Background image: Kraftwerk: Computer Love

what to do when an algorithm matches you with your BEST PAL

Dear Erika,
 I was messing around on an online dating site and it matched me with my best friend who’s a guy.  Does this mean we should be together?
Hey BR1,
Back when I was in 5th grade, we were given the opportunity to see how a computer matched us to our classmates. After filling out a questionnaire about myself, the machine paired me with a guy friend of mine.
The computer was able to tell that he and I had a ton in common, but what the computer didn’t know was that we hung out all the time. And guess what?  Whenever we did hang out, there was just no spark.  Attraction is so much more than liking the same sub-sub-sub genre of music and playing the same sports; it’s suddenly getting nervous when he comes around, inexplicably liking a guy’s smell or just loving his little quirks, like how he turns up just one corner of his mouth when he smiles.
You’ll know if you’re attracted  to your best friend (even just a little bit)–your body and mind will tell you so. Does your face get flushed, your hands turn clammy or do you suddenly turn into a klutz when your friend is around? Do you take an extra five seconds to look cute when you’re about to see him or wishing he were there to share an experience with you when he’s not around? Now those are some serious signs of attraction.
If your body and mind aren’t making you weird out in little ways around your best friend, then he’s just a best friend. And that’s not so bad. In fact, having a  guy best friend to kick it with is pretty great.

Erika Stalder is the author of The Date Book: A Girl’s Guide To Going Out With Someone New and creator of the DEAR ERIKA advice column for ABC Family’s Secret Life of The American Teenager.

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PST: Does the image above look familiar? It was manipulated from the LP cover of Kraftwerk’s lo-fi, super-synth single, Computer Love.

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