The quintessential Cosmo reader is supposed to be fun and fearless, which is perhaps why the magazine insists on daring women to complete a laundry list of somewhat ridiculous tasks. July's "20 Dares to Take On After Dark" involve everything from quite sane suggestion to share more about yourself to a romantic partner (which Cosmo naturally assumes you have) to the outright bizarre idea of yelling at someone you dislike on the phone - in the dark! Huh.
Since all but four of the 20 after-dark dares involved underwear, some form of nudity, having a boyfriend or a combination of all three, I decided to take Cosmo up on number 17:
"Haven't tried Chatroulette.com yet? Dim the overhead light, and start clicking. Hey, you never know who may pop up to chat with."
In fact, I hadn't tried Chatroulette before so on Saturday night, some friends and I gathered around a laptop and did Cosmo as directed and clicked.
For those who have been living under the same rock as me and haven't visited the video networking site, Chatroulette on a Saturday night isn't the most PG activity. It was essentially like watching snippets of other people performing those off-limits Cosmo dares I skipped over, which is maybe why those sneaky editors included the suggestion in the list. We did land on a pleasant group of pals hanging out in San Francisco and we talked for a minute, but then they Next-ed us, and the gasping commenced anew.
The short-lived Chatroulette session sapped our energy for the follow-up Cosmo dare: truth or dare...in the dark. In that case, maybe I should've just stayed in, turned off the lights in my bathroom and made that screaming phone call. Only Cosmo also assumed that in addition to having a hunk boyfriend to spoon-feed ice cream in a black hole somewhere, I'd also have someone I've wanted to mindlessly insult for a while. And realizing that I don't isn't a half bad pick-me-up.