Saturday, December 26, 2009

Report back: Speed Dating

Last Friday, before the hustle and bustle of Christmas took over my life, I experienced my first taste of Speed Dating. Speed Dating is basically grownup musical chairs with drinks and conversation. The women sit as the men rotate from girl to girl. You have a brief date which each man, then each person circles "yes" or "no" for each date on their scorecards. This particular speed dating had 16 men and 16 women, and each date was 4 minutes long.

I've heard mixed things about speed dating, and movies like "40 Year Old Virgin" certainly don't help speed dating's rep! However, I think people who are disappointed in Speed Dating tend to expect too much from it. They expect to actually get a longterm relationship or spouse out of it. Some do, most don't. I took it as an opportunity to practice my conversational and flirting skills with new people. It was another way for me to get out of my shell. To my delight, I was successful at keeping the conversation going with all my dates. I used open-ended questions and talked about more than just my job. I also avoided hot topics like politics, religion and family (if someone has parent issues, it can be a hot topic). Also, the majority of men were professionals. No 21 year old college boys! Most of them put their best foot forward for the event (one was drunk).

I don't know who said "yes" to me and no man from that night has contacted me, but that's okay. That wasn't my goal. Also, the Speed Dating company charges another $10 on to find out who said "yes" to me. They emailed me a "match" with his phone number and email, although they sent the same match to my friend. Going with a friend made it easier for me. I'm not ready to go to singles events all alone yet! I need moral support. Anyway, IMHO, if a man who spoke to me last Friday was so enamored by me, HE can call me. I'm not chasing after any man, certainly not after one 4-minute date! That's one gender role I've learned to accept in my dating quest: let the male be the chaser. Let him pay the ten dollars to find my contact info. I refuse to chase a man who's just not that into me.

So yes, I'll try it again. I don't take it too seriously, which makes it more fun, and although I would like to find a spouse or longterm boyfriend by the end of next year, I also just want to have fun. Flirt for flirt's sake. No expectations.

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