Speed dating is not confined to people who identify with a certain way of eating.
Speed dating opportunities for people who are secular, slender, tall, 50 and a variety of other niche groups are run by private companies. A 2005 study at the University of Pennsylvania based on multiple Hurry Date events found that most people made their choices within the first three seconds of meeting.And issues such as religion, previous marriages, and smoking habits were found to play much less of a role than expected. Intriguingly, Malcolm Gladwell’s book on split-second decision making, includes the work of two professors at Columbia University who run speed-dating events.If you’re unfamiliar with speed dating, here’s how last night’s worked: people wore name tags and were given a sign-up sheet.After some preliminary schmoozing, the women were asked to sit on bench seats and men sat opposite.Two women dropped out because they’d found themselves in relationships since they purchased tickets. The assembled crowd, mostly Caucasians in their early 20s through to early 60s from around the Bay Area, mingled over appetizers in the Space Lounge, an area separate from the restaurant.(A word on the food: mostly fried and fatty, with salsa laden with raw onion.
In short: Overwhelmingly unimpressive and not particularly dating-friendly. Some folks eyes lit up at the end of the evening when vegan cupcakes came out, others begged off saying they avoid sugar or that the treats were too sweet.) But folks weren’t there for the food.
“I don’t have meat in my home, go to zoos, wear clothing made from animals, or eat at restaurants that serve meat, so it’s important to me to have a partner who shares my lifestyle choices,” said Brighten, who specializes in vegan events.
“Then there’s no explaining or defending to do, you’re both on the same page.” Wednesday night’s meetup was aimed at heterosexual adults 21 and over, though Brighten hopes to hold events for gay folks in the future. For those who left “looking for luv” to the last minute, tickets at the door cost .
But, no worries, if these topics were even broached they were dispensed with quickly.
The event featured a self-described dating expert, Anna Hennings, 25, who has co-authored articles on the subject and counts among her credentials being raised by sex educators/therapists.
The Veg Speed Dating night was hosted by Berkeley-based Karine Brighten, 29, a vegan who met her husband (also vegan) online.