Image credit: my Tinder profile

Tinder should run courses on not being boring.

The number of ‘Hi, how are you’s’ is mind-numbing. If you use Tinder and you write “Hi, how are you”, PLEASE, for the love of god, stop!

I decided to take matters in my own hands when I was on Tinder and was usually first off the bat to start conversations with something a bit odd.

Because anyone who isn’t open to non-bland conversations was never going to make the cut, may as well weed them out from the get go.

I found that “broccoli or green beans?” elicited some great conversations about vegetables. (I was studying nutrition at the time)

I also experimented with questions about power tools

(I was genuinely interested as I’d just bought myself a circular saw), but that inevitably elicited some fairly predictable responses.

I also found that being super direct –

“Sex or dating?”

resulted in the most interesting conversations I’ve ever had on Tinder. All the most jock-ish of boys I sent it to launched into full conversations about how they’re open to sex but actually looking for something more. I thought they were taking the piss, but they seemed very sincere. I suppose I’ll never know!

I actually don’t know how the Tinder conversation started with Bloody Good Chap, because he deleted his Tinder account a couple of weeks after we met.

What a modern day romantic!

I was annoyed because I wanted to go back and laugh at it. And screen shot it to show our grandchildren, etc. Steady on eh? But seriously, will our generation be sharing Tinder screenshots with our grandchildren?

Something else that flips my wicket –

people who say ‘Hi, how are you’ as they’re walking past you.

Invariably the only option is to shout, ‘good, how are you!’ over your shoulder. To which they respond ‘good’, and you’re both left baffled by the pointlessness of the exchange.

Boring, etiquette driven conversations also get my goat.

Like, Hi, I’m Boris. Sooo.. what do you do? Usually followed by glazed eyes and a few back-and-forth questions designed to allow you both to retreat into your own thoughts while scanning your peripheral vision for more interesting people.

Unless someone says “sex”.

Which I often do.

Anyway. The point is, if you ask boring questions, you should expect a boring answer.

So, I’ve compiled a very short list of alternative conversation starters so you’ll never again say the dreaded “Sooo, what do you do?”

  1. What was the BEST thing that happened to you today?
  2. Where would you live if you didn’t live here?
  3. How busy is your mind today?
  4. What do you think about the whole paleo/ vegan thing? (Watch out for cross-fitters and actual vegans though – ranty territory)
  5. What’s something you’ve never done that you’d love to do?
  6. Favourite icecream flavour?
  7. What do you love about your job?
  8. What would you do if you didn’t do the job you do?
  9. What does your ideal day look like?
  10. How do you feel about owning chickens?

Alternatively, check out this much-better list of 100 interesting conversation starters by one of my favourite copywriters.

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