Being on a dating app is kind of like baking bread. Hear me out — I’ve recently gotten into both and neither is quite the experience you’d imagine. You decide it would be a fun new hobby to be able to make your own Italian bread to go with your daily bottle of wine. (Did I say bottle? Ah haha, I totalllyy meant glass). Or in this case, you’ve finally decided to get out there and find yourself a non-toxic (FDA approved!) boyfriend.

It sounds all kinds of fun and fresh until you’ve got a bun in the oven. HAHA, um, that’s not quite what I meant. What I mean is — you gather your ingredients, or matches in this case, and it seems to be going smoothly until you realize your dough isn’t rising, your dates are mostly weirdos and somehow you find yourself committed to eating really dense undercooked bread with a 28-year-old failed DJ who’s looking less cute by the minute as all that dense bread soaks up the bottle of wine in your stomach.

Other people seem to be able to cook bread and boys successfully, but no one told you how long it actually takes to get it right. (P.S. If you ever decide to make bread, carve yourself out five to six hours and don’t ever think anything is going to rise without a little ~heat~… I said what I said.) So, when you find yourself looking for a man in the lovely world of dating apps, here’s a list of things you REALLY want to say to your dates.

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If I can’t see your face in your profile, I assume you’re either ugly or dumb.

Let’s just get this one out of the way. This also goes along with not having a picture of you alone. Maybe you aren’t the hottest boi on planet earth, but if I can’t see your face, I assume that YOU think that you’re ugly, and that actually is a dealbreaker.

Confidence is hot, y’all. That, or somehow it hasn’t crossed your mind that you’re on a dating app and most people want to see the face of their potential new bread-baking partner. If I wanted an airhead, I’d take myself to Kwik Trip.

Really? That’s how you’re choosing to open this conversation?

Whether it’s the ol’ fallback “hey” or “sup,” or even “hey beautiful,” it’s bound to result in an eye-roll. Honestly, I’d rather take the worst pickup line you’ve got. At least it would be somewhat entertaining and show me you’ve got a bit of personality under all that hair.

Are you going to actually ask me out or was your plan to just ask me how my day is EVERYDAY, ON THE APP until I unmatch you…?

I get it, I do. Swiping is fun, but you sometimes lose a little steam when you actually have to talk to the person. But, whether you’re here to swipe when you’re bored and lonely or to find a relationship of some kind, why would we stay talking on the app this damn long?

Hot take — but until I meet you in person (or FaceTime, you in the COVID-19 era), you aren’t real to me. Why would I waste days or weeks of my precious time and 10/10 humor on someone who, from what I can tell, is either boring or unconfident?

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You talked me up and convinced me to give you my Snapchat and now you’re sending me … your feet and the TV.

I’ll never understand this. We carried on a wonderful conversation, and I’ve taken a chance on moving you to a platform where I must risk finding out if you really look like your profile, and now, not only do I get the pleasure of free feet pics, but I don’t even have to talk to you anymore! Everything I want in a relationship.

No, I will absolutely not come over to your apartment for a movie on the first date.

Now, if you aren’t a woman, maybe you don’t fully comprehend the anxiety of meeting a man you know nothing about. He could be a murderer! Or worse! He could be WEIRD!! A woman going out alone to meet a new man has alerted all her besties and her mom to where she is going and for exactly how long, and she has an elaborate escape plan that can be enacted whether or not you’re murder-creepy or weird-creepy.

Now, you’re most likely a perfectly normal guy who would rather get to know someone in a casual cozy setting, but just in case you’re not, I’d rather not be trapped in an unknown place with an unknown man. Beyond this, unless you’ve agreed to a hookup-only situation, asking a lady over on a first date will come across as presumptuous.

Do you know anything about humans? I’m really not asking for a lot.

Okay, I know I’ve been a little harsh, but I’m actually quite compassionate and understanding underneath all this sass. Most of these little snags can be avoided with a little common sense and a sprinkle of effort. It’s as simple as being confident enough to be yourself (aka, show a little personality), and aware enough to know what’s appropriate. (Hint — it’s not actually attractive or appropriate to thank me twice a day for agreeing to go on a date with you because you haven’t had one in three years and GOSH I’m just so pretty).