It would be an understatement to say that the Crimson has not paid a significant amount of attention to recent campus sensation Datamatch. It’s like Tinder, but more socially acceptable! And less awkward! Is this algorithm the solution to the supposed lack of dating culture on campus? For our second date in Flyby’s Datamatch series, I went on my date and took precise notes to find out. Here is the chronicle of my Datamatch experience:
Monday, February 16: 2:43 p.m.
As I looked down the list, my heart began to palpitate, my hands quickly becoming clammy and sticky. This is so weird. I know people on this list, but I don’t really like any of those people, to be honest. Was this whole Datamatch thing a sham? I mean, I knew I would never go on a date with anyone on my list (except for you, Nian my fellow Flyby exec, you are super cool). I had placed so much of my confidence in Datamatch’s robust and scientific questions, but I knew I would never be able to even hold a normal conversation with that strange girl in my section who now is, supposedly, my number three match.
Monday, February 16: 7:28 p.m.
While going over our lists of matches with a close friend of mine, she points out that she knows my number one match, Karen Maldonado ’18. I know nothing about her, but after stalking her on the Harvard College Facebook, I learn that she is a freshman. My good friend then informs me that if I so desire, she would ask Karen to accept my waffle request.
What if she doesn’t accept my request? What if she equally stalks me on Facebook and sees my hilariously bad profile picture? Will she think I’m one of those strange kids that goes to Lamont Cafe to actually do work instead of pretending to do work?
Monday, February 16, 8:15 p.m.
She has accepted my date request. Game on.
Tuesday, February 17, 10:18 a.m.
Trying to be as inconspicuous as possible during my 10 a.m. lecture (I sit in the first row normally), I Facebook message Karen, sending a cheeky blurb asking her to Zinneken's. Details are exchanged, logistics ironed out, and the date is set: Thursday night.
Thursday, February 19 6:08 p.m.
I arrive at Karen’s dorm, just in time. Not too early, but just a minute after Harvard Time expires, so not too late. So far, my date is going amazingly well. If the rest of my date is even one-tenth as amazing as my timing, then I am in great shape.
I introduce myself as Nacho and surprisingly, Karen remains completely unfazed as to why I do not call myself Ignacio. Does she know that “My actual name is Ignacio, but Nacho is a very common hispanic nickname for Ignacio’,” or do I have to repeat that phrase for her like I do to everyone? We then we start to trek across what feels like the entire expanse of Antarctica in the dead of winter.
Thursday, February 19 6:15 p.m.
We arrive at Zinneken’s and place our order. I try to pronounce “café au lait” in a French accent to sound more cultured, but fail miserably, despite me actually taking a French class.
Our nutella banana waffle arrives, but Zinneken’s only has one knife on offer for us. Is this because Zinneken’s can’t afford more knives, or was this a scheme to make our date more romantic?
Thursday, February 19 6:18 p.m.
Karen and I can finally sit down and start talking. I learned some interesting things about her. She really likes American Horror Story. Is that a good sign? Should I be mortified? From there on, our conversation actually got really deep. We talked about Latino/a identity, how college is different from where we are respectively from, social norms, and all that good stuff.
Thursday, February 19 6:57 p.m.
We leave our good friends at Zinneken’s and head back to the Yard. All in all, I would say it was a good date. I managed to not spill anything on myself, and I think I did a good job of making Karen think I was interesting.
Also, to whomever I was number one on their list, you missed out on a great opportunity to meet me and pretend to laugh at my jokes. Your loss.