Summer lovin’: how to have a blast

Summer flings mean no commitment, no expectations, and—some say—no heartache.
Summer flings mean no commitment, no expectations, and—some say—no heartache.

Summer is that carefree time that is supposed to be filled with excitement, which usually translates into “road trips” or, even better, “summer flings.” Two movies I watch religiously every summer are Grease and Dirty Dancing—and what girl hasn’t envied Sandy or Baby’s hot liaisons at one time or another?

Despite my lack of experience with real live summer flings, I have been always fascinated with the idea, so I decided to investigate the matter further. To help me get a more rounded perspective, I quizzed one of my male friends, Aaron, on the subject.

As skeptical as he was, he provided excellent insight. Rosel: So, what kind of a word is “fling” anyway? I already dislike the idea of dating altogether—two strangers putting blind faith in each other, hoping the other person won’t turn out to be one of those freaks they read about in either Cosmo or Maxim. And most of the time, they are one of those freaks. So honestly, what is the point in finding some disposable relationship that I know is going to expire anyway?

Aaron: Two words: no pressure. Sometimes—actually, all the time—I don’t want a “relationship” that has endless possibilities. I don’t want to meet your mom—though, Rosel, your mom is very nice. I don’t want to hang around with your friends—though, Rosel, we share most of our friends. And I don’t want to think about anything after the week-long vacation I’m on—though, in reality, I’m too poor to actually go on a vacation at all. The point of a disposable relationship is that it’s disposable, and that can be a good thing. With relationships come things like “fights” and “deep feelings” and “Aaron, you say you’re fine, but are you really?” With relationships come breakups, and nothing is easier then breaking off a fling: you just leave! For someone who doesn’t like to face his problems and someone who has a phobia of crying, that’s awesome.

Rosel: Fine, so maybe the no-fuss factor can be an attraction, as long as you share a mutual level of low expectations and recognize that the significance level would be zero.

And in that case, I will be completely honest: I think summer flings allow room for more shallowness, rather than “deep connections.” If he is going to be what he’s going to be—arm candy—then he better be a fine looking piece of work.

And, this might be just temporary infatuation, but if he could have some kind of a secret spy life—that I’ll eventually discover by accident à la Mr. and Mrs. Smith—that would be so extra-hot. Who doesn’t want to go back to school and tell everyone that they spent an eventful summer dating a real bad boy?

Aaron: Well, you could just lie. That’s what I plan to do.

Like this summer, I’ve spent most of my time sitting alone in the flower shop where I work and chatting with women who are over sixty.

Yet, when I return to school in September I intend to wow my friends with tales of a celebrity fling. I can’t name her, but I can tell you she appears in the movie Herbie: Fully Loaded. Also, thank you for bringing up the topic of Brad Pitt in Mr. and Mrs. Smith—who, I think we can all agree, is extra-extra-hot. And thank you for bringing up the “mutual level of low expectations” too—it reminds me of every relationship that I’ve ever had.

Rosel: That’s not mutual level of low expectations, that was just compromise.

[Silence.] Man, I think we just create more labels to confuse the heck out of ourselves. Summer fling: why not just call it “not dating, just benefiting?”

So maybe the conversation wasn’t as insightful as I’d hoped. But in attempt to be more informative and practical, I have summarized our conversation into three main rules, as a general guide to a successful summer fling. The fine print: we guarantee nothing and claim no expertise.

1. Mutual low expectations: remember, looks aren’t everything, but they can be most of the things in this potential fling. Other than that, what else is there to expect?

2. Separate lives, not integration: after all, it’s not hard to explain why you got out of something if nobody knows about it... .

3. Keep it light: Will you ever get to know their deepest secrets, happiest moments, and lifelong goals? Honestly, you don’t have time for that.

Rosel Kim would like to thank her reliable friend Aaron Andrews for his good humour. She is still dreaming of the day a hot mambo instructor sweeps her off her feet—only for a short time, of course.

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