How to tell who’s winning the dating game

As many of my regular readers know, I’ve been out on a fair few dates.  Regular readers will also know that I have an unusual approach to dating.  My motto is, make every date an adventure.  It’s hard to tell how a dating adventure is going, so while getting bored waiting for various dates to pick me up, or in the back of my head while making small talk, I came up with a points system to keep track of how things are going.  In the spirit of pooling resources, I thought I would share this system with you and ask for your suggestions.  I’ve broken this down into relationship phases, for ease of perusal:

Asking someone out

  • While sober:  +10 points
  • While drunk:  -15 points
  • Face to face:  +15 points
  • Over the phone:  +5 points
  • Via text message:  0 points
  • On five minutes notice:  -15 points
  • Through poetry:  +25 points, even if it’s bad

Getting to first date location

  • Person who did the asking picks up:  +10 points
  • Person who was asked picks up:  -5 points, unless good reason
  • Meet at location:  0 points
  • Bringing flowers:  +10 points
  • Bringing flowers with vase:  +20 points
  • Overly romantic setting requiring heels:  0 points
  • Casual setting allowing flats:  +5 points
  • Unusual setting (awesome):  +25 points
  • Unusual setting (creepy):  -15 points

First Date

  • Telling date he/she looks nice:  +10 points
  • Not commenting on how late the other person was:  +5 points
  • Not being late in the first place:  +15 points
  • Ordering for the other person:  -20 points (I hate this!)
  • Asking the other person how his/her day was:  0 points
  • Asking the other person how his/her day was and actually listening:  +15 points
  • Discussing politics:  -5 points
  • Discussing religion:  -15 points
  • Discussing ex:  -30 points
  • Getting so engrossed in other person that you don’t notice the restaurant is closing:  +30 points
  • Tipping badly:  -20 points
  • Walking date safely to car/door:  +15 points

Post-date communication

  • Follow-up phone call/email/text within 1 day:  +10 points
  • Within two days:  +5 points
  • Within three days:  0 points
  • No contact until a week has gone by:  -10 points
  • More than five calls/emails/texts within 24 hours:  -5 points
  • Sending inappropriate pictures with suggestive captions after first date:  -50 points
  • Suggesting second date:  +15 points
  • Suggesting second date, then going incommunicado for three days:  -15 points
  • Using words “buddy”, “pal” or “friend” in post-date communication:  just give up

This doesn’t include second date activity or anything after, since a) this isn’t that kind of blog, and b) I rarely get to that stage.  Those of you who want to use this system should remember, as always, that no matter what the numerical result is, you have to take into account that certain inexplicable something that can’t be quantified.  I call it the Johnny Depp factor.  Feel free to rename it however suits you!

So what do you think?  Additions?  Corrections?  Suggestions?  Recriminations?  Does anyone want to do a follow-up for second dates and beyond?

Do first dates count as near-death experiences?

Lara Croft

Image via Wikipedia

Ok, since a decision has been made on my behalf that I should start dating again, which I really think I should have had a say in, but whatever, I want to lay down some ground rules.  Dating should be fun, it should be an adventure, it should not be a nerve-wracking, ego-wrecking form of torture akin to waterboarding.  Unless you’re into that.  Which I’m not.  So I’m setting up some ground rules to try to keep the process enjoyable:

1.  Getting Ready

For me, the date starts long before either you pick me up or we meet at whatever location.  I want to Get Ready.  Guys, I realize you don’t understand the process of Getting Ready, but it’s usually the best part of the date, so just let me have this one.  I like to spend a couple of hours in the bathroom cleansing, exfoliating, maybe putting on a nice calming mask, and then piling on about a pound of makeup and hair product so that I can look exactly like I usually do, but better.  I like to fake the I Eat Right And Take Care Of Myself look, because it’s never going to happen naturally.  I put on music, light candles, consult makeup books, ponder outfits…I’m a girl.  Let me do this and we’ll start out already having a great date.

2.  Too Much Information

I guess it’s good to have some warning, but I don’t really need to know about all your health issues on the first date.  Or the second.  I mean, if you’re dying of cancer, go ahead and tell me that.  That one’s important.  But if you’ve had a life-long battle with Irritable Bowel Syndrome, while that is certainly not any fun at all, I don’t necessarily need to hear about it at the restaurant, by candlelight, as we’ve just finished introducing ourselves.  That’s really more of a We’re In A Relationship Now kind of conversation, not a I Haven’t Yet Gotten Into Her Pants kind of conversation.  Think to yourself:  “If I were her and I had just told me this, would I be more or less likely to sleep with me?”  If the answer is more likely, go for it.  If it’s less, hold off until you cross the finish line.  Words to live by.

3.  Facebook Isn’t For First Dates

Please, please don’t friend request me right before or after our first date.  I want to be able to post about how I’m getting ready (see #1 above) or about how the date went and about how I rate you as a potential boyfriend.  I don’t want you to see that yet.  That’s the girl equivalent of peeing with the bathroom door open–which is another thing I don’t understand, but I’ll save that for a different post.  Also, things might not work out.  If you’re a jerk to me, I want to be able to post on Facebook about how awful you are and how glad I am we’re not together.  If you’re not a jerk to me and it still doesn’t work out, I don’t want to stare at your picture when it randomly pops up on my screen and start sobbing because you’ve ripped my little blind heart to pieces.  Then there’s the awkward phase where I know things aren’t working out but you don’t yet, or vice versa, and that just makes for a crap ton of awkward.  Just wait until we both know we’re on to something.

Ah, dating.  When else can a girl dress like a hooker and demand to be treated like a lady?  This should be fun!  It should be an action movie, a thriller, with chase sequences and fight scenes and maybe some explosions.  I’ve noticed there aren’t many of these things in most of the romantic comedies I’ve watched, but then, I’ve always taken a slightly different approach to romance.  Put your affairs in order, slip on a bullet-proof vest, and let’s go on a date!