Dates: non-event or so necessary?


When I think of the relevance of a date, I suddenly get transported into the body of young Hova and ‘so necessary’ splashes across my mind.

I’m a mate of the date. That is, I fully support the notion of two people getting together in a slightly-more-formal-than-usual setting and making time to enjoy each other’s company. Whether you’ve been together for five years – or five minutes.

I know it sounds silly. Why wouldn’t you support it? Well, some people (especially those in either of the two extremes: just met or together more than three years) find it silly to put emphasis on either getting to know someone that could turn out to be just a fling, or someone they’ve been with for an extended period of time.

I don’t want to discriminate here, but it is mostly the fellas who aren’t in full support of ‘dating’ – that is the physical outing aspect of seeing someone – but are more than happy to spend time doing the horizontal jig in-between the sheets – or in the case of a long-term couple – on the couch.

That’s not to say all men don’t like to date. I know plenty of guys who enjoy wining and dining. Venturing out of the familiar four walls and getting to know a girl (or guy) in a more open environment. It’s dates like this that form memories. Special events that the two of you will always have in common, a topic you’ll always have to talk about because you experienced it together.

I also find as a female, it’s important for me to see how a guy goes in the outside world – you know, in public – anywhere other than between the sheets. Why? Well there a few deal-breakers for me, and a date can give me a good indication of how suitable this guy is before I fall into major crush-mode, only to find out he’s actually a douche-and-a-half.

Let’s say it’s a dinner date. Did he ask you to pick? That’s tricky. Either he doesn’t know his tapas from his toast or he’s willing to let you show off your know-how. Or he said there’s a great little place he wanted to take you to? Perfect, everyone likes a guy who can take the lead. Let him show off to you. Go on.

You get to the restaurant – does he put his head straight into the menu and allow conversation to dwindle? Not a great start. Does he ask you what wine you’d prefer and order accordingly? Tick tick tick.

Now, when the waiter comes, does he mumble his order and not make eye contact? Major pet hate for me personally – I must say. I’ve known a few guys to do this. Everyone at the table feels a little awkward. You want him to be confident, without being cocky. A lot to ask? I think not.

Now, the crucial moment. You’ve come to the end of the meal. Does he pay? Does he tell you to put your wallet straight back into your bag? If so, slap him with a great big gold star. If not, don’t worry too much – guys are less expected to always pay since women started banging on about equality – so it’s not a total no no to split the bill – but there are ways of going around it.

If he takes your half and winks at you saying the after dinner drink is on him, he’s redeemed himself. Most women don’t mind paying for themselves, it’s not a money thing – it’s the want to feel like he enjoys spoiling you. So the promise of dessert or a post-dinner drink on him is often all it takes.

If however, he itemises everything on the menu and tells you how much yours comes to, well, I take that as a sign that perhaps he’s just not that into you. In my experience, it’s sort of embarrasing for anyone to have to do that – so there’s only really three conclusions you could come to if something like this occurs.

1) He’s dumb as dog shit – and doesn’t realise how awkward what he’s just done is.

2) He’s actually pretty short of cash this week. Look, it can happen, but he should have borrowed off a mate, or pushed the date back, or not itemised the bloody menu for heaven’s sake.

or 3) He doesn’t see the need to impress because he’s pretty certain there won’t be a second date.

You may not agree with anything i’ve said above – but as I said, these are my conclusions from my own personal dating repertoire, and from the people around me.

But I want to know what you think – do you think dates are definitely worth doing? Or do you think couples should do away with them completely?

NQC x

Dates: worth doing, or should we just do away with them?

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