How to meet friends and lovers in a tech-dependent, awkward, messed-up world
By Scott King
“But, Stepmother, what if no one likes me???”
“Just be yourself, Jerri, and if things don’t work out, then we’ll know where the problem lies.”
– Strangers With Candy, The Movie
‘HELLO! I’M SCOTT KING. It’s nice to meet you.’ That is the best pick up line I know. Works every time.
If someone wants to get to know you, on any level, words can only get in the way. They will not win someone over. They will not cast a spell. They will only make you seem more and more banal. And complicated.
Have you ever had someone tell you that you don’t look like your picture? That’s because you don’t look like your picture. Have you ever had someone tell you that your pictures don’t do you justice? That’s because your pictures don’t look like you – the you that people see.
What does any of this have to do with transubstantiation? Thank you for asking.
I will now proceed to teach you how to take a compliment. And make connections. Then we will substantiate the transition, together.
WHEN SOMEONE GIVES YOU a compliment, say “thanks,” and know that it’s true.
Did you notice how I didn’t capitalize the “t” word? That’s because your body language will do fine to communicate the lack of capitalization there. And please, don’t say, “Thank you!” The word “you” has that open vowel sound at the end that leaves you vulnerable. It also makes the person giving the compliment want to … look away.
If you can take it up the ass, you can take a compliment.
Speaking of “thanks,” it allows you an excuse to take your sibilant “s” out for a walk. But I don’t have a sibilant “s,” you might say. Yes you do. But even if you don’t, you can still take that lispy “s” for a walk. It’s a beautiful day outside. The birds are singing. I bet this flower wishes it was as purdy as you.
No matter how masc you are, the sibilant “s” makes you more comfortable with your feminine side. It will also make you sexy. And dangerous. Like that obsequious gay snake in the animated Robin Hood. Remember when we were so oppressed that only snakes could be gay?
Well, times have changed. Snakes are now metrosexual, and gay people have talk shows and play professional sports. So much hugging.
TOO MUCH HUGGING, actually. Every once in a while, chill out on the damn hugging for a second. A nice, not necessarily firm, handshake can hold the goddess space. Suspended in midair, this paradoxical custom conveys perfectly that we are connected but also wholly separate.
The extended arm projects phallic machinations, yes, but, if you are versatile at all, it presents the perfect opportunity for you to harbor and soothe the energy of an errant sadist.
Do the handshake. Shake it like an earthquake. Stay strong for a couple extra shakes too long, and wrap it up with a hard knowing look in the eyes. Even if it’s just a bro, he will always remember meeting you.
And remember, every person you meet is just an Uber ride away from being a trick. Or a friend.
Think about the lady, just over 50, in her third career, dressed in subtle, elegant clothing, who helps you out at the department store. She’s Southern and charming without being pretentious or aristocratic. She greets you with a handshake. She’s not trying to top you.
That is how you meet people. The rest is up to you.
Scott King lives and loves in Atlanta. Reach him via this magazine.