So you’ve decided that you will take the plunge and give a singles party a try. If you’re a lady, you’ll no doubt opt for the safety-in-numbers approach and ask (or beg, or possibly have to pay for) some of your closest friends (or anyone who you know that is female and single) to go along with you.
If you’re a bloke, then it’s more difficult. If you take a friend, then it has to be someone who is fairly normal, but not someone who can steal the attention of the nicest girls. Or maybe you should just go on your own and try not to give off the impression that you’re a loner who stays in on Saturday nights to watch the Twilight movies with his mother.
Once you arrive you will be given either a padlock (ladies) or a key (men). These are meant as icebreakers. That is, they are an excuse to approach someone and make a conversation. So don’t make the mistake of obsessing over finding a lock/key combination that works. The prizes are crap anyway. You’re meant to chat, dummy, not walk away in disappointment when yet another lock fails to open. You’re not trying to unlock a pirate’s treasure chest.
At some point they will take away the locks and keys and you will be met with the sight of people who look like they’ve just lost a puppy. You don’t want to be one of those people.
You may also have had your picture taken on the way in as well. These are not for use on the company’s website (you’re not that good-looking). They are for a photo wall, where people who have limited social skills can leave flirtatious comments, for you to pick up later, rather than actually telling you to your face. No, I don’t get it either.
The first thing you may notice when you are in the thick of the action, propping up the bar, is that you seem to be more popular than usual. Maybe your mum was right all these years, you are attractive on the outside as well as the inside? Well maybe…
Or it could be more likely that you are average, but amongst the flotsam and jetsam of the singles world (I know, that can’t be their real names?) your status has risen, meteorically, to make you a desirable catch. For the men, that is likely to be a new experience for you to have to deal with. Thank God you are too tall for them to make the first move. For the women, you may start off trying to be nice, but that will soon wear off as the wine consumption increases. Remember, you’re there for a reason – Mr Right… Or possibly Mr Right Now. Or, come the end of the night, Mr Will Have To Do, I Have Needs You Know.
During the evening you may want to try strategies to zoom in on the target of your desires. Maybe a casual little shuffle, just a bit closer every so often, facing away to appear uninterested, or maybe a much less subtle thrust of your padlock/key in his/her face, interrupting their conversation. Yes, you’ll opt for the latter, won’t you? Time is of the essence.
But don’t make the fatal error of offering to buy the drinks and going off to the bar on your own. Would you leave a new sports car running with the keys in the ignition as you went to pay for fuel? Chances are you’ll find that when you bring back the drinks you’ll have to pretend that you’re pleased that two competing singletons have now made your twosome into a group gathering. And they are missing the less than subtle hints you’re dropping.
But singles parties can work. It just depends on being in the right place at the right time. However, as the night wears on, at what point will you decide that you’ve messed up, there are few viable options left and you are becoming just too desperate? Well, once the really good-looking people have left, after being undressed by the eyes of just too many oddballs, then the others start to get itchy feet and a snowball effect occurs. Or more like an avalanche effect.
You’ll know when… There will suddenly be a clear route between yourself and that weirdo who you’ve moved far away from. Time to make a dash for it.