talking with strangers

I trust that I’m in the right forum. If not, let slythe, in a moderator’s god given wisdom, banish the thread to another section.

This question is mainly being directed towards women since I’m a guy and inquiring minds wanna know.

You’re sitting at a coffee shop, library, park, (read: any public place you normally visit). A guy comes up to you. He’s not drop dead gorgeous, but he’s not a dog either. Just an average guy coming up to you in a non-meat market situation. He says a few introductory lines, and asks to sit down. He appears non-threatening. Do you let him? What if you’re there for a specific purpose (i.e. studying, reading, spending time alone). Do you mind the intrusion? At what point would you tell him that he’s wasting his time because you have a husband or boyfriend or that you’re just not interested period? Overall, do you mind being picked up at random? Would you have more respect for someone with the self confidence to approach you in the first place?

Basically, my question is this: Skipping all of those cheesy pick-up lines that guys tell to other guys in e-mails, what’s the most effective way to break the ice and meet someone at random?

Hey, I’m a guy and no one ever e-mails me pick up lines :frowning:
How did I get out of the loop?

One of my fantasies is to meet a guy in the library and do him in the stacks. :wink:

If someone approached me the way you described, I would generally be open (so to speak) to things, as long as I wasn’t getting any creepy vibes. And self-confidence is definitely something I personally find attractive (as long as it isn’t to the point of being a cocky, swaggering prick :D).

Of course, the only men that have approached me like this lately have been weird old guys in grocery stores. :frowning:

I’m not one to ask about how to meet people at random, or I wouldn’t be in this state.

Hi I’m Joe, How ya doing today?

This usually works better than almost any other “pick up” line. I am married, but I always talk to friendly types. I usually explain that I am married when the conversation tries to escalate into dating territory.

The worst I’ve heard lately is…
He: Did it hurt?
She: excuse me, did what hurt?
He: did you jurt yourself when you felol from heaven?

I think this just depends on the vibes that any woman would get from the guy. If he appears calm and self confident, maybe he’d receive an ‘okay’. How threatening do you appear?? Can guys even TELL if they are?

Some of the most charming ‘openers’ have happened at the grocery store. Once, the guy was reading the headlines in the ‘weird rags’ and started laughing, ‘where do they get those stories??’ It * didn’t seem like a come on * which is what made it charming.

Be yourself, relax, and find some activity you like doing, that females are involved in too, photography courses, that kind of thing. It’s NOT like they don’t want a guy, ya know! :wink:

In a public place? No bad vibes? Sure, I would talk for a few minutes & have a friendly conversation…And a person that is self-confident…That’s attractive in a man or woman…But you have to check out body language…And just be yourself…Of course who else can we be?? in the long run anyway…

Being a girl who is extremely intriged by males who sit by themsleves in public places (something about a decent looking male sitting in a coffeshop or out in the park on the ground reading a book by himself, mmmm just does something for me.) I’d say this is a good approach. Sounds friendly and very non threatening. If she is reading a magazine or somesort of reading material try to start a conversation about some headline from the reading material. Just don’t try to sound like you know everything about said subject, arrogance is a put off, while self confidence is a definant turn on.

In the mean time, good luck to ya :slight_smile:

A lot of it depends on my mood. Sometimes I just want to be left ALONE, and it has nothing to do with the guy. However, if I’m in a halfway decent mood, generally I don’t mind the intrusion, as long as the guy will back off if asked, and doesn’t appear too pushy. For instance, it’s all right to ask for a phone number or other means of contact after talking for a few minutes (I’ve given out my number a couple of times like this) but be prepared to take a “No” graciously. Offering to shake hands is good. Any other touching (excluding Heimlich maneuvers, etc.) is bad, unless it’s initiated by the other party.

Asking me to accompany you to your home/apartment and “making sweet love” upon the first meeting will probably result in your gonads also functioning as your necktie.


The reason that I ask this question is because my own logic process continues to amaze me on a daily basis.

If a friend introduces me to a female, I have no problems talking to them. I wait tables occasionally and have no problem being my fun jovial self in front of women. I’m training to get up on stage and I can’t wait for the opportunity to have fun and be a fool in front of a few hundred patrons.

But if there’s a cute girl next to me in a coffee shop, I’ll spend an hour thinking to myself. “You should say hi, you should say hi.” For over an hour I’ll sit there, trying to ignore her, knowing I should talk to her, and knowing beyond a shadow of a doubt that I’m a pussy and I won’t. And then she gets up and leaves. And I kick myself yet again.

I don’t understand it. I can’t even begin to comprehend the warped logic that is me. Why can I have no problems making a fool of myself in so many arenas, yet fear the rejection of a woman above all else? Can someone please slap me?

Do not use this as an opening line.

It sounds to me like you are just a shy guy. Maybe if you are in a social situation with a friend, you can ask your friend to break the ice. I’ve done it before for a few of my friends who were hesitant to say hello to the person standing next to them.

What is she reading? Maybe it’s this week’s Newsweek and you can ask her to pass the magazine to you when she’s done with it (if it’s a magazine that belongs to the coffee shop).

What is she studying? Maybe you can say that her textbook caught your eye and oh my God how you just hated/loved that class when you took it. Maybe she’s struggling with a particularly difficult Laplace Transform that you can help out with. Perhaps you can help her conjugate the verb to explode in Lithuanian.

Is she drinking coffee? Ask her where the creamers are (assuming it isn’t already obvious). Is she eating a bagel? Mention how tasty it looks and say you didn’t realize they served them in this particular coffee shop. Then ask what kind it is and if she likes it. If she recommends it, go buy one. Now you have something in common! This also gives you a follow-up opportunity when you’re done. (“That really was good! Say, is that a smoothie? I didn’t know…”)

I could go on forever here. Step one is to get over your shyness and break the ice. If you can’t do that much, no conversation-starting topic in the world will help you. Step two is picking a non-threatening opening line that goes with the situation at hand. Step three depends on her reaction. If you get an irritated glare or a :rolleyes: , change targets and go back to step one.

I think that opus is right on here.
I am generally a very shy gal, but even I don’t mind being talked to over my coffee.
I’d like it a lot better if the fellow had a reason to start talking to me, though. Such as asking if I know where he can get a good sandwich around here, or whether the soup is any good.
I like helping people, especially if they ask me something that makes sense.


My biggest problem is that I am a friendly guy. I am not out searching for someone (I have the cutest wife!! proof ) but I am just friendly. I will chat with people, talk to whomever and generally have fun. I do not intrude, but if someone says hello to me I will often lead them into a conversation. I know when they do not want to be there and do not force people to talk to me but my friends sometimes tell me I should not flirt so much now that I am married.

I did not know I was flirting. Just being myself.

messed up the URL there …

try this:’s_corner.htm

And where do you go to the Library???

The best opening line ever used on me was: “Can I befriend you?”

OK, so I was young and gullible, but it was the start of a fun relationship. As I think back, the line would not have worked for just anyone - he has just the boyishness to carry it off. Still, it was a sweet and non-threatening way to start a conversation.