The apps. The exhaustion. And, of course, the horror stories—for those looking for love, San Francisco presents a unique playing field. It’s something which Date/able, a brand new podcast about the dating scene right here in SF, seeks to explore by presenting the unique landscape singles encounter in the city. As Yue Xu, one of the hosts of the show notes, “I’ve lived in New York, LA, Beijing, and I’ve scoped out the dating scene in all of those. When I came to San Francisco, it was almost like a culture shock because I’ve never been in a city that dates like this before. It blew my mind how different it was from other cities. The more we talked about it, the more we thought we should do a podcast, because there’s so much to cover and so many stories we’re not communicating.”

4746004289_e9fe7e1271_bDevanny via Flickr

So many stories, indeed. Each week on the show, a local single tells a story of a baffling/interesting/memorable date they went on, and the hosts—which include a clinical psychologist and a relationship coach—attempt to dissect exactly what went wrong/right/totally unexpectedly, and uncover the true meaning of what went down. They don’t shy away from those cringeworthy moments, either, having already addressed sexting to getting stood up to the time one guy decided to caress his date’s cheek with a mushroom (yes, this happened) in the eight episodes of the first season so far. They’ve devoted a whole podcast to dating in San Francisco because, as Michael Vargas, one of the hosts relates, “It’s a city of opportunity for a lot of people. And the beautiful thing about opportunity is it brings together some of the most amazing, brilliant, diverse people on the planet. San Francisco also has such an open culture, which allows for a lot more experimentation and testing the waters.”

8809787380_9389209504_kDavid Goehring via Flickr

But the beauty of this podcast is not simply that you get to hear and share in those awkward stories of Tinder dates and weird messages. Just by listening, you learn more about your fellow singles just trying to make it out there in the dating scene, too. “One of those things you never get after a date is feedback,” Xu explains. “But on a podcast, you can talk about some of the things we see across the board.” Adds Julie Krafchick, the podcast’s producer, “The main goal is to encourage more open dialogue, and [for San Franciscans] to be able to eventually bring that to their own relationships.” It’s a show that hopes to uncover insights about the dating scene in the city, and ultimately make the whole thing feel less rough and exasperating for those listening in that can connect with a feeling of, Oh my god, that happened to me too. 

We failed to mention one of the best parts of all: that every story is crowdsourced, and that you can submit your own date story to be discussed by the experts. And they’re interested in it all—from hetero to LGBT to nontraditional relationship concepts, if it exists in San Francisco, they want to hear about it. If it was a particularly scarring experience, they also promise they can make you anonymous, too.

Listen to the Date/able weekly podcast on their website, Soundcloud, iTunes, Stitcher Radio, or Pocketcast, and get ready to hear about those too-real stories of SF dating.

[Featured Image: Chad Francis via Flickr]

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