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Thread: Missed Opportunity - What should I have done?

  1. #1
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    Missed Opportunity - What should I have done?

    Today I (Male, 30, single) was sitting at a coffee shop by myself waiting to meet up with a friend who was in town. They were running late, so I was sitting there for about half an hour just sipping my coffee and scrolling through my phone. Shortly after I first sat down, a very cute girl sat down at the table right next to me. The entire time I sat there, she sat there by herself, just watching a video on her phone. I wanted so badly to talk to her, but had no idea what I would say, or even if that would be appropriate. For one, she had earbuds in, so I didn't know how I would approach her, or what I would say - I didn't see an "in." Plus, I expected my friend at any time, so I didn't want to build up the courage to say something, just to have my friend walk in and not be able to talk to her any further. I was waiting for a boyfriend to show up and sit with her, but no one ever did. She was also pretty focused on her phone, and I never noticed her glancing at me or anything. I've been thinking about it for the rest of the day, and I feel like I missed a golden opportunity.

    My question is should I have taken a shot at talking to her in that situation, or was I right to let it go? But more than that, what is the correct behavior should something like this happen again? I'm very shy when it comes to talking to strangers, and that's hundred times worse with talking to girls. I just always assume they don't want to be bothered. How do you possibly start a conversation with a random person when you have nothing to go off of?

  2. #2
    Platinum Member SherrySher's Avatar
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    Hmm, well I am going to say that if someone purposely puts in ear buds when they're out, that's a fairly big sign that they don't want to be bothered by anyone.

    I think you did the right thing in letting it go. Perhaps another time you'll run into her, maybe not. But either way, I think that this wasn't the right time.

  3. #3
    Platinum Member Wiseman2's Avatar
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    Unfortunately, there was not much opportunity. It fine to notice attractive women, but if there are this many "keep out, I'm busy" signals, then do not attempt to pick anyone up. You're better off on dating apps and with women you can have some contact/small talk with in real life.
    Originally Posted by MrBrightside15
    she had earbuds in. She was also pretty focused on her phone, and I never noticed her glancing at me or anything.

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    Platinum Member Jibralta's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by MrBrightside15
    The entire time I sat there, she sat there by herself, just watching a video on her phone. I wanted so badly to talk to her, but had no idea what I would say, or even if that would be appropriate. For one, she had earbuds in, so I didn't know how I would approach her, or what I would say - I didn't see an "in."
    You read that right and acted appropriately. You did not miss an opportunity. Her behavior was a signal to the whole room that she was not an 'opportunity.'

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  6. #5
    Platinum Member superfan's Avatar
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    You didn't miss a "golden opportunity" unless by opportunity you mean an opportunity to annoy the crap out of someone.

    You didn't make eye contact or receive any indication that she was interested in talking to you.

    She spent the entire time on her phone with ear buds in - classic indicators that she didn't want to be bothered. You did the right thing.

  7. #6
    Platinum Member reinventmyself's Avatar
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    I travel for work and when I do I am often dining alone. My queue to not be approached is exactly what this young woman did.
    Ear buds in. If I don't have them, I am engrossed in a book or looking at my phone. It's intentional.
    Sometimes I'll buy a magazine moments before ducking into a restaurant, just so I would have something to occupy me and therefore to not be bothered.

    There is something about a woman sitting alone, un-engaged and gazing about the room that tells people to approach her.
    That's probably exactly why she was plugged in.

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    Not many things are worse than some person (man or woman) trying to approach me when it's clear I am wanting to spend time alone.

    I take my laptop to cafes frequently and I have everything set up in a kind of barrier between me and everyone else. That barrier says "alone, please".

    I agree with the others, this was not an "opportunity".

  9. #8
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    I agree with the others - and then if she was uncomfortable with your approach she either would have changed tables (awkward) or it would have been stressful while you waited. I used to go to a cafe while my son was at an activity. I read a book but no earbuds. Sometimes I ended up chatting with a woman at the next table but it was the kind of cafe where that was more typical -and of course it was another woman. I wouldn't have talked to someone with earbuds if i saw them.

  10. #9
    Platinum Member shellyf62's Avatar
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    Just because she was alone doesnt mean she is available.
    There is nothing worse than some guy trying to chat when you only want to drink coffee & play with your phone!!!

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    Thanks for the feedback everyone! I guess it was a lot simpler of a scenario than I was making it out to be, and it's good to know my judgment was the right one. You just always hear people say "You gotta put yourself out there more," and it's hard to know exactly what that entails, so I thought maybe this was one of those moments.

    Good advice all around. Now I know that there needs to be some kind of connection before one approaches a person, and if there isn't you shouldn't force it, especially when the person isn't giving any indication of wanting to be approached.

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