|Join me for a new series on my blog entitled "Dear Date..." |
where I share my insights and anecdotes into the exciting and often frustrating world of dating.
"I'm 33, single and a Christian.
The dating pool is so very small.
It's difficult to meet people.
YES I have tried Internet dating.
And the first thing you need to know: Be employed. Somewhere, anywhere, have some sort of a job."
There. You're all caught up.
In today's episode, I'd like to speak to all the would-be dating men out there about:
Date Number 2 - Venue and Conversation
Yes, for first dates or meet-ups you can start off pretty casual, a coffee shop, a walk, somewhere public. I've even heard of great first dates where the couple goes to a book store and picks out a favourite book or movie, or they choose one that says something out their life.
Casual and public is key for the first meeting/date. Check.
If, after an hour or two of conversation, you are both interested in seeing the person further, if you haven't been put-off by lack of conversation, or too much one-sided-bragging-about-myself-and-my-stuff conversation, then obviously it's time to plan out a second date.
(Please Note: Some side-effects of Date One may include - stomach butterflies that someone asked you out, nervousness at what will happen next, a racing-mind planning out what your life would be like next to this new stranger, and constant smiling no matter how the first date went...it's new, it's exciting, it's an actual date! Hallelujah! Heaven heard your prayer!)
Ahem. Back to our topic.
Second Dates are very important and key in the life of a possible dating relationship.
It's the time we, women, find out a little more about you, men; who you are, who you value in your life, what you are doing with your days, and we find out how interested you actually are in getting to know us.
How do we do this? By the famous method of Q & A.
That's right. We can tell whether or not our two paths will continue to wind down the same road or veer off in totally opposite directions just by asking and answering questions.
You did note that said asking AND answering, right? Good.
Most women are great at conversation.
We ask lots of insightful, information-getting questions to learn more about what we want to know.
(ie. Whether you have an actual job or not...see Episode One.)
However, what we need from you is for you to ASK a few questions yourself.
We want to see that YOU are interested.
We don't want to be the one to offer up our information all the time.
(Honestly, we sometimes ask certain questions on purpose so you'll ask us the same one back! It's not a trick, but a way for us to help you get to know us.)
Ask questions, answer our questions.
The other crucial variable for these all-important Second Dates is the WHERE.
Where will you take us? Where will we meet? Where will we have a meal or watch something entertaining? Where are we going to be to find out more about each other?
The WHERE is important.
You don't have to hurt your brain trying to plan some elaborate, magical evening (that's for dates 3-5! Kidding...kind of.) But you do need to put a little bit of thought into the Where.
If it's a meal, make it somewhere decent, not too crazy noisy and not too family-friendly. (For example: Yes, to a cool downtown eatery or bistro, NO to a family-style cheap night, crawling with kids and balloons and crayons and moose-head-birthday-helmets!)
If the night includes some kind of entertainment, like a live music night, please, PLEASE look ahead and see who and what is playing.
Pick something you both may enjoy, something not too loud and something age-appropriate.
* For goodness-sake DO NOT suggest the place playing heavy metal rock (unless you both love it), or interpretive poetry/dance (unless you are both post-modern urban artsy types), and for the love of all that remains holy, please do not pick a hole-in-the-wall 'jazz' club on middle-aged-amateur-lady-who-forgets-half-the-words-and-chords-UKULELE night! (Last one is a real story, I kid you not!)
All we want is comfortable, engaging company, some good eats, and maybe some entertainment.
The final word I have to Daters everywhere is this:
If you don't think you are very INTERESTING (if you have no great stories or experiences and are a great person who wants to have another great person in their life) then the BEST thing you can do is at least make us feel like you are INTERESTED.
Ask us questions, get to know us, even ask where we'd like to go.
If there is interest in seeing more of us, ask us what we'd like to do next time. What restaurants are our favourites, or ones we'd like to try but never have.
Ask, ask, and ask.
* * * * *
Until next time, get out there and sign-up for some new class, or course, or event where you can meet someone new.
Guys, take an interest in who are you with, and gals, be great conversationalists to put your date at ease and leave open spaces for him to ask you. (Don't always offer all your info...let him ask!)
(* Images courtesy of one of my favourite websites: http://www.explodingdog.com/.)