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Clearwater, FL YAL Convention 2005 Log

Friday, May 27, 2005

June 2, 2005

Friday, May 27, 2005

Back on the beach and back in the water around noon, there were Greeks as far as the eye could see. The sight of defective human pyramids in the deeper part of the ocean made you doubt that Greeks used to be masters of architecture back in the day. We got off the beach rather early today knowing that another long night was ahead.

The highlight of the evening was the actual following through on Speed Greeting. Maybe it was just the fact that people weren’t physically ready for Speed Greeting on Thursday night, but there ended up being somewhere north of 80 people with an even split down the middle of guys to girls. I have to admit for all the joking and posturing we had done the night before, and coming so prepared to Speed Dating, I was a little nervous. Part of the reason for the late night packing on Tuesday night going into Wednesday morning was that I had spent some quality time in assembling a list of sixty some-odd questions that were to be asked at Speed Greeting. Before you start thinking that we were coming into this thing with canned questions we were going to be asking the girls we met, these questions were written for the girls to ask the guys. Each girl who we speed-greeted would receive a card no larger than a ticket stub with the DCGreeks.com logo on one side and a question on the other to be asked to some other poor guy down the line. (We specifically told these girls not to ask these questions to the other one of us they’d meet down the line.) Some of our favorites:

bulletHow old are you, and how young of a Greek girl do you feel that you can get away with dating?
bulletHow long do you have to be dating a Greek girl before you bring her to church?
bulletIf we were back in the village, how many goats do you think I'd be worth?
bulletIf we were back in the village, how many goats do you think you'd be worth? (Note: For background read the DCGreeks.com classic, When a Thousand Goats is Not Enough.)
bulletClearwater - Finding Ms. Right or Ms. Right-Now? (Note: A question inspired by a friend from Baltimore who couldn’t make it Clearwater this year.)
bulletHow old were you when you moved out of the house?
bulletIf you met a Greek girl at one of these conferences and hit it off, which of you should move to be closer to the other one?
bulletGreek Girls with Graduate Degrees - It's good that that they're smart or too smart for their own good? (Note: A few of the women we showed this question to throughout the weekend appreciated it greatly as this was one of the reasons they listed for relationships with many Greek guys never getting off the ground or simply ending.)
bulletIf you had a Greek girlfriend and she made you a moussaka and your mother also made you a moussaka, and your mother's was better, what would you tell your girlfriend?
bulletDo you have a non-Greek girlfriend that you don't bring to things like Clearwater?

Also part of our two-pronged strategy for Speed Greeting and Clearwater generally, was custom business cards. Honestly, the number of lawyers or software engineers anyone was bound to meet in Clearwater over the course of the weekend was pretty high. Bald guys over six feet? – Slightly less. But finding proprietors of Greek Internet communities was pretty rare. This was bound to be the thing anyone was going to remember about either of us individually and we weren’t going to apologize for it. Our DCGreeks.com business cards featured titles, or in some cases, subtitles like: Agent, Modeling Scout, Rock Star, The Cute One, Director of Quality Control and Director of Self-Promotion. One of the first cards given out on Wednesday night actually, was to a guy, who actually passed it on to a girl. The title: Internet Millionaire. One of us would like to thank that guy.

As Speed Greeting started, and the three-minute meeting time was set, and the way the guys would rotate was finally settled, I realized that in about five turns, I’d be mowing straight through the same line up that my brother had just visited. For these girls it would be like seeing a bad sequel to a good movie. I also felt badly for some of the first few girls who I talked to because they were from DC and Baltimore and we really already knew each other from years of YAL events, although I must admit I actually did “meet” for the first time one girl who I had seen around everywhere in DC but really didn’t know. Despite my unique circumstances, Speed Greeting was a great time. For many who participated it was the first time venturing outside the group they came with or their immediate geographic region. It helped break down barriers for the rest of the weekend and particularly made it much easier to meet new people that night, even at the dance. We ended up meeting two girls from Ft. Lauderdale who had participated in Speed Greeting, who had a third family member who hadn’t. The third one’s boyfriend was really good friends with a guy on our Greek League basketball team. It proved to us that even in a room of at this point what seemed like probably over 800 Greek young adults, the degrees of separation in the Greek young adult community are astoundingly small.



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