Friday, February 6, 2009

Dating 201 for those who need it

I have some single girlfriends who share stories that transport me back to my single days. One in particular inspired me to share what is not so profound wisdom. I feel like going back in time...and thankfully, when I met JM, he didnt need a single piece of this...

I live in a large metropolitan area filled with hundreds of single, desirable men over the age of 30. Somewhere between the professional dater and the man who is actually shy lies an anomaly which is becoming increasingly more visible: the hybrid of all bad dating mannerisms known to women. While not every man wishes to be a slick connoisseur of one woman after another, there is an art to achieving the goal of a second date. Almost anyone can entice, persuade, cajole or simply ask a woman out and have that first date under their belt. However, beyond that initial night especially if he has any remote shot at obtaining that impending “magic” date where he is convinced he can sleep with her, exists the important and often overlooked Second Date. To help all men with the true interest of making it to the next level, and more importantly to end the bewilderment on why she just does not return your interest after the first date, here is a tutorial:
Idea: When you place the call or send the email (do not text or IM the first date request or you are beyond help) with the intention of seeing her again, have an idea in mind of what you want to do. A mere suggestion is fantastic and yet not so rigid that you would be opposed to her potentially good idea. The often occurring and snore inducing “what do you want to do” responded by “I don’t care, what do you want to do” lacks production. If you want to see a show, a stand up performance, a band, or how many drinks she can put away, say it. If movies are your thing, speak up. However, use caution here: Find out first if she is into the whole Will-Ferrell-same-character-as-usual before you suggest it. Believe me, it was hysterical in Zoolander, but not so much in Semi-Pro (or what should have been called Zoolander Part XV). If funds are the issue, suggest a walk around the park with your dog or a dog you borrow. This becomes increasingly important as you progress because believe me, by the third or fourth round if you are still lacking luster and creativity, she is thinking to herself “this man will never have a great surprise in store or an interesting conversation with my friends, neighbors, or family.” This of course doesn’t even mention her thoughts on your creativity or skills in the boudoir. If the mere concept of an activity on your second date is too much of a brain-teaser, she has more reasons than one not to see you again.

Presentation: A little goes a long way and no, this is not an implication you need to show up in your brand new souped up duds or a suit jacket if that is not your trend or protocol. Pants and a nice button down are always safe. Watch the t-shirts too…seriously, your “Gettin’ Lucky in Kentucky” or “I love that 70’s Show” are only cool if you are washing your car with her. Gentlemen, you have already seen this girl once…think back…chances are good she is going to have some foxy number on especially if your second get-together is an evening date. Remember, it is a date, and not Texas Hold ‘Em night at The Beer Mug. Unless it is during the day and you are at a sporting event or taking her to see you bench press at the gym, the ball cap, while a great weekend feature, is not the right accoutrement for your night of flirting. Easy on the cologne and hair gel too…we are happy for the wave of metrosexualism but don’t be carrying more product than we are. If she is a self declared feminist and gets sour about the door being opened for her, unfortunately you will learn that as you go, but many women still appreciate the door being opened and you walking on the outside of the sidewalk. If you would do it for your grandmother, do it for her. If she gets wild eyed and indignant about it, you might have more than one reason not to see HER again.

Conversation: This is a tricky one and yet the simplest piece of advice is just that; keep it simple. If you are nervous or not sure what to ask, ask HER a question about HERSELF. This is easy to do without appearing fake or insincere. Examples: how long have you been…in town, living here, had the dog, played tennis, played piano. Pay attention if you see her house. See any books? Art? Wine? Unique furniture? There you go…ask away. When some men get nervous, they just start rattling on and on. If this happens and your mouth gets running stay AWAY from any topic involving your road rage or how much you drank the last time your college roommate was in town. There are some clear deal breakers with women, not all women, but most of the women you are going to want to date so pay attention. If you don’t know her, don’t even think about mentioning any of your big thoughts about sensitive subjects like politics, homosexual marriage, or Jessica Simpson’s rack. Again, you do not KNOW her or if anyone she is close to is a politician, gay, or has implants. Also, never talk about your ex-wife, girlfriend, or the other women you are dating. Women do not want to hear all your war, horror, or whore stories this early on in the game. And don’t even consider for a moment you will gain ground or appear to be a catch if in your discourse on past women you call even one of them a “bitch”. The only thing rising in that situation is your jackass factor. If you MUST tell a story involving say, a trip, or a vacation you went on, try saying it was “with a friend” you don’t need to mention anything more about her.

Location, location, location: If Bacchanalia or the top of the W is not your idea of a comfortable outing, not to worry, but my vote is error on the side of conservative. In other words, unless you met her at Hooters, it is not an option. Ditto that on Joe’s Crab Shack or TGIFriday’s for various reasons. If cost is an issue, perhaps a wine bar, Starbucks, or ice cream. Again, a sunny day at a park is not bad either because ideally you should have fun doing something ordinary with a great person but be careful…your idea of fun may not be hers and again, unless you know her and know she will buy into your plan, things like NASCAR events or her coming over to watch the play-off game with you and your five friends is the guarantee of no more dates. While debating, make sure it is not a location you will be easily convinced to over-consume. When all else is failing, getting loaded is never the right answer.

Wrapping up: how you end the date will be contingent upon how the date comes along. If you throw some F notes around, talk about your previous live-in, how wretched your mom is, how you like to take Ecstasy, or the time you got arrested for mooning, you just walked yourself right into “NO FUTURE” with this girl. Discretion can be nice. When you take her home, walk her to her car, or the door, and say goodnight a good motto is always leave them wanting more. Watch for clues, if she is taking her keys out of her purse before you even open the car door, give her space. Don’t try pawing or groping and above all things, don’t ask her if she wants you to “tuck her in”. Better to have her asking “why didn’t he try to kiss me” then giving you the quick head turn and cold shoulder. But by all means, if you are getting the signals, make the kiss a good one.

1 comment:

Rubes said...

Love it. Very insightful and appreciated. Love from Denver, Brett