How to Make Friends

Hello again, blogosphere! So obviously I was not very good about keeping this up. Since my last blog post, we adopted a second dog (Barley), I’ve celebrated my one-year anniversary at my “new” job, and time in general has flown by. While all of that sounds kind of exciting (mostly the dog – pretty much just the dog), I started to get in an anime-binge-watching, The-Office-rewatching, reading-too-much slump. I was still hanging out with my best friend, Fallon, and Cam’s always down for new activities, but that was about the extent of my social circle. That’s normally enough for me, but I started to feel a little lonely and decided I need some more girl friends. Perhaps it was the day I watched eight hours of anime alone. That probably did it.

And so began Brooke’s Adventure in Friendship! I started slow and joined a book club at our local branch of the library. That was pretty good until at the second meeting it was still just me in the librarian. Two does not a book club make. Especially when one talks way more than the other (two guesses which one that is).

After some research on the all-knowing Buzzfeed, it turns out this is not just my own introverted weirdo problem. I signed up for two apps geared to helping people meet new friends: Bumble BFF and Hey! Vina. Both work like Tinder – you make a profile, then scroll through other people’s profiles shamelessly judging them from just a few pictures and 0-3 sentences. Swipe right for yes, swipe left for no. You and the other person both have to swipe right on each other to match, then you can start a chat.

To preface my profiles, which I’ve included in full below, I figured it was better to let the freak flag fly early. Making friends is tricky enough, might as well shoot straight and let everyone know I’m a huge nerd who loves anime, the renaissance fest, and obsessively reading.

The Profiles 

Bumble BFF: Bumble is actually a dating app that has started a BFF option – you set your account to “BFF” interests to match with same-sex friends. It let’s you upload up to six photos and write a short blurb about yourself. You can set a desired age range and distance from yourself. I went for 22-30, within 10 miles. Houston is SO big, that I wanted to go ahead and avoid the “Oh, I don’t know if I’d be up for driving that far” debate.

Blurb: Traveler and foodie tech editor from Houston. Loves books, food, museums, anime, and adventuring. Proud puppy parent of two. Husband is going into football mode, so in need of some girl time!

Hey! Vina: Vina was designed by women in Silicon Valley who, surrounded by mostly men, wanted to meet some more female friends. The app is for platonic lady friendships only, and seems to have a larger age range than Bumble. Vina users take a short personality quiz (coffee vs. wine, indoor vs. outdoor, etc.). Your responses help determine your matches and display on your profile. There are also more things to fill out, like your blurb, five emojis that describe you, guilty pleasure, and what you love most about yourself.

However, you cannot restrict your age range or distance from yourself in Vina – so some more savvy filtering is required on your part if you want close geographical matches or a restricted age range.

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Blurb: Native Houstonian and former expat living in the Heights. Looking to meet some other smart ladies with wanderlust and a big appetite! Love checking out local breweries, new eats, anything with sweets, and local museums and theaters. Spend too much time binging Netflix, books, and anime. Traveling is my favorite hobby – and eating of course!

Personality: Wine or coffee, Work to Live, Indoor or Outdoor, Introvert, Daytime, Have a Plan.

My Guilty Pleasure: Good old chocolate!

What I Love About Myself: Insatiable curiosity for other places and cultures.

And there you have it! Wish me luck, send good vibes, say some prayers, and off we go! Check back for updates on my lady-friend dating life, and my absolute lack of game.

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