As I boarded the flight to New York this summer I thought about how impossible it would be to manage dating with an investment banking internship. From all the hyperbolic horror stories I heard from previous second years, I was convinced that I was going to eat Chinese food all night, gain 40 pounds and beat Tibetan monks in practicing celibacy. But, as I frantically right-swiped on Tinder during my cab ride from JFK to the shared 4th floor walk-up, I started getting pumped. This was it—I was William Tell and I was going to go bananas and shoot my arrows at all the OkCupid apples I could find in the Big Apple. As soon as I unpacked my suits in the $2,400/month hostel, I went to Duane Reade and picked up extension cords, hangers and a 40 pack of extra-sensitive party hats.
Training week was the best of times. I was meeting a different girl every night and went after it with the vengeance of a nymphomaniac on death row, as I knew my time was limited. I had to cram in 10 weeks’ worth of dating and four TTS Valuations lectures into one week. But even after work started and I was working >100 hours a week, I traded in sleep for Hinge dates. I mean how could I stop? If Chicago Hinge was like fly fishing, NYC Hinge was like the Deadliest Catch. I was living life like a Taylor Swift song, because I can’t stop, won’t stop dating and I’m just gonna shake, shake, shake off sleep deprivation. Besides, even with my terrible modeling skills, I was earning the respect of my analysts with my impeccable Hinge game—street cred is something you have to maintain at all costs.
Five weeks into my internship, I went on my 9th or 10th date in NYC. I was running on 3 hours of sleep, but after a few days of pitching and rescheduling, I had to make sure the deal went live before some other buyer came in with a higher bid. I finally met her and we started dating. I knew this was it when I realized that she would “nap” after her work so that she can spend time with me when I got back around 2 or 3 AM. I changed my post-internship plans and became a stay at home boyfriend, trading in Excel sheets for baking sheets and Miller Lites for Rosé.
Last summer when I first moved to Chicago and began online dating, I started watching Sex and the City to understand how the enemy thinks and to have something I can talk about with vacuous girls. Even as I played Carrie Bradshaw without the talent or Manolo Blahniks the past few quarters, I wondered how this saga would end. I think I can say that this was my final right-swipe; true love was just a right-swipe away.