Asking Girls Out

Basic math, practice, & confidence

October 8th, 2016

Little difficult to fall asleep last night. This social experiment seemed a bit risky, a bit crazy. Also, it seemed likely that if I participated in this experiment: asking 75 girls for dates in a row, that eventually, I would match with someone who would show interest. I can’t remember the last time that I went on a date, or asked a girl on a date. It’s just not part of my vocabulary.

Morning Inspiration from Teju

The morning was slow. Zake & I were subconsciously procrastinating. We knew what we had agreed to, and we could only imagine the discomfort ahead of us. So we spent a lot of time doing other things: listening to music, laundry, eating, and doing research online about how to ask girls on dates. We clearly weren’t looking forward to the evening, but at the same time we both were looking forward to it, so we could experience what this would be like and push us out of our comfort zones. It would be an interesting social experiment that we could learn from.

Around 1:00PM, we walked into Boulder with our backpacks, heading to the CU library. The closer we got to campus, the more excitement/ nervous we became. We were being silly, making jokes, acting like losers who have never talked to girls before.

We were at the library, and Zake insisted that I “go first.” I was OK with that, better sooner rather than later. But I was nervous, for sure, and just wanted to get this over with. The library was a pretty uncomfortable setting because everyone was really silent. And starting conversation seemed difficult. If I started conversation, then I imagined everyone would notice me and pay attention to what I was saying. So I walked around and found a space that was more private, and walked up to a girl working at a single-desk to spark a conversation. The beginning, the hardest part.

She was studying, I interrupted her. “Hey! What are you studying?” A simple question sufficient to open the conversation. Response, then another question. Response, then another question. After some time, we had a mini-conversation going. I sounded pretty nervous. I think she could tell. Eventually I moved on from the small talk, and asked her if she would be interested in going on a date with me. To my surprise, the answer was a yes.

Wow, wtf, I thought in my head. Did she really say yes? Does this happen? Why would she say yes? I’m acting totally weird, doing a totally weird thing, having a totally weird conversation, and I’m a total stranger. Makes no sense. These thoughts all flashed in a matter of seconds.

Ok, cool! That’s awesome. She wrote down her number on a sheet of paper, handed it to me, and we thanked each other for making each other’s days a little bit brighter.

I returned to the table where Zake was sitting and reported to him my success. He could see my face and neck, completely red. Embarrassed, in disbelief, experiencing an emotional high. My body was still reacting to this peculiar experience. I explained to Zake that this girl was so sweet, really nice, and pretty too. After one attempt, I was satisfied.

But, this kind of threw me off. Because the purpose of this exercise was to experience rejection. To hear the word “no,” and to desensitize myself to that experience. Now, I had to think more about, what if a girl says yes?

This girl I just spoke to, I had zero expectation that she would say yes. But she did. And luckily I found her attractive and interesting, so I would like to go on a date with her. But this was beginner’s luck. If I had asked many other girls, I’m sure there’s many I would not be interested in going on a date with. And I didn’t want to ask people to go on a date, have them say yes, and then say “just kidding,” I’m just doing this for myself.

This got me thinking about the girl who I just asked. How was she actually feeling? What did she think about me? She wasn’t aware of my initial motive. So 20 minutes later, I returned to her desk and explained. I felt weird and uncomfortable, but she responded well. She thought the experiment was cool.

Ok, I felt better. Now I just needed to rethink things. Alright, the objective is rejection. So, I won’t really start a conversation. I’ll just ask girls if they would like to go on a date with me, without providing context. Surely, I got rejections. I asked 4 girls within the span of 15 minutes. No. No. No. No. “I have a boyfriend.”

Interesting. So after I asked them this question, I explained what I was doing and why I asked them. This made them more comfortable. And at the end, they thought it was really funny. I asked to take a picture and they gladly took a selfie.

After 5 girls, I felt like that was enough for the day. I got a Yes and I got some No’s. It felt kind of silly continuing to ask girls for dates out of nowhere. If I’m going to ask girls for dates, they should be girls that I already know or want to get to know, I should be more intentional.

Got a text from a Watson alum, Danny “Yo I like your style. Are you guys still doing rejections?” He wanted in. So I returned to Chautauqua and we spent 30 minutes taking a hike, chatting about how to talk to girls and the importance of trying, being you, and keep putting yourself out there. Danny started many conversations during our short hikes. He has practiced. He’s good.

For the evening I decided to head to a bar, at the Hill. Went to a rooftop where music was playing. I started conversation with a girl and quickly learned she had a boyfriend. He, the girl, and I then chatted for about 2.5 hours! We had a really great conversation. I told them about what I did earlier today, we talked about fear, we talked about failure, we talked about their careers, we talked about education, we talked about a lot of things. Made 2 new friends! Lot of fun.

So what did I learn from this social experiment? Well, society creates norms. It’s not “normal” to talk to a stranger and ask him/her for something, in this case on a date. But because it’s not normal, it makes you stand out. And as you meet more people, you discover who they are, and you learn their stories. And you start to figure out that people are generally friendly. They don’t bite. They won’t hurt you. Often, your fear of others is entirely fabricated. Whether that’s people of different sex, neighborhoods, colors, countries, language, etc. While we are different, we are similar. Let’s start talking to each other more. Who knows, maybe you may find love?