In my 30 years, I have gone on several first dates, two of which were remarkably horrible! One of the horrible first dates saw my date abandon me at a petrol station at 6am on a cold Sunday morning and the other one had me dealing with Mr. Arrogant McArmani Suit.
The Abandoner must have gotten tired of being called somebody else’s name 4.5 times –I kind of stopped myself halfway the fifth time. In my defense, who takes a girl club hopping on the first date after the age of 19? In fact let me rephrase that; Who takes a girl on a club hopping spree on the first date ever? Until morning? If I were him and I took a woman on a club hopping spree with my friends on the first date (that was real torture BTW Mr. Abandoner) I would allow her to call me/adjust to any name she chooses to confuse as mine …even Douche bag if she pleases!
Mr. Arrogant McArmani suit on the other hand was just something else. I arrived at the restaurant where we were meeting about 10.2 minutes late and spotted him sitting there with a disapproving and irritated look on his face, sipping on his Cognac, with his Armani blazer carefully hung on a coat hanger beside him. I walked hurriedly toward him looking all apologetic for failing to keep time.
He stood up to greet me with a peck on both cheeks and I thought all was forgiven until he said “I do not like giving my time to people who do not keep time.” To which I responded to by raising my eyebrows, not exactly sure if I had heard what he had just said correctly. He did not care to find out the reason behind my tardiness. Even though I have to admit that I have the tendency to really underestimate the traffic in this city and the difficulty to find parking space in some buildings. I also forget to factor in the time for getting lost because of making stupid wrong turns trying to avoid traffic and also choosing the wrong time to discover shorter routes to the venue half an hour to my meetings.
Anyway, when the maître d’ approached our table, I ordered a very expensive bottle of wine and then ordered my food. When the wine arrived, I gulped down the first glass and then the second and when I saw our food coming, I excused myself to go to the little Ladies’ room, turned the corner to the elevator and got the hell out of the restaurant as fast as I could and went home.
When I got home I found 27missed calls from him-OK I exaggerate, they were 26 missed calls. I quickly texted “I do not like giving people who do not like people who do not keep time the pleasure of seeing me eating” , then I decided against sending the text, deleted it instead, put on my pajamas and watched a movie or two and lived happily ever after.
After a certain age, dating becomes a task. Sometimes it is an enjoyable task and sometimes it is not. There are so many things and behaviors that stop being tolerable on dates including going on a date with someone who constantly invites you to hang out with his boys. Or someone waiting for you to pick up the bill when he is the one who asked you out. Or dates where friend makes three!…You are in the middle of your fun drinks date when his boy who had no plans for the night just happened to be around the corner and joins you by force! #Sigh
After 30, you know yourself best and therefore you are at liberty to choose who deserves the pleasure of getting to know you more on that awkward first date and who doesn’t…not unless you are the desperate woman looking to get married in the next 6 months and start popping babies every 13 months or so regardless of whether the relationship is working or not, so anyone –as long as they are male and have all parts of their body intact and especially teeth-will do just fine.
In that regard, here is a “first date” guide that you may find useful.
There are 4 ideas of a perfect first date. Dinner, Drinks, Cinema, and Adventurous date.
Out of these 4, you want to pick a date where you can talk and get to know each other a little better.
Of course a cinema date will not provide you with that while a dinner date could be a little too awkward and should be reserved for the second or third date. What with cutlery deciding to embarrass you by suddenly falling off the table for no reason, or discovering too early that your date chews with their mouth open while he introduces random, taboo topics that shouldn’t be discussed at the table?
It would be safer to discover someone’s epiglottis as they chew on the second or third date. I think.
Adventurous dates allow you to see him in his element. It also offers you the chance to sort of loosen up and be yourself. Kinda.
A Drinks date is also an ideal first date as you get a chance to sit across from each other and secretly analyze each other. It presents you with a chance to find out if he’s a compulsive blinker or if he doesn’t blink at all-which could be creepier- and a chance to sip away (especially when you get a little tongue-tied) and forget the long week that was.
Maximum drinks on the first date should be 3 drinks (4 if you must), sipped and enjoyed slowly and allowing yourself not to get drunk. Drink some water in-between drinks.
Also, leave early to create some mystery and a need for him to want to see you again soon. And also because you have “other things” to do like…sleep and blush remembering how great the evening went.
Wear what you feel comfortable in and make sure it matches the kind of date you are going to. Don’t wear high heels or makeup if it’s not your usual thing and if it is your thing then make sure you wear it well.
Forget about your phone for a few hours and don’t start taking pictures of your food for Instagram. You have the rest of your life to do that, if you are about that life that is.
If the guy asked you out, he should pick up the bill on that first date. Although it is perfectly normal for you to offer to pay or offer to go dutch with no intention of doing so. We all expect him to say in his confident, manly voice “That is very sweet of you but I will get it.” If he does that, then that right there is a gentleman. And if he lets you pay…well, we now know what he is not and will never ever be!
Depending on whether you would like to see him again, act and talk in a manner that suggests to him that a second date would not be such a bad idea.
You can leave him with a smile, a hug and maybe a quick peck on the cheek so that he can get a whiff of how great you smell. A whiff of that favorite perfume of yours which you wear only on special occasions and which will also give him something to miss you about.
Have fun on your first date, have those butterflies, change your outfit 101 times, make the effort to look good, get more butterflies, bore your friends to death by bombarding them with texts and calls about how excited you are and just enjoy life!
If the first date was a Douchebag affair, don’t worry for you are allowed to dwell in the knowledge that there will be a great first date in the near future. Also, remember to keep time….