Feb 242011
Authors: Nic Turciano and Kate Bennis

If you were to make a dating resume of your past relationships, what would it look like? Would we be able to contact your references? What skills would you list? Most importantly, what were your “reasons for leaving?” 

I, Kate Bennis, thought about this quite a bit in preparation for our most recent Never Have I Ever endeavor: speed dating, an Association for Student Activity Programming event in the Lory Student Center ballroom last Sunday.

This was a difficult assignment for my co-columnist Nic and me. We get nervous and sweaty. Luckily, Nic was being a good sport about it –– he even postponed a date with his ladyfriend for the event. However, as our evening plans drew closer, he brought up a very good point.

“It’s going to be awkward if someone approaches me afterwards to get my number because I have a girlfriend. But wow, it’s going to be really awful if no one approaches me, too … that means I’ll have gone on like 12 first dates without a second date.”

Wishing he hadn’t said that, we headed out.

The way speed dating works is pretty straightforward: Each individual gets two minutes to ask questions and then you switch. Four minutes per couple. One side of the table rotates when the time is up.

One good thing about this set-up is that no one you talk to can sneak in a pick-up line because that would henceforth leave them with about a minute and a half to sell themselves.
We sat down next to two students who were in similar positions; they had never been to anything like this before, either. The difference between them and us, though, was that we had to be there because we were meeting a deadline. What I wanted to know was why other people chose to come to something like this.

I received a lot of similar responses. Time was a unanimous factor. A lot of the participants said they were so busy they hardly had time to meet new people. As someone who is taking 20 credits, working 30 hours per week topped off with an extracurricular or two, I could easily relate to this. 

The people whom I was partnered with were actually interesting and kept my attention. Because I have the attention span of a gnat, this fascinated me. I wondered if I would still like them after eight minutes or even 12. I got some contact information and can only imagine the love connections that must have sprouted for those who stayed for the entire duration of the night.

To all of those who have yet to find that connection, maybe the key is to stop looking. My co-worker Rachel Cappo, who’s been bartending for several years, has noted that most of the time bars are not usually the place to make that connection (I think that most of us know this). However, one piece of advice she did have was this:

“Once you’re really, truly comfortable with yourself, relationships just seem to follow. People pick up on confidence, it emanates from you,” she said.

First impressions are important.

We learn this through various new experiences. The activities that Nic and I partake in each week, I’ve found, give us a small dose of humility that we can apply to our waking lives.
Which is why I’d like to take this time to say thanks, to all of my speedy-dates, for not bothering to tell me that my shirt had been unbuttoned for the entire duration of our four minutes in heaven.

Columnists Kate Bennis and Nic Turiciano can be reached at verve@collegian.com.

 Posted by at 3:47 pm

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