From age 10 to 13 or 14, I scribbled down the excruciating details of my crushes and secret emotions into the thinly-lined pages of a fuzzy, green MTV diary. Exhibit A:
My brothers used to play XBOX Live, which allowed them to chat via a headset with their gamer opponents in real-time. Not particularly good at video games, I asked one brother if I could wear his headset while he played so that I could chit-chat with the hot guys on the other end. (They had to be hot, right?)
The dudes with whom I chatted without fail asked a.) if I was a girl or just a little boy with a high voice, or b.) how I was so good at this game, as a girl. I wound up chatting with one random boy, let's call him Garth. We became so infatuated with each other's voices and shooting skills that we arranged times to play XBOX together, just the two of us and our arsenal of deadly weapons. Eventually we exchanged email addresses and chatted online. He lived in Canada and hinted that perhaps I could visit him sometime. I felt rebellious. Look at me, chatting with an exotic Canadian! I asked him for a picture and he literally sent this:
It’s a hot summer day in Cambridge, MA and I’m on my way to meet Gordon, an OkCupid candidate with a scrawny build and a mutual love of the guitar. This is one of those dates I agreed to go on because I thought I could be friends with the guy— we could play music! Start a band! — but had no actual attraction to him. Dumb, dumb, dumb. I know. Alas, I was young and hopeful, and maybe he just takes bad pictures and isn’t as weird and punk as he appears in his profile and also his blue eyes don’t look hideous?
I approach our meeting spot, an Irish pub in my ‘hood. I spot a figure that I quickly realize is Gordon and nearly run away. He’s wearing jorts, which are 4-5X tighter than my tightest pants, a janitor’s amount of keys hanging from of his belt loop, and a bandana that’s decorated with a cobweb design, rolled into a headband. I don’t even know if my 8th-grade punk-boy infatuated self would’ve been into it. Because, instead of acting too-cool-for-school or like he gives zero fucks and all that other alternative punk crap, he’s awkward as shit.
What's the worst pickup line that's ever been used on you? That you've ever tried?
I love asking this question and sharing my own ridiculous answers. Behold, some of my favorite pickup lines and tactics used by real men on me and my friends. Spoiler alert: not one of these attempts was a success.
Like most single 20-somethings in San Francisco, I’m on Tinder. Primarily, it entertains me, especially when I get matches like this:
One Saturday evening, my roommates and I go to Sligos, the diviest of dive bars in Somerville, MA. Complete with scraggly locals, cheap beers and a jukebox, we always left Sligo’s with a good story-- this one being my very favorite.
I spot a guy that looks JUST like a young, longer-haired Paul Rudd. I’ve always been smitten by Mr. Rudd, and am unsurprisingly drawn to his doppleganger. Eventually, my friends and I start chatting with him and his friends. After some time my roommates have to leave, and seeing that I’m mercilessly flirting with Paul (just gonna straight up call him that), they ask the group of guys: “Will you take care of our friend Kelly? We have to head home.” Totally safe.
I’d like to relay the story of my worst date... to date. A few years ago, I decided to try my hand at online dating. OkCupid was my destination of choice. Armed with a decently witty profile, cute photos paired with self-deprecating captions, and a nervous excitement that felt like confidence, my inbox was filling. And it was satisfying. I talked to almost anyone who was not an outright creep. And I said yes to more in-person rendezvouses than I should have.
Which brings me to my worst date ever. I’d been messaging a dude— let’s call him Mike** — who I actually thought was pretty normal and attractive from his profile. We had things in common: worked in tech, liked alcohol and were humans. We arranged to meet on a Thursday to drink and sing karaoke. The Sunday before, he texts me: “What are you up to?” I answer: “Just doing some shopping downtown!” He mentions that downtown is in fact his ‘hood, and asks if I’d like to get a drink. Ill-prepared for a first date, I frantically buy a new dress and change into it at Marshalls. I head towards the bar to meet Mike in person for the first time.