Sex + Dating

Things to Know Before Dating Someone From Pittsburgh

Pittsburgh Steeler fan
Gregory Shamus/Getty Images Sport/Getty Images

Part of what makes Pittsburgh so wonderful is its diverse dating scene. While you'll surely find the diehard Steelers fan, the aspiring engineer/computer scientist, the social justice warrior, or some terrifying combination of all three, you're also just as likely to encounter a 45-year-old record collector who still lives with his/her grandma in Bloomfield. But don't let that scare you away. Here are some tips to arm you in the pursuit of Pittsburgh dating bliss.

two people on a beer date
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We will most likely never take you on a formal date

"Formal" isn't a thing that exists in Pittsburgh. So unless you both have a shared love of the symphony, don't expect to wear dress shoes until your wedding day.
 

You will, at some point, date a "temporary Pittsburgher"

This is someone who is most likely going to school at Pitt or Carnegie Mellon and, as a result, has a four-year expiration date. If said individual invites you to go on a date at a sports bar in Shadyside that you've never heard of, there's a good chance they'll be living in back in Massachusetts come fall 2019.
 

If you live outside of city limits, you're, well, limited

Although most Pittsburghers have cars, you'll rarely find someone from Garfield dating a permanent resident of Butler County. If you don't live on the "mainland" of Pittsburgh, your dating pool just got much smaller. And for the East Enders who don't have cars (points to self), good luck even considering dating someone from the North Side. Also, if their location ends with the word "township," run.

man and two woman and a club drinking
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A date in the South Side after 10pm is not a real date

If you find yourself meeting someone at Jack's on a Friday night, you're either there as a wingman, or about to be pulled into an unfortunate threesome.
 

And if you do end up in the South Side against all your better judgment...

... know that anyone you meet at Dee's has already dated half of the people at Dee's.
 

If you've dated more than one person here, you WILL run into them again

Whether you're scanning the aisles of Giant Eagle, attending First Friday on Penn Avenue, or simply walking down the street in your own neighborhood, there is always the chance that you will unexpectedly run into one of your exes. Whether you choose to make awkward conversation, or avoid eye contact while walking backwards in the opposite direction, is entirely up to you.
 

Don't ask us out on a coffee date

Because what's the point of braving Pittsburgh traffic/transportation woes if no food is involved? On that note...

We're obsessed with food

As an official up-and-coming foodie city, Pittsburghers are becoming self-proclaimed experts on beignets, $9 tacos, and everything in between. But even the non-foodies among us are very concerned about where they will be having their weekly consumption of beer & wings. Be prepared to eat.
 

We're still unsure if we want a S/O or a booty call

Because of Pittsburgh's traditional blue-collar roots, many 20-somethings are looking to "just have fun," but, at the same time, still might take you to dinner at their parent's house.

couple on a date smoking
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We're a bunch of chimneys

According to Pittsburgh Today, a whopping 22.4% of Pittsburgh residents are smokers. And that number jumps up to about 90% when you consider how many of us only smoke socially, aka every time we have a beer in our hand. Time to hop on the tobacco train... or invest in an economy-sized box of Doublemint.
 

Even the most cultured of us turn into rabid animals when we see a home team score

It's inescapable.
 

The degrees between your new SO and your ex will be scant

Once you've opened the close-knit can of worms that is our city's dating scene, you will discover that every person you date somehow knows at least three of your current acquaintances. And that your current boo thang used to share a dorm with your ex. It's like Six Degrees of Kevin Bacon, except there are no celebrities involved, and figuring out your number of degrees will just bum you out. Welcome to the Pittsburgh Degree of Separation.
 

We have a crippling hangup on Polish food

Remember that food obsession we mentioned? Many of us are still convinced that you haven't lived until you've experienced all that Polish cuisine has to offer. So no matter how much your date might want to have a pierogi-eating contest at the Bloomfield Bridge Tavern, remember that there is nothing sexy about a stomach full of cabbage rolls and soft cheese.

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Julianna Bagwell loves expensive tacos, and is engaged to a Pittsburgher she met through online dating. He occasionally adopts baboon-like qualities when the Penguins score. It is a continuous struggle. Follow her woeful journey: @JuliannaLocal.