We’ve all been there: bored, at home alone at night, swiping left on Tinder or some various dating app when you should have swiped right. In a moment of weakness, of boredom, you have accidentally started up a conversation with someone you would have otherwise taken great pains to avoid. And then, against your better judgement, you proceed to exchange phone numbers, taking your meeting one step closer to trial run in person. Almost immediately, you are awash with panic and regret. A million things run through your mind: he’s not really my type, his profile says he’s 5’4, why on earth did he quote Limp Bizkit, is he going to cut me up into a million pieces, he’s probably going to cut me up into a million pieces. But here you are, in the virtual bed you’ve made, stuck trying to avoid ever ending up in a real bed with this real man in the real world. It’s happened to the best of us. And, because he likes (this presentation of) you, he keeps suggesting you meet. Here’s how to put him off until he gets so tired of your shit he moves onto his next victim.
That you’re moving to Virginia to work on Hillary Clinton’s ground campaign.
This is great. It’s topical, it’s polarizing, and–most importantly, it takes you “out of town” until November. Feel free to insert your own swing state and presidential candidate of choice here. If you want to follow through like a boss, send him a selfie of you wearing an “I’m With Her” shirt or various appropriate swag. Just make sure you stay away from his neighborhood and, in the instance you do run into each other, say you’ve been sent back home to recruit more impassioned campaigners. (If he offers his services, politely decline.)
That you’re off to learn how to swim in the Hudson River.
When he doesn’t hear from you in three days, he can just assume the worst.
That you’re training for a role in a short film.
A double whammy. Saying you’re an actress will throw up all sorts of red flags that some gents just aren’t down for (dramatic, attention-craving, insane,etc). Plus, telling him about your role as a kidnapping victim in a Romanian horror movie will also buy you some “I need headspace” time during which he will get bored of the idea of you and move on. Tell him you are following Jake Gyllenhaal’s lead and doing the All Kale, No Fun diet and plan on being very sad and cranky for the foreseeable future.
That you’re just not that into him.
JK! Don’t do that! That would be too easy. Dating is all about pain, suffering, and avoidance. Are you new to this or what?