Musings of a Chicago-Born New Yorker

Is It Weird To Ask For Her Number?

Hey everybody! This is my 275th blog post. That’s pretty cool, right? Sometime this fall, I’ll be on my 300th post. I’ve got to make it something special. Bloggers do that right? Eh, whatever.

Continuing with my trend of hopping back and forth from my time in Chicago and my time in New York, I want to talk about making new friends in New York. Or rather, I want to talk about my failed attempts to make new friends.

My girls and I joke about how we’re too old to make new friends. It usually sounds something like, “you chicks are crazy! Y’all are lucky I’m too old to make new friends or everyone would be replaced.”

I think perhaps we could be nicer to each other…?

Since I’ve been in New York, my girls remind me several times a week that I better not be out making new friends. They took a vote and decided against having auditions for a new me.

They realized it would be too difficult to find someone who makes everyone else look tall, mix up amazing cocktails, and always has a witty joke to cosign another joke.

That’s a tall order, so for now I’m irreplaceable.

Because they’re not replacing me, they don’t want me to replace them. That’s fair enough (bitches), but that means I’ve been spending a lot of time alone while I’m waiting for the husband to arrive.

I’ve met some really nice people who would make great friends acquaintances, but I suck at making new friends. You know there’s a story supporting this assertion.

My first weekend as a Brooklyn resident was going well. My best friend was still here and we were exploring to our hearts’ content.

Sunday saw us heading to the nearest Laundromat to wash clothes. While we were washing, we went to this frozen yogurt/smoothie/crepes place called Brooklyn Swirl. When you say the name, you have to be extra fabulous (think: Swiiiiirrrrll).

I ordered some very delicious cookies ‘n cream frozen yogurt. As we sat there hanging out and people watching, we saw a lot of the congregation of the nearby church walking past. Lots of people of all ages, families of all sizes, and church hats of all colors were everywhere.

It reminded me a lot of what I would see at my own home church in Chicago. I made a note to try the church out the following Sunday (which I totally did by the way; that’s going to be another post). The people looked friendly and welcoming, which only added to how awesome I had decided Brooklyn was.

Then the shop owner came over to introduce himself. When he learned I’d just moved into the neighborhood, he invited me to join the rewards program. Something like one free frozen yogurt for every 6 or 8 purchases or something.

We went back to put our clothes in the dryer. They had these huge industrial size dryers, so we decided to throw our clothes in together rather than pay for separate drums. The catch was that my best friend’s clothes weren’t done washing yet.

We started washing at the same time. The exact same time. In identical washing machines.

When my clothes were done washing, hers were still spinning strong, looking very sudsy.

Ten minutes later, her machine is still going strong, still looking full of soap.

At this point, we’re just confused. The lady who worked the Laundromat told us that machine runs a little slower than the others. We gave her this why-didn’t-you-tell-us-that-in-the-beginning-because-we-would’ve-made-different-choices-with-our-lives look.

She was unimpressed with our look and went back to her business.

Finally, another ten minutes later, my friend’s machine finishes.

So we load up the dryer and put what felt like endless amounts of quarters into the machine and ended up with 87 minutes on the clock. That’s such an odd number, right?

While the clothes were drying, we decided to head over to Peaches for brunch. This restaurant is so amazing that I’m definitely going to give it its own What’s Hot In New York post.

We sit down at the bar to eat because we didn’t have the time or patience to wait for a table, hashtag no reservations.

The bartender was nice and provided just as good of service as we would get from a waiter. While we’re eating and chatting away, we’re still doing the people watching thing.

These two girls came in and sat next to us at the bar. During the course of them ordering, we ended up striking up a conversation.

Both girls were transplants, just like us. They were from Philly. One lived in the Bronx and one lived in Brooklyn. The one who lived in Brooklyn was really nice and sweet. She was funny and we had a lot of the same interests.

When she heard the husband is a jazz musician, she was pretty excited at the possibilities of maybe having some future things to get into in the neighborhood just become of incoming local talent.

We were there first, so we finished first. We paid the bill and said our good-byes.

As soon as we left the restaurant, my best friend asked me why I didn’t get the girl’s information.

I considered my responses.

  1. My other friends constantly threaten me to keep me from making new friends.
  2. I’m not a friendly person and so I have no recent experience on how to make new friends.
  3. I considered it and everything I thought of in my head to say sounded like a weirdly lesbian pickup line. “Can I get your number? I’d love to call you so we can hang out some time because you seem so sweet.”
  4. I only really liked the girl who lived in Brooklyn, and it would be awkward to only try and befriend one of the girls.

All the reasons floated around and finally I settled on, “I’m so not good at making new friends.”

She chuckled and said, “clearly.” Then she gave me tips on what I could say for the next time I meet someone I’d like to hang out with again, or if I ever run into that girl again.

My best friend is pretty well versed in this because she lived in New York for some years and she came alone too.

I can totally see myself acting out this scenario in the future:

I’m at a bar or lounge or restaurant and I’ve met an interesting person to talk to. I excuse myself to go to the bathroom, telling them I’ll be right back. I round the corner and immediately call my best friend. I beg her to listen to the situation and give me tips on how to pick up this new potential friend. She laughs at me, but then helps.

So terrible, I know.

The husband will be here in six days (six days, yay!!!) and I do much better at meeting people when he’s here. Pretty much, I just need a Cancer by my side and I can make new friends.

Plus when the husband gets here, we’ll be hanging out with his musician friends and their wives, so that’ll be nice as well.

Okay, back to my story. After I got schooled on how to pick up new friends, we went back to the Laundromat. Our clothes were nice and dry, so we packed the up and headed back to the apartment.

I was really hoping to try out my new friend-making techniques, but I didn’t get a chance.

We ended up at this nice bar/lounge place over on Stuyvesant Sunday night. There was live music playing and it was amazing. I can’t wait to the take the husband there. The way I described it made the husband think it had potential to be our Local Watering Hole. He feels very strongly about us having one of these.

In this bar though, there were only three types of people there, none of which are great candidates for first-new-friend-in-New-York-City.

  1. Almost-Dirty-Old-Men: They were friendly and definitely more nice than lecherous. But if they were looking to be someone’s sugar daddy/friend, they couldn’t afford me.
  2. Couples: I really really really suck at making friends with couples without the husband around. I mostly just come off like I’m looking for a threesome. It’s awful.
  3. Middle Aged Women: these chicks seemed like they were looking to let their hair down in the small gap available between Sunday morning church and Monday morning work. I try to stay away from that.

Perhaps when the husband arrives, we’ll do good with the couples that hang out there. Even though I didn’t hit the ground running with making new friends, I was at least learning new places. Perhaps it will get easier once potential new friends start to see me more often.



4 responses

  1. There is definitely an age where making new friends seems next to impossible, or – you’re right – like some weirdly lesbian pick-up. Even forming those bonds seems to take so much longer as adults than it ever did as kids.

    August 4, 2013 at 03:10

    • I really does. Things will get better when the husband arrives this week though. I’m so much friendlier around him!

      August 5, 2013 at 10:52

  2. silverneurotic

    I’ve lived up here with hubby for over a year now and I’ve still not made any friends that hubby didn’t know previously. Kind of sucks but not really surprising, given the area and the fact that most people up here have been here their entire lives.

    August 5, 2013 at 19:23

    • That does suck. Maybe someone will move there after marrying another local and you all will become besties!

      August 7, 2013 at 10:45