Having a first date that involves a meal is never easy. Whereas a first meeting over drinks gives you the opportunity to run, if need be, a dinner date is far longer and, in some cases, far more revealing of who that person truly is. I'm not talking about any deep dark secrets, because those goodies usually don’t come out until date three or four. I'm talking about table manners. Table manners say A LOT about a person.
For most, table manners are everything. If you can't get through a meal without showing some basic social skills and the ability to act appropriately at the dinner table, then nine out of 10 women (86 percent) and 74 percent of men will not be going on a second date. Do you blame them? If someone can't put their addiction to social media and texting on hold for an hour, then what does that say about other areas of the relationship, if things were to evolve? Nothing too good, that's for sure.
Relationship expert, Kate Taylor, commissioned an extensive research to see exactly what table manners will send a date running, and what behavior is bound to impress. Overall, Italian food was voted the best choice for a first date, and those who are polite and kind to the wait-staff (because, hello?! Why wouldn't you be?), are traits that immediately score high with singles, both men and women.
But what are the bad manners? You know, the ones you might not even be aware that are grating on the nerves of someone else? Well, let me list them out for you, from the least aggravating to the absolute worst. Keep in mind, just because it's last on the list of annoyances, doesn't mean it still isn't awful.
While it should be no surprise that insulting your date's dinner choice is a huge no-no, it doesn't stop 16 percent of singles from being turned off by garlic or onion. Perhaps, it's because they're already thinking ahead to the goodnight kiss or maybe they just have an aversion to keeping vampires away. Whatever the case, for this particular group, nothing says rude like you downing garlic as if it’s the last bulb of it on the planet. But if the date is going poorly, then I say, order another round.
7. Taking your date out for fast food.
Before you even get to the actual date, you should know that if you're considering hitting up a fast food joint, you're not only going to get marks for bad manners, but you're also going to make a bad impression. Of those surveyed, 23 percent said that the quickest way to ruin a date before it even gets started is to take them to a fast food place. Not far behind, was sushi at 14 percent with respondents just not feeling it. I'm going to assume these people have never had a properly made crunchy, spicy tuna roll.
6. Taking photos of food.
"The date was going really great, but then he took out his phone to photograph the dessert …"Do you really want to be THAT guy? Sure, we're all guilty of taking photos of food; it's just an accepted, yet bizarre, behavior in which a lot of us indulge. However, there's a place and a time for everything. If a third of singles (33 percent) think the worst thing you can possibly do on a date is take a picture of your dinner, then just don't. You can play fancy photographer and capture the emotional essence of your burger tomorrow.
5. Answering a phone call
Emergencies are understandable, but a call from anyone else? Nope, and 33 percent of singles agree. I think what we're gathering here is that having your phone out can be dangerous. Between texts, social media, and the inescapable urge to photograph the way the light bounces off your glass of wine and really brightens the tomato and basil on your plate, it's probably safer to just turn the damn thing off and put it away.
OK, so texting has just become so ingrained in our daily activities, that maybe you're not even aware you're doing it anymore, but when you’re on a date, you really need to just put the phone away. Thirty-five percent of singles will not stand for your texting on a date. Again, while I’m sure an emergency situation is forgivable, everything else can wait.
3. Social media updates
So, the date is going well? Great! Do you really need to give a play-by-play about how awesome it’s going mid-meal on Facebook and Twitter? Probably not. Even if this is your first date in a looong time, be cool. You can share with all your Tweeps later the details of how smooth you were and how you're pretty sure a second date is in the works. Besides, 45 percent of people won't even be giving you a second chance if you spend the date updating your social media world.
2. Noisy eating
Ah! I can totally get behind this one! When I hear people eating meat loudly, it makes me cringe and I’m not even a vegetarian. Over half of singles, at 56 percent, think noisy eating is the grossest of the gross. Although the study didn't specify, it's probably safe to assume that these noisy eaters are chewing with their mouth open, too. Ew! Come on! You're an adult! Close your mouth, don't talk with your mouth full, and quit being noisy about it. No one wants to hear every single chomp you take on that steak.
And the ultimate dealbreaker of all?
1. Ordering dinner for your date
Dudes, what year do you think this is? Seriously. I’m not sure who these men are who still think they're doing their date some sort of weird favor by ordering for them, but apparently, these guys still exist and are probably still alone, because the worst possible bad manner for 61 percent of women is when her date orders for her. It's not chivalrous, it's not polite, and it’s actually just straight-up insulting, rude, annoying, and every other negative adjective you want to toss in there. Really, guys, don't do that. We can order for ourselves.