Why guys are posing with tigers in their Tinder pictures (and why it won't get them any more dates...)

Guys on the dating app (which acts as a catalogue of cleavage, six packs and selfies) seem to think that posing with a big cat will make others swoon

With news last week that the New York State Assembly had passed a legislation prohibiting the infamous “tiger-selfie”, internet daters throughout Britain and the world were sent into hairball-induced panic about the aesthetic future of their dating profiles. 

For some unknown reason, it has become rife amongst the male internet dater to believe that by presenting himself up close and personal with a big cat (customarily of the stripy variety) it will vastly increase his sex appeal and desirability to other singletons. Seriously. In the wise words of a much beloved and well known tiger, how on earth will potential lovers sense that you are GRRRRRREAT if you are sans tiger-selfie?

Cheese! The “tiger-selfie” or T.S as it is sometimes dubbed among the more hip (a prophetic coincidence that the lyrics from Cats were based on the work of none other than T.S Eliot), is a remarkably self-explanatory phenomenon: place yourself in close proximity with an oversized, dangerous feline, pick up your phone/camera, raise your arm to the heavens and say “Cheese!”, whilst keeping fingers, limbs and other extraneous bodily parts crossed in the hope that your chosen beast is not currently ravenous.

Admittedly, the legislation only prevents direct contact between members of the public and tigers in the state of New York and declares that "the purpose of this bill is to protect animal caretakers, those interacting with wild animals, bystanders, and the animals themselves”; rather than the prevention of any amorous encounters then.

Shhhhh! It's nearly feeding time The internet dating app Tinder is apparently the biggest culprit for the “tiger-selfie” with some Tinder users "estimating they encounter tigers in one out of every 10 profiles they view,” the Wall Street Journal said. There is in fact an entire blog dedicated to ‘Tinder Guys with Tigers’, a site "documenting the absurdly large number of dudes who have taken a picture with a tiger and are attempting to use said picture to woo women on the internet". Cue shaking of head and rolling of eyes.

For those of you not familiar with Tinder, you are the lucky ones; it is a dating service app which acts as an Argos catalogue of cleavage, six packs and selfies.  I’m still deeply in mourning for the loss of the catalogue so I use it here tentatively in this analogy.

The premise of Tinder is that you are presented with an array of pictures of single folk in your vicinity; one can define one’s own vicinity from a range of 0-160km depending on how many fish one wants to catch. So to speak. You then have the power to swipe ‘yes’ or ‘no’ depending on whether their visage tickles your tackle. If both parties swipe ‘yes’ Tinder then allows you to chat to one another and the age old exchange of winky emoticons and ‘What ru up 2?’s can begin.

By its very nature Tinder is instantly making people disposable, its foundations lie on the immediate rejection or acceptance of another’s appearance. And not even their actual, 3D, physical appearance but a 2D version pixilated on a tiny screen more than likely featuring them accompanying the aforementioned tiger on their travels to the Far East and beyond. Swoon.

You could pass by, or, sorry, swipe by the love of your life because he or she didn’t take a good photo. Take Chandler Bing for example, admittedly an archaic and fictional reference, but that man’s face did not hold up well in front of the camera and, unfortunately for Chandler, would have definitely succumbed to a left swipe - i.e. a no.

All most of us want, once we push past our imbedded cynicism/realism/otherism, and I include myself in this unruly bunch, is to walk down the street reading a book and bump into the love of our lives who coincidentally (THANK YOU FATE/GOD/JUPITER IN RETROGRADE) is reading the same book. It would be a slightly less romantic scenario to collide with a potential lover as a result of mutual Tinder scourage; Austen would loosen her corset and turn in her grave.

It may be overly dramatic to say, but with Tinder comes the death of romance. Where is the mystery? The magic? The chance? I am not naïve enough to deny that meeting someone special in this day and age can seem like an uphill struggle and nigh on impossible at times but surely, SURELY, it is far more likely to happen if you are looking up at the people around you rather than being preoccupied with swiping.

Tinder is perfect for the singleton that is looking for an immediate distraction, a bit of a giggle (undeniably at the expense of other singletons’ photos), or a cheeky, ahem, snog. But for those of us with bigger - and yes, ultimately - more idealistic fish to fry, Tinder is not the way forward. And for that reason both me and my tigers, are out.

Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Life and Style
ebookNow available in paperback
ebooks
ebookA delicious collection of 50 meaty main courses
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

SPONSORED FEATURES

ES Rentals

    iJobs Job Widget
    iJobs General

    Recruitment Genius: Appointment Maker - OTE £20,000

    £14000 - £20000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: An office based Appointment Mak...

    Recruitment Genius: Healthcare Assistant

    £7 per hour: Recruitment Genius: This provider of care services is looking for...

    Recruitment Genius: Lettings Administrator

    £16000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Purpose of Role: To co-ordinate maintena...

    Recruitment Genius: Business Development Manager - Commercial Training

    £30000 - £50000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: The business development manage...

    Day In a Page

    Isis profits from destruction of antiquities by selling relics to dealers - and then blowing up the buildings they come from to conceal the evidence of looting

    How Isis profits from destruction of antiquities

    Robert Fisk on the terrorist group's manipulation of the market to increase the price of artefacts
    Labour leadership: Andy Burnham urges Jeremy Corbyn voters to think again in last-minute plea

    'If we lose touch we’ll end up with two decades of the Tories'

    In an exclusive interview, Andy Burnham urges Jeremy Corbyn voters to think again in last-minute plea
    Tunisia fears its Arab Spring could be reversed as the new regime becomes as intolerant of dissent as its predecessor

    The Arab Spring reversed

    Tunisian protesters fear that a new law will whitewash corrupt businessmen and officials, but they are finding that the new regime is becoming as intolerant of dissent as its predecessor
    King Arthur: Legendary figure was real and lived most of his life in Strathclyde, academic claims

    Academic claims King Arthur was real - and reveals where he lived

    Dr Andrew Breeze says the legendary figure did exist – but was a general, not a king
    Who is Oliver Bonas and how has he captured middle-class hearts?

    Who is Oliver Bonas?

    It's the first high-street store to pay its staff the living wage, and it saw out the recession in style
    Earth has 'lost more than half its trees' since humans first started cutting them down

    Axe-wielding Man fells half the world’s trees – leaving us just 422 each

    However, the number of trees may be eight times higher than previously thought
    60 years of Scalextric: Model cars are now stuffed with as much tech as real ones

    60 years of Scalextric

    Model cars are now stuffed with as much tech as real ones
    Theme parks continue to draw in thrill-seekers despite the risks - so why are we so addicted?

    Why are we addicted to theme parks?

    Now that Banksy has unveiled his own dystopian version, Christopher Beanland considers the ups and downs of our endless quest for amusement
    Tourism in Iran: The country will soon be opening up again after years of isolation

    Iran is opening up again to tourists

    After years of isolation, Iran is reopening its embassies abroad. Soon, there'll be the chance for the adventurous to holiday there
    10 best PS4 games

    10 best PS4 games

    Can’t wait for the new round of blockbusters due out this autumn? We played through last year’s offering
    Transfer window: Ten things we learnt

    Ten things we learnt from the transfer window

    Record-breaking spending shows FFP restraint no longer applies
    Migrant crisis: UN official Philippe Douste-Blazy reveals the harrowing sights he encountered among refugees arriving on Lampedusa

    ‘Can we really just turn away?’

    Dead bodies, men drowning, women miscarrying – a senior UN figure on the horrors he has witnessed among migrants arriving on Lampedusa, and urges politicians not to underestimate our caring nature
    Nine of Syria and Iraq's 10 world heritage sites are in danger as Isis ravages centuries of history

    Nine of Syria and Iraq's 10 world heritage sites are in danger...

    ... and not just because of Isis vandalism
    Girl on a Plane: An exclusive extract of the novelisation inspired by the 1970 Palestinian fighters hijack

    Girl on a Plane

    An exclusive extract of the novelisation inspired by the 1970 Palestinian fighters hijack
    Why Frederick Forsyth's spying days could spell disaster for today's journalists

    Why Frederick Forsyth's spying days could spell disaster for today's journalists

    The author of 'The Day of the Jackal' has revealed he spied for MI6 while a foreign correspondent