By Scott Gantner
Eye contact is important. It’s the difference between unsightly insecurity and cool confidence. The hardest situation to master is locking eyes with a complete stranger. You’re sitting in class/at a bar/in a retirement home, and you notice a good looking newcomer twirling a pencil/icing out a $2 drink/logging into an AOL email account. You like the style of this mysterious girl/guy/war vet. And what’s this? The stranger is turning to look your way! What do you do? You have to look back, or else you could miss out on some “private tutoring”/barndance/Cialis commercials. Just don’t mess up the timing. You have a small window to achieve the perfect amount of eye contact.
In order to help yourself hit that sweet spot, try out this technique. Look your future friend right in the eye and count to yourself, “one-one thousand,” then look away. It conveys interest without conveying a stalkerish level of interest.
Throughout the night, you’re going to want to incorporate a good amount of seemingly incidental eye contact. The goal is to mimic the idea that some mystic force is magically drawing you two together. Here’s one way to get away with a harmless cornea connection. At some point in most nights, your friend/the dj/the head nurse will play a sing-along tune. It could be “Sweet Caroline”, or maybe “Livin’ On A Prayer.” When the song crescendos to the chorus, it is totally acceptable to point your rods and cones at your potential partner. Make sure he or she is singing along, and then sing the loudest line of the song, while looking them dead in their upper face holes. When Jon Bon Jovi sings, “We’re halfway there…” you make strong eye contact and join in, “WOOOOOAH-OH! LIVIN’ ON A PRAYER!” As soon as you end your “prayer,” cut away. You just got away with a four-one thousand length of time locked in with your soon to be significant other.
The hardest part of actually meeting a stranger is still ahead of you, but you just nailed the eye contact foreplay.