FLRT100H1: An Elective in Flirting

So there I sat in Flirting 101, on Valentine’s Day, slightly breathless and mildly sweaty. I was the only guy in the room of 7 girls: 2 presenters and 5 other attendees. Mind you, that’s not why I was sweaty. I had to rush over from the gym to Hart House, in my post-workout state of perspiration, to attend this workshop on flirting given by the University of Toronto SEC (Sexual Education and Peer Counselling Centre).

So the University of Toronto Sexual Education and Peer Counselling Centre gives all sorts of workshops on topics surrounding sex: from “Negotiating Healthy (Sexual) Relationships” to “Making Safer Sex, Greater Sex!” to condoms (wait, that’s not a talk, they just give out free condoms). Anyway, this particular workshop caught my eye. I’m always curious to learn a thing or two. Knowledge is power right? Plus, in case you haven’t read it yet… my Online Dating Adventure ended less than fruitfully. Maybe there’s room for improvement?

If nothing else, it might make an interesting article.

So, how much of a geek am I? Did I really need a course on flirting? Well, let me give you a fair idea of where I’m coming from. In all frankness, I think I’m an average flirter. While I may not be able to strike up impromptu conversations with women at will, or get girls’ phone numbers with a well-timed wink of my eye, I have chatted up girls and walked away with phone numbers a few times (I can probably count them on my fingers). But I have to say, of the times I’ve made an honest effort (which is infrequent), I’ve been decently successful.

As far as my flirting knowledge goes, it’s been mostly gleaned from what we call life experiences. And I imagine that’s the case for most people. Oh, but I did chance upon this book once, called The Game: Penetrating the Secret Society of Pickup Artists. Well, I’m sure you can imagine what it’s about (Hell, they even make a reality TV series). Anyway, that intrigued me for a while and I read up a bit on related topics briefly. I’m not sure if it helped me or not (probably not much, seeing as I’m a far cry from an artist in any field, be it picking up, stick figure portraitures, or yodelling).

Anyway, back on topic: I was at a flirting 101 workshop. The presenters were two energetic girls who radiated positivity. They alternated between smiling and giggling at the witty jokes they made (of which they made quite a few, and they were indeed quite witty). The workshop started off with some very elementary stuff, like “let’s list the different ways we communicate!” “Great,” I thought, “isn’t this a little too elementary school?” We were given some well chewed facts, like “communication is 7% verbal, 38% vocal (tone of voice), and 55% visual (body language).” (Now, if you did a little digging, you find that this claim is actually scientifically unsound)

The whole workshop was rather basic (which I guess is why it’s a 100 level course?). We did a few exercises in which we used body language to convey interest/disinterest and a range of emotions. Then, we practiced interacting with others while portraying a certain emotion. I was “flirtatious and bubbly”. That didn’t get me very far, seeing as the other people portrayed emotions ranging from “uninterested” to “shy and uncommunicative”, leaving me feeling a tad dejected and mildly bored. I guess I shouldn’t have been expecting much. I mean, it’s not like they advertised this as a 400 level course: “FLR410: Channelling Your Inner Casanova.” (but then again, that’s not a very PC course title)

But hey, it wasn’t all bad. I enjoyed the part of the workshop where one of the presenters told us about her recent, bold flirting escapade with a cute boy while she was shopping with her parents in Best Buy. I also found out that the SEC will be having some sort of awareness week in March. It’s actually pretty exciting sounding! With events like “Porn and Cookies… and Pie” and “Hentai and Sushi”, how can you go wrong? I’d suggest keeping your eyes on the website for further info on that one.

Oh yeah, they’re actually giving another Flirting 100 workshop, in case you’re interested:
When: Wednesday, March 5, 1-3 pm.
Where: Hart House, South Sitting Room

You can ask one of the presenter, Gina, to tell you her Best Buy flirting tale. ;)

Leave a Comment