When we found out that Patti Stanger was celebrating 100 episodes of her hit show The Millionaire Matchmaker we knew that she had to come to the BuzzFeed New York headquarters. "What to do with Patti?" we asked, but it was so, so obvious: she needed to share her advice with those of us who needed it. So we set up a booth, painted "The Matchmaker Is In" on it and invited the BuzzFeed editorial staff to pick Patti's brain.
What happened next was pretty much what we expected: Patti got really REAL with anyone who asked for her advice. These few intrepid souls surely knew what they were getting into, but did Patti's blunt (and sometimes crass) advice actually help? Let's find out.
Krystie Yandoli: If I have to make the first move and initiate hanging out with someone or talking to someone, does that generally mean that this person isn't into me?
Patti Stanger: No. But I wouldn't do the first move because that's masculine energy and you want him to be the man. I assume you're on the, what side are you on?
KY: I like men.
PS: There you go. So if you like men then you need a man to be a man; they're hunters and you're gatherers and you've got to stop it.
PS: You can signal and smile. You wanna learn the "five-second flirt"?
PS: OK, let's signal and smile. Take your glasses off.
PS: Five seconds is a signal to the man that you're available. If he's your guy he'll walk over and buy you a drink. If he's not, he's switch-hitting for the other team, he's got a girlfriend, you're a blonde, he wants a brunette, or he's passive-aggressive, which is the guy you're talking about right now. Passive-aggressives are the men that don't ask you out, but want to be asked out. What separates the men from the boys is the man asks you out first.
KY: Do I always have to take my glasses off for that?
PS: Um, no. But you have beautiful eyes.
KY: Thank you.
PS: So wear contacts.
Krystie's response: I wouldn't say that Patti Stanger has progressive or modern views on dating, especially when it comes to anything outside of the heteronormative bubble that she assumes most people are a part of (assuming you're straight unless you say otherwise). I thought her advice was pretty traditional, archaic, and backwards. In all fairness, I haven't tried her flirting technique yet and I'm still single. You can decide whether those two things have anything to do with each other. Also, sorry Patti, but I like my glasses. I can't wear contacts because I'm scared to touch my eye balls and they're basically a part of me so...I won't be getting rid of them anytime soon. But thanks!
Matt Ortile: OK. So, I hate people that say they're "bad texters." I actually just wrote an essay about it. Sometimes guys don't text first or take forever to respond — and I get that, you're busy, we all have work, sure. For some people texting constantly isn't "hanging out" —
PS: A person who texts you likes you.
MO: A person who texts you — period — likes you.
PS: So the ones that wait too long, even if they've got an act of god, a hurricane came, someone died…even if they had actual problems that will take them off their beaten path is really not into you unless they text you back.
PS: In other words: Whatever's going on, they'll find a way to text if they like you.
PS: But they can get complacent. You can be in a relationship or be dating someone and they get complacent. They know they've got you so they can wait to not text you right away. You gotta be less text-y. In that case, you would want them to initiate the text and maybe mirror them. So they wait a day, you wait a day, they wait an hour, you wait an hour, they wait 10 minutes, you wait 10 minutes. But the one that likes you is gonna text you right back.
Matt's response: She told me everything I already knew, to be honest. And I don't like playing that game she suggested, the whole "if he waits a day, you wait a day" texting back-and-forth. Like, if I can reply, I'll reply. But maybe that's why things haven't worked out in the past? She was chill though. I liked her eyelashes.
Alana Massey: I very recently went this blonde after being a natural brunette my whole life —
PS: Oh, I like it!
AM: Thank you. And I'm wondering if it's going to make me seem like a less serious romantic prospect.
PS: No, you're Michelle Williams! And look who she dated! Some really good guys!
AM: Who is she dating now?
PS: I don't know who she's dating because I don't keep up with her business but I know that you're blonde enough to get a guy because you have a cute pixie face, a little Kristen Chenoweth thing going on too. You should be able to get a guy with that hair! It's New York, everyone's brunette, you'll stand out like a sore thumb.
AM: The other question that I have is that I've sort of given up on dating men in their thirties.
PS: How old are you?
AM: Because I'm over-reading, I think?
PS: Thirties have nothing to do with it, age is just a number. You're probably going for boys, not men.
AM: That's probably what it is.
PS: There are men in their twenties.
AM: Should I start targeting younger? Because I don't want to start targeting higher.
PS: No, no no nononoo. You want a man that has money. You wanna go on a date and have him pay for you? Take you out to a nice restaurant, like a strip house? Then he's gotta be in his thirties. Twentysomethings don't have money. Unless they're in Silicon Valley, and you're in New York City.
AM: What about finance guys?
PS: Finance guys are great. They have a future and finance guys make plans, because that's what their job is. To make plans. They're estate planners. They're investors.
AM: So I can date, like, a 24-year-old finance guy.
PS: Yeah, but you're 28.
PS: Why do you wanna go down? Do you wanna babysit? Are you into babysitting, is that what you're into?
AM: I really like the guys in One Direction and they have a lot of money.
PS: OK, so...really. And you're gonna meet One Direction how and get to date them?
AM: Why do you think I work here?
PS: Let's not be unrealistic. Let's find a guy that mirrors what you're looking for. A Harry Styles that is maybe 30.
Alana's response: Patti approved of my new platinum blonde hair (and my pre-existing FACE) so that was great. She even said I look like Michelle Williams, which is a personal life goal. But I was confused when she said that I needed to have more realistic goals than dating a member of One Direction. She tried to reinvigorate my faith in men in their thirties not only because there are gentlemen among the rabble but because they have much higher earning potential than their twentysomething counterparts. "Do you want to be a babysitter?" she asked, which is a fair point. However, my specialty when I babysat in my teens and in college was the emotional manipulation of young people and I wanted encouragement in my plans to translate that to younger men. She didn't tell me what I wanted to hear but maybe what I needed to hear: Your look is fine, it's your attitude that sucks.
Krutika Mallikarjuna: My main question is that I tend to date pretty intelligent, well-off guys that are in their twenties and they appreciate the fact that I'm smart and that I'm a writer — until they find out I'm moderately successful. I find that a lot of men —
PS: OK, you need to date older. You need a guy who's older who has his own money and makes more money than you. You're a writer, how much money could you make?
KM: I'll have to ask my boss.
PS: Writers aren't exactly wiping the floors of Wall Street. Why don't you head down to Wall Street, pick a bar that has thirtysomethings, plant yourself, and wear your sexiest dress — show the ta-tas — and then call me.
KM: And I guess my other question is that also I'm bi, so I date women as well —
PS: You can tell by your hair color! You haven't made a decision.
KM: I haven't made a decision yet. Exactly. It's always in an in-between state.
PS: Do you tell the dudes you're bi?
PS: Because they will fucking love that.
KM: I never tell straight dudes I'm bi because it just ends up with, like, "Hey, do you wanna meet my girlfriend?" which is not something I wanna do.
PS: Maybe on the wedding night.
KM: Maybe, like, once they've earned it. I just have trouble meeting queer women.
PS: Well don't even talk to me because it took me five seasons to get a lesbian [on the show] so I'm not the person to talk to. I don't know where they hide out, they're known as the Chupacabras of dating, they hang out in certain places, like, maybe Ellen's house? Are you friendly with her? She's head of the gay mafia. So, I don't know where they go. We can't find a location. In the Abbey in LA., which is the gay hotspot that the gay community has hugged, there might be one lesbian there but she's always hooked up.
PS: So I don't know where they hide. Though I once was a lesbian, so that's another story for you.
KM: Where did you find women?
PS: In New York, my boss was bi. I experienced it for a couple of years. It wasn't my cup of tea, I like men, but I do understand you. There is something about "you can be best friends and still hit it," so I do understand you.
Krutika's response: Aw Patti Stanger, America's interrupting aunt. She didn't let me finish my first question, which was going to be how do I find a guy who's not intimidated by a modicum of success (especially since I tend to date other writers, which yes, I know is bad news). She was definitely talking about money, but I was talking about someone who's secure and established in their career path, so I'm not really surprised that that her advice was totally unhelpful. Sorry Aunt Patti, but any New York woman who's lived here more than a year knows that Wall St bros have a lot money and come with a lot of emotional problems and a pesky drug habit that they 'totally have under control'. Ain't nobody got time for that, I need a man, not a child with an expensive haircut and suit collection.
Also nobody says tatas anymore:(
But peak Aunt Patti happened when I asked her about women and being bi. Dear Aunt Patti, for future reference, "I haven't made a decision yet. Exactly. It's always in an in-between state," actually means 'I'm so horrified that this woman thinks bisexuality ends with choosing one gender in the end that I'm going repeat what you said back to you in a completely deadpan voice in the futile hope that you hear how ridiculously out of touch you are'. But we all have dreams deferred, right?
Overall I'd say 0/10 for actual advice (Tell rich straight white dudes on Wall St. that I'm bi so they can fetishize me? Are you fucking serious?) but in a congenially harmless way like your drunk aunt that you live tweet on Thanksgiving. 10/10 for entertainment value.
Julia Pugachevsky: When you meet someone and they're great, but you don't have anything in common as far as your taste in music, in movies —
PS: In other words you're sexually attracted to them but you don't like what they do in their spare time.
JP: Yeah, yeah.
PS: That's a tough one because you really need to have two things you like to do together and that's kind of the glue because eventually your body's not gonna work and you're gonna get old, and you want your best friend. That's the emotional connection, that's the glue. So what are we gonna do if we don't like who they are or what they stand for or what they do on the weekends? It's not really a good fit. Chemistry can only get you to a party, it can't close the deal.
JP: I was wondering about that a lot, actually, because especially working in New York City, it's so hard to find time to date in general.
PS: Saturday night could be date night should be every night of the week cause you get to sleep in on Sunday. You gotta make it a point. You can go out with your girlfriends, maybe get online, maybe individually date, mix it up, different neighborhoods have different types of men, especially in the suburbs. You're five women to one guy here so you wanna make sure you spread your network. Go on vacation and date. Join organizations, like, what's your favorite hobby?
JP: Favorite hobby...
PS: Do you have a hobby?
JP: I like to play music, I guess. I don't know if that counts.
PS: OK, what kind of music?
JP: Just, like, acoustic guitar.
PS: You should get with a drummer!
JP: Drummers have been trouble for me.
PS: Have you seen Whiplash, they have some hot drummers? OK, I would say join an organization, like, whatever type of music you like. At the back of a Guitar Center maybe has a booklet where people meet up and have a cocktail. Find an open mic night. Something of that magnitude because that's the glue. Whatever you like he's gonna like and then you're going to bring it together.
Julia's response: Patti gave good advice! I stand by my original statement that hot drummers are trouble but I think finding someone with similar interests who can be your best friend is so important. Also, her wine was tasty!
Ryan Creed: This just came up today, we weren't even anticipating it. So I'm a single man —
PS: Gay or straight?
PS: I have to ask these days, be politically correct.
RC: So a reality star messaged me on OkCupid. Not attracted to him, but do I just reply to him and go out on the date anyways?
PS: No. Not in the gay world. In the straight world you would do that because you'd want a job, or money, or something. In the gay world you don't have time for this crap. You don't wanna do him, you're not doing him. Not in him, on him. If you can't see him for ~schwhing~ then you need to like, bolt.
RC: But what if he's a millionaire?
PS: I don't think he's that much of a millionaire, don't get excited. But Perez [Hilton] is single! He has a six-pack now!
RC: I've met him, I'm not interested. He's messaged me twice in 24 hours, should I write him back?
PS: Yes. Tell him that you wanna be friends. You can go on the date if you wanna be friends.
RC: My resolution this year was to post-judge, not pre-judge.
PS: Oh, what an idea. Namaste! Namaste. Do I judge or do I have sex?
RC: You're right, I know. And also, I like when people say, "Horror stories over no stories."
PS: You want for a writing experience, do not lie. How about texting him back, bringing your friend, and letting him bring his friend. So if it's not a hookup, you've made a friend!
Ryan's response: Patti spoke two truths: that I shouldn't force an attraction and that I shouldn't be a terrible person who plays games just for a hilarious story. I was not expecting her to be an angel on my shoulder, but there you have it. I messaged the reality star back suggesting we be friends, and he did not respond. Also, I was unsettled by her suggestion that I date Perez Hilton, because I view myself more as an Andy Cohen kind of guy. But maybe she saw what I really am (a terrible person?).