I've asked a couple questions about building a richer social life on AskMeta, and a few times I've gotten the suggestion that I should be spending more one-on-one time with friends and acquaintances. My observations suggest that women socialize this way more often than men do. Tell me I'm wrong, then share tips.
Step 1: The cultural background is that this is the mid-Atlantic region of the US, the year is 2013, and I'm 28, male, white, gay, and not very blue-collar.
Step 2: Assume that I am not without redeeming qualities and that I do have at least minimal social skills.
I'm not in a relationship, I don't date friends of friends much, I'm not in any LGBT service organizations, etc. The result is that I haven't had the occasion to be out to everyone I know, especially to people I know from work.
I am usually OK at setting up group activities (including MeFi meetups), and when I'm with a group, people at least seem to enjoy my company somewhat (see Step 2 above). I occasionally end up inviting a single person to go do something somewhere, either because I haven't seen them in a while or because I don't feel like going out with a group.
I really struggle to think of an occasion when I invited a female friend somewhere by herself and got a positive response, as opposed to "I probably can't" or "I'm going to be busy." This includes women who have known me for a while and know (to the extent possible, I guess) that I have no romantic intentions.
I generally don't ask guy friends to hang out one on one, and guy friends don't ask me to hang out one on one. A few times I've ended up getting dinner after studying with someone, but I feel that this sort of thing is more situational than spontaneous. I've gone to events a few times with a straight male roommate before, but he seemed to remark a lot about how it must look like we're out on a date.
On a couple of occasions I've ended up somewhere with a gay guy friend (because we are the only two to show up to something). Granted, these were not people I knew very closely, but it seemed like both times the evening was spent with them on the phone with their partners.
To refine the question further, I hope you can talk about something like:
- you are (or know) a guy and you meet people socially (as opposed to work/school) one on one a lot, maybe over coffee/drinks/lunch/whatever, and you don't think it's an issue for you socially at all
- you feel that there are some social norms for guys to navigate here and you make certain conscious gestures to make one on one socialization relaxed and fun
- you feel that there are definite limitations on socializing this way for guys, either based on who you can invite out or the sorts of things you can do together
- this is just "not a very guy thing to do," guys are socialized and expected to hang out in group settings, and tete-a-tetes are reserved for more close/special/intimate occasions