Ohio is for Lovers.

February 4, 2008

February is the Month of Love, so I thought it would be appropriate to dedicate at least little time and though to the world’s most complicated topic besides politics, religion, and how not to throw yourself off a bridge in a world where Kevin Federline is the better of two parents.

A former colleague and good friend of mine just texted me from a detroit casino where she is currently on a blind date. Her message read as follows:

“I am on a blind date with my friends husbands boss. I don’t care how much money he makes, he has something stuck in his teeth and I’m not telling. Help me!”

Perhaps she, or even you, dear reader, have failed to notice, but I am the furthest thing from a relationship expert that you can find. In fact my standard protocol for dealing with relationship conflict is usually: 1) end all communication, 2) abandon state, 3) If #2 fails, adopt legal name change and abandon country. In that order.

I believe that there are several variables having an effect on my current attitude towards dating, not the least of which being the fact that I spent a greater part of the weekend watching the “21 Days of Bridal Bullshit” on WE televsion for women, only flipping away to catch bits and pieces of “Wedding Cake Challenge” on FoodNetwork.

In addition to the many external factors that go in the “pro” column for being single (including but not limited to: appreciation of independence, ability to do what I what when I want without having to consult someone, and the decided lack of drama, needy cling-on manbaby, and herpes) another thing that strengthens my commitment to the single life is the horror known as the first date – an experience so awkward it can only be upstaged by the first sex (which, I’m told, in some places goes by the code-name “third date”).

In attempt to educate myself on the first date, I’ve done a little internet recon, gathering advice from several sources, who – while offering helpful suggestions – seem to share my underlying sense of cynicism regarding the first date, which in my book, makes them not only credible, but fabulous. I hope you will find this information as useful as I have:

The Coffee, Lunch, or Daytime Time Date
If your date has read the advice columns that say to take the pressure off by having a coffee date or a daytime date, you can expect to dress more casually. In this case, it doesn’t much matter what you wear (as long as it’s neat and put-together), because you already know they guy is either nervous or non-committal.

Choice of the low-impact date does not indicate a man’s potential as a long-term romance. Cheapskates and guys who aren’t sure they want to “really” date will choose the daytime scenario because it’s simple and cheap. They get exposure without investment. Nice guys and shy guys will choose this date because of its low-drama possibilities. They get to be with you without having to act like Cary Grant. Nice guys and shy guys will either up the ante or wait quietly in agony for you to express interest in seeing them again. Cheapskates will expect you to pay for your own coffee. Non-committal guys will say they’ll call you, then won’t.

To Pay or Not to Pay
There is a creepy idea (often unspoken, often assumed) that if a woman in not planning to become sexually involved with a man, she should pay half. If you ask me, that’s selling sex pretty cheap. I say, forget all that crap and hang out with guys who don’t have a problem buying your coffee and dinner or waiting until you’re good and ready before making any moves on you. Besides all that, if you’re dating because you’re looking for a commitment, you want a guy who’s going to be willing and able to pay on a mortgage, and later, for child support. His willingness to shell out $2.50 for a latte is a very slight indicator of his potential, but it’s better than nothing.

Tip: Before a big date don’t make big changes in your makeup routine. Men have definite feelings about and reactions to make-up, and if your face looks noticeably different, he will become frightened and disoriented.

Wedding or Special Event Dates
Part of the way we judge a potential relationship is by the events we attend together. In straight relationships, going to a wedding with a date is an automatic increase in that relationship’s potential intimacy, if and only if the man has invited the woman along. If the woman invites the man and he’s not ready for the commitment of witnessing someone else’s commitment, he will either decline, bail at the last minute, or attend with great discomfort and break off the relationship soon after. In same or opposite-sex couples, asking someone to attend a wedding with you is a bold maneuver to be taken on only if you’re sure your relationship is ready for it, or if you want the other person to break up with you. (A sit-com scenario. Someone asks a woman, “What do you say if you want to get rid of a guy?” Her answer: “I say, ‘I love you and I want to have your babies.”)

If you get asked to a wedding on a first date, you’re either with a social inept, a potential stalker, someone who’s been in love with you from afar for ten years, someone who thinks it’ll be a good way to get laid, or someone who has nothing left to lose. For these reasons, I would not accept such a first date, eliminating the need for discussing what to wear at such a debacle.

…it all leads me to wonder if one day I will write a book on dating. A Modern Girl’s 20-Something Pink-Covered bitterfest extravaganza with icing and multicolored sprinkles. If I do, I think it will be called something like:

Faking It For Dummies: A Modern Girl’s Guide to Improv


Dating In a World Where Someone Once Thought it Would be Sexy to Eat Your Fruit-Flavored Underpants Please Don’t Get Fruity Panty on my Egyptian Cotton Sheets

On that note, I have to go help my friend in the only way I know how … sending a taunting text message with an inappropriate video attachment.


After all, Ohio is for lovers, yo.



2 Responses to “Ohio is for Lovers.”

  1. C. Fraser Says:

    This was both funny and scary. As a man, it’s always interesting to get inside the mind of a woman, on the other hand as a man it’s ultimately horrifying to see what’s going on inside the mind of a woman.

    Although you do make some good points.

    “Before a big date don’t make big changes in your makeup routine. Men have definite feelings about and reactions to make-up, and if your face looks noticeably different, he will become frightened and disoriented.”

    Lol. Very funny. Because it’s true.

  2. Simon R. Gladdish Says:

    Q – What would you do if you found Mike Tyson in bed with your girlfriend?

    A – You’d tuck him in!

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