Flirting fails can range from hitting on the most attractive human in existence and being flat out turned down, to unknowingly giving your number to your best friend’s brother. Both are mortifying. The worst thing is that it can creep up on you. It can happen anywhere, with anyone, at any minute. When it happens, you pray that no one saw. I feel you, man – it’s not fun. Luckily, you’re not alone.
Christine Broadwater describes her worst flirting fail as “a slap in the face.”
“I was at DayGlow my freshman year and ran into a guy I exchanged numbers with at a party a few weeks earlier,” Broadwater says. “I run up to him and yell ‘HEYYYY!’ at which point he looks at me uninterestedly, and replies with ‘ehhhhh.’ Cue the chick in booty shorts who attaches herself like a leech to his lips.. Also, cue the witness who offers a sympathetic chuckle and a ‘yikes.’ It was mortifying.”
Maybe even worse than experiencing a flirting fail yourself, is witnessing that of a friend. In situations like that, all you can do is watch and hope it ends quickly.
“My sorority sister and I met this kid on the soccer team,” says freshman Jules Albano. “This guy, over a period of one or two months, really developed feelings for my sister. I guess she thought he was just being friendly, and would harmlessly flirt back. He got the idea that he was “in love with her” – even though he had a girlfriend while this was all happening. He broke up with his girlfriend for my sorority sister, and he decided to talk to her about his feelings for her. She pretended she didn’t know at all, and now they’re awkwardly not talking.”
Don’t forget – there can be just as many problems for the flirtee as there are for the flirter. In the case of junior Stevie Johnson, flirting can sometimes be a foreign concept.
“I usually do not recover from flirting fails because I’m literally as dull as a doornail,” Johnson says. “I cannot name one time I actually knew someone was flirting with me. And then people get mad at me because they say I’m flirting, but I just like to make people laugh. They should have a flirting class at Penn State for people like me.”
Everyone has experienced a flirting fail. It happens to the best of us. Don’t be afraid of pulling an “It’s October 23rd!” (Mean Girls, anyone?) You made a valiant effort – or at least you can tell yourself that – and that’s enough to help anyone move past the awkward.
Photo by Lauren Johnson