I can't speak much about the era of fax machines and bell-bottoms, but dating in Nairobi in the 21st century is not for the faint-hearted.
It's why many of us are single. Well, maybe because we are also too busy finding fire memes, but mostly it's because it's a minefield.
Everyone is moving around trying to avoid getting scammed or hurt.
I've been single for a while now and out of boredom, a bit of curiosity and the need to get back in the game, I decided to try Tinder; and boy hasn't it been a ride!
No one prepares you for the mixed bag that you get when you download the app.
I had always thought that dating apps were for losers. Well, here I was downloading the app and hoping that I didn't end up as a WhatsApp forward by my Kikuyu aunties on the dangers of online dating!
Overall, I had a lot of great experiences and I ended up lucky with scrunched up sheets and make love beats. Err, and some friends.
Let's talk about the other end of Tinder dates; the ones which make you question humanity and make you think that celibacy isn't such a bad thing.
If you think there's a limit to places people will be money-hunting, you're wrong. This lass and I start talking after a matchup.
She tells me that she finds me cute, and I knew I was on the way to the finals. I asked her when we should meet up because I was ready to speed things up.
She told me that we could meet the very next day! I was in! Oh well, I thought I was until she sent me an image I thought was a meme until I realised what the numbers meant.
It was her rate card. Her hourly rates were printed boldly. That's when it hit me. It was nothing to do with my suaveness.
She was there for business. I also got a babe selling charcoal and another one trying to sell me multilevel marketing.
Another one was job hunting! I'm not one to knock on anyone's hustle though. Props to anyone making money by any means in this economy. But perhaps let's do it off Tinder?
One word answers
One of the hardest parts about Tinder is starting conversations. You mull over it and most women's profiles are blank and so you have to get creative and hope to get an answer.
"Hi" doesn't cut it. I thought I was cursed by my ancestors because I didn't like njahi (black beans), as I kept on getting one-word answer reply matches.
How do you respond with one word at a time? What do you do with all the time you saved? Plant njahi and hope it doesn't taste like the devil's armpits anymore?
I was done here. Jehovah Wanyonyi didn't die for me to have boring conversations.
Nibuyie (But for me)
Three days into conversations online and I had a shopping list of sorts of things she wanted before I could meet her.
I thought she was joking but she was dead serious. I needed to prove my 'provision' skills before we met. The only thing I provided was nifty jokes before I blocked her.
She was followed by another one who swiftly told me how she wasn't leaving the house without having cab money sent to her.
‘What a coincidence?' I told her. I also will not leave the house unless the person I was meeting sent me fare. We were at a deadlock. I unmatched after a day or two. I had had my fun with that situation.
One of the best conversations I had was with this really attractive girl.
The fire was great and the conversation was amazing, and we already planned a meetup. That's until she broke the news.
She wasn't the girl in the picture. That was her best friend. She sent me pictures of the ‘real her' and I really tried to find the parts of her that I found attractive but I wasn't successful. It wasn't her, it was me. Okay, it was her.
That reminds me of this other date I missed at the pub because she was nothing like her photo.
An hour after we matched, she had followed me on all social media platforms.
I know someone talked about women being super sleuths, but my Tinder name is a single letter.
How she found me off one letter is still a mystery, but I just chalked it off to algorithms. We met for two dates and they were fairly decent ones but nothing too exciting.
I thought that it would die a natural death but it didn't, so I was straight forward about it not working out.
I thought that would be simple, right? Not even close. Apart from the 50 plus missed calls, I had messages everywhere.
She showed up to an evening event I was at demanding an explanation and telling me that she was willing to make it work.
Initially, it was a bit amusing but not so at this point. I made a swift exit and did not go out for a few weeks. Who wants public drama?
I won't tell you not to try Tinder. It's a beautiful place, but it's not a walk down the park.