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Kim Voynar

By Kim Voynar

The Art of Dating by Geography

I’m fascinated by this Gothamist piece asking New Yorkers if they’d date outside their borough. Not so much by the piece itself, but by the general hilarity of the comments, particularly when some commenters get into the relative merits (or lack thereof) of Staten Island, and whether one lives IN Staten Island or ON Staten Island. Pressing issues.

Weighing the relative hotness of a potential date against the distance traveled (or number of trains you have to take) to get there?

I mean, yeah, sure, I guess. I wasn’t dating really when I lived there, so it wasn’t something that ever came up. But I get the geography of dating … when I was growing up in Oklahoma City, it was out of the norm for someone to date someone from a rival school, period, especially if it was a rival school within your district. Out-of-district was more acceptable, but even then it helped if you were dating someone a step up, or someone particularly hot. And North side and South side didn’t, as a general rule, mix or intermingle much socially.

Here in Seattle I don’t know that it’s so much an issue because our mass transit blows and everyone here either drives or rides bikes. My only really hard-core rules about dating, when I was engaged in that activity, were no douchebags … and no Longhorns. I dunno, this whole thing just feels like a low-budget indie film waiting to be made. Manhattan publicist decides she’s only dating guys who live in Manhattan, then falls in love with a poor boy from the Bronx, and somehow they have to overcome their geographic differences? No? Okay, maybe a Williamsburg hipster …

Do you make dating choices based on where someone lives?

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One Response to “The Art of Dating by Geography”

  1. Lisa says:

    While I think it’s a little bit absurd for New Yorkers to not want to date outside the boro (if you have a MTA pass it’s not like it’s going to cost anything extra), but living in New Brunswick, NJ that is an issue for me. Gas is expensive, and NJ Transit tickets (which rose 25% last year) add up. I always feel like a jerk voicing this though, as I know people around here who drive over an hour to see the people they’re dating.

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It shows how out of it I was in trying to be in it, acknowledging that I was out of it to myself, and then thinking, “Okay, how do I stop being out of it? Well, I get some legitimate illogical narrative ideas” — some novel, you know?

So I decided on three writers that I might be able to option their material and get some producer, or myself as producer, and then get some writer to do a screenplay on it, and maybe make a movie.

And so the three projects were “Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep,” “Naked Lunch” and a collection of Bukowski. Which, in 1975, forget it — I mean, that was nuts. Hollywood would not touch any of that, but I was looking for something commercial, and I thought that all of these things were coming.

There would be no Blade Runner if there was no Ray Bradbury. I couldn’t find Philip K. Dick. His agent didn’t even know where he was. And so I gave up.

I was walking down the street and I ran into Bradbury — he directed a play that I was going to do as an actor, so we know each other, but he yelled “hi” — and I’d forgot who he was.

So at my girlfriend Barbara Hershey’s urging — I was with her at that moment — she said, “Talk to him! That guy really wants to talk to you,” and I said “No, fuck him,” and keep walking.

But then I did, and then I realized who it was, and I thought, “Wait, he’s in that realm, maybe he knows Philip K. Dick.” I said, “You know a guy named—” “Yeah, sure — you want his phone number?”

My friend paid my rent for a year while I wrote, because it turned out we couldn’t get a writer. My friends kept on me about, well, if you can’t get a writer, then you write.”
~ Hampton Fancher

“That was the most disappointing thing to me in how this thing was played. Is that I’m on the phone with you now, after all that’s been said, and the fundamental distinction between what James is dealing with in these other cases is not actually brought to the fore. The fundamental difference is that James Franco didn’t seek to use his position to have sex with anyone. There’s not a case of that. He wasn’t using his position or status to try to solicit a sexual favor from anyone. If he had — if that were what the accusation involved — the show would not have gone on. We would have folded up shop and we would have not completed the show. Because then it would have been the same as Harvey Weinstein, or Les Moonves, or any of these cases that are fundamental to this new paradigm. Did you not notice that? Why did you not notice that? Is that not something notable to say, journalistically? Because nobody could find the voice to say it. I’m not just being rhetorical. Why is it that you and the other critics, none of you could find the voice to say, “You know, it’s not this, it’s that”? Because — let me go on and speak further to this. If you go back to the L.A. Times piece, that’s what it lacked. That’s what they were not able to deliver. The one example in the five that involved an issue of a sexual act was between James and a woman he was dating, who he was not working with. There was no professional dynamic in any capacity.

~ David Simon