This is a primer of sorts for first dates. Mostly for dating me but there are some general good ideas for a first date with any lady. I was thinking about how eventually I’ll be re-entering the dating world and the lessons I have learned over the years. (Unfortunately mostly from one person.) I’m hoping if some wonderful gentleman at some point asks me on a date, he will follow the guidelines below. If he just does these on his own, well that would just be awesome; but if he needs to be shown this prior, and then implements it, that would also be just swell. Without further ado, my top 5 pieces of advice – in no particular order:
1. If I smell you before you walk into the room, don’t be surprised if I excuse myself to the bathroom & never come back. I won’t be able to focus on a conversation or choke down my dinner. I will be polite and ditch you before ordering. Trust me, this is one of those ‘a little goes a long way’ things. There is nothing sexier than leaning in close and noticing a faint (pleasant) smell and then thinking of that person when – maybe, was that it? – you come across that smell again. There is nothing unsexier (*quick note – my autocorrect keeps trying to change “unsexier” to “insecure”. Very astute Apple, well played and spot on.) than choking down a nearly visible stench of cologne/Axe/scent-you-think-is-going-to-send-my-baby-maker-into-overdrive-when-in-fact-the-only-thing-you’re-turning-is-my-stomach. I assure you it is pretty generally accepted that your stink level is directly proportional to your suck factor.
2. If I ask what nationality you are, unless it’s 4th of July/some other patriotic holiday or you’re 100% native, American is not the correct answer. I’m as proud to be an American as anyone, but if that’s the extent of your knowledge of your own personal heritage, I’m just going to assume you don’t have much to say when it comes to all things culture. A broad generalization I know but in my experience holds true. I know this may be a geographically specific idea but I think it may be universal. Also going along with this same question & answer topic, what girl doesn’t like the idea of a hot foreigner with an impossible to resist accent (think Colin Farrell) sweeping her off her feet? The closest most of us girls will come to a sexy Irishman is the cute guy from Randomtown, USA whose great-great-grandfather came over here on a boat from Ireland. A grasp of this knowledge will score you some points, promise. Think about it, think about the chain of logic – you tell me you’re Irish, Grandpappy came over from Dublin in the early 1900′s, I go from lukewarm (at best) first date feelings about you to thinking about Ireland to thinking about Colin Farrell, now I’m starting to feel a little heat. See how that happened? You say you’re nationality is American, with no Native story to qualify it, I think Larry the Cable Guy. I just went from lukewarm to frigid.
3. Don’t share your sob story. By this point we all have at least one. You may think this is showing me your sensitive/emotional side. You’re wrong. At most you’re scaring me away (all your ex-girlfriends have completely disappeared in an almost witness protection type way) and at the least I’m thinking you’re just a whiny or ungrateful baby (mommy & daddy cut you off financially when you turned 30). Depending who you’re talking to you’ll either wind up in a “woe is me” contest trading sad tales (not me), you’ll wind up with someone’s pity (possibly me, but it would have to be really tragic at this point), or you’ll wind up annoying a person (probably me). Whichever way – not sexy and nothing to build a second date upon. Keep it to yourself for now, wait until I care about you enough to be interested & want to know or at least until I like you enough to pretend to care. Seriously though, listening to other peoples’ sad stories makes you think of your own sad stories and who really wants to be sad -or annoyed- on a date?
4. When picking a venue for a first date it is important to know your audience. For example, in my case I can paint you a picture right now how I looked when you met me. I was smiling & looked happy, maybe a little tired &/or stressed, but thoroughly content & loving life. My hair was pulled back in a ponytail, not much make-up (think mascara, maybe eyeliner, & some sexy Chapstick). I was wearing jeans, some kind of plain fitted t-shirt or tank top, & flip flops (unless it was cold & then I was wearing jeans, a long sleeve tee, & sneakers). Now given my appearance -out in public- when you met me, where would you take me for a first date? Chez Henri with linens, candlelight, a minimum $200/person dinners, & an unspoken dress code of ball gown & tuxedo? Or (hint, hint, hint – it’s this one) would you take me to a local sports bar/chain restaurant/mom & pop cute (casual) place (*if you’re really smart, it will be a place without a kids menu) for a burger, a beer, & whatever game is on? However, if you meet a chick in designer clothes, perfect hair, nails, & makeup, with her little dog in a purse on her shoulder – you should probably take her on the first option presented above. Of course these are two extremes and there is a lot of middle ground that I didn’t cover. It’s all about being somewhat perceptive to the type of person you are asking to spend a few hours with you & give you a chance.
5. If asked what your thoughts on kids are, do yourself a favor and talk about how much you love them, tell me about how cute your brother’s/best friend’s/co-worker’s/neighbors’ kid is. You definitely see kids in your future. Even if you don’t 100% know you want kids, just utter that one line. I’m not encouraging lying at all. First dates are all about not lying but still saying the right thing. Kids will definitely be in your future, they may not necessarily be yours but someone you know will have kids. See? No lie there. I know you probably think my opinion on this is skewed but I’m telling you there is probably only about 1% of all girls out there that won’t completely shut down if you make it known on a first date that you never want kids. We have the uterus, we decide if we want kids or not. There’s plenty of fish in the sea, yours are not the only swimmers. By the way, as a single mom my kids are usually close by, if not attached to, me. You knew I had kids when you asked me out. If the topic of kids comes up and you make a face, shrug your shoulders, or in any other way imply “Meh, I could take them or leave them,” you can pretty much go ahead and ask me to split the check because you won’t see me again.
Please feel free to share with anyone you feel would be helped by this or anyone who might agree/get a laugh out of it! What is some advice you’d give to a gentleman suitor? Please share in the comments below!