Hey, I Just Met You....
October 8, 2012 9:46 PM   Subscribe

I am rather awkward when it comes to matters of the heart and I am unsure how to proceed in this particular situation.

I met a really nice guy a week or so ago while we were volunteering for our npr affiliate's pledge drive. We talked most of the time, whenever we weren't answering phones and I feel like we hit it off pretty well, but that could just all be in my head. When our shift was over, he walked with me to my car and asked if I was doing anything afterwards. Unfortunately, I had a meeting to attend, but I invited him to come see my acoustic show later that week (we had discussed it earlier) and wrote down the info for him. He seemed interested at the time, but he didn't show up that night, for whatever reason. I was a little bummed, mostly because we didn't exchange contact info and I had no way to get in touch with him.

I think he is quite intriguing and I'd like to get to know him better. I asked my friend for advice and she suggested that I look him up in the student directoy (he's a student at a local university). I felt a bit weird about it, but I looked and found him easily.

Would it be weird and/or creepy to email him and ask him out for coffee*? I've never done something like this before; usually the roles are reversed.

In the grand tradition of all things MeFi, I am probably overthinking this. Any wisdom you can offer would be greatly appreciated.

* I'd prefer to do something more interesting than coffee/dinner/movie, because I can get awkward and nervous when I'm forced to just stare and talk at relative stranger for 1-2hours. Plus, when you add hot liquids in the mix....bad news all around.
posted by chara to Human Relations (28 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
If you know his first and last name from the pledge drive, could you find him on facebook? Not many people would think anything of that. If you can't and you have his number, I say go for it. He might think it's weird, but if he does, he can say no to a date. No harm no foul. On the flip side, he doesn't think much of it and you have a good time.
posted by tomtheblackbear at 9:57 PM on October 8, 2012

There are any number of reasons he might have not to go to your event.

In all likelihood he will be flattered and pleased that you looked him up. If he isn't, by chance, then you will be where you were anyway, ie without an ongoing relationship. In other words, you have nothing to lose except a little pride.
posted by zachawry at 10:00 PM on October 8, 2012

Another vote for a Facebook message. This is a totally normal thing to do.

You shouldn't worry too much about the expected gender roles, BUT, if you are... well, just Facebook him and say something like, "Hey! Great meeting you the other day. Hopefully we can re-connect sometime!" That puts the boy-asks-girl ball back in his court, while clarifying that you're interested.
posted by samthemander at 10:02 PM on October 8, 2012 [3 favorites]

Agreed: I think friending on Facebook and then a message would come across as significantly less creepy/forward than looking up in the school directory. I guess my question would be: did you give him your contact info, or did you give him the concert location info? If he has your contact info, I'd drop it. If you gave him the concert info, it's perfectly possible that he was unable to make it, and is kicking himself at the missed opportunity, and unable to get in touch with you.
posted by UniversityNomad at 10:04 PM on October 8, 2012 [1 favorite]

Response by poster: Oh yeah, forgot to add that he's not on Facebook and I didn't give him my contact info. I would have preferred the fb route much more to email, since it's more casual, but oh well.
posted by chara at 10:05 PM on October 8, 2012

I contacted someone once using that very method! It was pre-Facebook days so I emailed his school address after meeting at a party and I made a joke in my message about being a creepy stalker. He thought it was cute and we went for lunch. You should go for it...he'll likely be flattered!
posted by Pomo at 10:16 PM on October 8, 2012

Given your update, my vote would be to go for the school directory route, even though it is potentially slightly creepy. Given that he seemed interested, and he has no way to get in contact with you, I would say it's worth a shot. If you want anecdata: I did something like this once (not entirely analogous, but involving looking up someone's information, with reasonable reason to believe he might be interested). I didn't get a response, and wrote it off as a lost cause. He wrote about half a year later (I'm really not entirely sure why so late: my hunch is that he may have been seeing someone at the time), but by then I was no longer interested. He did say he was flattered, FWIW.

I'd keep the message short and low-key, and put the ball firmly in his court; if no reply, definitely drop it, and no follow-up message. Maybe something like: "Hey X, Really enjoyed meeting you the other day!" Possibly with "Let me know if you ever want to meet up for coffee or something" added to the end, although that's probably obvious given that you're emailing him. I probably wouldn't say that you got his email from the student directory: it's tempting to explain it, but I think it will come across less weird if you just entirely omit, although maybe others have a different opinion. This really has no risk except your pride, because if he doesn't respond, you're in exactly the situation that you're in now, which is that you aren't dating him.
posted by UniversityNomad at 10:16 PM on October 8, 2012 [2 favorites]

I must be the only guy who ever thought it was AWESOME when a woman chased me down. One of my fondest college relationships came about when I met a girl at an event, didn't have the nerve to ask for her deets so she tracked me down through ROTC a week later. There is nothing better than feeling sought after. Email him already!
posted by bpm140 at 10:20 PM on October 8, 2012 [6 favorites]

Be brief, mention you wanted to chat more or get coffee but foolishly failed to provide contact info so had to resort to school directory, apologize for it possibly seeming creepy, and give him proper contact info. Then leave it to him to reply.
posted by ead at 10:21 PM on October 8, 2012

It's super not creepy. He gave you his name and you already knew what school he goes to. It's like looking someone up in the White Pages.

It's only creepy if he ignores your message and you send a million "Did you get my email" follow-ups or if you persist in emailing him after he's told you not to. This is what the technology is made for.
posted by inturnaround at 10:25 PM on October 8, 2012 [5 favorites]

Also seconding bpm140: for me and most men I know, being pursued is flattering and we don't have nearly as much of a trigger for creepy early enthusiasm (unless it moves quickly past interest into future talk, commitment, etc). It is just polite to mention/disarm that angle.
posted by ead at 10:26 PM on October 8, 2012 [1 favorite]

If he's not on Facebook, then email is a totally normal way to contact him, especially since you didn't exchange phone numbers. I'd say go for it! He's obviously interested in you and you sound equally as interested in him, so I don't think it would hurt.
posted by E3 at 10:53 PM on October 8, 2012

Feel free to look him up on the student directory; that's what it is for! You have positive expectations - again, nothing wrong with that! - but you should mentally tell yourself that a no from him is still possible.
posted by the cydonian at 10:55 PM on October 8, 2012

I was contacted by someone through the university directory because that was the only way he could find me. Reader, I married him.
posted by mochapickle at 11:02 PM on October 8, 2012 [12 favorites]

I can think of a million reasons that I, with my awesome social anxiety, would not have gone to your show even if I was super into you.

Just email him.

You really have nothing to lose.

Facebook puts nonfriend messages into an other folder and people often don't see those for months.. if ever. Seriously, it has happened to me on both ends. So email him.
posted by OnTheLastCastle at 11:23 PM on October 8, 2012 [2 favorites]

Isn't that what the university directory is for? Contact him.
posted by JohnnyGunn at 11:24 PM on October 8, 2012

I'd say go for it. He didn't have to walk you to your car, and he definitely didn't have to ask if you were doing anything later.

I have to imagine he just couldn't make the show, since nothing happened in between where he would've realized he just wasn't into you (well, unless he has a disliking for acoustic music).

Plus, you met him at a volunteering gig, so he must be a stand up guy, right? Is your show a regular thing at that venue? Is it possible he'd come to the next one, or ask the proprietors about you on his own?
posted by TheSecretDecoderRing at 12:24 AM on October 9, 2012

Just email him. No big. If you want to lower the stakes, just say hey, it was nice meeting you and leave the ball in his court to ask you out for coffee -- although I vote for taking that on yourself.
posted by J. Wilson at 6:26 AM on October 9, 2012

Yep, I can think of a bunch of reasons a shy or socially anxious person might not come to a show you told him about. He might have thought that you were just being polite by including him and did not specifically want his company. He might have feared showing up and not fitting in and looking like a creeper. He may have not wanted to awkwardly trail you in public since he wouldn't know anybody else there. I actively try to keep a handle on this kind of (over)thinking in my own life and I would still only put the odds of me showing up at such an event at about 50/50 depending on where in the cycle of talking myself into and out of it I was.

I feel like a quick message with an invite and your contact info is totally the way to go. Inviting him somewhere one on one lets him know that you actually want to spend time with him. Giving him your contact info puts it in his hands so you can stop thinking about what you should have done/should be doing/etc. It is not creepy at all. It is awesome and you should totally do it.
posted by troublewithwolves at 6:28 AM on October 9, 2012

Yeah shoot him an email. You don't really have a shitload to lose.
posted by FAMOUS MONSTER at 7:54 AM on October 9, 2012

Email him and ask him out. Then come back here and tell us what happens! :)
posted by superfille at 10:19 AM on October 9, 2012

I was asked out once by a guy who tracked down my email through a school website. He could have easily asked our mutual friend for my contact info but chose to do it through the school site instead, and I *still* didn't find it at all creepy. (Kind of flattering, actually.) I mean, I thought he was cute, so that helped. But really, I don't think most people would creeped out by that; an email is pretty much the lowest-key form of contact possible. Go for it, and good luck! :)
posted by miss_kitty_fantastico at 12:26 PM on October 9, 2012

I say go for it! Who knows? Maybe he's thinking the same thing as you. He couldn't make the show and maybe he feels weird emailing you.
posted by parakeetdog at 2:24 PM on October 9, 2012

Another dude chiming in to say email him. Not creepy.
posted by hootenatty at 2:31 PM on October 9, 2012

Facebook is a TERRIBLE way to try to contact someone now. Friend requests don't allow you to add a personal message and messages from non friends go into the black hole of "other messages," you don't get a message notification on that type and you have to know to look for them. Email or call him and god luck!
posted by cyndigo at 4:22 PM on October 9, 2012 [1 favorite]

Update us please :D
posted by lifethatihavenotlivedyet at 6:00 PM on October 9, 2012

Response by poster: I sent him an email Tuesday afternoon, after reading this thread. I still haven't received a response, so I assume he's not interested. I guess I just read that situation totally wrong? Oh well. At least I tried. Anyway, thanks everyone for your helpful comments.
posted by chara at 10:40 AM on October 12, 2012 [1 favorite]

Bummer. But at least you'll never wonder what-if! Good on you for taking a chance! :)
posted by miss_kitty_fantastico at 1:21 PM on October 13, 2012 [1 favorite]

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