Introducing Ohlala, an app that lets men pay to go on dates with women.
Here's the problem: back in my day, online dating wasn't a thing. The last time I legitimately dated, Tinder hadn't even been created yet. Hell, iPhones were barely even a thing. So the whole swipe-to-meet concept is completely new territory, one that I've been doing my best to avoid.
That was, of course, until I heard of Ohlala, an app that lets men pay to go on dates with women.
Now, tell me: why should I use Bumble to meet up with some dude from my town who's already hooked up with six of my friends when I can use Ohlala and get PAID to do nothing but show up looking pretty? What could possibly go wrong?
So, I grabbed my phone and resigned to find myself a generous date.
After a few minutes of searching through the App Store (you'd be surprised at how many developers are trying to make "ohlala" a thing), the app doesn't technically exist in the US yet. To make a profile, I had to sign up via the app's actual website. I then got a confirmation text, which brought a new browser window up that looked like this:
From there, I created a profile, which consists of your picture and a username as well as your age, occupation, body type and whether or not you're a smoker. Once that was done, I went to the home screen that houses the date requests. It's here that you see the guys who want to take you out: their photos, age, and a range of one to three dollar signs that show how much they're willing to shell out to meet you.
I'd be lying if I said I wasn't immediately disappointed by my date options. The ages ranged from 37 to 50 — meaning 12 years my senior, at best — but I guess it would be naïve of me to think that anyone within my desired age group would be willing to pay for the same girl they could meet on Tinder (or in a bar) for free.
F*ck it, I thought. The sign up process was a pain in the ass, why give up now? I accepted a date request from "Javier," who only had one dollar sign even though he wanted to meet for a hefty two hours. I sent him a message:
Hi Javier, what date did you have in mind?
I obviously don't care much for small talk.
He responded almost immediately:
It's those two words (if you can consider "bb" a word) that almost turned me off of online dating for all of eternity. But for the sake of this article, I kept going, and told him I needed to know where we were going so I could decide what to wear.
At this point within the chat screen, the app suggested I "make sure I have all the logistics I need — time, place, personal fee, etc." Javier wasn't interested in the logistics. At this point, all he wanted was a picture of me.
Perhaps still frustrated by Javier's use of "bb," I completely forgot to check the browser window where our chat was. Luckily, Ohlala sent me a text after 10 minutes of inactivity to remind me that I had a message.
I sent Javier the same photo I used for my profile, to which he replied:
(FYI: I'm not the mother of any hay whatsoever.)
He then asked for my number, a request I denied.
OK, then no. Then how we go meeting. If you don't give me your number.
After a couple minutes without a response from me, he asked (or really, stated):
Let me ask you something you're married
As you know, I'm not married. And to be honest, it scares me that anyone in the dating scene needs to ask or answer that question. But I digress.
I told Javier that I was not married, and he left the chat.
After being rejected by Javier seemingly based on my marital status (or lack thereof), I started a chat with "MoneyMan," who claimed to be 27 and advertised a whopping three dollar signs. When I asked what he had in mind for a date, he responded that he was just looking for some "quick fun" and promptly left the chat.
Two rejections in a row are a lot for a girl who's both newly single and new to online dating, so for now, Ohlala is tabled. To Javier and MoneyMan: I hope you both find what you're looking for.
As for me, I think I'll stick to meeting people IRL.
Also, as a warning: if getting paid to go on a date is your idea of a good time, note that there's NO option to delete or deactivate your Ohlala account once it's created. Here's to hoping this doesn't come back to haunt Future Me.