I have a friend who insists that the best way to meet guys in the wild (which is a thing some people apparently still do, though I've personally seen no proof of it) is to make eye contact, look away, then look back and hold for a certain number of seconds. I can't remember the exact number of seconds, but I know it was uncomfortably long. This isn't my friend's trick; I think she learned it from a reality show. Housewives of somewhere, probably, because those women are clearly adept at getting men to talk to them. They're literally housewives.
I find prolonged eye contact with strangers to be unbearable, and my preferred method of flirting—looking away as quickly as possible and never looking back—hasn't done me any favors. So when I came across this old Seventeen in which five editors offered their best flirting advice, I couldn't not read it.
Like Liz, I'm pretty short, and I ask tall people—who often happen to be men—to help me reach things all the time, but it's never turned into a love connection. Usually they're Whole Foods dads wearing Allbirds, which isn't really my thing. (Neither are wedding rings, but especially not Allbirds.)
Gayle [Forman, now a prolific (and married!) YA author] offers a somewhat involved flirting method that's actually perfect for me, since I fall frequently without even trying. The only problem is that no one's ever come to my rescue.
One time, I slipped going down the stairs at the Graham Avenue L train stop and the rush hour crowd just stepped over me. Another time, I hit ice while wearing heels in Hells Kitchen and tourists starred at me, mouths agape. I should have known better than to go to Hells Kitchen.
As for the flirting advice that's probably the least applicable to me (though it's also my favorite from this entire deeply reported article): "Upon entering a roomful of potential honeys, toss out your deep-voiced hello. Watch with glee as all whip around to see who the sexy, Lauren Bacall-like voice came from—then take your pick of the bunch."
Honestly, "potential honeys" is a phrase I haven't used nearly enough.
Another highlight: "You've made eye contact at least twice and your stop is next or you've just got to go. Act like one of Alex Trebek's contestants and write WHAT ARE YOU LISTENING TO? on a matchbook, followed by your first name and pager number." This one I'm tempted to try since I ride the subway every day, twice a day, and it would liven up the monotony.
But beyond the obvious issues, like that I don't have a pager number, I also find the idea of approaching someone in an enclosed space with an audience to be mortifying. We've all cringed along as people have attempted to make moves on crowded subways. I don't want to be that person. (If you want to be that person, more power to you and please please report back.)
Nostalgia elsewhere in the news:
- Noted youth expert and Seventeen contributor Jane Buckingham was one of the parents associated with the very salacious SAT scammer scandal. Tbh would make have made a great teen mag essay.
- Speaking of all that, an LA Times columnist reminisced on her own youth and said her biggest act of rebellion was writing a Seventeen essay without her parents' permission. Some intense googling tells me the article ran in a 1982 issue with the headline "Volunteer Work Does Pay Off!" Scandalous, indeed.
- Am I the only one who didn't know Miranda Kerr's big break came from winning a teen mag modeling contest? Learned from this fascinating interview (by @thankyouatoosa follower Alison Syrett!).