MARTA Dating Tips
For the final stretch of my ride home Monday night, I hopped on the train at Avondale, post a stint at the Corner Pub with One and Two, to Kensington. One stop. At 10pm, my normal commute time. Except that night, there was crazy all up on that train and it had it’s eye on me.
See, there was this dude sitting across the aisle from me. We were in the capper seats facing one another (there were, indeed, no cappers present requiring said seats, thankyouverymuch) and I plopped down and leaned back while discussing with my bud Steph about my tenure at the shelter via cellular phone. I mentioned that I had been there one year when crazy dude pipes in with a whole, “Girl, why you been staying in the shelter for a year?” I explained that I’m the manager there, it’s my job. See, but that was my mistake, don’t engage the crazy.
I leaned back again and continued my conversation when I feel something on my boot. Sure enough, crazy was playing with my foot. On the train. Who does that? I shake him off and continue with said conversation. Then he does it again, and when I look at him, he licks his lips. Ew. Just ew. So I continue to ignore him. Once more, my toes are squeezed and he says, “Hang up”. It’s about this point, in my bad day, that I proceed to tell him to stop touching me. This gets him going, “You crazy not to talk to this good looking man.” No, you crazy, hitting up on some chick on the train when she is obviously not into you at all.
Fellas, I’m not saying to not talk to a girl on the train; I know Two’s dream girl is car free like him, so MARTA might even be a good place for him to meet such a lady. But you’ve got to do this one right, because the creep factor can be super high if you’re chatting up someone on transit.
So I offer you my dating tips, as verified by the Accidental Commuter.
First. DO NOT TOUCH. Especially feet. I mean, really. Most girls have this whole “Transit = dirty” stigma. There are a lot of people on that train everyday, and this means germs and general ickiness. So don’t spread anymore ickiness. And most people just don’t like being touched without provocation.
Second. If it’s a weeknight and it’s 10pm, this is not the time to engage someone in conversation. Only crazies do that. A safe time to engage girls in conversation is generally 10:30am to around 8pm, unless its the weekend, when you’re safe up til close to midnight. This is because people don’t want to chat it up usually during the morning commute so you’re just annoying. Unless she’s a super crazy morning person, and then she just may well be annoying. But in the AM, she’s reading her newspaper, still a bit groggy, and not looking forward to that 9 to 5. However, during lunch or daytime errands, or the commute home, this can be a good time to hit it off with the girl of your transit dreams. But after 8, you get into that latenight-creepy factor, and she’s had a long day and is trying to get home, so again, I’d stay away and let her come to you if she’s so inclined.
Third. If someone is on the phone, leaning back, has their eyes closed or is anyway not paying attention to you, do not talk to them, this is not a bar. Only engage with someone if they look at you. And I mean LOOK at you. This look should either a: be eye contact lasting longer than three seconds, b: result in a smile, or c: be followed up with a second look. You should be looking for some sign of interest. And if she’s reading a book, she doesn’t want to talk to you.
Fourth: So she looked at you, twice, and she smiled. Now what? Does she have a seat? Do you? Offer her your seat or the one next to you so that she’s close enough to engage. But what do you talk to her about? Talk about some crazy person on the train, there’s usually one. Maybe the curly headed blond girl I always run into, or some joker selling something. But don’t make fun of them, talk about how they make the commute more entertaining. Or you could talk about the ads, like how you were thinking about getting those blue jeans for curvy girls or hair extensions, or how that Troy map got you lost one time. Be fun, have humor. Transit girls like humor. We also like dorks, so it’s a safe bet to make fun of yourself. Don’t try to be cool or slick, cool turns to creepy too fast. And please don’t ask her where she’s going. If she wants you to know, she’ll tell you. Unless she has luggage and is heading to or away from the airport, then you can inquire about her trip.
Fifth: You’ve engaged her in some light conversation, and she doesn’t seem to be annoyed. Great! Seal the deal, but do it quickly. You never know when she’ll be needing to get off. But how do you do that without being all creepy? I would recommend some cutesy strategy, like suggesting you two meet up again on the train. If it’s Tuesday night and you’re both headed home from the office, suggest that you do the commute again tomorrow. Saturday night? See you at on the way to brunch for some Hangover hash! If she laughs, drop it. Then it’s not like you awkwardly asked her out and she declined, laugh along and pretend it’s a joke. If she says sure, give her your business card with an e-mail address. Then she has the option to follow up if she cares to.
If you never hear from her and you see her again, just smile. She may come talk to you. She may ignore your existence. She may write about you in her blog. Us girls tend to get hit on more than you think on the train, so it’s a fine line to tow if you get on that ship. You could even make fun of creeps who hit on girls on transit. But the best MARTA dating tip I have, is for pete’s sake, help any chick you see on the train who’s being harassed by a crazy. Pretend you know her, make said crazy go away, and you will be forever endeared to her.