Wednesday, August 29, 2018

Sixteenth Chance

Date Connection:

A former student messaged me on Facebook months ago and asked if I wanted to be set up with someone from her ward.  I agreed and we became Facebook and Instagram friends. We never actually went out, so this dating experiment provided the perfect opportunity. 

Date Location:

U-Swirl Frozen Yogurt

What I Learned:

He was very engaging to talk to.  He leaned forward towards me as he spoke, which was something I never realized was so important when having a conversation. It made me feel like he valued the time he was spending with me. He wasn't at all distracted and was very friendly and approachable. He had fabulous calves- the best I've ever seen! He was authentic and open.  He is also a teacher, and there is so much to which we can both relate.  His students must love him.

My sixteenth chance at this dating experiment taught me that the way we talk to people- eye contact, body language, focus- is extremely important.  When we are fully engaged during a conversation, it shows we respect the other person and makes him/her feel important.

Sunday, August 26, 2018

Fifteenth Chance

Date Connection:

He contacted me after I did the live Facebook video on LDS Matchmaker.

Date Location:

Video Chat between SLC and Southern Utah

What I Learned: 

What a fun, crazy adventure this phone date turned out to be. We talked for 3 hours! Sometimes, a person's personality connects with yours electrically, and that's how I felt about this guy.  While dating is not an option for us right now, our friendship was instant.  What stood out to me was his authenticity and transparency.  He was extremely honest and we were talking like old friends by the time our conversation was over.  We both gave each other our perspectives on dating, and even doled out some advice to one another. He was simultaneously uplifting and constructive.  That's hard to do! My favorite thing he said was, "Katie, I don't think you're utilizing all your best tools in your tool belt when you go on a date." He took me completely off guard and I busted up laughing before asking him to please elaborate!  I look forward to having adventures together in the future.

My fifteenth chance at this experiment taught me, yet again, how unique we each are and how different our journeys to joy are.  He is a fascinating person with an amazing story to share. His story is completely different from mine; yet, we have so much to offer one another because of our life experiences that are so different from one another.  I would have missed out on a very cool human had I not taken a chance to be vulnerable and meet someone new. 

Fourteenth Chance

Date Connection: 

We chatted on Mutual a while ago and I contacted him when I started the experiment and asked if he'd like to meet for a date.

Date Location:


What I Learned:

First of all, he was an extremely nice guy.  He seemed like the kind of guy who rarely gets mad.  When we sat down, we started our conversation with the usual questions, including where we are from. When he said he was from Orem, I asked where he went to high school.  When he told me, I asked if he took choir there.  He had.  And lo and behold, he was one of my best friend's STUDENTS years ago!  My friend Melissa and I graduated from high school the same year and went through the BYU music ed program together. I went on my mission a year before graduating. While I was gone, she graduated and started teaching high school, including this young man.  That was a trip for me.  He could have been MY student if I had started teaching when she did.  He is 28 years old, which sounds old enough until it is put in to perspective like that!  We had a really nice time talking, though, and he is a great guy.  He didn't seem phased by the 7 year age difference at all, which I think takes a lot of confidence and maturity.

On my fourteenth chance, I learned that I am OLD. ;-)

Wednesday, August 22, 2018

Thirteenth Chance

Date Connection:

When I went on the LDS Matchmaker facebook live show, a couple people reached out to me and said they would be interested in participating in my 35 dates.  He was one of them!

Date Location:

Fizz in Farmington

What I Learned:

He was strong in his convictions and he loves his children very much.  I learned that children bring a truly lasting love into one's life that is constant through trials and tribulations.

Twelfth Chance

Date Connection:

Several posts ago, I wrote about a choir friend who shared my birthday dating goal with another lady in choir.  This date was a set-up from the second choir friend!

Date Location:

Ekamai Thai in Sugarhouse

What I Learned:

Some things I already knew but were confirmed to me on the date, like the following:

1) I find it attractive when men are left handed
2) I find it attractive when men know their way around a garden
3) I find it attractive when men are intelligent and driven

One thing I learend that I didn't know before is that Ekamai Thai is one of the best kept secrets in Sugarhouse! I've worked across the street from it for over 7 years and never knew it existed. Try the Drunken Noodle dish- it's delicious!

My date had an engaging personality and was easy to talk to.  He made me feel comfortable from the minute I arrived. It was a great date.

Monday, August 20, 2018

Eleventh Chance

Date Connection:

I'm in a card group hosted by my friend Lori.  She set me up with her brother when she saw my dating challenge.  She also hosts an uplifting and interesting podcast called, "Love Your Story" and asked to interview me about this dating challenge. The episode will probably air some time in November when I'm finished.  Check out her podcast!

Date Location:

My neighborhood!

What I Learned:

Gentlemen, take note! This was such a fun date. He offered to plan it and didn't tell me what we were doing.  He told me to dress casually and met me at my house.  When we got to his car, he pulled out popsicles! He said we were going to celebrate the past for my birthday and go on a walk and eat a childhood treat.  We walked and talked along Legacy Trail while eating our popsicles. When I finished mine, he said he would take my popsicle stick and wrapper and carried it the whole way back, which was so thoughtful.  When we got back to his car, he pulled out a blanket and lemonade and a deck of cards.  He said the next part of the date was celebrating the present.  We sat on the grass in the dusk and played the card game Speed, which he pointed out requires being in the moment. That's such a great card game (and I'm not just saying that because I won best 2 out of 3!).  I had a really great time.  I was very touched by the time and effort he took to plan a thoughtful date when he didn't know me, but knew I was celebrating a birthday soon.  It made my day!

My eleventh chance at this dating experience taught me that when someone plans out a date so carefully, it really makes the other person feel valued and special.

Sunday, August 19, 2018

Tenth Chance

Date Connection:

This was another Mutual match! We became Facebook friends and Instagram friends, but never met, most likely due to the fact that we live in different states.  But he was down for a FaceTime date when I asked!

Date Location:

FaceTime chat between Southern California and Utah

What I Learned: 

You can learn a lot about someone by what is in his living room.  He plays guitar and I asked him if he would play and sing a little something.  With a little embarrassment, he agreed, and started looking for his capo.  I ended up getting a virtual tour through his living room while he searched, and I noticed a lot of awesome things that revealed his hobbies and interests- a poster of The Breakfast Club, a pull up bar, a road bike, a Superman flag, a picture of the Savior, and- my personal favorite- When Calls the Heart on pause on Netflix.  Definitely my kind of man! I was impressed that he was willing to take a risk and play and sing upon request. His singing voice was so likable...the kind of voice you could listen to all day.  He smiled a lot and had a chill, laid back vibe.  I bet if we had been friends in high school, we would have totally hit it off as friends (and I probably would have been secretly crushing on him big time!).

My tenth chance at this project taught me that what we surround ourselves with tells a lot about who we are.  It makes me think about what someone would learn about me if they walked in to my living room!

Ninth Chance

Date Connection:

I chatted with him a while ago on mutual.  Our conversation died off not very far in to it. I messaged him on the app when I started this challenge and asked if he'd be up for meeting!

Date Location:

Midvale Mining Cafe

What I Learned:

I learned about baseball! Did you know that Utah is not a great place to play baseball because of the high elevation? When he told me that, I assumed that meant because it's harder to breathe.  In reality it's because curve balls drop more in elevation and it's easier to hit home runs. There's sort of a false sense of security that makes it less of a realistic playing scenario.  It was so cool to see his passion for the sport.  He is a driven man, which is a very attractive quality. He bought an older home and has been remodeling it himself.  Because I'm kind of a house nerd, I asked to see his pictures of the process and it was so cool as he explained the steps. Not only is he handy, he is also intelligent and a gentleman.  He's a catch for sure.

On my ninth chance at the challenge, I learned that people are not one dimensional. I knew that before, but it was driven home to me. During our one hour conversation, I learned so many different things about him that painted a rich picture of someone with so much good to offer the world.

Saturday, August 18, 2018

Eighth Chance

Date Connection:

We met on Mutual a couple weeks before I started my dating challenge.  We had chatted a little on and off on the app, but never met until our date.

Date Location:

The Habit in Sugarhouse

What I Learned:

Our world is full of inspiring people.  He is a school teacher who is beginning a new job working with students who have unique challenges.  Without going in to detail, because it's not my story to share, he has overcome his own unique trials with exceptional courage and a positive attitude.  Some may see his challenges as insurmountable; for him, however, they do not define him and have never gotten in the way of anything he wanted to accomplish.  He is constantly defying the odds.  He is kind, intelligent, and handsome.  We had a great time swapping teacher stories- there are some things only a fellow teacher understands! As I left the date, I knew I was privileged to spend time with someone truly magnificent.

For my eighth chance at this dating experiment, I learned that attitude is everything. We should never let our challenges dictate what we are capable of. 

Thursday, August 16, 2018

Seventh Chance

Date Connection:

A while back, someone I grew up with mentioned he had an artsy friend he thought I'd get along well with. Coincidentally, I knew his friend's sister from a show I was in a few years ago. I never ended up meeting him, but when I posted my personal dating challenge, my childhood friend reached out to me again and mentioned his buddy for a second time.  When I contacted him, he was up for it!

Date Location:

Leatherby's in Salt Lake

What I Learned:

One thing that stood out about him is he was so cheerful and smiley.  Conversation flowed easily.  I felt like we were old friends.  He seemed to be the kind of person that finds happiness in whatever situation he is in.  I asked him about his cool watch, and he showed me it was set to a nineties sitcom background theme. It was confirmed in that moment that this guy was awesome! We are almost the same age, so we could relate well about pop culture.  We joked about one of my favorite scenes from any 90's sitcom was in Family Matters when Carl Winslow is repeating to himself at gradually increasing volumes, "3-2-1, 1-2-3, what the heck is bothering me?" He does improv, and I can't wait to go check out one of his shows!

My seventh chance at this dating challenge taught me that happiness is contagious. 

Tuesday, August 14, 2018

Sixth Chance

Date Connection:

My friend in the choir, Karen, saw my petition on Facebook and texted me the number of a man in her stake.  She told him about the experiment ahead of time and he was totally up for it.  She spoke very highly of him.  Karen actually did some networking for me, too! We were sitting backstage waiting for our broadcast to begin this past Sunday and she said to a couple of the women sitting nearby, "Did you hear about what Katie is doing?" and we talked about my birthday date challenge. One of the ladies in our conversation later talked to a man she knows from her home ward and gave him my contact information and said he would reach out in the next couple weeks.  It would be cool if he did, but even if he doesn't, I was excited to see the power of networking in action!  For better or worse, a post on Facebook can have a ripple effect that reaches beyond Internet interactions. 

Date Location:


What I Learned:

There were a couple things that made tonight's date unique.  First, it was probably one of the only TRUE blind dates I've ever been on because I never saw a picture of him beforehand.  I tried looking him up on Facebook (because, duh, of course I'm going to do that), but I couldn't find him.  He told me what color shirt he was wearing and that was it. I had no idea what to expect.  It was kind of awesome to go in to the date and be completely surprised.  And it was a pleasant surprise! He was a handsome man and he was wearing great shoes.  A guy wearing an attractive pair of kicks is something I secretly love! I brought my makeup bag with me when I left the house at 8:30 a.m. thinking I'd find a time to put on makeup before my date.  But I ended up running around all day long and didn't have a second to do it.  I was running a little late for the date and couldn't justify keeping him waiting longer to put on makeup.  So I quickly had to accept the idea of meeting him without a stitch of makeup on.  And we still managed to have a great time talking, even without eye liner or mascara.  Crazy, right?

Another thing that was cool was he has never used a dating app or dating website.  I said to him, "What?! Then how do you meet people? Just through blind dates?" and he said, "Yes, or through people I meet."  I jokingly said, "What? You meet people to date in real life?!"  Even though I was being facetious, I was struck by what a foreign concept that was to me.  How often do we ask people out that we've met through a human interaction?  I know I rely heavily on apps or the Internet to meet people, and I would love to do that less.  That's one of the main reasons why this experiment is valuable to me.  It's cool to meet guys that my friends know and love.  Throughout our conversation, I gathered that he is a genuinely good, intelligent person who does a lot of good in his job, in his family, and in his ward. 

I am starting to realize that the old adage, "A good man is hard to find" may not actually be true.  Maybe we just aren't looking in the right places. 

Among other things, my sixth chance at this dating experiment taught me that blind dates- the real kind- bring a sense of adventure that is FUN and exciting.  And makeup (or lack of it) doesn't make or break a dating experience. 

Fifth Chance

Date Connection:

We met on Mutual a couple weeks before I started my 35 dates and chatted over text.  We kind of beat around the bush about getting together because we were busy, we lived dozens of miles apart, etc. etc.  The experiment was a good excuse to make meeting happen.

Date Location:

Yogurt Stop in Sandy, an in-between point from where we both live.

What I Learned: 

First of all, even though I'm open to dating men of all different heights, I was struck by how tall he was and realized that's something I find very attractive.  I have usually gone for guys just a couple inches taller than me, but he was 6'3" and about 6 inches taller, and I liked that.  I obviously know there is much more to a relationship than height, and I don't want it to be determining factor in whether or not I pursued a relationship with someone, but I enjoyed it and that's part of the purpose of this experiment- to have fun and learn things about myself.  I learned that really tall guys are attractive to me. 

One thing I found endearing about him was a little half smile, without teeth, he would give after he said something amusing.  It was kind of shy and sweet, and it made the conversation more fun.  One of the first things he told me as we sat down is he was going to be on his best behavior the entire time because he knew I was going to write about him!  He had a gentle demeanor and a subtle, witty sense of humor.  It was obvious that he is a good man who cares about the people in his life. 

We had an interesting conversation about dating hypocrisy that really made me pause and consider my own attitude towards dating.  Often, we care more about a label than a person's character.  Here is an example.  Let's say I date two men, one named Pete and one named...Repete :-).  Pete is a good man who treats me well but doesn't have one of the "labels" I thought was necessary in a man I date.  Repete has the labels but is emotionally abusive and doesn't treat me well. My friends all tell me to date Repete and ditch Pete. How often do women in this position go for the man who has the labels and not the one who has the hallmarks of a good person?  That's not to say that we shouldn't have standards when we date. But we need to evaluate which of those standards are actually vital to whether or not we pursue a relationship with someone.

For my fifth chance at this experiment, my mind was opened to some problematic things in the dating world that reshaped my ideals.  And I learned that tall guys are cute.

Monday, August 13, 2018

Fourth Chance

Date Connection:

We met on a dating site a couple years ago and became Facebook friends, but never met in person or talked on the phone.  When I posted my dating challenge, he reached out to me and we decided to finally "meet" for a date over video chat.

Date Location:

Facebook Messenger video vall between San Jose, CA and Salt Lake City.

What I Learned:

I think he will laugh when I share this rather than take offense, so I'm going to be honest.  I knew that he had young adult children and I expected him to look and act...old.  But he was so youthful and fun. It made me realize that what I used to think as "old" just isn't old anymore.  I realized that, though he was about 9 years older than me, we had a great time and I felt on an equal plane.  For half the conversation, I kept trying out every single filter they had on messenger and was having a great time doing so as we chatted.  He didn't act annoyed at all, and piped in with comments every once in awhile about which filters he liked best.  I finally started feeling like I was about 16 years old and stopped experimenting with the filters, but I appreciated him letting me be myself and have a little fun. One other thing I really liked about him is he was direct and honest and was interested in getting to know me.  He wasn't afraid to ask hard questions.

During my fourth chance at this dating experiment, I learned that when someone asks you questions about yourself or your opinions with sincerity, it feels great. Likewise, when they foster an environment where you can be yourself, it's a great dating experience.

Saturday, August 11, 2018

Third Chance

(I didn't intend to do 3 dates in one day, but my Friday night phone date tried calling again early this evening and we both had some time, so we went with it!)

Date Connection:

He is my former roommate's older brother.  He's number 3 of 12 kids and she is number 5! He messaged me the day I put up my post about the dating experiment. His sister must have mentioned it to him and he decided he was up for the adventure!

Date Location:

Phone date between the Patch Adams Compound in West Virginia and Salt Lake City, UT.

What I Learned:

I don't even know where to begin! This date taught me about non-conformity.  Before I begin, I'd like to mention that he gave me permission to write about our conversation, which is why I feel comfortable going in to more detail.

He is a self-proclaimed nomad who hasn't paid rent in nearly 8 years. He either campus out (he currently lives in a yurt) or works for his room and board.  He has a gentle, sweet voice and a kind demeanor.  He volunteers at the Patch Adams compound because he saw the movie based on Dr. Adams' life and became very interested in his values.  He wanted to be a part of his cause.  He left his home base in Oregon (where he has residency) 2 weeks ago to work there, with the intention of returning to Oregon. But now, he is not sure.  There may be opportunities for him to stay there and earn money beyond room and board. He didn't attend college- it wasn't for him- but he is obviously extremely bright and has lots of ideas and theories he is passionate about.  He writes them down in his phone, possibly for future publication or use in a podcast series.  He lives right by water that he can drink straight from the ground. Reception is not good where he is, which is why we could't FaceTime.  He loves his family. He and his 11 siblings are all very close, which he admits is pretty rare.  We talked for almost an hour and a half.  I inundated him with questions, because I was fascinated by his life.  I asked him his views on religion, marriage, sexuality, and more.

When I questioned what he feels his primary purpose is, he had two answers.  His first is that he doesn't really know what it is and he likes it that way. I definitely could tell that his mind is very open to different possibilities for truth and his value system is constantly being shaped by his experiences.  The second is something he's been fleshing out very recently, and that is to know people as they really are.  He wants to look beyond their body and their mind and see in to their souls.

When asked about his views on dating, he said he is often told to settle down because that's what a woman desires.  To him, the idea of shopping for a shirt and tie and going in for a job interview for a big company is so contrary to who he is and his moral make-up that he can't do it.  He would love marriage and a family, but it cannot be at the cost of his personal values, which align with a more nomadic lifestyle.  After spending the evening talking to him,  I find myself hoping with all my heart that he will find someone whose life could be compatible with his, because that woman would be extremely lucky.  I can tell she would be cherished and treated as we all hope we would be in a committed relationship.

My third chance taught me that non-conformity is its own kind of beautiful.  If he had been someone who conforms to society, I don't know that he would have reached out to someone so obviously different from himself.  He saw the value in getting to know who I am as a person, even though our lives are in completely different places. He wasn't concerned about whether or not we could fall in love or be a match. He was curious and open. Non-conformity yields a mentality of thinking outside the box.  We both expressed a desire to remain in contact. We actually have a lot in common in our interest in the way people think and act.  He said he views my life of conformity as equally fascinating as I view his, because it's so different from the life he chose.

Second Chance

Date Connection:

We connected on Mutual (similar to Tinder but for LDS singles) awhile ago and he messaged me, but I never responded.  I was probably hung up on his height.  When I decided to do the 35 dates challenge, however, I decided to ask him to be one of my 35 dates.

Date Location:

FaceTime between Phoenix and Salt Lake

What I Learned:

There are actually good men out there who 1) like to date older women AND 2) like to date taller women.  He is 29, almost 30, and about 5' 7" or 5' 8".  All his friends and family tease him about being attracted to older women- when he was a sophomore in high school, he would date seniors. I am almost exactly 5 years older, and he wasn't the least bit intimidated or turned off by that fact.  I was impressed by his entrepreneurial mind and his enormous, bright smile.  He was very outgoing, friendly, and honest. 

During my second chance at this dating experiment, I felt a great connection with someone shorter than me! But also many miles away...

First Chance

For my very first date I...

...was stood up.

Okay, so it's fun to make it sound dramatic.  But really...

...he lives out of state and it was going to be a Friday night phone date. We had a time misunderstanding.  I was waiting for him to call at 5:00 p.m. and he called me after 6:00 p.m. By that time, I was on my way to Heber with friends.  But, after our little mishap was realized, we bonded over some pretty rad pictures of giant cheese wheels via Facebook messenger and we hope to reconnect on the phone soon.  Though we've only chatted online so far, I can tell he has a really fun personality and a free spirit, so I hope we can make it happen.

My first official date happened today instead and it was awesome.  Below is the format I will use to report on my experiences from now on!

Date Connection: 

When I first posted about my dating challenge, I received a message from an acquaintance from the Utah choral community.  We did not know each other well, and he offered to take part in my experiment.  He was the first person to reach out to me, so it was only appropriate that he was my first date!

Date Location:

We met at Roxberry Smoothies in Farmington Station. 

What I Learned:

I had no idea what an accomplished musician he is.  We shared opinions and ideas.  He was kind and open.  One thing I learned is just how much you DON'T know about someone until you have an opportunity to sit down and talk.  You may think you know about a person based on what few facts you have, but there is a whole wealth of things to discover.  For example, I knew he was musical, and I assumed his musical resume was similar to most other choral musicians.  But he has extensive background in opera, as well as other areas that aren't always typical of choral musicians.  I also learned about his impressively musical family, including a grandmother who was an opera singer.  Because of his level of education and experience, I assumed he was older than me, but I found out we are the same age (which makes me think I could stand to get a little more on my resume ;-)).  

This first chance at this dating experiment was so positive. I'm really glad we formed this new friendship in a one-on-one setting, instead of getting to know each other bit by bit when we happen to see each other at music related functions.  I look forward to becoming better friends and maybe even collaborating on future music projects!  

Wednesday, August 8, 2018

Chancing It

When I turned 28, my roommate Celeste gave me a unique birthday present. She presented me a calendar with 13 dates on it that she pre-arranged for me.  It was one of the most thoughtful gifts I've received, and it pushed me outside my comfort zone in many ways. For example, I rode a motorcycle and tried sushi on one date, both things I avoided before.  It turned out to be an amazing opportunity to grow.

Due to the nature of this dating experiment 7 years later, however, I have to take on the responsibility of finding my own dates.  I told myself a couple things before I began the process.  First, I wanted to be completely open minded.  I wanted to go out with good guys without trying to analyze compatibility before meeting.  So often, I want it to all make sense on paper before ever getting to know someone.  I think this attitude leads to many missed opportunities.  Second, I didn't want to be timid or apologetic when I asked people to go on the dates with me.  Asking someone to spend time together is intimidating, but it shouldn't be something to apologize for.

As I've reached out to 15-20 men referred to me or guys I've chatted with on Mutual (a dating app designed for LDS singles) over the past 2 days, I've said something along these lines:

"I'm doing a crazy challenge for my 35th birthday and going on 35 dates. They are an hour long and super chill. They are meant to be fun! Do you want to go on one of these dates with me?" 

And I am still alive to tell the tale.

 I've operated in the land of apology for too long now.  In the past, I would probably have said something like, "...but if you can't, it's totally fine and I completely understand."  But I'm learning that those things are implied. If someone can't or doesn't want to go out, he will decline and life will move forward.  Fear of rejection tends to enslave us.  We are scared of the negative thing that could happen if we tried, so we don't try. And that means we miss out on the positive things that very likely could happen instead. Not everyone has responded to my petition, and it might not be their thing.  I totally get that and respect it. But many have and I can't wait to meet them.  It's worth a few no's to meet some amazing people with cool stories to share. 

I have many moments when I think, "Am I a crazy person for doing this?"  The answer is yes, in case you were wondering. I am a wannabe journalist and a lover of people and stories.  This kind of social experiment combines those interests. But I have a lot of fears about doing this.  Will people judge me? Will they misunderstand my intent? Can I see this through? Did I promise something I can't deliver?

But it's my hope that I can channel that little bit of crazy into something positive and rewarding that will hopefully positively influence the way I think and act in the future.  I have a lot to learn from the people I will meet, and I can't wait for the process to begin. 

If all goes as planned, Friday night will kick it off, exactly 1 month before my birthday. Stay tuned!

Tuesday, August 7, 2018

35 Chances: An Experiment in Dating

I'm turning 35 on September 10, just over a month away.  As a birthday gift to myself, I'm becoming completely vulnerable and doing something kind of nuts that I've always thought about doing, but never actually done.  Several years ago, I read a book called 31 Dates in 31 Days by Tamara Duricka Johnson and it absolutely fascinated me.  I even contacted the author and we emailed back and forth a couple times.  I toyed with the idea of trying something similar, but didn't ever do it.  It was just one step too scary for me.  It was two steps too risky.  It was three steps too embarrassing.

But I'm doing it. The Facebook post is published.  I'm waiting for connections I can contact to set up my 35 dates, whether they be in person or over FaceTime.  I'm spreading it out over 3 months because I don't want to go insane.  That is not the point of this experiment.  Nor is the point to meet the man I'm going to marry.  It's to practice being my authentic self over and over again. It's to spend 35 dates being unapologetic for who I am.  It's to meet and learn from people I perhaps never would have met otherwise.  It's to work on being open.  It's to give me courage.  And it's to have a little fun and make turning 35, the midway point between 30 and 40, a little more interesting. 

The title of this experiment is 35 Chances: An Experiment in Dating.  But it's not 35 "Chances for Love" or anything remotely Hallmark like that.  It's taking 35 Chances.  It's 35 opportunities to be brave.

Let the dating education begin.