Because our offices are based in the heart of West Hollywood, my business partner Nicholas and I work for a few hours every morning at the local gay Starbucks, affectionately referred to as the "Gaybucks." While there, we often talk to a lot of people about their online dating experiences and their challenges with being single in 2013. Unofficially, our friends at Starbucks have become OneGoodLove's incredible focus group in real time.
In fact, there is a group of three friends that shows up at this Starbucks every morning that we jokingly refer to as "The View," because they sit at a high-top table drinking their coffee and talking about their dating lives and current events. It is a lot of fun to watch as the fourth seat at the table gets filled again and again by a "guest." In turn, they joke about us hosting "office hours" for love advice for all the gays and lesbians who track through one of the busiest Starbuck stores in the country. After all, we remind them, our goal at OneGoodLove is to help every pot find its lid!
A recurring complaint we hear in our conversations at Starbucks is, "I just haven't found the right person yet." But when we press people further on what they are doing to be proactive to change their love life in 2013, we often get blank stares, sort of like the stare Mariah Carey recently gave on American Idol after hearing about how Nicki Minaj makes crispy turkey bacon each morning. Priceless.
Seriously, what continues to amaze us is that even when we help friends put profiles up on our site and give them free subscriptions, they tend to set up their profiles and wait for somebody to contact them. Seriously? We just don't understand why people are great at going to the gym and changing their diets to keep their new year's resolutions, but when it comes to their love lives, they just sit like a lame duck Congress and wait for something to happen. This approach brings to mind a saying my mom always says to me: "Honey, you can't win the lottery if you don't buy a lottery ticket."
Come on! Really? Why are so many of you unwilling to make the first move when you see somebody you're attracted to in the club, on an online dating site or right here at Starbucks? For God's sake, please just smile and just say "hello" to the venti-two-pump-vanilla-skinny-latte guy with the great, scruffy face, tight Diesel jeans and killer Converse sneakers. Making the first move is extremely sexy, and you have nothing to lose!We've heard enough already. For all you passive single folks out there, here is our tough love advice for 2013:
- Stop your bitching and get off your ass. Be proactive with your love life in 2013 and actually start smiling and saying "hello" to that cute guy or girl at the grocery store. They won't bite, and, at a minimum, they will say "hello" back. We promise. You will never find out if you don't try something new. Go ahead and be the person to send the first email on that dating site. Take a chance.
- Don't do a half-assed job on your online dating profiles. Take the right amount of time on your profiles to make sure it communicates who you really are. Take new photos, and please do not use the same tired, old ones. Your friends want you to find love, so they will be more than happy to snap some photos of you.
- Don't set it and forget it. Many of you set up your profiles and then sit back and wait to be contacted. It's not an advertisement. It's an interactive profile, so make it interactive. Life will pass you by if you sit back and never jump into the center of the double-dutch jump rope. Send out some messages. Who cares if you don't get a response back? Really, who cares? Get over yourself.
- Set a few achievable goals. Initiate contact with two new people each day for a week. You will be pleasantly surprised by how just saying "hello" will change the number of messages you get. And here's to many happy dates.
I mean, I also love the scene from Pretty Woman in which Edward comes charging up the street, hanging out of the sun roof of his white limo, holding an umbrella as a sword, and professing his love for Vivian. But Vivian doesn't get to that point by sitting back and waiting for Edward to just come along. She puts herself out there. She buys a damn lottery ticket.
Much love, and happy dating!
To email Frank Mastronuzzi, click here.