University of Minnesota

It’s funny how the University of Minnesota Student Union feels warm and familiar, considering it was closed most of my college experience. (Coffman Union was open two months of my freshman year in 1999 before a complete interior demolition and renovation and finally reopening my final semester in 2003.)

Tonight’s alumni event was unlike any other I’ve experienced. The event? Speed dating. Surprisingly, I already knew three of the ~70 attendees. Bonus. The game? Women sat at numbered tables while the guys rotated around the room. Gametime? 2 minutes, 30 seconds for both of you to make an impression, to be witty and smart, to show drive and heart. Thirty seconds to decide whether to circle Y / N on your scorecard. From figure skaters to Spanish speakers, ag journalism reporters to actuarial scientists, child psychologists and genome biologists, there was an impressive mix of people and fun conversations.

I like asking questions; I like listening; I like telling stories. So really, this was right up my alley. You’d be surprised how much you can learn in 150 seconds. I thought it was amusing when someone told me how much she loved dining at restaurants, and I apparently stumped her by asking her favorite restaurant. To be fair, someone simply asked how old I was, and I inexplicably reported my age incorrectly before catching myself.  …This was sometime after my second glass of wine on an empty stomach and 20 completed matchups. Next week, we’ll get our scorecards and find out how we fared, that is if we got any mutual Yes’s.

Even if nothing comes from tonight, my fortune cookie after a late-night dinner at Village Wok had a positive prediction:Fortune Cookie

Good enough for me.