All Things Dating in LA: Beat The Beaten Path . . .

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Okay, so LA isn’t exactly always Melrose Place or 90210. But, some stereotypes about the city of angels do have their roots in truth — preferably well dyed roots. For example, odds are good that pretty much every waiter you’ll ever have in LA is also an actor/model/writer/insert dream Hollywood job here. The paparazzi really are everywhere. And, there’s nary a restaurant in sight that doesn’t have a low carb option on the menu.

The stereotypes come out in even more full force when going out in Hollywood. Every bar is packed to the brim with blondes, bunnies and businessmen, and everyone’s running as much professional game as personal. Of course, there are places you can go to get away from the whole stereotypical scene. But, once The Dime became a haunt on The Hills, I personally started losing my faith in the future of those out of the way watering holes. Which is why as much as I love the bars, there’s also something to be said for some of LA’s more unexpected singles scenes — especially if you’re looking to close a date with a real guy, not a deal with a reality producer.

If you’re into the witty writer types, Book Soup is the place to pick them up. With writers from Al Gore to Sarah Vowell gracing their tiny store stage for readings, the shop attracts an eclectic event crowd. Browse the stacks and the shelves, work your way through the classics and the contemporary and maybe find your way to flirting over some fiction. Nothing makes a better pickup line than “hey, have you read this?” Plus, you can always test your potential pick up by asking him what he thinks of “Twilight.”

Another bookstore with big boy finding potential is the newly opened branch of Santa Monica staple Hennessey & Ingalls. This sleek shop specializes in books about fashion, photography, art, architecture and design, and they just opened up a branch in the brand new Space 15 Twenty complex in Hollywood. The books are incredibly beautiful, inspiring and compelling, and the hunky hipsters and debonair designers that frequent the place aren’t bad either. Strike up a conversation over that book about Schnabel or that coffee table Taschen tome, and then casually make your way over to Snackbar for a beer.

If grappa and grape talk are more your thing, head over to Silverlake Wines, where weekly tastings provide the perfect pairing for picking up foodies and fine diners alike. Tastings range from $12 to $20 a person, and come with a flight of wines accompanied by farmhouse cheeses, fresh breads and olives, as well as plenty of valuable vino knowledge, providing you with plenty of things to talk about and enough liquor to lubricate that whole awkward first conversation. So, bust out your sexy librarian look, brush up on your blancs and your burgundies and check out one of LA’s lesser-known single scenes. Or, if you really want to get adventurous, you could try to cram all three pickup possibilities into one crazy book and booze filled singledom spree. Just make sure you pick up a moleskin at Book Soup so you can keep track of all your conquests.


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