Not a lack of friendliness but a lack of skills
By Natalie Serafini, Opinions Editor
I was recently talking with some friends, and we got onto the subject of how many single people there are in Vancouver. It’s weird. You’d think with so many singles out there, everyone would eventually pull a Noah’s Ark and pair off—mathematically speaking, it just makes sense. Well, apparently the reason for all the single ladies and gents is the unfriendliness of Vancouver women. Because women here are so unapproachable, no approaching gets done, and the little that does ends at the “Hi, how are you” phase. Just Google “Vancouver women unfriendly single” for a host of articles, rants, and blogs on the subject.
I agree that we could all stand to be a little friendlier, and I enthusiastically concur that women shouldn’t depend on men to ask them out (what is this—the ‘50s?). Still, let’s not saddle all the blame on us women. I think some of the blame could easily be shared with the game that certain men appear to be lacking.
Clumsiness seems to be the biggest downfall for otherwise normal guys. I was once on a bus when an adolescent (I’d like to emphasize that he was an adolescent, and that this event transpired a few months ago—so I was in college) approached me and said, “Hi excuse me but you’re cute and I want to talk to you.” Charming though I’m sure he was, I didn’t want to talk to him. Besides which, his approach was very awkward and Justin Bieber-esque (“Hey girl, let me talk to you”). Granted, approach anxiety is no fun, and being rejected is even less fun. Perhaps that anxiety has begun to translate into clumsy approaches, but that won’t get you anywhere.
Sharing a lot of personal stuff or awkwardly emphasizing your physical prowess is a big no-no. My friend has dealt with an “I have an alcohol abuse problem and my girlfriend broke up with me even though I followed her across the country so we could go to university together. Want to go out?” In what I can only assume was a bizarre brag, I encountered “When I have sex, I break the bed.” I don’t know if those techniques have worked in the past, but as far as I’m concerned, they aren’t turn-ons.
One solid reason a woman might turn you down is that there are creepers everywhere. I myself am terrified of encountering the next Ted Bundy after I morbidly watched a series of A&E documentaries on serial killers. You might just be a plain, not-murderous creeper, but even that won’t get you any ladies. This ranges everywhere from the old guy on the bus who stares a little too intently, to the stranger who (as a friend of mine was once an unwilling audience to) just whips it out as you’re innocently walking down the street. Avoid coming across as a “Silence of the Lambs: I-want-to-make-a-woman-suit-out-of-you” creep, but also avoid being perceived as a straight-up, average creep.
I know it can be tough to ask someone out, but you still want to avoid resorting to bizarre and awkward behaviour. The standard, “Hey, do you want to go for coffee?” generally works pretty well. If the person says no, they’re probably saying it because they don’t like you—at least you know where you stand! Perhaps if some people weren’t as creepy, Vancouver women wouldn’t seem so unfriendly.