Written by Ian McEntee.

Graphic by Peyton Cabaniss.

I am and will continue to be a serial dater. Nothing serious tends to come from these dates, but hey, free coffee is always fun once in a while. The issue lately has been finding new ways to meet people. Yeah, Tinder is a thing, but sometimes you just want to change things up a bit. After talking to a few of my friends, we discovered many….innovative ways to meet new people. Some have resulted in great things, but most of the time it has crashed and burned. Luckily, we’re left with some humorous anecdotes to let others laugh at our misery. Disclosure: The names in these stories have been changed to try and maintain some sense of anonymity.

Canvas, the platform UT professors use to post class information and grades, is one of the best ways to meet new people if you’re willing to work for it. Say there is a cute person in your class and you know their first name, you can use the “People” function to attempt to find them. Once you find their full name, you can switch to one of my favorite methods of intel: Facebook stalking. However, after completing your investigation into every corner of this person’s existence sans finding their social security number, I recommend not accidentally letting it slip that you know something about their personal life that you discovered on your data mining. It’s very awkward and very difficult to talk your way out of that one (and no, there was not a second date, thank you for asking).

Miranda: Canvas also has a feature where you can message someone directly, but as my friend Miranda found out, you should check who you’re sending it to. Miranda had a class with a man named Steve that she wanted to invite to a date event. She looked him up on Canvas and sent him a message. What she didn’t realize was that she had actually sent the message to her entire class. So, her class of about 150 people, including her professor, received a heartfelt email asking them to a date event. Unsurprisingly, Steve declined her invitation. Don’t worry, he was kind enough to not hit reply all.

Samantha: Sometimes writing a paper is hard and you need a little additional help for edits. My friend Samantha loves to edit people’s papers, and she actually gets paid to do it. Smith, a boy, found out about Samantha’s writing skills and asked her to edit a paper for class. She agreed, and he shared the paper he wrote via Google Docs. Unbeknownst to Samantha, Smith was in need of a date for an event for an organization he is in. Smith was a little more bold than your average guy. In the middle of the document, Smith had placed a sentence that said: “Hey Sam, will you go to a date event with me?” Bold, Mr. Smith, very bold. Samantha agreed to go to this date event with him. Unfortunately, due to prior commitments she could not attend the date event with Smith. Samantha was still interested in potentially going on a date with Smith in spite of not being able to attend said date event. Apparently, Smith was not. As normal for straight males who don’t get what they want after doing the bare minimum, he ghosted her. Even though it did not work out for Samantha, it’s an inspirational tale of shooting your shot in any way possible. In this day and age, Google Docs is a great way to confess your undying love to a friend who loves copy editing.

Carrie: Finally, we reach the tale of Carrie. Carrie taught me and countless others to always double check the name of a file before we send it. My friend Carrie met a guy while studying named Mr. Big. Like Samantha, Carrie also enjoyed editing papers for people. Mr. Big saw that Carrie was editing something for another friend, Charlotte, and asked for her help to edit something for one of his classes. Carrie thought Mr. Big was really cute, and gladly accepted the task. Mr. Big sent Carrie the document, and she uploaded it to Google Docs. The thing about Carrie is that she names her documents on Google to be very, very specific. She edited the paper Mr. Big had sent her and downloaded the file. What Carrie did not realize was that she never changed the name of the file before sending it back to Mr. Big. What did she name the file, you ask? Good question. She sent the file to Mr. Big under the title of “Paper for Really Cute Boy.” She has yet to hear back from Mr. Big, but things are not looking good.

Many different methods of dating exist outside of Tinder, Bumble, and all of the other dating apps. The moral of the story: Don’t be afraid to put yourself out there. Just make sure you are aware of what you are about to send and who you are sending it to. If you don’t, that’s fine. Just be sure to tell your truth and your story to all of your friends, so you can laugh and cry together.

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