Friendships are like good wine - they develop and deepen over time. You never know where they'll lead.
On the other hand Western romance emphasises falling in love. Spotting a lady across the room and just knowing she is the one you're going to spend your life with. Now how many times have you spotted a bloke across the room and thought this is someone I'm going to have a life-long friendship with.
Of course we can't neglect the effect of hormones like serotonin that flood our monkey brains. In school I spent many a dreamy hour contemplating the figures of my female classmates instead of the mathematical ones followed by the addicting roller-coaster ride of approaching and the rush of a first kiss.
I've learned to avoid the lad's terrible advice which included such gems as:
Go to Al-Anon meetings - every woman has dated a charming whino. Stormy Heathcliffs have many admirers. Yes, but do I want to go out with a woman who's suffered through a string of abusive relationships.
Sign up at all the dating sites and then mail or IM at least 20 women a day. Can you imagine the amount of time back and forthing over emails this will take? Why hide behind email. Just ask the cute physics grad in the neighbouring cubicle.
Ask every lady you meet for a date. One friend even handing notes to bank tellers asking them for dates with his withdrawal slips. I would rather set my hair on fire.
Go to yoga classes because they are at least 80% women. This is a recipe for both distraction and injury. How am I going to keep my eyes in my head with dozens of women in their sweats bending and stretching around me.
Only go on drink dates near your place rather than restaurant dates. This way you can avoid talking and naturally seque to showing her that great book/video/painting at your place.
Move into a cool apartment like The Chelsea . Dylan Thomas died of drink choking on his own vomit in the lobby The walls are covered with the paintings of struggling artists who couldn't pony up the rent. There have been many suicides including a woman who replied "I'll be right down." when asked for the rent, before throwing herself out her ninth floor window onto 23rd Avenue.
My new modus operandi is forget dating and just make friends of both sexes. Do what you enjoy doing - cooking classes, rock-climbing. Have fun and stop worrying about racing to get the first kiss. Expand your network of friends. Don't see each attractive lady as a potential conquest - but as a potential friend.
Let nature take it course and savour the adventure.