Here's another example.
I returned a belated email to a gentleman who had expressed interest in going out (I'd met him once at a party). It happened to be a Saturday evening. He wrote me back later that night asking what I was doing. When I told him I was working, he wrote back:
"Not anymore. Let's c how spontaneous u r. No need for makeup, c'mon n meet me somewhere. Impress me."
Now. It was now 10:30 at night and I was in — in as in pajamas in, comfortably in, with no interest in going out. But the idea that I should go not only because he felt like it, but because it would impress him? Really?
Related: What Men Really Want
It's one thing to ask if I will meet you late on a Saturday when you hadn't given a thought to asking me earlier ... but to add that this would make me somehow more likable? Wow. This is the slight-of-hand of the spontaneity game — it's "I didn't think of it before, but you should meet me —because I feel like it and because it'll definitely make me like you more."
Yeah, not signing up for that. Not always, anyway (never say never). But it definitely was not a motivating factor.
And here's why: To a great extent, spontaneity must be earned. You can't break from the norm when you don't have a norm. Much less be expected to be spontaneous (which sort of cancels out the spontaneous part).
This drives a single friend of mine crazy. When she gets the after-9 p.m. text to meet up, she doesn't respond. "I wonder how many people he's gone through to get to me," she says. Of course, this is fear-based thinking — and not one I subscribe to. But I get her concern and I know that many women would think the same thing.
I don't personally care how many other women whose attention you're vying for. But if you want mine, you have to think a little in advance and assume that, like you, there's a good chance I have plans.
At the very least, if a gent is going to ask you out the day of, or night of, it should sound more like this: "Hi there. I know you likely have plans for this evening but I happen to be in your neck of the woods unexpectedly and would love to take you out for a drink. If you can, fantastic, and if not, I understand and will be in touch next week so we can set up actual plans."
Related: 5 Signs He'll Be Good in Bed
There you have it: The approach is humble; it doesn't assume you're free and if you call yourself a woman you'll meet him. No. There's even a little context (and I don't even care if it's fudged —it just needs to feel real), and if it doesn't happen, the guy has every intention of following up to make a real plan.
Why? Because real men make real plans. And they know where their priorities are. If you're one of them, you usually know before you order takeout and throw on "Deadly Women" on Investigation Discovery.
My advice: Beware the man who insists you meet him spontaneously very early on, or all the time. Spontaneity has its place, and can be fun when it's someone you'd be thrilled to meet up with. But not when it's used as a mask for poor planning, afterthought and straight-up laziness. It also demonstrates first hand that he can't make a decision or won't commit to one until the very last minute —which, ironically, limits his options in the end. Not that manly, when you look at it that way. Adolescent, is more like it.
Keep that in mind the next time your phone buzzes after midnight with a two-word text: "U around?"
More from GalTime.com:
- Is the Dating Pool too Crowded?
- Advice to My Younger Self About One-Night Stands
- 10 Signs He's Not Really Committed
- What NOT to Wear on a Date
Terri Trespicio is a writer, speaker, expert, coach, and contributor for the fast-growing online magazine for women GalTime.com. She’s also the creator of bestdecisionallday.com. Visit her at trespicio.com.