Talking to Strangers
Nerve asks deeply personal questions to people we just met.
What do you do for a living?
I sell phones.
How's that going?
I hate it. But, it pays the bills.
Does it ever get you guys?
Very rarely. Very rarely actually.
Do you hit on guys while you sell them phones?
I've done it once or twice. Guilty as charged.
I feel like that would be a convenient way to hit on boys.
Surprisingly, it isn't. Because you can be like, "Oh, here's my number if you need anything," but that's so easily taken for great customer service.
Which of these dogs is yours?
This husky. His name is Everest. He gets me guys. Honestly, he attracts a lot of attention in general, but guys especially. I never thought about it before I got him, but I feel like usually they're thinking, "Oh, it's a big dog and she's a girl. This is interesting."
What kind of guys do you usually go for?
I don't have a type at all. I've not been able to find a pattern in any of the guys I've dated. I've definitely dated really, really hipster. I've also dated really prep, straight-edge, yeah.
Have you ever offended anyone in the bedroom?
Possibly. Maybe not so much offended. Maybe a little more surprised.
Oh, I see. Do you have any favorite hook-up stories?
I do actually. I met this guy randomly. Actually, I went to a party. Turned out to be nobody there. Met him. He was like, whatever, we got along. We got to talking. He was a backup dancer for some celebrity.
This wasn't K-Fed, was it?
No. I made that joke, though. But yeah, he was a backup dancer, and he was like, "There's this party that I'm going to. Do you want to go?" I was like "Sure, what kind of party?" and he's like, "Swingers party."
Have you ever been to a swingers party?
That was actually my first time. It went surprisingly well. It was kind of a mix between somebody's really nice apartment and a club. It was a really nice place. There was a cover charge for couples, but as you entered there was a living-room-slash-dancing-area. It was open bar, so they had a naked bartender. Obviously the mood was set, the lighting and stuff. The next two rooms were really loungy couches, love seats. You just did what you wanted.
Did you guys go on multiple dates?
No, I wasn't very interested in him. I just went for the fun.
Do you have any dealbreakers with guys?
It really is.
What do you do for a living?
Does that get you girls?
Um, it has. It's not something that an everyday person answers that they do, so it's a good conversation starter.
What kind of girls do you get?
There isn't really a specific kind, but I went to art school, so I guess the artsy, liberal type.
If you like a girl, how do you show it?
Strategic text messages, or lots of eye contact.
What makes a text strategic?
Engaging something that will elicit a response or series of responses to capture interest. I didn't really have to say anything to her [gesturing to friend]. I just blew in her ear.
Do you have a favorite story?
I was sitting in my room in college, eating dinner, and all I had on was basketball shorts. This girl that I didn't really know came into my room and asked if Nate was there, and I said, "Yeah, how can I help you?" She said, "Do you wanna make out?" I told her, "If you give me a second, I can brush my teeth," because I was in the middle of eating. She said something to the effect of, "Oh no, that's okay. I'll just be leaving, I guess that only happens on TV." Well, I'm like, "If you tell me your room number, I'll come and find you or give me your number," and then she walked out. I spoke to one of her roommates the night after, and she told me that the girl had a condom in her hand, and she was coming to basically have sex right on the spot. So, that was probably one of the most...
So wait, how did she know you?
I didn't know her, not personally. I knew some friends of hers. She was a girl with a plan, but unfortunately, she wouldn't let me make it up to her, because whenever I saw her again later, she was very embarrassed.
What do you do for a living?
I'm a mosaic artist and I also do a ladies' smutty magazine, Candy Rain.
Candy Rain? That sounds hot.
Ladies love it.
Do either of those things get you dates?
Not really. In fact, probably doing the porn, people get intimidated by it.
If you like someone, how do you show them that you like them?
My signature move is just getting drunk and embarrassing myself.
Any specific instances?
I met him [gestures to friend] when we were shotgunning beers. He pushed me off my bike and we made out. [Guy: "You guys are like eight years old, it's okay."]
What kind of guy do you usually go for?
Oh, I go for the worst dudes in the world! I've dated scumbags, ex-cons, you name it. I dated a dude with three teeth one time.
What? Why did he only have three teeth?
I have no fucking idea. He must have gotten them knocked out at one point in his life, but he literally had like three teeth in his head.
How does a man of that caliber get a lady of your caliber?
I think it's some sort of internalized self-hate.
Do you have any dealbreakers?
Yeah. Low as they may be, I do actually have standards. No drug addicts. Nobody with a serious substance problem. And you need to have a job and your own house.
Are these things you learned by trial and error?
Yes! But the thing is, the one common thread all these dudes have is they're actually really funny.
Have you ever been offended in the bedroom?
If anyone was to be offensive in the bedroom, it'd probably be me. I get real mean about shit. I've had a dude just straight up walk out.
I've had loads of bad sex in my day, so I've come to the point where, if I even think there might be some sort of sophomoric fucking going on, I'm just like, try again later or get the fuck out. I've mostly yelled at dudes for not getting hard. It's never gotten the reaction I wanted, but...
If you like a guy, how do you let him know you like him?
I don't know. For all the game I talk, I get really bashful about it. Which is why, generally, I don't get dudes that I like.