Dating in the Fast Lane
When you're tired of wasting your time
by Lauralyn "Speedy" Avallone
In my last article, which you can probably check out in the archives if you're REALLY interested, I interviewed Jay Rosenweig, the Queens man who brought speed dating to Long Island. Now, let's say it all together, "Thanks, Jay!" As we all know, Long Island is not exactly the most dating friendly place, after all it's the suburbs. The suburbs are classically known as home to couples, some who met in high school.
Well, we are all not so fortunate to meet our soul mates in the second grade. Nor are we all so lucky as to meet our mates at the water cooler at work, or at a good friend's party. Life post high school and college can feel quite disconnected from the carefree, silly days when the opposite sex seemed to be omnipresent and omni-into-you. Does this day sound at all familiar? Get up, go to work, come home, talk to a few friends who are either married, in a relationship or bitterly single and still raving like it's 1999. Turn on the tube or crack open a book, and before you know it, it's time for bed and then time to wake up and do it all over again.
Ok, I don't mean to get you depressed here. I'm just saying if you feel stuck in a singles rut and are wary of the impersonal Internet matchmaking services, then speed dating might be a good option for you. My friend Catherine and I checked it out last week, and I'll describe the experience firsthand so you get a sneak peak (aren't I just the sweetest?!)
First, you make a reservation with the speed dating host, in this case, Jay. You hold your reservation by paying $35, which is a small price to pay since most events are held in bars, restaurants and clubs, leaving opportunity to talk to fellow daters immediately afterward, and if nothing else, meet new friends!
The one we went to was at Lily Flanigan's in Rockville Centre. The women sat on one side of the room, seated at tables, while the men played a game of musical chairs, interviewing and being interviewed from anywhere to four to eight minutes by a prospective date. At first, everyone is slightly awkward; some had a cocktail to relax. But after a few rounds, people seemed to genuinely be having fun, laughing and smiling even if they knew the person across from them was not "The One."
After chit chatting with someone, both men and women discreetly glance at their sheet of paper that lists everyone's names. They then circle yes or no, whether they would like to talk to the person again. No personal information is given, only once two yeses match do e-mails get exchanged. Absolutely no phone numbers, unless of course, it's your choice.
Speed dating in comparison to Internet dating offers the real thing, meaning no doctored pictures or guesses as to what the person really looks like or who they really are. There's no wasting time e-mailing back and forth on your best behavior and getting emotionally attached to someone who in reality may be someone who physically doesn't do it for you. Let's be honest, looks do count. No, they're not the entire package, but it's a basic, chemical, evolutionary thing that physical attraction is needed for mating. Of course, beauty is in the eye of the beholder, and with speed dating, your eye can detect your idea of beauty from a few feet away.
I have to say there was one thing that creeped me out: a few of the men asking me, "are you playing?" or "Do you want to play?" Yes, speed dating is lighthearted and aimed to be pressure-free, but I don't particularly want to engage in conversation with a guy who's whimsical enough to refer to any potential dating scenario as a game. We're tired to the games, aren't we? Granted, I might be very uptight. Hey, look how popular The Dating Game was! I think even Kevin Costner and Burt Reynolds were contending bachelors at some point! (I guess you had to be there).
Maybe next time, you will be.
The results, you ask? According to Jay, 15 Guys- 10 got at least one match. Many got several matches
13 Women- 11 got at least one match. Many got several.
Happy hunting for that good egg....
Oh, and before I forget a P.S.
Any eligible bachelors or bachelorettes who would like to be featured on LongIsland.com as a Catch of the Month, write me! I would like to feature YOU and YOUR singles story! You never know who might be reading....
Recently attached? Share the hope! Send me your dating story! Remember to put SINGLES in the subject line!