Making acquaintances on July 13, 1998…
Dear Breakup Girl,
Okay, here’s my situation: I’m a 24 year old male who moved away from my friends and family to attend a University. This college town has been my residence for the past six months; this is my first time away from home. Life is great for the most part except for one minor inconvenience: I don’t have a girlfriend or more importantly, friends.
Before I moved up here, I was surrounded by my tight group of cronies. I’ve even been fortunate enough to have a few relationships with some righteous babes. Now that I’m living on my own, I find it difficult to make friends. At school, there’s a few acquaintances that I sometimes chat with but I really don’t have a whole lot in common with them. So the chance of me hanging out with them is pretty slim. It seems like whenever I’m in a social situation I tend to clam up and make people think that I’m some kind of snobby bastard. In reality I’m actually a decent-looking, nice guy (no really, I am) so I’m not sure what my problem is.
Around town, I’ve seen a lot of local goddesses that I’m quite attracted to. It’s really not my style to go up to them and say, “Hey baby, if we were an alphabet I would put U and I next to each other.” All my relationships in the past have been initiated by her, meaning I have never played the part of the aggressor. Keep in mind that I have never been in love before and I’m beginning to think that I never will.
I have worked extremely hard to become independent and start my new life in this college town. There is no way in hell that I’m gonna move back home because of my loneliness. I’m not sure how much longer I can live without having any friends to drink beer with or any girls to snuggle with. I love being alone but I hate being lonely. Boy am I a mess.
–Dateless and Lonely
Dear D & L,
About not using that alphabet line: don’t change.
Other than that, yes, actually, making friends is hard. For what it’s worth, a lot of people who seem to do it easily are just as lonely as you are; they may be surrounded, but they feel hollow inside. In other words, the gift of gab does not the gift of close friendship make.
But surely you have other gifts to share. That’s why I honestly think you should — and look out, I am about to give THE DORKIEST ADVICE EVER — um, join a club. I am cringing as I type this, but I am dead serious. And you’re at University, so I know they’ve got clubs around there somewhere; take advantage! You said yourself you’re short on people with whom you’ve got stuff in common. A club will totally allow you to circumvent the lame requisite conversation clunkers like, “So, what are your extracurricular interests?” It may lead to friends, girlfriends, whatever — at very least, it will help you become a point on a new circle.
I know you’ve worked hard to become independent; now, it seems to me, you’re working a little too hard. Joining a club will also, I hope, require you to rescind your membership in your university’s chapter of Self-Fulfilling Prophets. If you know what I mean.