One of Nerve's intrepid field agents was in a bar in Brooklyn when he ran into a guy in a not-too-unusual situation — the guy was there to meet a blind date, the girl never showed, so he hung around drinking and looking for someone to commiserate with. Again, not that unusual, until it turned out that there were fourteen other guys, there for the exact same reason.
Lillyoftheally, an OkCupid user with a cute picture and a profile somewhere between quirky and insane, was apparently approached by all fifteen guys. She replied to each with some chitchat, and then, a few days later, an invitation to meet for a drink. The troop of hapless would-be Romeos arrived around 10 p.m., as per ''Lilly's" instructions. Soon, after chatting over beers and cigarettes, they discovered they had been duped. According to Andrew V.
"She told me online that she plays pool here every Wednesday night. So I went over to the pool table and didn't see her. I just saw a guy fiddling with his iPhone. After she hadn't shown up for a little while, I started to get suspicious. I asked the guy if he was waiting for a date from OkCupid. He said yes. Pretty soon, our posse started pouring in. She was real pretty. I think we'd all agree about that."
A couple of the men left fairly soon after realizing they'd been hoodwinked, but a bunch stuck around and kept drinking. Roy, twenty-six, said:
"I was expecting a human being. A female human being. Instead, I get fourteen dudes standing around, staring at their phones, looking around."
The gentleman-callers came from near and far, Brooklyn and other outer boroughs. One, Andrew, traveled for an hour and a half from The Bronx for the blind date:
"I'm kind of bummed but I'm impressed. And I'd fall for it again," Andrew said. "I just sent her an OkCupid message on my phone. I wrote her and said, 'Well-played.'"
Despite the surprisingly gracious responses, no one had any convincing theories as to why she would have done it. The bar, Williamsburg's The Levee, firmly denies that it was a promotional stunt (and what kind of promo would that be? "Come here and get your heart broken?") and it seems unlikely that it was a spambot — since you have to be pretty human to convince fifteen men to actually come meet you.
Is she a former online dater who'd been stood-up one too many times, getting her vengeance on mankind? A college student involved in some sort of weird research project?
There are some lessons to be learned, however, like "Don't agree to meet up with someone who won't give you her phone number first." And, that whole dark-cloud / silver-lining thing — since in the end, it apparently turned out to be a pretty fun night. Also, dating in New York can be fucking rough.