An analysis of "missed connection" posts on Craigslist, where starry-eyed romantics try to track down and win over a stranger who caught their eye, found that Walmart is the most popular place for Americans to find love at first sight.
Is it the romantic glow of fluorescent lighting? Could it be the heady aphrodisia of one-stop shopping for sweatpants, Cheetos and lawn fertilizer? Only a poet or sexologist can say, but, for whatever the reason, more people in 15 states thought they saw their future spouse go by at a Walmart than anywhere else.
The study finds that Wal-Mart was especially popular among the love-struck throughout the South and some western states, while commuter trains and subways are the most frequent head-turning spots in New York, New Jersey, Massachusetts, Illinois and Washington, D. C. Body-conscious Californians, Arizonans and Virginians glimpsed potential romantic partners at the gym, while Kansans found McDonald’s their kind of place. It makes perfect sense that Hawaiians caught someone’s eye at the beach, but I’m not sure what to make of the claim of those from Indiana to have spotted that special someone at home. I’m going to assume they meant around the neighborhood, and move on.
Age also plays a role in where the lovelorn are scoping out potential mates. The most common place for missed connections for 20-somethings was an ice cream store. At 30, it was a bar, and for people over 40, it was a strip club or adult bookstore. Ah, romance.
Other noteworthy findings:
The state of Washington had the highest percentage of ads from women seeking men (25%) and women seeking women (5%).
Idaho’s percentage of ads from men seeking women (76%) and from men seeking men (7%) were, respectively, the highest and lowest in the nation.
Hawaii is the anti-Idaho in more ways than just climate, with the country’s highest percentage of ads from men seeking men (46%).
See where love-struck hopefuls are searching in your state:
Walmart: Alabama, Arkansas, Florida, Idaho, Louisiana, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, New Mexico, North Carolina, Ohio, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, West Virginia
Supermarket: Connecticut, Iowa, Kentucky, Maine, Minnesota, Nebraska, New Hampshire, Wyoming
Train: Illinois, New Jersey
Subway: Massachusetts, New York
Metro: District of Columbia
Bus: Oregon, Washington
Bar: North Dakota, Vermont, Wisconsin
Gym: Arizona, California, Virginia
Super store: Alaska, Michigan
Convenience store: Delaware, Pennsylvania
College campus: Utah
Football game: South Carolina
Gas station: Colorado
Parking lots: Rhode Island
State Fair: Oklahoma