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ISSUE 117 VOL 2 PUBLISHED 9/26/2003

The Dating Game

By Brenna Greenfield
Contributing Writer

Friday, September 26, 2003

Dating at St. Olaf can be a murky and shallow pond in which to swim. Complaints about the sparse pickings are heard all across the hill; it seems most people are either in a very serious relationship on the path to matrimony or simply single. The small number of people on campus may be one of the causes of this phenomenon. Random hook ups and unpleasant breakups are all the more painful on a small campus, where a run-in with an old fling is practically inevitable.

In an effort to alleviate in some small way the dating shortage, two unattached individuals were set up in the most sterile experimental lab setting of sorts – the dreaded blind date. Here’s how the afternoon unfolded…

The date consisted of two parts: a round of disc golf behind Hoyme and dinner afterwards in Stav Hall.

The date hit a small hitch when Brent showed up in the Buntrock crossroads, rather than the location the two had previously agreed upon (Mellby lounge). Realizing the error of his ways, Brent rushed over to Mellby and prepared for a full evening with his date.

Both Brent and Kari opted to wear casual attire (both wore the same outfits they had worn to classes that day). Their fashion selections dispelled the myth that one must dress to impress when preparing for a date (though Brent was critical of Kari’s vest, which he considered weather-inappropriate).

At the disc golf course, it took a little while for Kari and Brent to get into the game; Kari had never played before and kept hitting the trees dead center. In spite of her novice status at the sport, however, Kari said that it was, ‘“nice to be outside and moving around.” Needless to say, the two didn’t keep score.

Their rousing game of disc golf soon forced them into the cafeteria for a hearty meal and some Western-themed music.

And speaking of Western, both Brent and Kari hail from west of the Mississippi – Brent is from Great Falls, Montana and Kari is from Leavenworth, Washington. Their shared geographical region was perhaps the only thing the two truly had in common.

In the cafeteria, Brent experienced his favorite part of the date, which involved, “gazing into each other’s eyes over a hot plate of gumbo.” The couple sat at a two-person “date table” overlooking Rolvaag Library, and discussed their favorite sports and extra-curricula activities. The evening’s conversation was strained at first, but after awhile it began to flow more naturally.

When asked if she felt that Stav was an appropriate first-date setting (and one conducive to romantic conversation), Kari said that, “It was a comfortable place to have a date. St. Olaf students go there all of the time.” Another bonus was, of course, that the two didn’t have to shell out any cash toward their meals or bicker over who would pick up the tab. Thank goodness for the St. Olaf meal plan!

The date ended with a friendly hug. Was it a smashing success? Keep an eye out around campus for these two in order to answer that question.

The People:

THE GIRL Kari Koos Sophomore exercise science major Likes: mountains, being loud, running

Dislikes: lack of snow in Minnesota, wearing pink nail polish

What she looks for in a guy: tall, full of energy, hair long enough to play with and braid but not too shaggy

Dating Experience at St. Olaf: “Last year was one grand new experience. I can say that I definitely crushed on a few dudes, but it was all about meeting a variety of people and chilling out on the weekends.”

Expectations for the Date: “Dude, it is a Tuesday afternoon and I get to hang out on the hill with one of my fellow Oles. The weather is sweet, I am just looking forward to getting to know this fellow and, ya know, kick his boot-ay at disc golf.”

THE GUY Brent McCafferty Junior English major Likes: writing - wants to be a screenwriter or playwright, soccer, and collecting books (especially anything by F. Scott Fitzgerald)

Dislikes: “I like most things.”

What he looks for in a girl: pleasant, intelligent, funny, talkative, no specific physical type

Dating Experience at St. Olaf: Brent arrived his first year with a girlfriend from high school and proceeded to break up with her later in the year. Though he dated a little at the end of last year, he doesn’t ask girls on dates often and enjoys being single.

Expectations for the Date: No real expectations except total awkwardness, a fun two hours, and the possibility of meeting “the one.”

Parting Thoughts:

THE GIRL Kari: On Brent: “He’s a really bubbly nice person, and we had a good time playing Frisbee golf. He’s kind of like an artsy person and we don’t have a lot of similarities.”

How about another date? “A group experience would be fine.”

The date, in sum: “Frisbee, fun, food, friend.”

THE GUY Brent: On Kari: “Wow, what can I say, just a great girl, gregarious, nice smile we were complete opposites, pretty much everything we’re involved in, it was fine, it wasn’t like a big deal.”

One Drawback: “She was wearing this puffy vest and it was just very distracting and it seemed odd because of how nice out it is, and I kept looking at it and being like, take off that vest, you know, just take it off. It was ridiculous.”

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