I’m normally not the Tinder type, but this morning I don’t have much of a choice.
My hotel lobby is empty save for a pair of Russians, and whatever they’re eating smells like the bathroom of an Air India plane. I’m so lonely I still consider chatting with them, but the stench of raw beef is as potent as tear gas and I am in no mood for a night of cold sweat hallucinations.
So Tinder it is.
As I start perusing the local beauties on my phone, a few things stand out. Everyone is blond-haired and blue-eyed and seems to have some combination of Ingrid or Sigurð in their name. There’s a lot of hiking and beer and OH MY GOD THAT’S A SWASTIKA
So are we splitting the check or…
On swipe three(!), I have stumbled upon a Neo-Nazi and freeze in terror. What do you do in this situation? What is a date with a Neo-Nazi even like — do you take her out for schnapps and sausage and then kiss tenderly by the book bonfire? Do you crack a beer and bemoan how much better Hitler’s “earlier work” was like some Sieg-Heiling hipster? Do Nazis have their own hipsters?
This girl does not seem like one for romance judging by her mohawk, but the ocean of curiosity in my Hebrew veins desperately wants to take her out. So I swipe right and start scrolling through other potential mates.
Somehow a man named Karl has shown up on my feed, and he looks like the kind of person who washes down his pepsi with a hamburger. Next there’s Karoline, a smiley girl in pigtails who resembles Grendel the Dragon, and Dorthe, whose profile proudly lists her Myspace and Aol accounts after her favorite sex positions.
I’m starting to think Norwegian Tinder isn’t for me until I get a flashing notification — I’ve matched with someone! Her name is Emilie, she lives two miles away and seems to like hats. Definitely no Neo-Nazi, but still could be interesting.
With all the subtlety of a battery acid shower, I ask “on a scale of 1 to America, how free are you tonight?” and chuckle to myself. You’ve got her right where you want her, Tim.
“Does that ever work?” she responds, adding in an emoji of a smiling piece of dog shit.
“You tell me. How about I make you my Viking maiden tonight? I’ll Leif your Erikson ;)”
“Just call me Ivar the Boneless, baby — and by the end of the night I’ll show you how wrong that nickname is.”
With baited breath, I stare at the screen and wait for her to write back. The Russians in the room have moved on to a second helping of raw beef whose smell makes trench warfare seem tame by comparison.
Pick you up at 8?
“That’s a terrible pick-up line,” she says. “but I think it deserves a number. Text me.”
Thirty minutes on Norwegian Tinder and I’ve got digits! Actual digits! Replete with the plus signs and extra 0’s that make it so authentically foreign!
We plan to meet up later that night, and I spend the evening learning as many Viking puns as I can. I’m just glad she has a phone that can text — it’d be awful if we had to communicate in Norse code!
…Thor-ry, that joke was terrible.