Tuesday, February 20, 2018
News Roundup

Comic Con speed dating can be a riddle

TAMPA

The Riddler looked me square in the eye and gave me the best dating advice I'd heard in months. • "You dress up as Catwoman, and you'll never be single again," he said, dressed as the Batman villain in a green hat and matching suit. • I kicked myself for not grabbing my cat mask from last Halloween.

I had never speed dated before, but when I saw Tampa Bay Comic Con was offering sessions, it seemed a unique opportunity. Forty of us — 20 men and 20 women — spent three minutes with each other wearing name tags that identified our gender (M or F) and a number (1-20). We talked about our favorite comic characters, our day jobs, our reasons for speed dating.

"I'm just tired of being single at 36," said M-6, a Hulk fan with a messenger bag to show it.

I told him I had the opposite problem, that I had spent the last few years as a serial girlfriend, jumping from relationship to relationship until a few months ago. And since then, I've realized that I, a 21-year-old reporter who literally talks to people for a living, have no idea what I'm doing when it comes to dating.

This became apparent with M-11, dressed as Great Saiyaman from Dragon Ball Z. I shook his hand, complimenting his white pleather gloves.

"Actually, they're goat skin," he said.

Um, my mistake.

Needless to say, he wasn't one of the men who gave me his phone number at the end. Only five did.

A 25 percent success rate isn't too bad, until I realized that just one of the five guys I gave my number to gave me his back: The Riddler.

After a few texts back and forth, he told me he was going back for speed dating round two that night because during the first session he "got three numbers including one from a cute reporter lol."

And cheers to you, Riddler. Because it seems to me from this experience that the first step of this whole dating thing is to put yourself out there. Even if the conversations fall flat or fizzle out, at least you tried.

As I was walking to my car, I made small talk with a man in a Spider-Man shirt. Before we parted ways, he pulled out his phone.

"I don't mean to be forward here, but can I get your number or email address?"

Sure, Spider-Man shirt. You sure can.

Contact Kathryn Varn at (352) 754-6114 or [email protected] Follow @kathrynvarn.

Comments
Girl, 12, sister of murder victim, calls relative after being reported missing

Girl, 12, sister of murder victim, calls relative after being reported missing

Seven months ago, Jalyssa Shannon’s older sister Janessa went missing, sparking a frantic search that ended with the discovery of the 13-year-old’s body in a Hillsborough County nature preserve and, later, the arrest of the girls’ father in her murde...
Updated: 2 hours ago

High school scoreboard for Feb. 19

Monday’s scoreboardSoftballSpringstead 11, Central 0
Updated: 3 hours ago

Lottery resultsNumbers drawn after 9 p.m. are no longer available by our deadlines. For results, go to tampabay.com/lottery.Pick 2, 3, 4, 5Mon., Feb. 19, midday:46 278 6907e_SRit78769Mon., Feb. 19, evening:59 597 4363e_SRit97936Fantasy 5Mon., Feb. 19...
Updated: 3 hours ago

Updated: 4 hours ago
Water Wars starting to simmer again in Tampa Bay

Water Wars starting to simmer again in Tampa Bay

CLEARWATER — A simmering feud between Tampa and the regional water authority avoided boiling over Monday, but little was resolved.At a Tampa Bay Water meeting, board members requested Tampa work with the agency on the city’s plan to convert tens of m...
Updated: 4 hours ago
Ex-workers at Russian ‘troll factory’ trust U.S. indictment

Ex-workers at Russian ‘troll factory’ trust U.S. indictment

Associated PressST. PETERSBURG, Russia — While Russian officials scoff at a U.S. indictment charging 13 Russians with meddling in the 2016 U.S. presidential election, several people who worked at the same St. Petersburg, Russia, "troll factory" say t...
Updated: 4 hours ago
Man sought in sexual assault of woman, 71, in New Port Richey

Man sought in sexual assault of woman, 71, in New Port Richey

NEW PORT RICHEY — Deputies are searching for a man who they said broke into a home and raped a 71-year-old woman on Monday.The Pasco County Sheriff’s Office said the woman was checking on a home at 7437 Heather St. for the homeowner at about 8:15 a.m...
Updated: 5 hours ago
Trump offers support for limited effort on background checks

Trump offers support for limited effort on background checks

Associated PressWEST PALM BEACH — From the confines of his Mar-a-Lago golf club, President Donald Trump offered support Monday for a limited strengthening of federal background checks on gun purchases while staying largely mum in the past few days ab...
Updated: 5 hours ago

Puerto RicoJudge grants $300M loan for power companyA federal judge on Monday approved a $300 million loan for Puerto Rico’s power company that officials say will help keep the troubled agency operating until late March. The judge had originally reje...
Updated: 5 hours ago
Grief-filled funerals also can be cathartic

Grief-filled funerals also can be cathartic

PARKLAND — Each funeral for the victims of the Marjory Stoneman Douglas High massacre is different, yet the same: the mourning relatives, teens walking in clutches wearing black, politicians paying their respects, media cameras pointing at the entran...
Updated: 5 hours ago