes” and you’re not her ethnicity, well I feel bad for you son because…. 99 problems but a kid ain’t one. *Jay-Z voice*
    2. Money Question(s): Again, another dead giveaway. People usually don’t put in the work to answer these for yourself but you should (and for good reason). If you don’t want a “Gold Digger” than anything that shows she values money potential you might, have a large incompatibility issue in the long run. Furthermore, I would stress that a whopping 98% of the profiles I’ve encountered answered these questions in the same way regardless of ethnicity, that I swiped on (shocking I know) and here are the two questions and their affiliated responses:
      1. Is your ideal match well-off financially or at the very least someone who has high income potential?
        1. You Answer: Whatever
        2. She Answers: Yes it’s somewhat important
          1. If she answers “Yes it’s very important,” now I ain’t saying she a gold digger but..
      2. How important is money/wealth for you in a match?
        1. You Answer: Whatever
        2. She Answers: Yes, it’s somewhat important.
          1. …she ain’t a messing…
      3. Would you date someone who was in considerable debt?
        1. You Answer: Whatever
        2. She Answers: No
          1. …With a (Broke/Student Loan heavy/no new BMW type) ninja. However if she ever says, “Yes, its not a problem for me.” that’s wifey material right there (hard to come by).
      4. How would you feel if your significant other made more money than you?
        1. You Answer: Whatever
        2. She Answers: Very Comfortable
          1. Fun fact on this one, I NEVER see any ladies say “Very Uncomfortable.” Given the whole movement in 2018 for dating equality, there are some things that will stay the same till the end of time.
      5. Do you believe money can buy happiness?
        1. You Answer: Whatever
        2. She Answers: Yes
          1. If she answers yes (in addition to the above questions), then I hope your pockets are deeper than the Mariana trenches, cause that child/lifestyle support money is serious in 2018
    3. Hygiene (Biological/Lifestyle) Question(s): You’re probably thinking, damn Ryan I can’t pick up a woman if I don’t wash my balls religiously or brush my teeth twice a day. You can thank your stars Jimmy, this isn’t that much of a deal breaker. Granted I can make the case, that most people have some standard of basic hygiene and the arguments for lack of hygiene is purely for lifestyle optimization (not washing their hair everyday, is a ‘dirtbag’ (rock climber), or HLA (Human Leikocyte Antigens) incompatibility). In my sample size, 60% of the women I swiped on answered the question and provided these responses:
      1. How important is it to you that your partner smell good?
        1. You answer: Whatever
        2. She answers: Important-ish or Less important than you think
          1. If she says “I just don’t care at all” may your crusty balls be forever cherished.
    4. Lifestyle: This isn’t lumped with hygiene because you can avoid the restroom for a few weeks and still be a rational (and somewhat ethnical) human being. However do note, depending on what you’re personally gunning for you may want to focus on certain questions and de-prioritize the rest. Here are the questions and their respective responses, keep in mind 70% of the women, I swiped on answered in this manner:
      1. Would you date someone who still lives with their parents?
        1. You answer: Whatever
        2. She answers: No
          1. Another fun tidbit, if she says “Yes” and you’re living in a very expensive part of the country *COUGH* San Francisco Bay Area/Manhattan/Hollywood*. Good luck, trying to convince her otherwise.
      2. Would you consider having an open relationship (i.e., one where you can see other people)?
        1. You answer: Whatever
        2. She answers: No
          1. One of the things I learned from past dates is if she says “Yes,” then you shouldn’t hold your breathe on commitment quality, just saying (and this is beyond the “Dating Phase.”) as well.
      3. It’s your first date. Do you split the bill, pay the whole bill, have them pay the whole bill?
        1. You answer: Whatever
        2. She answers: Split the bill or It doesn’t matter to me.
          1. If she answers “Have them pay the whole bill.” then you know what to do chief.
      4. Would you consider sleeping on a first date?
        1. You answer: Whatever
        2. She answers: No
          1. If she says yes and she’s also down to hook-up, then make sure to stay equipped.
      5. About how long do you want your next relationship to last?
        1. You answer: Whatever
        2. She answers: Several years or The rest of my life
          1. I never seen the answer “One night” usually few months to a year is common.
      6. Has anyone ever accused you of being “high maintenance”?
        1. You answer: Whatver
        2. She answers: No
          1. If she answers “Yes” in addition to the financial questions again don’t be surprised…
  3. Read their profile and find common ground between you two
    1. No surprises there but there’s some amount of work you need to put in.

Other questions to look out for and determine good compatibility not just for dates but long-term relationship potential are:

  • How many children would you ideally like to have?
  • Is it ok for a woman to ask a man out on a date?
  • Would you consider being in a relationship with someone who has had homosexual sex?
  • Does hanging out in an empty field, in the middle of no where, at 2am to watch a meteor shower sound like fun to you
  • Are you still in love with one or more of your former partners?
  • Which of the following do you find to be the most liberating?
  • How many countries have you visited?
  • Have you stayed friends with most of your ex-boyfriends/ex-girlfriends?
  • Do you have an ex that you would really like to date again?
  • Are you flaky (i.e. cancel plans at the last minute)?
  • Can you cook?
  • Do you believe regular sex is necessary in maintaining a healthy relationship?
  • Do you ever ghost someone (cut off contact without warning) after meeting in person?

These questions are a supplemental litmus to determine how adventurous, reliable, and/or “not ready for a relationship material these prospects” are. You can observe on the one’s I highlighted here to determine, the ideal people I’d like to build a relationship. However if you really want to take the bare bones optimal approach use the questions I bolded as strong indicators of overall compatibility, that might help you in your search. Hope this helps and look out for an upcoming Podcast Episode on Double Standards and the next app I’ll review in the DAT TRP series.