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Oxonian Pickup Lines

February 13, 2013

Today, I was sitting in an undisclosed Oxonian location hard at work on my dissertation – okay, maybe a slight amount of exaggeration is employed here, but whatever- when, out of the blue, a random fellow shows up and starts asking my opinion about teleportation.  If you are teleported from here to New York, and in the process, your body was destroyed and recreated, is the person in New York the real you?

nerd_looking_coolNow, if some unknown person on the street were to ask you your opinion about the ethical results of teleportation you might be slightly surprised.  But not in Oxford.  In Oxford, such a question is a quintessential pick-up line.  It is the academic equivalent to ‘hey baby, you wanna dance?’–  but in this instance the dancing is conversational and self-consciously erudite.

You may think I am exaggerating– surely grad students at Oxford are not that weird– but to prove my point I will list a couple other pick up lines that have been used on me in the last year or so.

The worst was probably when the ‘Medieval Romance’ exhibit was on at the Bodleian library last year.   If you don’t remember let me remind you: I study the Middle Ages.   Somehow these two facts cannot coexist without the result of questions like, ‘Hey Merskank, want to go check out the Medieval Romance exhibit… with me?’  Very subtle, Oxford men.  Very subtle.

Let’s see.  I have also been asked if I wanted to go to Roman night at the museum.  Apparently there are reconstructions of classical board games we could play…

Another winner: ‘Hey do want to go visit Tolkien’s grave this weekend?’  That was a pretty good one actually.  I mean, everyone knows: Tolkien is the best.

As far as conversations go, the first time I hung out in my college bar last year, I ended up talking to a guy for an hour about the theory of multiple universes: if it is sustainable, and how it interacts with the laws of physics.  A month later, another guy chatted me up talking about his research into ‘ineffability’.  Oh yes, we were talking about the unspeakable– how much hotter can you metaphorically get?

But yes, the gist of my post is that if a guy comes up and asks you particularly obscure or nerdy questions, or if he invites you on obscure or nerdy outings: he is definitely hitting on you.  Trust me.  I think half the time, girls at Oxford fail to recognize the methods of truly nerdy guys.  We expect things like– ‘I was wondering, do you want to do coffee’ but instead we get: ‘hey, I was wondering what you think about vowel gradation system in German.  I’ve been comparing it to Sanskrit and the Indo-European implications are fascinating.’

3 Comments leave one →
  1. February 13, 2013 7:24 am

    YES. Best post yet. keep us updated as more come along!

  2. February 14, 2013 12:58 am

    And yet none of these amazing pick up lines have worked? Inconceivable!

    • thelittlemerskank permalink*
      February 14, 2013 1:33 am

      Well. I did go see Tolkien’s grave– I mean, who would I be if I could have said no to that?

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