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Text Fishing

Have you ever realized a bit too late one evening that you really wanted to do something?  Wanted to see a bad movie, if that’s all that was available.  Or, maybe that you needed a change of pace from your friends who had gotten too predictable.  Or, that you might just chance that phone call to the mystery lady.

In full disclosure, I have been in the position many a time and just shined it on.  I thought I’d just orchestrate my life a little better next day, summon the courage to make the phone call, or at least, try to find that movie that was half-way decent.

But there are more efficient ways available.  And they involve using your device for what it was intended:  connecting up with the love of your life.  Alexander Bell, the unsung hero, was not trying to call Watson that fateful night.  His journal clearly shows that it was a booty call.  Watson picked it up before his husky voiced, Dominican maid could get too it.  The rest was history.


You find yourself all set for an evening on the town without a date.  Yet, earlier that day, you did not have the steadiness of voice, the confidence of spirit, the unwavering foretelling of the future, to actually make that call and risk being too forward or of being turned down.  So, you are left with your device in hand, thinking what exactly you could do that would satisfied your craving.


Connect to a potential date at the last minute by texting them.  Use the mobo technique of text fishing, a friendly mode of texting to land a last-minute date.


In the mobo world, spontaneity is highly valued.  It has no bad connotations associated with it, such as not thinking ahead of time about a date, or that the person you are contacting does not have Favored Person status.  In fact, a last-minute text can be seen as purely a status update, ie letting a person know what you are doing, however incongruous it may be.

The steps you need to take are the following:

  1. Sort through your contact lists on your phone and find a set of people that you really wanted to see that night.   List your romantic contacts first, then your fallbacks.  (Keep in mind that this is not a booty call.  No, it is legit:  just an engaging evening with a friend or a date.)
  2. Augment this list with the names of people whom you do not have mobile phone numbers or emails.  (To find their mobile numbers, see section 9.2).
  3. Craft a text message that updates what you are doing in a nonchalant casual way.  For example,
  • “Sitting in front of the tube wondering if you ever found your car keys.”
  • “Just scraping down my grill again.  Got a good laugh last week.”  [I planned on using this one myself, but it may not be that appropriate for you.]
  • “Just caught Jon Stewart on the tube.  What a gas!”
  1. You can send out many of these.  You are technically text fishing.  This is the act of trying to catch someone free, or free enough to respond.  For the mobo, it is completely acceptable to fish among friends.  In many circles text fishing is perfectly acceptable.  Take for example, the following fishing examples from some of my friends:
  • “Hey, I’m doing nothing tonite, do you want to see a bad flick?”
  • “Trying to drum up a midnight gaggle for Pirates.  You in?”
  • “If you’re free, drop by. I have some Druhin.”

One important point to keep in mind.  Don’t be too blatant with those whom you don’t know that well.  And for anyone you have not gone out on a date before, keep the initial bait very light and noncommittal.

  1. When you get a reply, do a follow up text.
  • “Hey, just a thought:  are you doing anything tonight?”
  • “Feel like seeing a movie or scraping a grill tonight?”  [I planned to send this one myself.]
  • “Nice to hear from you.  I was thinking of a late-night coffee.  Are you free?”

Notice how easy it is to craft a short little diddy.  No big deal.  They are either free or not.   And by communicating by text message, the respondent does not have to feel bad in admitting that he or she has plans. Or, even that you are not high on her list.  The respondent can even communicate that you are a jerk or that she is way too busy, by simply not responding, thus becoming a non-respondent.

In my case, however, the results were disappointing but not hopeless.  The exact text read:  “You’re sweet.  Maybe another time.”

At the time I was elated.  To think that she thought I was sweet.  But it also signaled that she would respond in the future to some of my text messages.  Even better, because it opened up the door.

  1. With a positive response, consummate the deal.  Maybe that is a bad choice of words, but the idea is to confirm plans.  Do not get too specific at this point, since you will need to decide on the exact arrangements.  And for this, you will need to consult your device.  So, use something like the following:
  • “Great.  I’ll find out what’s playing.  Say around 10 PM?  Good for you?”
  • “Come on over anytime.  Say around 10 PM?”

Again, keep it short and to the point.

By using the text facilities of your device, you can interrupt your fellow mobos with spontaneous plans.  This works even for those whom you have a passing acquaintance with.  The key is to make is a three-parter:  (1) the initial fishing expedition, (2) the follow-up with some general ideas, and (3) the confirmation.

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