The Trial: Victor. We met on a dating website, didn’t converse much before he asked me out but what I did know that I liked about him was, he was a few years younger than me, likes to dress up in costumes, and is in Marketing. I told him I only go on drinking dates so we agree to meet at a pub.
The Error: He was a several minutes late which, thoughtless as it may have been, wasn’t the end of the world, except that it resulted in the first conversation we ever had being on the subject of drying undershirts. Think about how you screw up any meeting where the first thing you have to talk about is why you weren’t there on time. Call ahead and warn her so you don’t have to talk about it when you meet in person. So, undershirts and tumble dryers are less than riveting first impression material, unless you are me, who as usual had a glass of wine (OK, two glasses of wine) knowing full well that I intimidate my suitors with my magnificence and I can ease the awkwardness by giggling and talking enough for the both of us. I have a lifelong mission to protect everyone else’s confidence in themselves until the moment they offend me. It is both a blessing and a curse, but I’ve never really been a gray area kind of girl so it suits me.
Victor orders a tea. Now normally I don’t think there is any fault in drinking tea but when a girl says she wants to go for drinks, you should be smart enough to leave your car at home and prove your chivalry by matching drinks with her. A date is time planned to do something together, so do the thing together that the woman asks you. Imagine you ask a woman to go golfing, she agrees, and then just wants to carry your clubs… it would be weird… even if you might not necessarily mind… you would golf alone while she watches… definitely a weird first date. Any smart woman who you meet on a blind date does not expect you to drive her home. She doesn’t even know you, therefore she hasn’t decided if she trusts you yet- remember that. Just because you think you are the nicest guy on earth, SHE doesn’t know it until she gets to know you be it for five minutes, or five weeks, or five years, depending on the smart woman. So if the plan is to go for drinks, be a modern gentleman and drink the same number as drinks as her.
Our lovely waitress, who I had told earlier that I was on a blind date while I was mildly obsessively deciding where to sit in the pub, tells Victor that they do not serve tea. Victor makes a grand show of total disbelief, which as a former waitress I found very annoying. Get over it. Pick something else so I can be on my way. To get on with the show I point out to Victor from my two years working in England, that pubs don’t always have coffee or tea. So I suggest he have a white wine, like me and Victor replies, “I don’t drink.” Well. Once again, normally I wouldn’t think there was any fault in being a non-drinker – unless you are going out with a girl for drinks, and she blatantly told you that she only goes on drinking dates, and you deliberately mislead her to thinking you would be drinking together. I am not overjoyed at this point that I am drinking alone, which gives me a very unusual sense of self-consciousness and that it seems like he lied about it to trick me into meeting him, but he is pretty attractive and I am interested in Marketing, and I tell myself that he DID do it because he wanted to meet me, so I remain.
We start to talk about our jobs, his in marketing, mine as a clothing store owner/jack of many trades, and as I tell him I have always done my own marketing by use of hairbrained ideas which seem to be working for me, he starts to belittle my profession, poking fun at the original marketing ideas I have had, but not suggesting anything useful. So I ask him his opinion of what he would do differently in my position, where the truth comes out that he works in Marketing for a flooring company and knows absolutely nothing about retail, or fashion, or alternative culture, or marketing for any of them. Belittled by a guy who is supposed to be trying to get in my pants, concerning a subject he is not expelling any actual information on, I look him straight in the eye, and I ask him “Is this the first date you have ever been on in your life?” He refrains from answering and at this point I have had enough and tell him I am leaving, where he slathers the icing on the cake by telling me he wants me to take him to “my little store” and see what “my little store” is all about. I laugh. I ridicule. I go home alone.
The Moral: It is not proper modern dating etiquette to make fun of a woman’s profession if you ever plan to get near her panties, nevermind into them whether she works at McDonalds or Wall Street.
It is best to show up on time, for avoidance of seeming like a princess, or an asshole. When a guy is significantly late without calling to say so, I assume that he thinks his time is more important than mine. Which is of course a huge turn off. Even if you think you might be one minute late, it is polite to call or text to let your date know in order to make her feel like this date is important to you.
Lastly, if a woman insists on drinks for the first date, chances are she expects you to drink with her so be sure to make her aware of the fact that you will not be joining her in the festivities if you don’t plan to. Be straightforward about it instead of creating an immediate wall of distrust and instant power struggle, so she can decide ahead of time if she wants to sit there drinking by herself while you sip on herbal teas or mineral water, or if she wants to omit herself from the situation altogether. Another idea would be to omit that undershirt that you didn’t have time to dry that made you late and gave you the poor first impression in the first place.
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