single gal speaks: adventures in speed dating

Gather round, friends. I got a story for ya.

Picture it- New York, 2012.

It was the Monday of Labor Day weekend when two single gals from Brooklyn decided to take matters of the heart in to their own hands and get out there and try something new.

As we should all know by now, Lisa likes to think of new adventures for us to go on. Sometimes I have a say in our activities and sometimes I just get a phone call that says “So, I bought these tickets”. This was one of those times.

Tickets? Getting tickets to something should be fun! Tickets mean Broadway shows or the movies or plane rides to exotic locations where you can sit poolside with a refreshing drink in your hand. But I digress.

These tickets were not for something fun. These tickets were for my worst nightmare. These tickets were for…

SPEED DATING.

To say I didn’t want to go was a gross understatement. But there I was, getting off the train at Penn Station, waiting for two of Lisa’s co-workers to meet us for a quick drink before we made our way to the torture chamber restaurant. By the time we got there, whatever was in that quick drink must have worked because I was feeling better about what was going on. I wasn’t 100% sold, but I didn’t feel the need to find a hole to fall into anymore.

Before I continue I feel the need to say this – I have/had nothing against speed dating. My feelings of apprehension were totally cause by my insecurities. Not to get too serious or psychological but, I was always seen as “the friend”. I was always nice enough or funny enough to hang out with but anything past that almost seemed like a joke. Basically, after years of being too shy to pursue anyone and after years of feeling like I shouldn’t pursue anyone because they probably wouldn’t be interested anyway, putting myself into a situation like this was a hard pill to swallow. I felt that since I’ve been written off for how I’ve looked before that it was just going to turn into a parade of NOs and I just couldn’t deal with that. I know I have a good personality and an excellent sense of humor and I can carry a conversation, but I also know that I can be very introverted and shy when I’m in a new situation, especially when I’m uncomfortable. I was letting all of my doubts and insecurities and pre-conceived notions get the best of me.

But again, I digress.

We walked in a were led to a long set of tables and were told to make ourselves comfortable on the booth side. The men were then escorted in and sat in the chairs across from each of us. I was seated between Lisa and one of her co-workers. I figured if all else failed, I’d pull one of them into my “date”. We were given pieces of paper to write down the names of our dates, make some notes and rate them on a scale of 1-10. 1 being “I never want to see this person again” and 10 being “what are you doing for the rest of your life?”. The bell rang and we were off.

I don’t remember all of my dates but when they were good, they were really, really good. And by good, I mean bad. Here are some highlights.

Me: So, where are you from?

Him: Guess.

Me: Um, OK. Want to give me a hint?

Him: I’m from the same place Obama’s father is from.

Me: -_- (i actually knew the answer but I didn’t want to look too eager)

Him: It’s in Africa.

Me: Zimbabwe?

Him: No, try again.

Me: Oh, um. Kenya? (told you i knew it)

Him: Yes!

Me: (to myself) Good because my knowledge of African countries was running out.

Him: So, what do you like to do for fun?

Me: (to myself) oh shit. lay on the couch? eat? plan my weddings to my celebrity husbands? oh, God.

Me: Well, I like to explore the city, read, be with family and friends, go to the movies, maybe see a Broadway show. Ummmm… I’ve recently gotten into photography…?

Him: Oh, so you’re boring?

Me: Um. Well, I guess so. *rates him a 1 on my evaluation sheet*

funny story, a few weeks after we went on this adventure, i was talking to someone that i was starting to have a nice size crush on. i was telling him this story and he started to laugh and asked me how i answered the question. i told him and he said “you’re not boring! that’s a hard question to answer and probably not the best to ask in that kind of situation.” then i promptly melted. he’s engaged now so… yea. digressing, yet again.

And now, my personal favorite.

Me: So, is this your first time doing something like this?

Him: No, I come every week.

Me: Oh! Really? Um. Ok.

Him: Yea, they call me when they’re having an event and I show up.

After the final bell rang, we gathered whatever dignity we had left our things and high tailed it out of there. We found ourselves in a diner (that had the best French onion soup ever in life), like real, stereotypical New Yorkers. There were a few guys I tried to make a match with (ok, one), like the photographer from Connecticut, but feelings weren’t mutual I guess. That’s cool.

Would I do it again?: Absolutely! Now that I could go in knowing what to expect and being OK with the possibility of not making a match, I would definitely go again. And really, you just never know who is waiting for you just around the corner. I know Lisa got our tickets on Groupon (or LivingSocial, whichever.) and I’m sure things like this are offered all the time. why pay full price? My suggestion – make sure the place has a bar (but don’t get sloppy drunk – just in case!), grab your girlfriends and have good time!

britney’s got the right idea!

Have you ever gone speed dating? Would you?

Let’s discuss!

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