How to Meet a Guy IRL

Inspired by my recent online dating hiatus, I emailed a few friends asking how about their experience with meeting guys in real life (aka IRL for you text-savvy folks). I posed the following questions to my friends and received some great responses and thought that this would make for a great post for what has apparently turned into my dating blog:

  1. What pick up lines do you think would work? What has worked? Maybe it’s not a pick up line, it’s just the first thing you say. How do you get the ball rolling aka the conversation started?
  2. Where do you meet guys in real life? Where do you suggest girls meet guys IRL? (ideas: volunteering, grocery store, etc.)
  3. Are there types of events you can go to? (speed dating, speed friending)
  4. Is there anything you’ve always wanted to do, but never had the guts to do?
  5. Have you ever done anything in real life and IT WORKED?!

The resounding result from this survey was that girls need to have some guts to get the guys! Guts = guys! We girls choose not to approach a guy because we’re afraid of rejection (maybe he’s married, maybe he thinks I’m not cute enough, maybe he’ll say no, maybe he’ll be a jerk about it, etc.), but as one guy friend* put it: “If the guy takes it negatively, they probably got bigger drama you wouldn’t want to deal with anyways.” *I also asked a few guy friends to give me their perspective.

In the similar words of a girl friend: “One thing […] is that if you think you can’t do that, or you don’t do that (like flirting, or whatever), then you won’t. Making a connection with someone is easy, so long as you put yourself out there and don’t get embarrassed in the process[…]. And if someone IS a jerk when you put yourself out there, then he’s a jerk and how lucky you are that you found out so soon!”

Let’s continue to find out how smart my friends are:

  1. What pick up lines do you think would work? What has worked? Maybe it’s not a pick up line, it’s just the first thing you say. How do you get the ball rolling aka the conversation started?

Simply, “I think it would vary depending on what you’re looking for, but in general, it’s easy. Just go up and strike a conversation without being disrespectful and you should be cool.”

Can you tell that a guy wrote that?? I totally get where he’s coming from, but if you want a bit more advice on what to say when you’re in the situation where you’re intrigued by a guy, it’s all about the first question. I recently watched a video by a (hot AND English) dating coach of sorts named Matthew Hussey and the best suggestion he gave was starting with something really interesting. “How are you? What’s your name? How you doin’?” etc. can work, but it’s boring, right? So, come up with a funny question or compliment that will entice him into continuing the conversation. Things like “I love that sweater! Did Santa bring it to you?” or “Aren’t you tall?” then apprising him. Say something that will automatically make him want to start talking more to you, if only to find out if you’re into him. The idea, according to Hussey, is to create “but wait!” moments.

I was recently in a liquor store on a Saturday night on my way to a party. I couldn’t decide what to get, so I walked up and down the aisles, catching the eye of an attractive man doing the same thing. My guts weren’t big enough yet, but it was the perfect opportunity to strike up a conversation: “I’m on my way to a Christmas party. Do you have any suggestions for what to bring?” or “What’s your favorite cocktail?” This list could go on, but the point is, he was cute and I was a wimp. No phone numbers were exchanged.

Another guy friend said that he’d love it if a girl came up to him at a coffee shop or (when it’s finally nice again) outdoor patio and said: “I’ve never been one to drink coffee alone; can I pull up a chair?” It’s corny, but it gets the point across…I am interested, hear me roar.

Once, I was in a coffee shop reading a book when a guy came up to me and said, “I love that book!” Conversation was struck!

Okay, who loves Serial? I emphatically do! And so do 5,000,000 other people apparently. A friend was telling me this story about how on the train a guy approached a girl because he saw that she was listening to Serial. They exchanged phone numbers by the end of the train ride. It was simple as that!

These are just examples to prove the point that it isn’t that difficult and doesn’t have to be overtly sexual. But, if you prefer the flirtation route, multiple of my friends suggest the eye contact + smile. It’s a simple technique, but it certainly can work.

  1. Where do you meet guys in real life? Where do you suggest girls meet guys IRL? (ideas: volunteering, grocery store, etc.)

Daily Urbanista has an awesome article with 7 ideas for IRL matching, and so do my friends!

Kelly: “I’ve met people in a bar, at a group dinner, online, in a coffee shop, in school, at work, at a NYE party, wherever. My point is, it doesn’t matter where you are. If you think of everywhere (the street, the gym, any of those places I mentioned before) as a potential place to meet someone, you will open yourself to the possibility. Look at people you find attractive–see who looks back. They don’t always return the look–and they don’t always say something even if they do–but it opens your eyes to who is looking, at least.”

Samantha: “Through friends i.e. went to a house party at the weekend and had a cuddle with my friend’s flatmate, put yourself in new situations out of your comfort zone is my best advice, go to that gathering where you only know one person and you never know who you will meet!”

Another friend suggested doing things you like. That doesn’t sound so hard! You like yoga? Go to a workshop on handstands. Enjoy volleyball? Join a beach team!

A friend who shall remain anonymous gave me a list of some of the best places she’s met men. It was a long (and hilarious list), but I narrowed it down for your viewing pleasure:

  • The hospital. Break your arm and meet a cute guy who broke a bone as well in the hospital waiting room. Dates are always great when people look at you weird because you are both wearing casts (blame in on the epic fight). Florence + the Machine anyone??
  • There’s always the valet guy (hopefully cute) who you can talk with about giving you free valet to the next event in the area and then actually drive up again if you feel like you might hit it off (or who might turn out very creepy when he goes in the restaurant to look up your phone number under the restaurant reservations to ask you out on a date).
  • Go to a concert you would normally never go to (like one of those underground music scenes or ones with local bands). You never know what guys might just happen to be supporting their friends (or actually just into off the beaten track type of music)
  • Do not become an elementary school teacher and expect to meet any males that way.
  1. Are there types of events you can go to? (speed dating, speed friending)

Sadly, none of these ideas were highly lauded. Though, I will recommend sports leagues because you can meet friends and play sports that you enjoy. It might not end in love, but it will end in fun.

  1. Is there anything you’ve always wanted to do, but never had the guts to do? (also alluding to 5. Have you ever done anything in real life and IT WORKED?!)

Samantha said it best: “No, I do what I want when I want…independent woman!” She also told me a story about a friend of hers who wanted a guy, so she just walked right up to a group of hotties and started chatting. “Be brave!” she claims.

Kelly agrees: “It’s just not as hard to meet men as some women think. It’s hard to meet QUALITY men–but you may have to kiss a few frogs before you recognize the taste of loser.”

Puh-lease, girl, I LOVE this last statement! Haven’t we all kissed a bunch of damn frogs?! So what’ll it hurt to kiss a few more? Or if anything, chat up a few more, until a really, really cute toad comes along; and, no, I won’t call him Prince Charming because that, my friends, does not exist. As Samantha (and Destiny’s Child) said: I-N-D-E-P-E-N-D-E-N-T WOMAN!

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