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Online Dating Magazine > Columns > Date & Relate > Shared Interests

Date & Relate
by Sara Hodon

Shared Interests Can Lead to Love

The saying goes that “opposites attract”, but there’s a lot to be said for having at least one or two common interests with the one you love. 

Whether it’s a huge time investment bordering on a lifestyle, or simply your own annual tradition, couples often make their shared interest an important part of their relationship.

It’s no coincidence that artists tend to gravitate towards other artists, teachers toward other teachers, and so on. 

 

Shared interests or careers provide an endless source of conversation and things to do.   It’s important to have a partner who, even if they don’t necessarily share your particular interest, can at least “get” why you like it so much and leave you to it.  Hopefully they compromise once in awhile and join you for the annual comic book convention, outdoor show, computer conference, or whatever your interest might be. 

Below are just a few examples of folks who have turned their interests into more than love—it’s a lifestyle:

“Parrotheads”.   Most people know that devotees of singer Jimmy Buffett have called themselves “Parrotheads” for years, but you don’t have to know every word of his songs in order to appreciate this way of life.  Fans of the laid-back, Hawaiian-shirt-wearing, pina colada-sipping lifestyle can easily boast the “Parrothead” label, too.   There are even some Parrothead clubs across the country.  We have a local chapter whose members  attend Buffett shows whenever they can and hold a number of fundraising events in the community.  Some of them are unaffected by the weather and wear shorts, visors, and Hawaiian shirts all year long! 

Harley-Davidson enthusiasts (H.O.G.’s).  Many of the bikers I know are loyal to Harley-Davidson because they’re an American company and their bikes are one of the best on the road.  Motorcycles have always had a high coolness factor, which is probably another part of the appeal.  Bikes also conjure images of freedom, the open road, and a bit of the kick-butt attitude.  Members of H.O.G. (Harley Owners Group) chapters are often active in the community, holding different events and charity rides.  I know several “bikers” who have even gone cross-country on the back of a Harley. 

“Trekkies”.   Devotees of Star Trek, Star Wars, and the other popular sci-fi franchises are among the most loyal and well-known groups of fans out there.  They regularly attend Star Trek conventions, own the complete collection of each new version of the series (though everyone has their own particular favorite), and just maybe they’ve held on to a collectible or two.   Though there seems to be a new version of Star Trek every few years, there has been some very serious buzz as to what will happen to Star Wars superfans now that all 6 films have come out.  Only time will tell.  

Classic car enthusiasts.  I live in an area that seems to have no shortage of classic car shows and cruises, especially in the summer.  Many of the folks who enter their “rides” into these events have spent months, sometimes years, restoring their vehicles.  They love to show them off, talk about the whole restoration process, and whatever anyone would like to know!   There’s a huge car cruise in my region each summer that attracts nearly 1,000 vintage and muscle car enthusiasts from all over the country, including quite a few couples who both own cars.  Pretty impressive.  

History buffs.  What’s a Renaissance faire without a few lords and ladies to add to the experience?  Or a Civil War re-enactment without soldiers?  Go to any Renaissance faire in the country and you can see plenty of actors (and non-actors) strolling through the grounds in full costume, often speaking in traditional Elizabethan tongue (with a healthy dose of “thou’s”, “thee’s”, and “goest’s”).  Many of these folks incorporate elements of the Renaissance into their everyday lives and relationships—there are whole publications and websites devoted to Renaissance-themed weddings and holiday celebrations.  

I’ve also seen advertisements for local Civil War Weekend events complete with battle re-enactments and period dress.  Think it’s unlikely to find love in such a setting?  An actor who portrays Ben Franklin and an actress who portrays Betsy Ross in the historic district of Philadelphia were married in the city last year—right around Independence Day, of course. 

There are countless websites and resources available if your interest matches any of those listed above.  Whatever your interest may be, there is someone who shares it.  There are a huge number of niche dating sites these days, so there is definitely one out there for you.  If you’re looking to connect with some like-minded folks a bit closer to you, check out Meetup.com, a networking site for folks with common interests and hobbies.    Just like the niche dating sites, there is something for everyone.  And if by some chance you don’t find someone who shares your longtime hobby of collecting antique kitchen utensils, you can start your own group.  Your common interest just might lead to love, so why not give it a try?

           

Date & Relate is published every Thursday by Online Dating Magazine columnist Sara Hodon. She can be reached at sarhodon@yahoo.com.


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