This is a very obvious example, but the more complex and subtle aspects of flirting etiquette can be confusing — and most of us have made a few embarrassing mistakes. Research shows that men find it particularly difficult to interpret the more subtle cues in women's body-language, and tend to mistake friendliness for sexual interest. Another problem is that in some rather Puritanical cultures, such as Britain and North America, flirting has acquired a bad name.
Some of us have become so worried about causing offence or sending the wrong signals that we are in danger of losing our natural talent for playful, harmless flirtation. So, to save the human race from extinction, and preserve the foundations of civilisation, Martini commissioned Kate Fox at the Social Issues Research Centre to review and analyse all the scientific research material on interaction between the sexes, and produce a definitive guide to the art and etiquette of enjoyable flirting.
Psychologists and social scientists have spent many years studying every detail of social intercourse between men and women. Until now, their fascinating findings have been buried in obscure academic journals and heavy tomes full of jargon and footnotes. This Guide is the first to reveal this important information to a popular audience, providing expert advice on where to flirt, who to flirt with and how to do it.
At some such events e. This is because most parties, celebrations, carnivals and festivals are governed by a special code of behaviour which anthropologists call 'cultural remission' — a temporary, structured relaxation of normal social controls and restrictions. This might just sound like a fancy way of saying 'letting your hair down', but it isn't. There are rules of behaviour at even the wildest carnival — although they may involve a complete reversal of normal, everyday social etiquette.
Flirtatious behaviour which is normally frowned upon may be actively required, and prissy refusal to participate may incur disapproval. Drinking-places Flirting is also socially acceptable in some public settings, usually where alcohol is served — such as bars, pubs, night-clubs, discos, wine bars, restaurants, etc. Flirting in drinking-places is, however, subject to more conditions and restrictions than at parties.
In pubs, for example, the area around the bar counter is universally understood to be the 'public zone', where initiating conversation with a stranger is acceptable, whereas sitting at a table usually indicates a greater desire for privacy. Tables furthest from the bar counter are the most 'private' zones. As a rule-of-thumb, the more food-oriented establishments or 'zones' tend to discourage flirting between strangers, while those dedicated to drinking or dancing offer more socially sanctioned flirting opportunities.
Restaurants and food-oriented or 'private' zones within drinking-places are more conducive to flirting between established partners. Learning-places Schools, colleges, universities and other educational establishments are hot-beds of flirting. This is largely because they are full of young single people making their first attempts at mate selection.
Learning-places are also particularly conducive to flirting because the shared lifestyle and concerns of students, and the informal atmosphere, make it easy for them to initiate conversation with each other. If two people eventually do connect, a virtual earthquake is released across the network. Lost Cat and Stampede are about overlaying fictional narratives on the city to create surreal relationships between actual places and a parallel virtual data landscape, attempting to blur the two worlds.
The Lost Cat is a virtual creature that lives and roams within Helsinki's cellular network occasionally jumping onto people's mobile screens. It appears at certain places in the city at certain times and if you regularly pass those places it befriends you and even starts to follow you. But like a real cat, it's very independent and easily distracted, moving on and finding new people to love.
Stampede is a virtual herd of reindeer that's let loose in the network. Warnings are issued when the animals begin to gather in certain places. Then without warning, they will charge across the city moving from cell to cell. They first appear on the phone as tiny forms and get progressively bigger as they move closer to your cell, when huge pixels fill the screen. If you are run over it goes black. Casualties are reported as they occur and the final virtual death toll is released at the end of the carnage.