Alien Messages: Tinder in a northern town

Charo: “Do you know the old song by The Dream Academy, Life in a Northern Town?”

Kalpana:No, never heard it.”

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Charo: Of course, you’re so friggin’ young!  Never mind. The thing is, I was listening to it on the radio the other day and I was thinking that these days it should be Tinder in a Northern Town, seeing as everyone’s on Tinder in Fort St. John.

Kalpana: “I know, right? What’s the point in a 20,000 people town? You might as well address people directly, since they are going to see you in Tinder later and recognize you anyway.”

Charo: “Yeah, the thing is, if you are in Edmonton in a cold winter morning and suddenly you fancy someone to help warm you up, you can go to Tinder, which most people use like an online catalogue. There are 1.5 million people in Edmonton, so chances are you can find a total stranger to keep it discreet. But, here in Fort St. John? Impossible! How do people get away with it?

Kalpana: “Best case scenario, it might be your neighbour or co-worker. Or even worse, you might get to meet the person socially at a later occasion.”

Charo: “Awkward. Hell, you might even pick your own spouse by mistake, if he or she posts a picture from fifteen years ago.”

Kalpana: “But in that case, when you meet, you could excuse yourself telling him or her that you have a headache.  Hahahah!”

Charo: “Haha! And those people playing out of wedlock, how do they explain their presence in Tinder? Do they use a Taylor Swift mask and an alias? But then, how do they attract possible playmates?”

Kalpana: “Ha! They won’t believe they found Taylor Swift on Tinder, that’s for sure. You can also post six or seven different pictures, including one of yourself, and write: ‘I might or might not be one of these people’.”

Charo: “That would make it roulette.  I don’t know if anyone would fall for it. Anyhow, I wonder what happened with meeting people at a good ol’ bar.

Kalpana: “That’s archaic, Charo.  Speaking like that will make you look older. But if you did happen to meet a guy in a bar, as the case might be, you should ask him if he’s available on Tinder.  Then you can produce your cell phone and proceed to pass your finger over his profile so that you can say you met him in a cool way.”

Charo: “I see. Do people still say the word cool?”

Kalpana: “They do.”

Charo: “I see. Cool!”

Charo Lloret is from Spain; Kalpana Loganathan is from India. Both call Fort St. John home. Each week, they’ll reflect on their experiences immigrating to Canada and settling into their new homes in Fort St. John through a series of dialogues called Alien Messages. 

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