I like to think overall the setup is similar to online dating, which I have done, but I have often thought of as parallel to trying to meet someone at a bar.Some of the people you think you’re attracted to are probably jerks, and some are diamonds in the rough who you wouldn’t realize are awesome until you talk to them.But in real life, at least half of these strangers would be secretly coupled or otherwise uninterested.

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Therefore, by the law of deductive reasoning (aka science), these speed-dating lessons therefore apply to online dating, which therefore apply to all dating. On average, men were stingier about the number of women they indicated interest in.

Although more than one man has written “I’m interested in anyone who picks me,” which is kind of disturbing in its own desperate way, and plenty selected a handful of gals to see again, overall men were much more likely to indicate interest in only one or two women.

However, one time I made fun of them for it in the opening remarks, and it changed: at that event, most men picked more than two women.

I have four times now witnessed hundreds of people go on hundreds of dates in only a few hours.

I’ve then analyzed their post-date opinions about each other, and paired them off. I organized literary speed dating events at the bookstore where I work.

Although I have not been speed dating myself, organizing and witnessing speed dating led to some interesting observations and reinforced some trends about courtship.For the uninitiated, this is how our speed dating works: 35 or so women and 35 or so men sign up for the event, and we set them up based on age and literary interest.Each participant went on 10 to 14 six-minute dates.Since each woman would not have the opportunity to meet every man, and vice versa, because of the size of the event we also offered a post-official-dating mingle time for people to hit on each other the old-fashioned way.At the end of the night, participants turned in a provided list of all the people of the opposite sex, indicating who they were interested in talking to again.(We did one of these events for queer women, but most of them were for straight men and women and most of my observations come from that.) If both participants indicated interest, each received the other’s email address and they’re invited to take it from there.