I Invited Tinder Matches To See 'Fifty Shades'

When my editor pitched me the idea of asking guys on Tinder if they'd be down to see Fifty Shades of Grey on Valentine's Day, I was game. The idea made me laugh too hard to not give it a shot. Up until this assignment, I'd never used the popular dating app (I'm in a relationship), but I was ready to see what all of the swipin' fun is about. Plus, I thought this Fifty Shades/Valentine’s Day pickup line could yield some amusing results. I was amped. I was jazzed. I was ready to Tinder.

Why is this particular pickup line so special? Well, it just so happens to be a double-whammy:

  1. Fifty Shades of Grey, the film adaptation of the first novel from an erotic book series, is arguably a ballsy choice for a first date. (Heck, it might even be a ballsy choice for a thousandth date.)
  2. Valentine’s Day is a ballsy choice for a first date.

Put 'em together and what have you got? A really bold way to start a conversation. I know I'd be like, "Hard pass" if a Tinder match sent that inquiry to me, but I was genuinely curious to see how others would react.

I established some ground rules for my Tindering:

  1. I would not make any small talk; I would send one message.
  2. The one message would be along the lines of: “Hey! What do you say to Fifty Shades of Grey on Valentine’s Day?”
  3. If someone said something particularly awful, I would resist the urge to respond. I would block.

Before I began, I told some of my Tinder-savvy friends that I felt guilty suggesting a date only to never respond to the person’s answer. My Tinder-savvy friends assured me that it’s no big deal, it's all in good fun, people constantly suggest dates on Tinder without following through, the worst that'll happen is someone will tell me to f**k off, etc.

After my anxiety chilled out, I set up my profile. I chose some whatever pictures of myself, but I was really proud of my bio: "I just met you, and this is crazy! Here's my Tinder, don't swipe left maybe?" (When I read it aloud, my roommates audibly groaned. That was the only response I needed.)

And then, IT WAS TIME TO TINDER. I swiped right on every person that popped up. I waited for the matches. After staring at my phone for two whole minutes, Prince L*** sent this to me:

Without giving away too many details about Prince L***, there were multiple corgis in his main picture. I was itching to hear Prince L***'s reply to my inquiry.


No matter how many times I attempted to resend my message, it would not reach Prince L***.

Prince L*** remained my only match for about 20 minutes. My roommates told me nobody would swipe right as long as I had that corny "Call Me Maybe" joke in my bio. After another 10 minutes passed, I began to panic. So, I changed my bio to: "I spend way too much money on nail polish." (It's SoOoOo true!)

...And then, it happened. The matches began to roll in. THE FUN COULD BEGIN. I messaged all 52 matches. All but three responded. I will share my favorite responses now!

One match saw right through me:

...You caught me.

This match also saw right through me:


...OK, fine. Neither. NEITHER. You caught me, too.

One match wasn't too stoked about my idea, but he was willing to compromise:

SpongeBob Movie: Sponge Out of Water it is!

Another match seemed disappointed by my counteroffer:

To be honest, his original offer was awesome. I'm never not craving Pinkberry.

I think this match picked up on my love of dressing up for movies:

I mean, I haven't dressed up for a movie since high school, but this suggestion was pretty great. (Assuming he's kidding, of course.) (Actually, the suggestion is great either way.)

Here's the link.

This match was on board:

Apparently, Fifty Shades and Valentine's Day is this guy's kryptonite.

This match was confused:

Or maybe he thought I was telling a joke: "What do you say to Fifty Shades of Grey on Valentine's Day?" "I don't know, what??" "Happy Valentine's, Grey."

(...Clearly, I should write a joke book.)

This match was not familiar with the holiday:

But knows what the movie is, apparently.

This match made fun of my pickup line:

Oh, yeah? What happened to your face or is that your face?!?!?!

...I'm sorry, I didn't mean it. My pickup line just means a lot to me.

One match liked my idea:

I assure you there's nothing kinky about the way I inhale movie theater popcorn.

One match wanted to haggle:

...Um, a movie, duh.

This match turned out to be Renée Zellweger's character from Jerry Maguire:

Did you know that dogs and bees can smell fear?

This match was proud of me:

Thanks, man.

This match was full of offers:

I think I caught the guy who wanted to show me his junk off guard, which is quite a feat!

And finally, this match made me feel like a jerk:

I wanted to apologize, but that would be breaking the first rule.

Before I deleted my account, I gave messaging Prince L*** one last try:

It was no use. I would never know his answer.

Today's lesson: Never fall for a prince with a bunch of corgis. He'll only leave you hanging.

Images: Kristie Rohwedder (18)