Everybody Publicly and Shamelessly Flirt With Each Other Right Now

Last month, the hashtag #LGBTbabes took over Twitter with thousands of self-identified LGBT people blessing the timeline with their most flattering pictures. It was beautiful; as an exercise in self-love it was beautiful, but it also just visually beautiful. Go scroll that hashtag and try not to be that gif of the nodding woman going “Wowwww” with a single tear falling down her face.

It was also a great tool for flirting. For weeks I watched people fill up and cannonball into thirst traps with reckless abandon, just wildly grapevining into each other’s mentions with heads held high and quote RTing other people’s pictures with side eye emojis as if they had not one care in the world. It was inspiring. So much so that I decided to take it a step further, shamelessly and proudly.

I’m excited to announce that I found myself along the way.

Here’s what happened: I bypassed the picture approach and straight up asked if anyone wanted to publicly flirt with me. Just like that. Was this desperate? Absolutely. Counterpoint: does it matter? No, it doesn’t, because the world is ending. You know what else? Not only was this given the go-ahead, I got two date offers out of it – one to read lesbian erotica while drinking martinis and another to go to Olive Garden for bellinis. I’m sorry, have you ever heard better date offers in your entire life? “Yes, someone offered to fly me to Dubai all expenses paid, and also Olive Garden is bad.” Okay, but that date requires travel, there’s a lot of buildup, the trip itself seems to be the focal point which doesn’t bode well for the actual meat of the date, there’s going to be too much pressure to have a fun time (which is a nightmare, like a forced dance party), things aren’t on equal footing, and also don’t talk to me about Olive Garden ever again. These dates are low stakes and concept-driven – a recipe for success.

What makes this argument to shoot your shot arcade game style even more compelling is that I was already flirting with the people from whom I received date offers – just stealthily! But guess where stealthily flirting got me? Nowhere! Being coy? In this economy?

I believe so much in this new way of life that if Meagan Good were in front of me right now I’d ask her to leave her husband and marry me. What’s she going to say, no? Probably! It would still be the exact number of Meagan Goods I’m married to now, so what am I losing here, besides nothing? Flirt with your friends – LITERALLY WHO CARES. Did you see the video Jennifer Garner posted willingly on her Instagram where she’s stoned out of her mind while crying about Hamilton the musical? Watch that video and tell me we are not as a civilization on the brink of collapse. You owe this to yourself.

Yes, you, right here, right now, owe it to yourself to commit to a lifestyle of publicly and shameless flirting with the people in your immediate digital or physical area. Try it! Who are you, Siddhartha under the Bodhi tree without desires? No! In no way have we as humans ascended to a higher plane of existence. Get out there! Just say exactly what you’re thinking at any given moment, unless you’re a bigot, in which case stop reading this right now and direct yourself into a shed where you should stay and never come out. Also, if the person you’re flirting with tells you to stop, or expresses that the attention makes them uncomfortable — my friends, you must stop.

Still not convinced? This is how Rihanna goes through life. Do you think she got to be one of the biggest stars on the entire planet by talk-singing? No! She got to be one of the biggest stars on the planet because she is a master of frank openness and doing what feels good in the moment. So let’s live like Rihanna. Dirt the skirt when you’re sliding into those DMs. What you choose to do after is up to you. If you want to do the somewhat detached approach, that’s fine, although I personally like to carry it all the way through and thoroughly unnerve people with full transparency.

That’s it. Just a suggestion that’s universally accessible and free of charge. See you out there ;)

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Los Angeles based writer. Let's keep it clean out there!

Erin has written 208 articles for us.


  1. I’m working from home today which will limit my options, but in the name of research I’m going to go out right now and see if I can get my flirt on with the automated checkout at the supermarket.

      • Every time I tried the ol’ unexpected item in the bagging area she cried assistance needed. Really hard to tell if it was too much too soon or she just wanted to initiate a three-way with this middle-aged woman who was voyeuristically monitoring our interchange.

    • Am I the only person who says “You’re welcome” to the auto checkout when it says “thank you for shopping at…”. Please tell me I’m not the only one ?

  2. I’m unshowered and wrapped in a comfy blanket on my couch, so I’m not really feeling this, yet, Erin.
    However, I shall ask of the help from Mr.Gin and Mr.Tonic later tonight to exercise your suggestion.

  3. Does playing Mass Effect 2 and choosing the flirt option for every conversation with every character count? Because that was already on my to do list for today. Automated flirting and breaking some digital hearts.

    Other than that, this whole thing sounds like a lot of work. I am down to be flirted with though… snarky responses have always been easier for me than initiating a flirtatious encounter. Also the vouyer in me kinda wants to just sit back and watch everyone else flirt. And then maybe write some fanfiction about it.

  4. Hey ;)
    So so so down with this movement. Flirting is fun and silly and doesn’t have to lead anywhere than a good laugh with your friends. I truly believe we all need a little loving in our lives right about now and if its just verbal foreplay than so be it ;)

  5. So down with this! I mean there’s already a double standard around flirting – straight guys have no problem flirting shamelessly even when no one wants their attention and they suck at flirting so, y’know, what have you got to lose?

  6. This would be a fab idea if I had ANY CLUE ON THIS EARTH how to flirt – any chance of a follow-up how-to article?

  7. In addition to the how-to-flirt guide requested above, I need one for how to respond to flirting in a way that doesn’t make the other person think they’ve just stomped on your toe or informed you that a swarm of genetically-engineered giant attack hornets is headed in your direction.

  8. Erin, those who aren’t responding are just afraid of their secrets coming out through your interrogation techniques.

    Also for anyone else: don’t know what I’m talking about? If you were an A+ member you’d be laughing now.
    Oh yes, you look gorgeous, but I can’t wait to see you slip into a yellow membership circle…

  9. “Go scroll that hashtag and try not to be that gif of the nodding woman going “Wowwww” with a single tear falling down her face.” LITERALLY ME

  10. Is it considered flirting when you make eye contact with an attractive earthling for 0.034 seconds rather than aggressively ignoring them like you usually do?

    • hahahhahahhahahahhah wow it me

      i’m normally a huge flirt but when i like someone i try so hard to ignore them, and then i’m like “ok i’m gonna flirt real quick” *glances at cute human for longer than .5 seconds* omg i did ittttt

    • Oh my gosh why is it SOOO much easier to flirt with people who you aren’t actually interested in? I can do some rather impressive flirting with friend and people I will never see again, but that one person I have a crush on? Nope. Straight business.

      • Ugh me too with the flirting with people I’m not interested in, I don’t give a single fuck what men think of me which means I sometimes relax enough to get into witty banter that can come off as flirting which is totally wasted on them, it’s a curse

  11. This is a beautiful idea x
    Not going to do it irl right now though. In my pjs and only other person in house is my stepdad and I’m not Ivanka trump…

  12. That was like a sports movie worthy pep talk, Erin. I’m not sure all this flirting is a good idea if you’re not completely single, though, so I’ll limit mine to straight women strangers for the time being.

  13. I’m usually good at flirting, but only because I have zero belief in my self xD My current partner however had only been on tinder for a few hours until they met me, so I guess I’m decent =)

  14. damn, is this offer still on, ms erin? I’ve always had a cyber crush ahahhaha. Your articles are flirty lesbian fun, for reasons I cant put my finger on. Your machivellian clothing plans make my life. Just the sheer plotting.

  15. I think I’m too serious to recognise flirting. And I take things literally a bit too often. Stuff flies over my head more often than a poop covered statue.

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