I read an article online stating that today’s dating generation no longer knows how to date. I believe this to not be entirely true. Today’s dating game has evolved and changed from that of what it was less then ten years ago. That’s because this generation has been saturated by the internet, movies, and technology. The idea of “dating” has been falsely romanticized, and the expectations of the individuals involved have become unrealistic. By saying that, however, I do not think we shouldn’t strive to be able to provide a romantic evening, as both members of the date.
To me, taking a person on a date is an art, so paint a damn good night.
Have a Plan B Ready
No. Not the morning after pill.
Making a date go well means making a plan. Making a date amazing means having a plan b. Making a date incredible means having no plans. Confusing… I know.
So you’ve successfully landed a date for yourself. Congratulations. Now the real work comes to play. While you were making plans for the date, I hoped you agreed on the time you guys would meet. If you agreed to meet in the evening after work — great. If you two decided to meet in the morning for an all day excursion — fantastic. What really matters is that you make a plan for the day. From every meal you might have, to the activities you will do. Plan it out, and then go further than that. Create a back up plan just incase something is closed, sold out, or rained out. Nothing is worse than having a plan to have a picnic, then it rains, and you’re out of luck. So instead, make a back up plan to have an indoor picnic in your shitty apartment. Make it cute. Still use that blanket. Still use the basket. Push your furniture out of the way, and sit on the floor. Turn off the television, and play nature sounds through your speakers.
That’s the important thing — a back up plan, because not only will you two still have fun, but because it will show that person that you cared enough and that you put in a lot of thought in for your date.
However, most people tend to like spontaneity. I do. So it’s important to not make plans (between your plans). If you have the boring plan to go to dinner and a movie (please do more than just that, I mean…. gosh.) Then leave some time to have fun after the movie. Ask that person if they would like to do something else, like go to the park, or get a drink. Let them decide. It shows that you care about their opinion, and that you care enough to listen and put it to action.
The Pick Up Line
“Aye gurl! Wat yo name iz?”
By this point, you won’t need an actual pick up line, because hopefully by this point you actually picked them up, that’s probably how you got the date. However, what you do need, is a reliable mode of transportation to pick that person up from their home.
Don’t schedule to meet someone somewhere. That’s not cool. What is cool, is saying “May I pick you up at seven?” And you better walk to their door and knock. Don’t call them saying you’re out front, and don’t you dare honk your horn.
That car ride is a very important time to get to know someone further if you don’t already. It puts you in an intimate position, and forces conversation. After salutations, witty banter, and after the awkwardness has died down a little, offer to play some music. Hopefully your car has an auxiliary port (if it doesn’t, buy an FM transmitter, they’re not expensive). If that person accepts your invitation to play music, plug your phone in at the next stop sign, or red light, then hand them your phone, and tell them the password. For two reasons does this benefit you. 1.) It shows that person that you trust them with your phone. 2.) It shows that person your taste in music, and music is a great way to connect with someone, and learn about them. It can also spark further conversation.
Flowers are Overrated
And for Algernon.
Be you male or female, everyone loves getting flowers. I’m a dude, and if a girl took me on a date and brought me flowers when she picked me up, I think I would fall in love at the moment.
Now…. flowers are wonderful. They really are. However, if you can, or have the know how, bring something else. If you know he or she likes to bake, bring that person assorted flours. (That pun works the best, “I got you flours.” Haha. Oh, man. I actually did that once and it worked wonderfully.) If you guys met at a strawberry farm, bring them a tub of strawberries. If you know that person likes classic gaming, bring some assorted N64 games. If you bonded over something silly like carrots, bring them a bouquet of carrots. The point is, if you know something specific about the person, then work with it. It shows that you listen and pay attention, and that you’re creative and different. You will also win SO many cool points.
Just remember, even one rose can cost upwards to five dollars in some places.
Use that money to make someone swoon.
Just don’t scare…
During your plans it’s nice to arrange some cool things. If you have plans to get dinner, do yourself a favor by making a reservation, buy a bottle of wine, go down to the restaurant before your date, and ask the restaurant to bring that bottle of wine out for you. Not only will it impress your date, but you also have the opportunity to save some money.
The restaurant may charge you a corking fee, but keep this fact in mind: Most wine & spirit stores mark up wine prices by 30%, whereas most restaurants mark up their wine prices by 100% or more. Also keep in mine that a glass of wine at a restaurant might average about $10, when the bottle of that same wine could be about $20 in a store.
Other surprises you could plan out might take a bit more work. If your plan is to take a stroll in a park, arrange a friend to set up a picnic for you guys before you arrive.
A friend of mine in college asked a girl he had liked for a long time out. On their first date he told her they were going to a restaurant. After he picked her up, they started driving, and he said he forgot his wallet at his dorm, so he drove her to his place. When they walked inside, there waiting for them was a fresh home cooked meal, complete with lit candles, a spinning record, and a fire displayed on the TV.
My friend asked us for help with this endeavor. The night before hand, we all came by to help clean his dorm and set up all the candles. We also timed how long it would take to cook the dinner, and how much time we would have to do so before he would come back. The day of his date we cooked the dinner, lit the candles, played the record, and turned the TV on. We left the dorm, hid around the corner, and as we turned the corner, there they were walking up to the door.
Be a Gentleman
The way you hold yourself during your date shows greatly how you act under pressure/nervousness, and how your demeanor is in general. A first impression is important, and obviously you impressed your date, otherwise they wouldn’t be on a date with you. The only thing more important than a first impression, is a lasting one.
Don’t drink too much if you go to a bar or restaurant. Know your limits, and stay well below them. Hold doors open, open car doors. Gentlemen, walk on the outside of the sidewalk, and let her walk in front. Also let her order first. Ladies please be polite if a man does these things for you, but do these too if you’re the one hosting the date.
I Need a Dollar
Baby, a dollar is what I need.
General rule states that the man should pay. My rule states that the person who asked out the other person must pay. It’s only right. You’re treating them, so treat them right.
Now if you’re poor like I am. There are many alternative things you can do on a date. You can have a picnic. You can stroll around your downtown. You can get dressed up and crash a wedding. Do something cheaper like getting ice cream or coffee. Go on a date that involves only food carts (make that known first.) Go hiking or fishing (if they’re into that.) Tour a winery, distillery, or brewery. Most of them are free or relatively cheap, and a lot of fun.
Take a Walk
Like Passion Pit… y’know?
At the end of the date, if you followed at least any of the tips above, then you should now be driving your lovely date home. This is a great part. It allows you to reflect and laugh about everything you did. It will also give you bridge work and time to ask about a possible second date.
Now, walk that person back to their front door, and kiss them goodnight.
At least… this is how a date with me would go, ladies. 😉