Happy Sunday, all! I hope everyone had a wonderful weekend. Mine was very “summer”, complete with a hotdog and beers at a minor league baseball game (don’t worry, I didn’t watch a single play), lounging by the pool, the debut of my trendy new jumpsuit on the Columbus bar scene, a 19-mile ride (tri training is in full force!), as well as other summery adventures.
Being out and about this weekend got me thinking about dating (ok, I’m always thinking about dating). More specifically, how to MEET people. As a 30-year old in Midwest, it’s comes as no surprise to me that most people I meet are in relationships (if not married). What continues to elude me, however, is how all these people managed to meet their significant others in the first place, let alone fall in love and spend a life together. Because in my experience (and I have many years of it), meeting people is not easy.
Columbus is a great place to live – rents are reasonable (especially mine!), people are nice, the food is good. But Columbus, like much of the Midwest, is not necessarily an easy place to live if you are single and above the age of 27. You see, by the time most Midwesterners are in their late 20’s, they’ve already met the person they intend on spending their life with. Whereas in large metropolitan areas it’s uncommon for a 27-year-old to be married, in the Midwest it’s entirely too common. Which leaves those of us who did not get our MRS degree in college or the few years that followed in a bit of a pickle.
The situation is complicated by the fact that we are living in a crazy technological world. Back when my parents were dating (many a year ago), people met organically – at the bar on a Friday night, at the grocery store on a Sunday afternoon. If a man was interested in a woman, the only way to ensure he would see her again was to ask for her number and subsequently use it. But in today’s information-overloaded world, people don’t have to meet in line at the dry cleaner. They can meet on dating sites. I rarely see strangers chatting each other up in bars – I see groups of friends huddled together, barely acknowledging the other bar-goers. Dining alone while traveling for business, I see other lonely travelers also dining alone – buried into their iPhones and not making small talk with the cute stranger next to them. And even if two strangers do manage to meet, the guys don’t have to call – they can text, or send you a Facebook message, or just figure they’ll see you again sometime.
Depressed yet? I wouldn’t blame you. But I’m a glass-half-full kinda girl. I like to believe that it IS possible to meet someone, even if you are 30 and living in Columbus, Ohio. And living the O-HI-30 life means that I refuse to sit back and wait for my dream man to find me. I can find him!
Ways to Meet Men:
- Online Dating: I’ve been a 5+ year subscriber to various dating sites, off and on. Match.com, OKCupid, JDate (yep, for the Jews). I’m a big believer in that online dating is just another way to meet someone, and that once you do indeed meet, the fact that you met online becomes a moot point. Future post!
- Tinder: “I’m yellin’ Tinder”. Hot-or-Not dating app for your phone. It gets to the root of meeting people right off the bat – swipe right if you’re interested, left if you’re not. If it’s a mutual match, you get to text. A great way to entertain a group of married men and women – give them your phone and you might not get it back.
- “Drive-By Shooting”: A guy I did this to once compared my tactic to a drive-by shooting. You write your name and number on a napkin, preferably accompanied by a clever and breezy tagline like, “call me, maybe?”. You place it on cute guy’s table, and then promptly turn around and run out of coffee shop/bar. Trust me, it works – I have an 80% success rate.
- “Blind” Dates: Blind in quotations because with Facebook, dates are never blind. Not being shy about my single status, I tell everyone and anyone who’s willing to listen that I’ll gladly go on a blind date with their niece’s friend’s roommate. It’s only a drink, and you never know!
- Wingman: I don’t mean this in the traditional sense of a wingman – having a friend be the intermediary between me and cute guy at a bar. I’ll do that myself. What I mean by wingman is asking my hairdresser to fix me up with the cute guy who’s hair she was cutting before mine. Or asking my best friend to give the Jewish doctor she’s sharing night-shift with my number. Gotta be your own advocate!
- Being Friendly: And last, but definitely not least – just being friendly. Part of my O-HI-30 mantra is to be open to meeting men anytime, anywhere. My mom always says to keep my eyes – and heart – open, and cheesy as it may be, it’s sound advice. I’ve found that in keeping my eyes and heart open makes it easier to be friendly and chatty. Most friendly encounters will stay just that. But some may turn into a series of texts. And maybe – believe it or not – an actual date!
Call Me Maybe?