Recently, I got a very interesting question over at my Facebook Group “No Game Necessary” (link provided below if you’re interested in joining up), where one of the members asked about where he could go to meet more of the women he is really interested in. He mentioned (correctly) that the vast majority of men’s dating advice online is designed to help you successfully “pick up” and land a date with what is commonly known as “the popular hot girl” or “HB10” (if you’re still shackled by that pickup terminology). Now, if that is truly the kind of girl you’re looking for…. then this advice still may not even work, because every “popular hot girl” is a unique individual herself, and not all of them will automatically be swooned by your lines and “cheat codes” as though you’re playing a video game that reliably responds  to you input the same way each time. Human beings simply don’t work like that, and it’s time we as a people move away from thinking this way.

Anyway, mini-rant over! What about girls (and guys too) who do not conform to the traditional societal definition of desirable, but are nonetheless, still incredibly sexy in their own way? What if you’re a guy looking for more of a bookish, introverted, nerdy girl? What if you’re a woman looking for a guy who’s not a machismo-fueled, Jersey Shore dude-bro? How do we meet them? 

In this post, I will explain my top places to go to meet people, which don’t involve bars, clubs and other places designed to be a “mating meat market,” so that you’ll have a better chance of finding people who are right for YOU. 

Keep in mind, this advice applies to both men and women, so ladies, feel free to explore these options yourselves as well! 

1) Bookstores: Ever walk into a bookstore and notice that cute guy/girl sitting quietly, reading the latest bestseller (or even the latest Star Wars book?) I have, and many of my dates that I had offline started from bookstores. The reason? As I said before, Im a big geek! Bookstores are a great way to meet more intellectually curious people, and talking about the latest in literature is a great jumping off point for a conversation.. which could eventually set the stage for a meeting down the road. Be careful though. A lot of people go to bookstores and libraries to…you know…. actually READ. So if it looks like the person you’re hoping to talk to is not having it, respect that, and move on.

2) Comic-Cons/Sci Fi/Geek Conventions: Another one for my nerdy friends, these conventions are a great way to introduce yourself, network with people, and bond together over shared interests. Again, this is a great place to lay the foundation for a future friendship and relationship, as you can establish that normally difficult initial rapport by having a built in topic of conversation handy from the get-go. However, you need to remember that since most people are there for the convention, not necessarily to hook up,  so it might not be the best idea to lay it on real thick in your first initial meeting. Instead, talk to them, ask for contact info, and continue the conversation as any normal friends would afterwards.

3) Martial Arts classes: OK, the specifics of the martial arts comes from my own bias, as I am a huge aficionado of bashing people’s brains in for shits and giggles (just kidding…although I DO enjoy the spirit of healthy one-on -one physical competition every now and again). Martial Arts would work for me… but if breaking bricks and choking people to the point of unconsciousness isn’t your thing, you could easily substitute it for intramural sports teams, pickup Basketball leagues, mountain biking, or anything else that involves you getting up off your ass, moving your body around, and sweating a bit. If you are an athletically inclined person looking to meet a person who shares your passions, groups centered around sports and games could just be the next place where you meet Mr./Ms. Right.

4) Dance Classes: This is a great spot for guys in particular, as dance classes are largely made up of women. Some classes in NYC, for example,  are almost 2 to 1 girls to guys, so you definitely have the numbers in your favor. If you’re someone who likes to move their body, but aren’t really into the competitive side of physicality, dance classes provide the optimum way to explore your interests, and meet new people at the same time.

5) Art clubs/classes: If you enjoy spending time in art museums, looking at masterpeices, or if you want to create on yourself, art clubs and classes are a great way to fulfill your hobby while getting to know the next great artist of the opposite gender!

These are just some of the many examples of places you could go to to meet people outside of the bars, clubs, and online sites. As you can probably see from the above examples, the formula is pretty basic: You figure out what your interests are, find a group or club related to that interest, join it, and go to the events, network, and meet like minded people. In addition, to meeting your potential future husband or wife, it’s also a great way to build a strong social circle in general.

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