Dating: My Way — Some Reasonable Tips, Part One

Well, after being pressured (oh, the pressure!) into doing a dating guide, I gave it some thought and decided Yeah, I have thoughts. I have a lot of thoughts. You want my take on dating? I believe in a kinder, gentler dating world, and in my world, everyone would follow my common sense take on things. This is at least two parts, possibly three. I’m too lazy to organize it, though, so it’s coming out as I wrote it.

Stay tuned for the next part, sometime next week, but here’s part one. First, my credo:

  • I don’t believe there are do-or-die rules.
  • I don’t believe in systems.
  • I don’t think you should ever try to ‘snag’ a person – they’re right for you or they’re not, and if you need to change yourself, well, keeping them in the longterm is unlikely ‘cos you’d be changing for the wrong reasons.
  • I believe every date is an entity in and of itself – focus on the moment ‘cos the future’s just a question mark.
  • I believe in being true.
  • I believe in going with the flow.
  • I believe in following your instinct.
  • I believe in chemistry, and I don’t believe it’s conjureable. It’s there or it’s not.
  • I don’t believe those who say “only call once” – I say go ahead and call a second time or follow up with an email. I agree that it can be pushy or perceived as aggressive, but if they’re not interested anyhow, another call isn’t going to hurt your chances, now is it? But what if? What if your message got dropped along the way, or they accidentally deleted your number, or toasted your email? It would suck if you’d jumped to conclusions. Give it time in between, but if you don’t hear back the second time, yer done. They’re not into you.
  • Don’t be late, or at the very least, call in ADVANCE when you’re running late and tell them. If they’re rushing to get ready on time and then you show up late, they’ll wonder why you didn’t make the same effort they did. Strike one.
  • If you’re a chick and the guy’s picking you up, be ready. I’ve never once met a man who enjoys waiting for a woman to get ready. Break the stereotype, girls. That means having your coat and shoes ready, your keys in your purse, your makeup done. It means being ready to walk out the door.
  • Don’t be nosier than you have a right to be. What they make, if they own their place, whether their car is paid for, what level schooling they have… none of these really matter, and for you to make them a central issue indicates you’re probably more hung up on status than you are about who they are under the skin.
  • Don’t ask boring questions. Find out what makes them tick. Ask about happy memories. What’s a great Sunday. Are they enjoying life. Books, movies, music, dreams, goals, best laugh ever.
  • Don’t talk about exes. You might be over them, but your date doesn’t know it.
  • Don’t talk about your troubles. Your date’s not your shrink. Most people, most of the time, don’t give a shit about your problems. They’d rather talk about the movies. Let ’em grow fond of you, and then they’ll naturally care about your problems. Give it time.
  • Don’t talk on your cell phone. It’s rude. Turn the thing off.
  • Hold the door open for your date – even if you’re a girl. It’s classy and it’s just plain good manners.
  • If you’re on a dinner date, know your etiquette. (I wrote something on it a while back. Part one here, part two here.) Eat slowly. Take your time. Spend more time looking at your date than you do your food. Eat small bites so they don’t have to wait awkwardly for a minute or two while you’re mashing your honking bite to bits before you can answer the question they just asked you.
  • If they ask you a question that cuts too close to home on a difficult subject for you, and you’re into them, be honest. Smile, look them in the eye, and just say, “That’s a great question, but it’s a hard topic for me. Can we save that for next time?” They’ll appreciate your honesty, and you’ll show them you can be vulnerable yet composed. It’s an attractive balance.

Part two’s done, but I go by whim ’round these parts, so it may be posted tomorrow, maybe next week. Depends on many things. :) Stay tuned.

Whatchoo think about these ones so far, though? Any thoughts?