Apologies for the delay! I’ve just gotten back from my Spring Festival Holiday in Vietnam!
If you don’t already know, China has its own Tinder and it’s called Tantan. A lot of my Tinder experiences and mishaps that have occurred in China have actually happened on Tantan.
Tantan has it’s pros and cons and I’m quite a fan of it and it’s interface. However, the one drawback of Tantan is the men that are on it.
When men message me on Tantan it normally results in one of two things:
They want to have sex with me, but they make it clear that it’s because I’m foreign and they want to experience something “different”.
Two: English Practice
They want to practice their English with me, which is fine because I’m an English teacher and not actually on Tantan to meet men.
The second theme is the one I prefer a lot more than the first one. Normally its a back and forth and I can practise my more conversational Chinese and it’s a lot of fun. Whereas the first one is just an uncomfortable and forceful assertion that I will have sex with them and it will be great and normally always includes the question, “have you ever had sex with a Chinese man” or some version of this iteration.
The process to reach these resulting themes vary but almost always include either a cute and or sassy emoji or a compliment of some sort.
The compliment is actually something that occurs frequently in casual conversation in China. It’s not a compliment but a statement. For example, if you want to call your waitress but you don’t want to shout out Fúwùyuán (Waiter/Waitress) you can call her Měinü or beauty. If you need a favourite from a stranger you say měinü，once, in Shanghai, a women said to me while we were in line at the aquarium, “měinü, can you speak to my son in English please?” And of course I did. Compliments always put people in a better and more favourable mood, so I chattered to her son in broken Chinglish for a while.
And with that tangent I return back to my point! Which is that men, especially men who are interested in practising their English with me, will say things like “beautiful (teacher)” and whatnot in order to garner a more positive response from me. Which is fine because who doesn’t love compliments? 😀 And it works pretty well, I get to have casual Chinglish practise and get to know some more local spots in Suzhou and they get to practise their English. Win win.
However, the sexual conversations are quite disconcerting and not to mention degrading! But they are one of the costs of being on a hook-up / dating app. Plus they give me good ranting blog material.