Recently I came across an article titled "How to Meet 'The One' While Running Errands". Naturally, I read it, because I've been taking a break from online dating for the past several months, ever since one of the guys I talked to on okcupid insulted me because I wasn't comfortable with his assertion that three is not a crowd (cough, cough). I could go to bars, which is where a lot of guys hang out. I have two female friends who used to go barhopping often to meet guys; they called it "hunting". I went with them a few times, but I just called it "lame".
All this time I've been focused on just getting my errands done as quickly as possible without head-butting anyone who gets in my way. But I could have met my soul mate, at least according to this article.
One errand that is good for finding "the one", according to this article, is grocery shopping. It says, "When you see a hot guy pushing a cart filled with family portion style
meals, forget him. He's not single. He's likely to be a well-trained
husband. Single guys carry baskets and hang around the frozen pizza
The only thing is that I've always been a morning bird rather than a night owl, which is why I prefer to get my grocery shopping done before 10 A.M. I'm able to do this since I usually teach in the late morning and have office hours in the afternoon, and my website job is done in the evenings and on weekends. Most of the people shopping at the supermarket when it's that early are elderly people. I don't want to sound like too much of an ageist, but I really just don't want to date someone who's at least fifty years older than me, you know? I just don't know how all of Hugh Hefner's girlfriends deal with it (And I'd rather not know, frankly.).
I suppose I could go grocery shopping later in the day, when more guys are getting off of work and are stopping in to buy dinner. I tried that in the past, and one of two things usually happened. I became impatient and stressed out by all the long lines and people cutting in front of me, to the point that I would have whapped them in the head with my box of Froot Loops if I had any less self-restraint.
The other was that I'd often see couples and groups of people shopping together; they'd be buying lots of food for meals that they'd cook together, or they'd be buying beer and junk food for parties. I always felt like they could tell that I was alone because of the single-serving meals that I bought, and it just made me feel lonely. Of course, there's loneliness in the morning crowd too; some of the elderly people will stand in line and chat with the cashiers for a few minutes. I'm less impatient with them holding up the line than with the younger people; I have the feeling that they strike up conversations with the cashiers because they're lonely. I might end up like them someday, a lonely old woman who just wants someone to talk to.
The article said that you could also meet a potential mate at the bookstore; it said, "While you're browsing, check to see if there's more than a bestseller you fancy devouring!" I did go to Unabridged Bookstore recently. It's a really great bookstore that's in East Lakeview, my favorite neighborhood in Chicago (I wish I could afford to live there).
However, East Lakeview is also known as Boystown, which means that a gay guy is more likely to meet a potential match at Unabridged than I am. Not to mention I'm happiest in bookstores; it always thrills me to be in a room filled with other people's words and ideas. When I'm at the bookstore, I'm usually more focused on finding an interesting book to read than anything else.
But there was a guy at Unabridged who caught my eye that day; when he looked at me, he suddenly looked up and then looked away. So I looked up too, and I realized that I was standing in the erotica section, as evidenced by the book covers featuring pictures of half-naked people. Oops. (I don't read erotica; I know it's a legitimate and popular genre, and a lot of people do enjoy reading and writing it. But I always fear that if I buy one of those books I'll run into one of my students or one of the nuns from my church at the same time. That's also the reason that I feel self-conscious when shopping for new underwear.)
Another tip the article gave was this: "Wherever you go, walk the walk! Men find a woman's walk sexier when she adopts the natural human stride, a loose, gentle gait and swinging arms." But I happen to be a total klutz. The last time I tried walking like that, I ended up running away from a dead rat and nearly knocked over some guy in the process. So that one's a no go as far as I'm concerned.
I figure I'll try online dating again in a few months, but not anytime soon. Right now I still need to focus on my dissertation prospectus; I wrote a new draft and gave it to two of the people on my committee. I'm hoping they'll like this new draft better this time so that I won't end up feeling as devastated as I did the last time I turned in a draft; I was devastated because my mentor said that I'd done it all wrong. Also, even though I really do want to meet someone, I kind of like being on my own right now.
What do you think? What do you think are some good places to meet potential matches, other than online dating sites? If you've already found "the one", how did you meet him/her?
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