Lame pickup lines: The blight of America


Believe it or not, sometimes people flirt with me. I’m not saying it happens all the time, but every now and then, some friendly someone will strike up a conversation with me.

At which point, I get painfully awkward, giggle at nothing, become red-faced like a radish and begin to tear up a little. (I’m not a very good flirter.)

When Bryan and I first started dating, he made a comment once that he’d always wanted to meet a girl at the grocery store. So, naturally, I stopped allowing him to enter any grocery store in an attempt to keep him away from ALL OF THOSE WHORES.

Just kidding.

I think he said that because he was DJing a lot at the time, and the grocery store is about as opposite from a Broad Ripple bar as you can get. At least during the daytime. In general, people at the grocery store in the daytime are casual, sober and most importantly, they’ve let their guards down. Plus, you can see if they have good taste in important things like candy and wine.

I was at Marsh on Saturday to purchase a basket full of an embarrassing combination of things that included kitty litter, oyster crackers, toilet paper and kale (because I’m fancy.) I gathered my things and approached the self-checkout. As I got in line, the woman in front of me turned around and looked at me.

“You a model?” she asked me abruptly.

“Me? Oh! No,” I answered.

“Oh,” she said. “You have nice eyes.”

“Thanks!” I cheered. She turned around. I continued, “Nope, I’m just a measly grocery store patron.” (Have I mentioned I’m awkward in all situations?)

She was quiet for a few more seconds, then turned back around to me. “You have a boyfriend?”

(An understandable question, given the contents of my basket.) “Yes, I do,” I smiled.

“Damn,” she responded. “You’re cute.”

“Oh, yeah,” I said, starting to blush uncontrollably. “Well, thanks anyway!”

Then, we proceeded to checkout next to each other, and I, feeling awkward about the attention, mumbled at her to have a nice day and said something super nerdy about the weather.

Shockingly, reader, this is all leading up to a point. I’d like to call our attention to a tragedy which is clearly plaguing single Americans across genders: Lame pickup lines.

I’d say that the pickup line I’ve received the most – by far – is the “Are you a model?” line. Yes, sir or madam, it’s nice that you appreciate my face and/or body. It really is kind of you to say. It makes me feel good! But there is no way in hell you think that I, at a towering height of 5’4 and with an ever-increasing bit of pudge around my midsection, am an actual breathing model.

Yes, there is a time and place for lame pickup lines, like at the bar and at 2AM and on Tinder. Those pickup lines are good for certain motivations, like holding hands and french kissing.

But a grocery store is not a bar. And aren’t we tired of the same old lines? Let’s make flirting exciting again! (Note: It will always be terrifying to me.) Plus, if we’re really motivated to meet someone who is actually interesting, who stimulates our brains as well as our nether regions, I think we need to take a more honest approach.

So, I’ve (surely) done us all a favor by brainstorming a few realistic and honest pickup lines. Try these on for size:

  • I’ve just met you, but I’m already attracted to your brain.
  • I couldn’t help but notice that you carry yourself with confidence and elegance.
  • I acknowledge and appreciate your unique sense of style.
  • You have impeccable taste in [tortillas]. (This is most applicable at the grocery store.)
  • You have a shiny soul.
  • I see you’re buying kitty litter. I love cats. In fact, I care for a community of feral cats in my free time.
  • I can’t help but notice your perky attitude and bouncy personality.
  • I have a beard.

How can you go wrong? With these pickup lines, you’re guaranteed to stand out from the pack. Of course, I wouldn’t recommend taking advice from me. I’m the worst at flirting, after all.

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