Chicago Transplant Grapples with NYC Dating Scene ‘Ghosting’

ShutterstockWomanTextingSteve Heisler is a comedian and freelance writer based in Brooklyn who has contributed to GQ, Variety, The AV Club and other outlets. He has also this week, via Time Out New York, stepped on to the battle-of-the-sexes soapbox.

Heisler moved to New York five years ago and even though it happened to him personally as recently again as Christmas 2013, he still can’t quite come to terms with one particular wrinkle of the New York dating scene. A behavior and slang term that muddy the mental picture of Demi Moore crying while navigating a pottery spinwheel:

Have you heard the term ghosting? I hadn’t until moving to New York City from Chicago; now I use it regularly. It’s when you have a bunch of awesome dates with somebody, and then one day, they suddenly stop responding to your texts: They have ghosted you…

Ghosting — how fitting that this phenomenon takes its name from those invisible entities made up entirely of sadness — is a particularly New Yorky dating frustration. Back in the Midwest, ladies were so nice that I once got let down easy by a lady before we went out. It stunk, but I appreciated it. Maybe New Yorkers just don’t have time for courtesy.

We (sort of) feel your pain, Mr. Heisler. Although we hadn’t previously heard of the term “ghosting,” just the other day someone was telling us about a male acquaintance whose girlfriend broke up via Facebook messaging. It’s a data-eat-data world…

[Photo of woman laughing at him, not with him: Andresr/]

@hollywoodspin Richard Horgan is co-editor of Fishbowl.