Texting and the Hindenburg Disaster
Have you ever seen footage of the Hindenburg disaster? The way it sails along, all calm and tranquil, but when it tries to dock, flames erupt and the whole aircraft is destroyed in a fiery inferno in less and 30 seconds? That pretty much sums up my texting game. A fiery inferno with casualties. It took me a long time to realise it. For months, nay years, I was in denial, explaining away and rationalising each individual crash through the lens of extenuating circumstances. Only recently, did I realise, that each individual disaster was not, in fact, the fault of wind, or turbulence, or hijacking. No. It was the pilot. It was me.
Since this epiphany I’ve done some thinking. Analysed the wreckage, so to speak. And I think the problem lies in the fact that in person, I am actually quite a fantastic flirt. You see, I’ve never really had to try. It’s always come naturally. When I’m around people and in extrovert mode I can be relatively charming, funny, bubbly, witty, and approachable (or at least I think I can after a few glasses of Champaign). But this, I have come to realise, doesn’t automatically translate into text. It makes sense when you think about the fact that 90% of what we say has nothing to do with what words we speak, but rather how we speak them - meaning, what body language and tone we use. Therefore, the 10% becomes the 100% in the world of text flirting where body and tone are almost imposible to convery. And it turns out my 10% is nothing but filler. Filler like the sawdust and cow hooves in sausages.
My approach to texting a guy I’m interested in has generally been to write back straight away. Because honestly, who the fuck has time to draw that shit out over three or four days. Yes, I could spend my time texting pointless, semi-flirty crap about what I did on the weekend in an attempt to make myself sound super fun and spontaneous. Or I could just be like ‘Hey, you seem kinda cool, wanna get some coffee sometime?’ Coffee of course being a universal code for you have approximately one hour to convince me it would be worth my while to consider having sex with you. And if you’re not interested, well hey, who cares, because that guy I met at the gym the other day is way hotter than you anyway.
Meeting someone in person is great because you can usually determine, in the first five minutes or so, whether or not you would be willing to jump into bed with them. Adversely, I’ve heard of people wasting weeks, months even, communicating via email or text, only to finally meet and discover one is a morbidly obese semi-professional pigeon watcher with a fetish for belly-button lint while the other is a convicted felon who collects human fingernails and is obsessed with watching The Notebook. And they’re also cousins.
When it comes to the content I’m actually writing, it’s usually whatever the hell pops into my head first and then I hit the send button as quickly as I can (without re-reading of course) before I chicken out and decide what I’ve written is stupid and the whole thing is a waste of time.
Needless to say my hit rate this year hasn’t been great. And by hasn’t been great, I mean zero. I have had zero hits. So my New Year’s resolution this year (among a long list of others) is to actually put some effort into my text game in the hope of maybe getting some long awaited hits in 2016. (And by hits, I mean dates. And by dates, I mean sex.)