If you’ve gone to UC Irvine for at least a year, you’re probably familiar with the way dating and flirting works on this campus, as in it doesn’t work. Well, it doesn’t happen face-to-face that is. With a bunch of soft-spoken pale males and equally shy females, UCI sees a much more regular “Secrets” page on Facebook filled with secret confessions of love for the dining hall employees. On the other hand, UC Santa Barbara has a massive “Hookup Stories” page. We’re a bunch of wussies who hide behind computer screens and Tinder when it comes to forming any sort of physical or emotional relationship. However, when pressed, here are the sparse ways I’ve seen UC Irvine students hit on each other on campus.
1. “Hey, do you wanna go to Cha?”
Cha for Tea is an overpriced boba place in our University Town Center. Within walking distance of campus, it’s the easiest place to take a little lady from your dorm for a casual fruity beverage (It’s casual and not directly a date because it’s not coffee, get it? Coffee indicates intentions to hook up or marry, clearly.). In the beverage’s casual nature, it leaves vague room and much pondering for, “Is this an actual date or are we here out of the convenience of it?”
2. Purposely walking around Ring Road a couple times, hoping to run into your crush.
Ring Road is kind of our school’s equivalence to a courtyard. It’s where all the magic happens, from obnoxious fraternities fraternizing in their letters to protestors protesting protests. It’s a great way to catch up with friends on their way to class but it’s also incredibly inconvenient compared to the shortcut you can take through our park in the middle of campus. If you walk on Ring Road in the middle of the afternoon in between class times, it’s most likely you’re going to run into the cutie you saw in lecture. Question is, are you going to stare from afar like a creep or walk up to them and do your thing?
3. Joining a social club
Irvine is an incredibly boring city, so our campus has a TON of social clubs to make up for it. Culture clubs, Greek life, club sports, professional societies, we’ve got it all. Chances are you’re bound to have at least one thing in common with that other hot person in the club too. In fact, a lot of clubs just end up becoming dating and drinking clubs for that reason. I was in Hapa Club, otherwise known as MIX Club, a group “dedicated to celebrating the diversity of mixed race people.” Given that the UC San Diego division was nicknamed “The Hot People Club,” our group consciously kept that in mind, and it wasn’t uncommon to have multiple hookups on the nights we partied and gloated that we didn’t have to be in frats to do so. But I have to admit, I did develop my first long-term relationship out of Mix Club, so I can’t say it’s not a valid way to meet someone, right?
4. Looking up the UCI hashtag on Tumblr
If I’ve already mentioned this, I’ll repeat it again. UC Irvine students are a bunch of wussies who like to hide behind their computer screens. Therefore, it is that easy for them to search “UCI” on an internet search engine and find all the users who go to school there. What starts as a simple “Follow” on their blog becomes a string of private messages and the hope that they will agree to meet up at UCI and become a real life potential bae?!@$%!!1! (The large amount of symbols indicates my disgust with the etiquette of online dating in this form.)
5. Hitting on anyone who works in the service industry at UCI
Since those of us who work in the service industry have to be extra nice to people, sometimes they’ll take it the wrong way and see it as an okay to flirt with us in the process. No, I’m not going to write my number on your coffee cup and no, by asking me out at work will I not deny you just as harshly were you to ask me outside of work. As people who are expected to provide excellent customer service, we somehow become easy targets for people to assume we are interested in dating them if they start visiting regularly. Again, we can’t do anything about it because our presence here is an obligation, not a choice.
Those are just a few ways that students here “coyly” try to hit on other people at UC Irvine. If you go there and you’re reading this, just walk up to someone you’re eyeing, pay him or her a compliment, and strike a conversation! Now that’s what I would find flattering!