Because here's how a foray into one went for me awhile back. So it started one night when Rick (not his real name), a friend of mine, talked me into trying out the dating scene again. He wanted to take me to this singles club called Fling and I was less than willing........reluctant even. Now Rick does great at these places of amorous, ephemeral vanity because he is himself attractive and promiscuous.....but he was insistent I at least try. "Look, I'll talk you up," he said, "I'll say you're back from building orphanages in Africa." <------my thinking of this "C'mon," he continued, "I'll talk myself down......I'll say I have a girlfriend and that my doctor is really sure I have a STD." He actually seemed to be proud of this idea and I now knew that, at the very least, it would be an interesting evening, what with everything being built on a foundation of lies, so I relented. "Sure Rick." So we showed up at the place, which is apparently in an old warehouse district that is becoming gentrified, and Rick got us a table near the wall. I offered to go get some drinks, I don't actually drink but I can handle a soft Rum & Coke every now and then so I figured I'd get one now at least, and headed to the bar carefully avoiding the dance floor. I angled up to the bar, ordered the drinks and, after I finished ordering them, the blonde to my immediate left looked up at me then blurted out, "sorry, not interested," before turning back around. Kinda taken aback by that I turned the other way where there was this brunette on the other side of me looking my way and I thought she was going to comment on the other girls rudeness when instead she said, "in your dreams, bub," then walked off also. Before I had processed this quick exchange my drinks were up and I turned around to bring them back to Rick and suddenly this other girl, a freckled redhead wearing this odd slinky neon green dress, dropped her blackberry and, with her dress obviously not designed with dexterity in mind, I bent down and picked it up for her. "Thanks," she said beaming a halfhearted smile and without even taking a breath, "I'm sorry I already........" she didn't even finish her sentence but instead just turned around and started talking to her friends. In less than a minute I'd been rejected three times--and not even deemed worthy of a full verbalization for the last one--and I hadn't even asked a single gal out yet. This was shaping up to be a very rotten evening. As I got back to the table I saw that Rick had been joined by three pretty ladies who seemed to be enthralled in whatever Rick was telling them. As I approached I heard the tail end of it, "...pulled the orphans out of the building through a window even as the mercenaries were still pumping bullets into it." He was actually telling an orphans in Africa story....that had someone become like some Bruckenheimer produced, Michael Bay directed explosion/gun porn fest. I half considered pretending I had come to the wrong table and go elsewhere when Rick saw me. "Ahh, my man. Girls, this is him, the man himself!" I tried to hide the nervous gulp as I meekly responded, "uh, hi everyone." No sooner had I sat down then Rick got up to go to the bathroom. Not knowing what kind of story he had been telling I started sweating in anticipation of being grilled by the three women. Where had Rick said the orphanage was in Africa? Had Rick said I used a specific weapon to get the orphans out? However, my fear was misplaced, after Rick was gone they all started talking amongst themselves and didn't even look at me. I figured this was one bullet dodged at least. Rick came back and the three girls said they had to leave but wanted his number first. He seemed a bit surprised but wrote it down for all three on three little strips of paper. They all seemed to be confused by what he had written though. The closest one asked, "So is one your home and the other?" "The first one is mine, the second is his (pointing to me)," he explained. One girl immediately crossed out my number, the second folded up hers and the third simply tore my half off and discarded it into a waste basket. So much for subtlety. "I thought you were going to say you have an STD?" I asked after they were gone. "I did," Rick replied. At that I quickly downed my drink not wanting to contemplate the implications of having rated below STD infection. A while later a friend of Ricks, that I didn't care for, came by and I excused myself to another table on the other side of the dance floor. As I sat there with another (very unusual for me) Rum & Coke my mind kinda drifted off. It was brought back to earth by an angelic voice, "um, hi." I focused my eyes onto a beautiful brunette that could have been Zooey Deschanel's long lost twin in a sleek gray party dress. "There's like a rumor going around that you were like in a war in Brazil or something." "Africa," I quickly corrected her before realizing that I had just inadvertently committed myself to a horrible lie. Damn my inability for extemporaneous explanation! "Oh, that's like cool," she said almost nervously. Damn, I thought, this was it. Go for it and stay the course, explain the war in Africa as a metaphor, an allegory, or something, at some future time, like on a date. "I could explain what it that was all about, like over dinner, perhaps?" I sure hope I didn't look as eagerly hopeful as I actually was. "Oh, no, I'm sorry.......this is kinda awkward now," she bit her upper lip and glanced backwards before resuming, "I was just hoping you could introduce me to your friend over there," she said gesturing to Rick. Feeling somewhat--scratch that--feeling completely hollow I just got up and walked her over to Rick. "Hi Rick, this is.......," I didn't even know her name, "someone," and I walked, zombie like numb, back to the other table barely missing the couple on the dance floor who looked like they might start fornicating right then and there. After what seemed like forever, two DJ changeovers at least, Rick and I left. In the car he explained that the girl I had brought over to him was named Rachel or Natalie (he couldn't remember which) and that she had explained to him her theory on why people do things like my fictitious Africa orphan thing. Her theory was that it was because the beautiful people spend their time having fun and those that are not have to find other things to do; some do crime and some go to Africa for the orphans.........I was not in the mood to explain the numerous holes in her hypothesis so I just let Rick rattle on about it. After I got home I woke my dog Toby up as he seemed to be whimpering. Toby was rescued from a dog fighting ring and sometimes seems to have nightmares. I flicked the lights on and off to let my deaf cat Totoro know I was home, located my other cat Tiger (who has epilepsy [in case you're wondering why the weird pets: I help run an organization that gets pets with disabilities adopted out]) and went to get a piece of leftover lasagna. Unfortunately I hadn't run the dishwasher so there were no clean plates. I just gave up on the lasagna and went to my bed, laid down and started reading my latest book, Conspiracy of Fools (which is pretty good so far by-the-way) and as I did so Toby came in and curled up on the rug next to my bed. Then Totoro jumped up and laid down on my chest purring. You know, I reflected, the world isn't such a bad place, it's just the people that are the problem......well, some of the people, I wouldn't want to put any blame on the orphans in Africa after all. So a few days later Rick went out with Rachel/Natalie (her real name was actually Amy) and he reports that she is a sociology major. I hope that works out for her. So, does anyone here give these places much time? If so what are your experiences like with them?