Love, Self

4 Dating Tips From A (Near) Professional

Dating tips

First, I'd just like to say how grateful I am for all of the comments and Facebook friend requests I received yesterday wishing me good luck—I honestly appreciate each one. I just hope everyone comes back tomorrow so we can say a proper goodbye. Moving on: When I tell people that I blog about my love life on, the first thing most say is, "You're like Carrie Bradshaw with a penis! Can I call you Hairy Bradshaw?" Then they laugh uproariously as I fight off the urge to bang my head against the nearest hard surface. The second thing is, "So you must be the real-life Mr. Big by now." Not exactly, but after going on more dates than John Mayer on a hot streak, I have managed to pick up a few pointers that anyone could use. And now that I only have one more day to go at Single-ish (!), it's time for me to share whatever small bits of wisdom I've picked up along the way.

Rule #1. Say yes to set-ups. The very thought of letting my busybody buddies set me up on a date used to give me the shakes. I figured they would demand a minute-by-minute recap, a key to my diary and naming rights for our firstborn. Turns out they're excellent matchmakers. After all, these are the same people who have been listening to me wax philosophic about women for years. And there's an added benefit: Gossiping about your mutual friend is a great way to get the conversational ball rolling on a first date. 5 Online Dating Red Flags Women Look For

Rule #2: Cut the guy some slack if he sounds like a nervous 13-year-old on the phone. If it were up to me, all pre-date communication would be conducted via email, where there is no risk of accidentally saying something embarrassing. I assumed my tech-savvy readers would agree. Wrong-o. When I asked how you felt about asking a girl out electronically, the response was overwhelming. This advice from emma4 sums up the consensus opinion: "If you want to stand out in a crowd of mediocre, wussy men, take the time and make the phone call. At least I'd get to hear your voice." Duly noted. Now I always try to call at least once before a date.

Rule #3. Choose a venue where he won't be distracted. Last summer, my date invited me to brunch at a restaurant that is always packed with beautiful hipsters. Naturally, there was a Kate Hudson look-alike sitting behind my date, right in my line of vision. Even worse, she was wearing this crazy low-cut dress, and when she leaned forward I could see her ENTIRE breast. I'm not a total cad, but asking a man to ignore bare boobs is like putting Cookie Monster on a sugar-free diet. 

Rule #4. Don't talk ish. The hardest part about rehashing my dating life online—besides explaining the concept of "booty calls" to my mom—is detailing a night that didn't go so well. While I want to be honest, I also need to be sensitive to the woman’s feelings because A) I'm a nice guy and B) she can always go on the comment board and tell everyone I smell like unpasteurized cheese. But discretion is key even if you don't have a blog. When a guy hears a woman ripping on her last suitor he becomes a little less brave. Once I was having a nice conversation with a woman at the bar when her friend started making fun of the last guy who hit on them. Were they were waiting for me to give them a good anecdote to rehash over Bloody Marys the next day? I quickly found someone else to chat up. It's pretty simple: if you don't have something nice to say, don't say anything at all. Well, unless it's really funny, in which case you should start a blog. Bad First Impression Hard To Shake

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