Laugh, Cringe, Cry: Tinder Tales

Tinder Tales is a cathartic and hilarious live show where members of the local community submit their awful, cringeworthy, sad, unbelievable and sometimes a little scary stories from online dating services, Tinder or otherwise, and then present them to the audience.
This February 13, Tinder Tales hosted their Not-So-Valentine’s Day show at Showtime Comedy downtown St. Catharines and was a fantastic event for Brock students.
The Brock Press caught up with former Brock alumna Adelade LaFontaine who is the producer and one of the founders of Tinder Tales, based out of Toronto.
LaFontaine says “at the time we started, which was just over two years ago, Tinder had just came out, and it was myself and one of my friends who would sit around and either talk about our bad dates or read our conversations and the ridiculous things that people would say to us or just show each other profiles that came up and that sort of thing, and then I thought, ‘we can’t be the only people that do this.’”
After the idea started to take form they set out, putting up posters asking for submissions. Lots of people sent in their wild and crazy stories and she met up with them, asking to hear them tell it in person and asked any questions she had or that the audience might have.
From there, she continues, “we put together a line-up, and the first show that we did was free just as a tester to see how it went, and it went really well, and we hit capacity. Then from there, we’ve just been doing the same thing. It’s kind of grown into something where we get a lot of people from the City that are in Comedy or relationship bloggers that will read out their stories and then we have random people that hear about it and just have a story and do regular submission.”
LaFontaine says the event is important to Brock students because they need to be able to laugh at the struggles of contemporary online dating as well as to understand what constitutes a safe hook-up. “You are allowed to stand up for yourself” she says. In many of the stories, users can become very forward and students need to be able to say no.
“What we really want to do is make it a safe space where you can listen to other people’s stories, and you can laugh about them, and you can realize that maybe your dating life isn’t that bad or could be worse, or we can just laugh about it and not beat yourself up about it because everyone’s going through the same thing.”
LaFontaine says that they get stories about all different kinds of situations. One of them, she says, from the previous Not-So-Valentine’s Day show in Toronto went like this: “a girl met somebody on Tinder, and went back to his place, got up to go to the washroom, and came back and then gets into bed and someone goes ‘um, I think you’re in the wrong room’, so she was naked and went into the roommates bed and had to leave — again naked — back to the room she was supposed to go in.
“And then we have other ones where they are lured in, they talk on Tinder super late at night, and then they change to text message and they get a photo of ‘we have all this booze and food’, and then they go there, and there was no booze and no food, and he was like ‘where’s the cheese board?’, that was what he came for.”
Sometimes, she adds, they get stories that end up being “not so good.” “We had one where a girl thought she was stood up by her Tinder date and she was really confused because he had been texting her right up until then, and he seemed really excited, and she didn’t understand why he didn’t show up and it turned up that he had actually overdosed the night before.”
LaFontaine notes that during the shows they will also interact with the audiences, asking them questions about their experiences and how they interact using online dating services. For example, one night they asked the audience how they felt about “ghosting” and whether the audience felt it was better to do that or to just tell the person that they are not interested. She says that audiences can expect to get involved and have a good time but to be in a safe and comfortable space, unlike some other more intense comedy shows.
If you have any stories, you would like to tell you can do so by going to tindertales.ca and use the submissions page or email them directly at tindertaleslive@gmail.com.

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