I have been speed dating before, but never with 414 people. Generally speed dating sessions are in groups of 30-ish. So this was definitely an experience.
I feel like I had some pretty fun conversations and there was a decent amount of flirting. I talked about where I was from and what I do for a living and so on - your typical first date over and over again (26 times). There was actually one guy, though, who asked how many times I have voted which I found to be oddly interesting. I was also told by several guys that I should be a comedian which I think is a good thing and I am going to take as a compliment.
There was also one delightful gentleman who was clearly trying to play the part of the obnoxious guy. He even mentioned about how he is into bestiality which I am almost positive he said only to get a reaction from me (he didn't). I kind of wondered why he was even there. And really, mentioning what you consider to be some off the wall sexual fantasy to get a rise out of someone is so over used. Just sayin.
Now, I know that the whole point of this event was to beat the world record but I honestly think there were just way too many people for a speed dating event. Granted, you couldn't really tell that you were surrounded by 400 other people during the dates but I think that's mainly due to the fact that the dates go so quickly. The atmosphere was incredibly loud and I had a really heard time hearing my dates on more than one occasion. Really, I have to say that I have had an easier time carrying on a conversation at a bar on Saturday night. And, through talking to people afterwards, I know I am not the only one that felt that way.
Also, with 414 people there, I am guessing half of those were guys and I only went on a date with 26 of them. That means there were 181 men that I didn't really get an opportunity to meet. I think I kind of would rather the smaller event that I went to previously where I was able to go on a date with every guy there.
I genuinely feel like I was able to meet a variety of people from all different age groups. I met some pretty interesting guys, most of whom have never been speed dating before. So it kind of seems like the fact that this was a Groupon and that they were trying to set the world record might have brought out people who wouldn't have normally tried speed dating.
There was also a little after party where you could mingle with everyone there so I did get an opportunity to meet some of the other people there. I actually ended up chatting with a very cute and flirty 27-year-old guy (thank god he is not 26) who I found to be pretty interesting. And yes, I flirted (and I mean flirted a lot) with him.
I also have to add that I think registration was very poorly organized. I understand that people who organize events can't control the weather. When I arrived with my friend we had to stand in line for at least ten minutes in the frigid Chicago cold. Generally I am not one to complain about the cold especially if I am going to a bar. But I feel like when you host an event then you make sure the people attending the event are well cared for.