But if anyone falls in love because they met one of our eligible bachelors or bachelorettes, just know that I'm officiating your wedding.
We pulled up to Oceanside Grill with a backseat full of heart-shaped balloons, a banner of heart-shaped cutouts, heart-shaped confetti and a pack of sunglasses that literally gave you heart-eyes. The car was parked, and we started to wonder if we may have overdone it.
"What if no one comes," Jac said looking at the expensive heart-shaped necklace Greg Lynn Jewelers had donated as a raffle prize.
"People will come," I said trying to reassure her while wondering why the heck we bought so many heart-shaped paddle ball games.
"Well if they don't," she said while getting out of the car, "it's all on you."
The door slammed shut, and Jac left me with all the decorations — and all the pressure.
After an hour of preparing for what could very well be an awkward disaster, we were ready for our first-ever Love Local Singles Mixer, an idea that was born out of one of the many hilarious conversations Jac and I had had about the dating scene in Ormond Beach. Three months, eight pages and 20 bachelors and bachelorettes later, and our weird idea was actually happening.
One-by-one people started showing up. They wore the heart-eye sunglasses and filled out the ice-breaker name tags Jac had printed out.
"Hmm, what's my spirit animal?" one vivacious blonde asked.
"How about a tiger?" I suggested, sensing some feistiness.
"I've got something better," she smiled. "Kitty."
Yes, that was way better. After she had walked away, I made a promise to myself to be a little more like her.
As the night went on, the small spot we had reserved at Oceanside got more and more crowded. But I didn't consider it a success until one of our bachelorettes pulled me aside to tell me how good it made her feel to be in the paper, and how she hopes the article and the event will encourage more single people to get together.
And it's funny, but once Jac started to realize that the event didn't totally bomb, she was much more willing to own up to her credit. Imagine that.
Though no one to my knowledge met their soulmates at our mixer, at least they might have left with a little bit of comfort knowing that being single doesn't have to mean being lonely.