Hopeless Romantic Found His Mystery Girl Online

Man finds mystery girl and they talk exclusively to ABC about their first date.

February 9, 2009, 10:39 AM

Nov. 9, 2007 — -- The romantic New York City subway rider has found his mystery girl, and today the two talked about their first date exclusively on "Good Morning America."

Patrick Moberg, a 21-year-old New Yorker, made blogosphere headlines this week when he developed a Web site, nygirlofmydreams.com, dedicated to finding a mystery girl he was too shy to approach on a train. He described her as wearing blue tights, blue shorts and a flower in her hair, and even included a sketch of both himself and the girl.

Moberg and his dream girl -- a 22-year-old Australian magazine intern named Camille Hayton -- met and went on their first date Thursday night. They talked about meeting Friday on "Good Morning America."

"I wasn't nervous to meet her," Moberg told ABC News' Diane Sawyer. "We totally clicked."

Hayton said that she "couldn't not meet Moberg," especially after he went through the trouble of making a Web site for her. The lovebirds told Sawyer that the conversation during their date wasn't awkward and that they actually had "plenty to talk about."

But why didn't Moberg just approach Hayton on the subway in the first place?

"As soon as she had disappeared, I felt an undeniable urge to reach out to her and find her," Moberg told ABCNEWS.com in an e-mail. "The only way that seemed remotely possible, without seeming like a total creep, was to put up a totally straightforward recap of what happened, and hope it somehow made its way to her."

Moberg's recap, as he calls it, is a colorful sketch of the mystery girl and himself, surrounded by arrows that detail everything from the girl's hairstyle -- "fancy braids" -- and his own mental health -- "not insane." Think stick figures meet Shakespeare's "Romeo and Juliet."

His cell phone number and e-mail address are also part of the sketch, as is a plea to "everyone else," asking they pass the word along to their friends on the off chance that someone happened to know the mystery girl.

Several people called and e-mailed him, Moberg said, mostly wishing him luck in his search. A few posed as the mystery girl, but Moberg said he had no trouble weeding them out with a few questions.

Moberg said his family is "excited" and "proud" at the lengths he went to connect with Hayton.

Moberg also posted a video online explaining to viewers -- many of whom didn't understand why he hadn't just approached the girl in the first place -- that just as he had mustered enough courage to say hello, the girl got off the train and was lost in a swarm of commuters.

"I spent the whole ride psyching myself up to introduce myself, but when the time came, a rush of people got between us, and by the time I could get through, it was too late," said Moberg. "I don't think anything I could have said would have been able to sanely convey how strongly I felt about her! I'm sure I would have come across as insane. So I think I made the right choice [by making the Web site]."

It's not too surprising that Moberg turned to the Internet to try to find his beloved straphanger, said Mary Madden, a senior researcher at PEW Internet Project, an organization that studies the social impact of the Internet.

"Since the Internet is so much more integrated into our every day lives, even our love lives are being orchestrated with online tools," Madden told ABCNEWS.com. "What's more interesting about [Moberg's Web site] is that he took a decidedly low-tech approach. Even though he created a Web site, the site itself is essentially a flier -- a cute drawing that's very personalized. It's not your typical classified listing."

Three out of four "single and looking" Internet users use the Web for dating purposes -- whether it is by using dating Web sites or Googling someone before a date -- according to research conducted by PEW.

With such an overwhelming number of Web sites dedicated to singles and love, Madden said that Moberg could be on to something with his more creative approach to finding love.

"It makes sense [Moberg] would turn to the Internet to find this person -- it's a sign of the times," said Madden, who told ABCNEWS.com that she was a bit skeptical he would find the mystery girl, given the size of New York City. "Using the Internet for dating extends far beyond just eHarmony and [Match.com]. Those are just some of many avenues that can facilitate dating."

Craigslist, the online community that posts local classifieds for everything from jobs to apartments to event tickets in 450 cities worldwide, even developed an area on their sites called "missed connections."

A Craigslist spokesperson told ABCNEWS.com that the demand for a place to reconnect with friends, family and even strangers was so great, missed connections was the practical solution.

"It's a tremendously popular part of the site," said Susan MacTavish Best of Craigslist, who added that several weddings have occurred thanks to the site. "We've had stories of people finding family members and high school sweethearts. We all love second chances, and missed connections is the ultimate second chance."

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