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Despite my fearless reputation among friends, I was nervous as hell.

This kind of rigor goes into a lot of my decisionmaking.On a first date I once had, the guy compared dating apps to slot machines; the human element is removed, and there is no real indicator of chemistry. We never had a second date, but the analogy was on-the-nose. By the time I arrived, everyone seemed either paired off or already sitting with a co-ed group and I wasn’t sure I wanted to be the interloper. I was fully expecting stereotypical hunting behavior, and I wasn't feeling up for confrontation. “If you don’t belong here, then neither do I,” Kaitlyn, a fellow first-timer, replied with a smile.Social Concierge offers an alternative, a chance to see a person, hear their voice, smell their breath (for better or worse) and let them buy you a drink. They had already gotten comfortable if they were already sitting in a group, I assumed. So instead of approaching a mixed XX-XY group, I put my coat and bag on a couch where a group of friendly-looking 20-something women were gathered, and asked if anyone had been to a mixer before. Her friend Katie explained that she joined for the monthly fee of , submitted her photo, provided her employer’s name (Social Concierge verifies by social media or a phone call to the applicant), but said that she was entry-level — not the rich mover and shaker I thought members had to be.If I'm standing in a torrential storm and you keep yelling, "WHAT DO YOU WANT?!?!" You're gonna get less of a chance I'll be able to choose.