Goodbye Little Black Book, Hello Digital Roster!

By Megan Shippam, Contributor

The physical address book deemed the “little black book” may still exist at the bottom of a drawer in your closet somewhere. But as our lives have moved from sharing contacts and information via the written form, to typing the information digitally, the little black book continues to collect dust.

A new kind of book has replaced the antiquated, time consuming address collector. Enter the Digital Roster. Nowadays the majority of individual’s Smartphones have replaced their address book completely, making our phones the modern day black books in the romance and dating sense.

We now have the capacity to not only collect names, phone numbers and address, but we can email or text our current contacts that we’ve added, even add notes about contacts all through the touch of a finger. I’ve observed in some cases, including my own, that the notes section can become the most vital contributor to the roster.

When meeting so many different people every week, I find myself adding the location of first encounters next to contacts to help jog my memory of when I added them to the running list. In very select situations, adding notes like “John Doe – DO NOT ANSWER” can end up saving a life! If you’re caught in an uncomfortable situation and find yourself giving out your number to some idiot savant (God forbid) who you thought was harmless…the notes field is a must.

Inadvertently, the roster on our phones start seeping and building as rosters on social networking sites, profiles, blogs, and forums. Whether we realize or not, the next person of the opposite sex that we add to the running list and “accept as a friend” could potentially be “the one”. This brings about a new era of how to collect potential suitor’s numbers in the pool of what seems like dwindling singles. Or dare I say this also includes the plethora of single posers. When guys from the past start flying out of the woodworks on Facebook after being hidden under logs, don’t forget why you jumped from that lily pad in the first place.

I have a friend who keeps a running log of every date she’s ever been on. She records the day, or night, of events in a spreadsheet to “keep the guys straight in her head” she says. Does she really just record each outing to simply remember where John #1 took her last week, and where John # 2 will be taking her the following week? Perhaps. Does she diligently update her spreadsheet to document every poor smuck’s flaws and imperfections? You bet your bottom roster she does!

But be aware of your surroundings and potential burns. I was out the other weekend with a summer fling, and noticed he had been absent from our spot at the bar for a good 10-15 minutes. My spidy sense told me something was up. Come to find out he was in the backyard of the venue secretly adding numbers from other girls to his roster. Before returning to his seat, the smart young chap that he was started bragging to one of my friends that he had “gotten four numbers already” and proceeded to ask “how many did you get?” My friend just stared at him blankly and said “Uh, none dude, we’re out with our girlfriends”.

At first, when my friend reported back I was in denial of Mr. Romeo’s bold conquest right under my nose. I mean honestly, who competes for phone numbers anymore? I think the last time I heard of such nonsense was circa 1995.

Little to say, that boy plunged to the very bottom of my roster, with little but bubbles in the abyss to remember him by. Just delete him you say? In my digital book, I never delete evidence of a perfectly good idea of a man (or boy in this case). When they come crawling back for more, I’ll remember all the fun times I had with them, but I will be mindful not to make the same mistake twice.

When it comes to those who freely share their roster with others, it’s mostly in the form of hooking someone up with their friends, brothers, coworkers, even acquaintances. Rarely do we so willingly offer our private, archived numbers to someone that we’ve been dating, for example. Lest you find something you don’t want to see. Like secret notes next to the number of the hot guy you met out with friends the night before. Oops! But if you’re single, and you have generous friends who find extra time on their hands, they may be willing to deliver archived numbers ready to be activated.

At first you’re completely flattered at the thought that someone is actually playing Cupid and you feel all warm and fuzzy inside. The ideas of grandeur start rushing through your head, like “this might actually work this time”. But when you’re finally on that date, and you find yourself daydreaming about what your vacation photos would look like and what house you would buy, not hearing a word he’s saying, you’d better back-peddle that train of thought real quick or that locomotive will run the bejesus out of you.

So who will fill space #1 on the roster? In the conquest of the single girl in a small town with two degrees of separate between suitors. … That is to be continued …

Megan Shippam has covered stories about local restaurants, retailers, galleries, and festivals in the Midtown Grid specifically.

About Megan Shippam

Megan Shippam has covered stories about local restaurants, retailers, galleries, and festivals in the Midtown Grid specifically. Through her experiences with Sacramento culture, she has worked with owners to expand beyond their cover stories through outreach programs to deliver impactful lifestyle experiences. Megan was raised in Sutter Creek, a small town in Amador County and currently lives and works in Midtown as the Partnerships and Promotions liaison at The Glass Agency (formally Glass McClure).


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Posted by on Jul 31 2010. Filed under Dating, Humor, SMT Talk. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. Both comments and pings are currently closed.

3 Comments for “Goodbye Little Black Book, Hello Digital Roster!”

  1. […] This post was mentioned on Twitter by Britta Nauta, Christine Cheng. Christine Cheng said: Check out, my girl, @Shippy's column on the new Sac Midtown website: […]

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    • Megan Shippam

      Hi Betsy, I’m so glad to hear you liked the article. I appreciate your feedback and am very excited that you book marked the website! Come back and visit us often 🙂

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