May 6, 2013
9 first date dos and don’ts
So you’ve asked a girl on a date, or maybe she’s asked you, either way follow this simple guide so you don’t make common errors so many people seem to make.
- Offer to pay if you suggest a location or activity. You might decide on the day to pay half each, but be prepared to pay if you invite her to the most expensive restaurant without checking if it is okay with her. There’s nothing worse than the bill arriving and the pair of you sat waiting for someone to pipe up and offer the cash.
- Take her somewhere where you can get to know her and/or have fun. The classic “the cinema is not a good place to go on a date”. How do you know you even like the same films? What if you go to hold her hand and she withdraws? Do you stay in the cinema, awkwardly sat next to someone who evidently doesn’t want to be there watching a film you probably don’t even like? Group activities are often to be avoided because the other person is never quite sure if it’s a date or not. So take her somewhere where you’ll both have an enjoyable time, that way, even if you don’t get on, you still had fun.
- At least make some effort. If you work with the girl you are going on a date with, don’t turn up in your work clothes. Equally If she’s impressed you’re a farmer by trade, don’t turn up to your meal in your farmer gear. She’s going to want to know you have a life outside the farm as well, and I’m not sure the other people at the restaurant will appreciate the farm stench either.
- Act interested. If you invited her out on a date then it’s your duty to listen to her list off the names of her twenty cats and even if you’re not, pretend you’re interested. Tips to make yourself look like you’re interested even if you’re not: ask her questions about what she just told you, smile, nod, mhmm, and ahh, and don’t fall asleep.
- Be honest. If you tell her you’re an aeronautical engineer then make sure you actually are, because one day she might ask to see your spaceship (not a euphemism) and it won’t be good when you have to tell her you’re not actually an astronaut, but a supermarket cashier. (Not that there’s anything wrong with being a supermarket cashier). Be yourself, be yourself, be yourself. If you are funny, be yourself. If you are not funny, then still be yourself. There’s nothing worse than someone trying too hard to crack a joke only to find they’re the only one laughing, or the date is laughing out of awkwardness or embarrassment.
- Don’t mention the second date straight away or get ahead of yourself. Bringing up baby names, wedding locations, and your ten year future plan, with them featuring in it, are probably going to scare away your date. Although, you might find she’s as forward as you are and appreciates that prior to the date you embroidered towels with her name on and cleared half your wardrobe to make space for hers. More often than not they’re not going to take kindly to it, and you will scare them away.
- Avoid things which bring back memories of an ex. “Oh you should probably sit here, because my ex always used to sit here and we found it just worked better like that,” …“You’re going for the steak? Really? I’m a vegetarian, but my ex loves meat and I’d definitely suggest you opt for the ribs, those were her favourite”… “You have such nice complexion; it’s really similar to my ex’s, that’s what made me fall for her you know!”… If you’re not yet over your ex, you probably shouldn’t be dating. If you’re dating to try and get over your ex, follow the golden rule: THOU SHALT NOT MENTION THINE EX.
- Don’t drink too much. Going for a drink is always a great way to break the ice, but what you want is a little crack in the ice. You don’t want the ice to be crushed and in your vodka, but then it’s on your lap because you drunk too much vodka and spilled the ice, then you’re on the ground throwing up the ice and vodka because you had alcohol poisoning, and so your first date is actually spent in Accident & Emergency with your date watching you have your your stomach pumped. Great first impressions you have given her.
- Don’t get too personal. On the first date, it’s all about getting to know the person and seeing if you match initially. Personal, deep and emotional topics should be left out, alongside, how much money you earn, politics and religion. If you break down on the first date, or start asking her intruding questions so she breaks down, I don’t think a second date will be on the cards.
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Sarah Schulman at Lesbian Lives 2013
Legendary queer activist Sarah Schulman has spoken out against the LGBT Center of New York City and its decision to ban her from a controversial book reading.
February 17, 2013