Daring to Date: Swooping, Hookups, and Other Swattie Things

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Editor’s note: This article was initially published in The Daily Gazette, Swarthmore’s online, daily newspaper founded in Fall 1996. As of Fall 2018, the DG has merged with The Phoenix. See the about page to read more about the DG.

Why hello there freshmen. My name is Channing Dateum, and I’m Swarthmore’s go-to dating expert (read: I’m really just an aimlessly single, sex-deprived student like most Swatties). You’ve all experienced your first Paces party (and subsequent police raid) , so I’m sure you’re all asking, “How do I turn that sweaty Saturday hookup into a long-term relationship/casual fuckbuddy/caring romantic partner?” Well I’m here to provide you with some tips to make your swoop-filled first semester romantically and sexually fruitful.

1) Get your ass on Tinder (and actually swipe right on Swatties you’re interested in!)

This is my biggest tip for you. My freshman year I was terrified to download the app. “How embarrassing if upperclassmen saw me on this!” But what didn’t run through my mind was the fact that in order to see who’s on Tinder, you have to be on Tinder…. Fast-forward to sophomore fall when I swallowed my pride and downloaded the app and **poof** suddenly I was digitally chit-chatting with Swatties before inviting them over to my room, guzzling a bottle of wine, and watching Netflix. Also, don’t bashfully swipe left on every Swattie you see. If you’re genuinely interested in chatting, or dating, or hooking up with someone—swipe right!

2) Stop avoiding your past romantic encounters!

Swatties have an unfortunate tendency to live up to our “swawkward” reputation post-hook up. All too often I’ve seen two students clearly ignoring each other in line for Quiche Bar on a Sunday morning, trying to ignore the fact they just spent ALL NIGHT together. I, too, am guilty of this but I’ve come to realize that ignoring your hookups—especially if you’re actually interested in them—leads to no good. Flashback to my first year at Swarthmore: I finally broke through the friend zone with a hottie, hooked up with him, and proceeded to ignore him. Fast forward a few weeks and he decides to get with a sought-after senior and our friendship is now forever broken! Freshmen, avoid this. Acknowledge the people you like, have liked, and have sucked off—it’s just the nice thing to do. Plus, it’ll pay off in the long run when you do a 180 and decide you want to get with them again. Trust me, it will happen.

3) Go. On. Dates

If you haven’t read about all of my dates last semester, do that now! After reading about my experiences, you’ll hopefully see that going on actual dates isn’t that bad. In fact, you’ll learn a lot about yourself. Now that we have the OneCard, avoid Saturday night Wing Bar and take that special someone to Bamboo Bistro or Occasionally Yours or Renato’s. As a freshman, I was scared of the ominous concept of “dating” — could it be something more than my parents driving me and my high school crush to the movies then picking us up right before curfew? I am here to tell you it’s a resounding YES! Sure, have great sex. But hang out with someone outside of the bedroom if you’re genuinely interested in them!

4) Explore!

I saved my biggest piece of advice for last. Don’t pigeonhole yourself too early. Don’t think you know everything you like or don’t like. Don’t think you have one “type.” Don’t think you have one favorite sex position. Use your time at Swarthmore to explore: romantically and sexually! This is still the hardest tip for me to listen to.  I often find myself falling back on my mundane routine of chasing the same, boring types of guys or having the same type of lackluster sex. I vow to spice things up this semester (stay tuned to see how!) and you should vow to spice things up during your next four years here at Swarthmore!

Follow along this semester to hear about the ups and downs of my life as Channing Dateum — and comment any questions you might have! I’ll try to work as many of them into future columns as I can.

Yours in sex, love, and Swattiness,

Channing Dateum

Featured image courtesy of www.pbs.org

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