Words by: Clara Yew Art by: Lauren Easter
Unfortunately, we can’t all be forced into karaoke at a New Year’s Eve party with a stranger and have that person move to our school when the term starts. Alas, life is not an excellent musical film by Disney Channel, but anything can happen when you take a chance.
Although, that makes it all sound so easy. Starting a conversation with someone new can be daunting. How are you supposed to get the words out of your mouth in the right order and tone? Or perhaps you’re on the apps and trying to create a flicker of genuine human connection out of all the monotonous swiping? Maybe that’s why, as a society, we tolerate pick-up lines — we need something to get the (eye)ball(s) rolling.
In preparation for this article, I conducted the wholly unscientific research of gathering data by shamelessly asking everyone I came across on the street, on Instagram, my group chats, and even getting a shout-out from the good folk at Monash Love Letters (MLL). Some of them were so bad they made me regret learning how to read. So buckle up your seatbelts — we’re all in this together!
“Are you an orphanage? Because I want to give you kids.” — Aaron* (19)
Context: Be upfront about your intentions. Make it clear that you want children from day one.
Would this work on me: Are children ever truly willingly given to orphanages? I always assumed these sorts of places arose to meet a need. Thought-provoking. 7/10
“I’m Nike and you’re McDonald’s. I’m doing it, and you’re loving it.” — Catmin to Simpmin
Context: These were used within an established relationship between MLL admins, Catmin and Simpmin. It may not bode as well to be so presumptuous with a stranger.
Would this work on me: It’s so sweet that they’re in a long-term relationship and still chatting each other up. Couples who become the bourgeoisie together, stay together. 10/10
“Hey… How you doin’?” — Joey** (23)
Context: This comes accompanied by a meme where Matt Le Blanc plays every character in the film Dune. It is captioned ‘How you Dune?’
Would this work on me: I’ve never seen that episode of Friends. 6/10
“If nothing lasts forever, can I be your nothing?” — Sydney** (23)
Context: G-rated. Can be used in all settings.
Would this work on me: Suddenly I’m 13 and Twilight is deep. 10/10
“Are you Wi-Fi? Because I’m feeling a connection.” — Abraham* (28)
Context: As long as it isn’t Eduroam you’re talking about, should be right.
Would this work on me: Nope, I’m a boomer trapped in a millennial, thus technologically adverse. 7/10
“Le ho chiesto: ‘cosa fai tonight?’ Mi ha risposto: ‘quello che fai te’” — Lila* (23)
Context: This comes from a former Italian exchange student and translates to “I asked her: ‘What are you doing tonight?’ She replied: ‘Same thing as you.’” It’s derived from a catchy Italian trap song and I am assured that learning to rap this will bring all the Italian trap boys to the yard.
Would this work on me: Lila tells me that “these guys just throw words together”, but I’m inspired to do more practice on Duolingo to truly appreciate this. 9/10
“Hey girl, are you me? Because I love you despite your flaws.” — A Retired Monash Stalkerspace Memer
Context: Extremely wholesome. This could work on anyone. If it doesn’t, you have the self-love to be okay.
Would this work on me: Are you BTS? Because you have shown me I have reasons I should love myself. 10/10
“Pick-up lines are all bad and cringe. I think people should treat each other with sincerity.” — Da Wei* (22)
Context: I reckon this sounds like a snippet from a middle-of-the-night, philosophical conversation.
Would this work on me: The first half had me thinking that Da Wei was a 2013 hipster who could not be caught dead appreciating anything mainstream, but then it ended surprisingly earnestly. Wholesome. 10/10
You may not have agreed with some of my thoughts and ratings. In fact, I’m kind of hoping you didn’t. It really goes to show that there is no T.K.O. pick-up line since we all find different things funny, charming, and endearing. At the end of the day, the words you choose don’t matter — just be kind. Those are the kind of words anyone wants to hear.
*Names changed to protect the innocent.
**They chose these pseudonyms, and are single and ready to mingle. DM me and I’ll set you up.