|“You can’t hurry love. No, you’ll just have to wait…”
The old song by the Supremes sure is catchy. But something else catching on is just the opposite of what the song preaches: Speed dating.
Speed dating is on the rise among young professionals from sea to shining sea. More often than not, singles are too caught up in the rat race called career and life to look for love. With a palm pilot filled with meetings, dinners and appointments, there is nary a space available for a date. Let alone time to meet someone to take out on a date. Dating in the workplace is unacceptable, and dating within a circle of friends is a soap opera waiting to happen. So just how does one meet someone in a day where everything is so fast-paced? It seems only natural to add dating to the world of convenience we have become so dependent upon.
Enter speed dating- where singles can unite in one place, and spend minutes getting to know each other over drinks and hors d’ vours, in an organized fashion. If someone sparks an interest during this speed dating process, a connection can be made, and followed up on.
Speed dating, usually held in the hip club and bar scene, is an event planned by the venue themselves, or by a professional speed dating company- a largely growing industry. Many of these events have registrations to limit the number of participants, as well as have age groups, and many even have events based on religion, career, etc.
Can you really meet someone at an event like this, many ask. The answer is, of course. First impressions are key. One may not get a whole life history in a five to ten minute period, but a common bond can most certainly be established. Speed dating is an excellent way to find someone with similar interests and weed out people who just would never work out. (Without spending a lot of money sending drinks across the bar!)
A typical speed dating party goes like this:
1. Pre-registration - You hear about an event on the radio, in the paper or from a friend and pre-register. Registration is needed because in order to be successful, there has to be an equal number of guys and girls. There is usually a small fee involved. Basically, this fee should not be considered a reason not to go. Think about it. You pay cover charges anyway on a normal night out.
2. Getting ready - This can usually be fun to do with a friend. The two of you can prepare together, picking out a hot ensemble to show off your best features (and cover up your worse!) Also, to just be each other’s support throughout the night, especially for cheering each other on.
3. Arriving - Once you arrive, there is usually a registrations table set up where you will sign in, and get a number or will be assigned to a table. Usually, you will be able to grab a drink or snack to help get relaxed before the show goes on the road!
4. The Dating - When the event is ready to start, the guys will be seated at the tables, and the girls will take turns visiting each table (or vice-versa) for a pre-determined amount of time, usually 8-10 minutes. During this time, guys and girls will get to know each other by engaging in conversation and asking questions- telling stories and what not. This is your chance to make an impression, and leave someone at a table wanting more. But- everyone gets a fair shot.
5. The Wrap-Up - Contact information is only exchanged if a real connection is made. Usually, there will be a box to put your information, or a more formal way of getting your number to the girl or guy you want to see again. It will be neat to see if the person who like you was the one you liked.
6. The follow-up - If a mutual match was made, the next date can be a lot longer than ten minutes.
What if no connection was made? At least you tried it. And, you could try it again. Speed dating isn’t a guarantee, as anything is not. But, it is a fun and fast way to meet someone. Plus, it beats another blind date arranged by your roommate.