Have you ever looked around at your group of friends and thought to yourself, wow, these guys are awful? If so, there's a strong possibility that you might be a jerk, but that's okay. We're going to help you out anyway.
As it happens, summer is the ideal time for meeting new people. The sun is shining, nature is being all resplendent, and everyone's going out to mingle and complain about how it's hot and there are bugs all over everything. This is the time to get in on some of that action. (The mingling, not the bugs.) Here are ten ideas to get you started.
Activities and Classes
Look, nobody is ever going to tell you that making droopy, unusable pottery will get you friends. All it will get you is droopy pottery. But the act of participating in a pottery class will give you a schoolish atmosphere of potential friendships without the pressures of actual school, because nobody's going to give you an F when your vase flops over and breaks because it was terrible.
Art Museums Or The Other Kinds Of Museums
These cultural venues offer you opportunity to strike up a conversation about whatever you and someone else are both appreciating. "I find Matisse's use of color transcendent," you might say. Alternatively: "I find that the T. rex was very big. It was a large dinosaur," you could offer, stroking your chin thoughtfully.
There are tons of sports out there that don't amount to endlessly chasing down a ball and then having a fight over who gets it. You could chase down a wheel of cheese, for example, or fling your body pointlessly into a swamp. The important thing is just to make friends, which will happen naturally once you turn out to be really good at writhing around in the mud and you win the big Bog Snorkelling Championships and everyone carries you through downtown Lllanflwyrdrynshire on their shoulders. If you live in humdrum America you will just have to go bowling.
Meetup is a good way to find out about local events, craigslist is a good way to find out about local serial killers who are trying to sell a couch, and foursquare gives you the opportunity to call yourself the mayor of a restaurant, an honor formerly only held by Mayor McCheese.
What if you had a falcon? Then the falcon would be your friend, that's what. And there you have it: the first and last time anybody will ever advise that you take up falconry.
Are you deeply concerned about, say, the disappearing habitat of the Warbling Sloth, but your friends are constantly disparaging your concern? "If you love warbling sloths, so much, why don't you marry one?" they constantly tease. "Nah, just kidding, I love warbling sloths. ...When they're dead because of habitat encroachment!" Well, screw those guys. Volunteering is a great way to meet new people who share your passions, where nobody will tell you that the animal you're protecting sounds kind of dumb and does not exist.
On one level, a gym is full of perils, with women getting hit on by dudes with blowback haircuts, and guys having to endure the inexplicable brazen nudity of the male locker room. But gym classes are an opportunity to meet all kinds of people, learn yoga or cycling with them, and then immediately realize that they are all dramatically better than you at everything.
Pick a particularly unusual destination and you're guaranteed to get some friends out of the experience. "OMG, I saw a ghost!" you'll exclaim, touring the dungeon of a haunted Romanian castle. "There's no such thing as ghosts!" the skeptical tour guide will assure you, immediately before being eaten by a ghost. A fun time will be had by all, except the guy who died.
Events Around Town
Summer is the perfect time for street festivals, live music, and dumb-but-endearing local events. If all you've got is the Corn Festival or Rhubarb Daze or whatever, these events are still attended by breathing humans who are alive, and if you're looking for qualities beyond that in your new friends, well excuse us, Your Majesty.
Accept All Invitations
Above all, never turn down an invitation to do something. Within reason. Watching guys eat quail and be wizards at the Renaissance Fair may not be your cup of tea, but if you go along despite your reservations, maybe you will meet a really nice wizard. Conversely, if a guy approaches you at the mall and tells you he's a wizard and he has some quail in the back of his van, you would probably be wise to pass.
How have you made summer friends in the past?
Related Post: How To Be Friends with an Introvert