THE BLOG

36 Hours in Tinder

03/19/2014 10:15 am ET | Updated May 19, 2014

You know you've arrived in Tinder when greeted by its most famous landmark: a giant, orange-red flame that could also pass for a bloody teardrop. With a rich history dating back to September 2012, Tinder is a bucolic escape for pleasure-seekers and romantics alike. Some tourists call it a paradise; others, a place of last resort. Yet regardless of any misgivings, you can't truly judge Tinder until you've taken the time to explore its breathtaking scenery.

Friday

1. Right or Left | 4 p.m.

Settle in and get comfortable. In Tinder, you'll meet hundreds of willing, eager candidates to have and to hold, for richer or poorer, until (some variable end time, e.g. "the next morning") do you part. If you see someone you like, go right. If you see someone who repulses you in every way, go left. Even though you have scant information upon which to base your decision (a name, an age, a short description and a few of their very best pictures), who cares? The thrill is in the choosing. Right or left. Buy or sell. Deal or no deal. Be choosy, but also give people a chance. The only way it ends badly is if you get brutally murdered by a Tinder date... but isn't that better than dying alone?

2. Let's Go Shopping | 9 p.m.

Are you looking for a one-night bonefest or a serious relationship? Do you want a good girl gone bad or a bad girl gone good? Would you prefer a shawty or a chickenhead? Whatever your predilections, Tinder has it all. If you're seeking a husband, try dinner at the Tall, Dark & Handsome, where popular dishes include: taller than six feet ($5), has a full-time job ($12), and took a picture with a tiger ($3). If you're going for something less serious, get dessert from the Busty Blonde, with specialties like bikini photo ($6) and uses more emojis than actual words ($4.50).

3. Make it Rain | 11:30 p.m.

Come back to an empty bed, but don't fret. Tinder comes alive after dark. Make it Tinder rain by going right, right, right, right, right, right, right, right, right, right, right, right, right, right, right, right, right, right, right, right, right, right, right, right, right, right, right, right, right, right, right, right, right, right, right, right, right, right, right, right, right, right, right, right, right, right, right, right, right, right, right, right, right, right, right, right, right, right, right, right, all night long.

Saturday

4. Feel Loved | 11 a.m.

Wake up late because you're single and you still can. Upon reviewing your activity from last night, you may find a few bites on the line. You've been matched! There are doctors. Lawyers. Webcam chicks. An abundance of shirtless mirror selfies. In the harsh light of day, not everyone will be as Tinderesting as they seemed last night. But that's what you get with quantity over quality: a lot of puns ("Are you my Tinderella?") and several messages of "Sup" at 2:50 a.m. At least you can feel good about being wanted, even if you now have a large, bearded man named Danuary on your tail. Follow up on promising leads with a message like "It's going down / I'm yelling Tinder," and wait for love to bloom.

5. Familiar Faces | 1 p.m.

Cruise the busy Tinder streets long enough and you're bound to run into someone you know. Inevitably you'll both try to justify why you're here ("My friend signed me up as a joke!"/ "I just wanted to see what all the fuss was about!" / "I'm writing a satirical article about Tinder that plays off those bougie New York Times travel pieces!"). When you do find yourself face-to-phone with a real-life acquaintance, simply take a few screenshots of their cheesy profile for future blackmailing purposes and go left. Left will make it less likely that they'll see you in Tinder, and thus less likely that they'll find your cheesy profile to show to all your co-workers, and thus less likely that you'll get fired for pretending to be sick when you were clearly whitewater rafting on a long weekend in Tahoe (thanks, Tinder pic #4).

6. Leaving Las Tinder | 6 p.m.

You've traded the quips. You've gathered the courage. Now, set off to meet Jenna/Brittany/Danuary in person. Isn't it exciting? You're finally leaving Tinder for the wonderfully dim lighting of Starbucks (so that if do start dating, you can tell everyone that you met at Starbucks, of course. Like normal people do.). But before you go, remind yourself that pictures can be deceiving, especially when it comes to waist-thickness or hairline-fullness. Remind yourself that liking "good food," "music," and "traveling" doesn't necessarily mean that you have anything in common. Remind yourself that a lot of people have herpes. A lot. But setting all that aside for a moment, just consider: this could be love...

7. The Tinderer's Dilemma | 7 p.m.

Sadly, you have no chemistry with Jenna-why-is-her-voice-so-annoying-and-did-she-just-quote-Rand-Paul, which you discover over a vanilla spice latte at Starbucks ($4.59). So head on back to Tinder, however begrudgingly. You've become one with Tinder now, even if no one in Tinder has become one with you. You debate leaving, but you stay for now... because it's still fun and addicting and it gives you something to do while waiting for your mom to go on Words with Friends.

Sunday

8. The Road Less Traveled | 1 p.m.

Pack your bags. After hundreds of back tats and tongue rings, duckfaces and bicep kisses, you've exhausted the mighty gods of Tinder. The famed red flame is sputtering, searching for people nearby, searching, searching, searching, but... the streets are deserted. There is nothing more to see. You've righted and lefted yourself back to where you started: alone, with nothing but a can of Pringles by your side. But you know what? You're okay with that. After 36 hours in Tinder, you've realized--you don't need Tinder. You don't need anyone. You're happy with where you are in life. So you can keep on eating Pringles in bed because at the end of the day, you're totally cool with being sing -- IT REFRESHED! THERE'S A WHOLE NEW CROP OF SCUMBAGS TO CHECK OUT! LET'S STAY IN TINDER FOREV -- Uhp, it's out again. This place sucks.