You’ve got a friend … for five minutes

Yellow_roses1Let’s start by saying that the following phenomenon—like, say, bulimia—isn’t something we’re endorsing. We’re just shedding some light. Here goes: There’s a guy in Manhattan who has introduced what he calls “Speed Friending” to the many lonely souls wandering around the streets of New York. According to a story in today’s New York Post (a publication that seems particularly susceptible to writing about trend wannabes), Jared Nissim, who has also founded other networking programs such as The Lunch Club, has started these Speed Friending gatherings, with rules that remind us of a particularly relentless game of musical chairs—half the participants are assigned to stations within a bar while the other half rotate from station to station, talking at each one for five minutes with the stationer. (We’re not sure that’s the right terminology, but this is all so new.) At the end of the evening, some genuine friendships have begun—or not. To us, the real genius here isn’t that someone’s found another way for Manhattanites to meet each other; it’s that he has actually managed to repackage what used to be called bar hopping and convince people it’s something new.

—Posted by Catharine P. Taylor