Mark Twain once remarked that there are only two certainties in this life -- death and taxes. While that's a pretty salty way of summarizing our collective pursuit of happiness, I like the finality of it. However, if Twain were alive today, I'm certain he would amend the quote thusly: "The only three certainties in life are death, taxes and lunch."
Lunch is without question the most important meal of the day. As children, we looked forward to it as our cacophonous respite from the rigors of schoolin'. As adults, we scamper off on our lunch breaks, venting about our work day or our class load in a trans-fat-free attempt at restoring our resolve before plunging back into the fracas.
Lunch is, for lack of a better term, a savory escape that is best spent with friends. Startups are aware of this, given the wealth of mobile applications that are designed to tell your friends where you are, provide photos of what you're eating and, lastly, what you thought of the place you dined at.
A new company crawling into Boulder this month aims to improve the real-life lunch experience by making it easy for you to meet other munchers and go to lunch together. It's not a dating site, it's an eating site, and it's called COlunching.
"It's a social network where people organize and RSVP to lunches, brunches and dinners to meet new people and discover new restaurants," said Bryan Pirolli, community manager for COlunching. "People love using social networking. People love eating in restaurants. So this site really helps bring these two niches together."
The site, which began in Paris a little over a year ago, has been such a success in the City of Light that an expansion to these delicious American shores was a no-brainer. Boulder is among the first U.S. cities that COlunching has expanded to, owing to its reputation as a haven for foodies.
"Since Boulder was Bon Appétit magazine's '2010 Foodiest Town in the US,' it seemed like the perfect place to try COlunching," Pirolli said. "The Boulder community seems really excited by restaurants and good cuisine, so I hope they can congregate over some fantastic meals."
The site is fairly easy to get started with. You can log in using your Facebook identity, select a nearby CObrunch or COlunch or COdinner, see who's attending it, RSVP and that's it. You show up at the appointed time, meet peeps, eat Peeps (if it's close to Easter) and then go back to work. It's a bit like going on a large blind date, except no one's expected to put out.
The first COlunching event in Boulder (which will technically be a COdinner) will take place at Centro on Wednesday, September 28 at 7 p.m. As I write this, there are five spots available at the table for eight, which will include local food blogger Grace Boyle (of GraceFullPlate.com).
"Once the first event happens, I hope that people will adore the idea and start planning their own events in Boulder," Pirolli said. "The idea is to take social networking away from the computers and smart phones and into real life. I hope people can rediscover the pure joy of sharing a meal with new faces."
More information can be found online at COlunching.com.
Ef Rodriguez writes about geeky stuff once a week for the Colorado Daily. Hit him up on Twitter at @pug.