It’s the first date. You’re probably nervous, reluctant to wake up from your GTA5 coma, and feeling like Eminem at the beginning of 8 Mile. But rather than live your life vicariously through animated degenerates, understand no date has to be that scary. Women love confidence more than Todd Carney loves a tattooist’s gun. You’ve done the hard part; you’ve got her number, and got her to agree to go out with you. All you have to do now is not stuff it up. Women are generally unpredictable, so there’s no scientific formula for the perfect date – there are only general rules of thumb, and these are mine.
What to wear
- Don’t dress above your means – Don’t dress above your means – If you’ve saved 12 months for that Givenchy printed tee, but lived like Tom Hanks in Castaway to do so, it will become glaringly obvious to your date, if you manage to secure date two. Dress accordingly to where you’re going for dinner. If you don’t know what I mean, here are some cost effective solutions: here, here and here.
- Groom yourself – Find your signature scent, get a clean shave (check out The Happy Sailors Barbershop), and trim your fingernails (trust me, she will notice) .
Where to go
- Much like not dressing above your means, don’t take her for a 15 course degustation dinner at Tetsuya’s if it means that you’ll be eating Weet Bix for the next month to save money. That doesn’t mean you’re allowed to take her to Maccas or your favourite kebab place that’s been red flagged by the city health inspectors.
- The idea is to get to know this girl, to talk to her, and, most importantly, listen to her. Take her somewhere casual, somewhere that will allow you both to converse without yelling, and without the risk of constant interruptions. Tapas is exploding in Sydney right now, and it is an ideal first date – you’re sharing a meal in more ways than one and don’t have to worry about her sneaking something from your plate. It takes the stress out of ordering. I strongly recommend Foley Lane. It has an arty, relaxed vibe and wont leave your wallet as empty as the Cronulla Sharks’ trophy cabinet.
How to act
- Be a gentleman. Sounds simple, but few truly understand what it means. Everyone has their own version, but I abide by these rules:
- Pick her up and drop her off back home – Yes, you’re going to be more nervous than a drug mule in customs, but man up.
- Don’t be late – If before you leave your house for dinner you require more bodywork than a written-off F1 car, give yourself enough time to do so. She’s no doubt going to make you wait while she gets ready, but she’s got two x chromosones, so indecisiveness is built into her DNA, not yours.
- Listen – Pay attention and don’t talk over her. This can be a strategic advantage for securing date two – remembering her favourite movie, or even her best friend’s name, will put you in good stead. It also demonstrates to her that you were listening while she was talking, even if you were really trying to avoid getting caught staring at her cleavage.
- Pay for dinner – I can’t emphasise this one enough. If she has to pay for dinner, she’ll also be paying for a cab ride home. Oh, and guess what, you’re not invited.
- The goodnight kiss – ‘Should I lean in?’ it’s the eternal question. I said at the beginning that women are unpredictable, so ignore every romantic comedy you’ve ever watched – you’re not Hugh Grant, and we discovered that Hitch was useless. I can only speak from experience. A first date doesn’t have to herald the beginning of new relationship. But, if by the night’s end, you want to see this girl again, and you get the vibe she’s into you, hold off until at least date three.
- And if you never want to see this girl again, don’t be a dick about it – Say goodbye to her the same way you greeted her, as a gentleman.