Dinner and a Flu Shot

If courtship as we know it is dead—the classic dinner-and-a-movie combo replaced by last-minute bailouts sent via text message—then HowAboutWe.com is waging a Sisyphean battle. The three-year-old partner site of New York Magazine helps online daters meet like-minded individuals by getting them to, you know, actually go on dates. To join, users must complete the sentence “How about we …,” to which they’ll receive messages from other singles interested in doing just that. While many members have standard-issue notions of a good time—like strolling through Central Park or eating frozen yogurt—it’s those whose date suggestions veer radically off-path that tend to stand out. Here, a sampling of local members’ most eccentric (and only potentially ironic) date suggestions.

How about we …

“Run around the city like ninjas, stealthily taking pictures of interesting people.”

“Go get flu shots.”

“Head over to Macy’s and pretend to be newlyweds who are creating a wedding registry.”

“See Being Elmo, and I can tell you the story of why I wouldn’t exist without the Muppets.”

“Follow each other on Instagram for a week and then decide if we still want to meet.”

“Go fishing in the East River.”

“Smoke cigars at the Carnegie Club and pretend we’re robber barons.”

“Have a conversation without talking about what we do for work.”

“Stick up the American Girl store and then spend the proceeds at the dog races.”

“Wear period costumes while shopping at Chelsea Market on a Sunday afternoon.”

“Hit Times Square and photo-bomb as many family photos as possible.”

“Go to Cafe Grumpy and annoy the barista by asking for an espresso to go. They hate that.”

“Make up our own version of ‘the real’ how-they-met stories for the wedding section of the Sunday Times.”

“Pretend I had a crush on you in high school but let you get away.”

“Meet at Madison Square Park and see who can get the better photo of a squirrel without getting attacked.”

“Polish each other’s fingernails.”

“Get tattoos of a gnome riding a unicorn … or go to Barcade and play Rampage instead.”

“Wander the Met and decide which wing would be the most sound place to hole up during a zombie apocalypse.”

“Throw a Frisbee and pretend we are in a Cialis commercial.”

“Hang out and make fun of people’s Match.com profiles.”

Dinner and a Flu Shot