Thursday, February 11, 2016

Not Just For Valentine's Day: Dating Your Beautiful Lady

It's all about her, even if she likes white wine.
Being a fairly inquisitive guy, I sometimes ask people somewhat personal questions. On more than one occasion, for example, after I’ve met someone who I think has a really awesome job that I didn’t even think could be a job, I’ve asked, “So, what could I expect to earn if I did this really awesome job, too?” I must have an honest face, because I can’t remember a time when my interviewee said to me, “Shove it up your *.”

My curiosity hasn’t been limited to potential earnings for doing really cool jobs. Considering I’m a single father who writes for other single fathers about single father issues, I tend to talk to people, men and women alike, about a lot of stuff . . . like dating. I’ve heard some pretty funny and interesting stories, much of which I won’t repeat here. However, I’ve also learned that a lot of you, my single father brothers, just aren’t doing it right. So, considering it’s almost Valentine’s Day weekend, I thought I’d impart a few really important things that you need to do when you take a lady out on a date.

(Ladies, you can thank me later.)

The Notebook based on a novel by Nicholas Sparks.
1) Have a plan. I know it’s a generalization, but a lady enjoys the dating experience. For you, my brother, spending time with your beautiful lady should be enough. Hopefully, you know your lady at least a little, so have a specific plan in mind to do something mostly (or all) about her. If she likes Tai and Nicholas Sparks movies, then plan make reservations and check (If you have to Google “Nicholas Sparks movies,” please do so now.) If she likes a picnic lunch and hiking the Adirondack Trail, plan that. Unless she’s a NFL junkie or a Yankees (Cardinals, Cubs, Dodgers, etc.) fan, then save watching the big game for your buddies and your man cave.

2) Guys, ask your lady for a date. Don’t expect your lady to ask you and even if you’re in a long-term relationship, don’t assume that you’ll go out on Friday/Valentine’s Day/Whatever Day. It’s not part of the romance thing. Your lady wants to feel special and, when you ask, you’ll help make that happen.

3) Dress for success. This includes grooming. To a lady, it’s a matter of respect that you’ve taken the time to look good for her. I know you want her to look good for you, right? I can’t believe I have to say this, but get a haircut. Shave or, if you’re like me, trim your beard. Make sure you’re clean and that you’re wearing clean, nice clothes. Here’s one: throw on a sport coat. If you don’t have a sport coat, go to Joseph A. Bank right now and get one. Spend at least $500.

Be a gentleman, gentlemen.
4) “Don’t use your mobile phone” and other gentlemanly behaviors: Be a gentleman. When you pick her up for the date, assuming you don’t cohabitate, walk to her door and ring the bell. Open her car door. If you go to a restaurant, look at her and listen to her while having a conversation. Don’t talk about yourself. Of course, you pay for dinner, movie tickets, and whatever else. From research I’ve done, a woman’s #1 dating peeve is her partner’s mobile phone use. So, if you have money on the game, then check your phone briefly with one hand . . . when you’re using the restroom. (Wash both before returning to the table.)

What happens next?
5) Intimacy Protocol – Send Flowers: Look, I’m not going to tell you all my secrets and some things you just have to figure out yourself, but you may end your wonderful evening with your beautiful lady in an intimate way. Because you’d had a plan, been respectful by asking your lady for a date, showered and shaved, listened, and been a gentlemen, you probably went a long way to creating a romantic environment. If you do happen to have connected intimately with your partner, make sure she knows that the time she spent with you meant something and that you’re still a gentleman. I’m not kidding about this, send her flowers the next day. Regardless of anything else, the flowers will say a lot of things like, “You’re special,” “Our night together was beautiful,” among others. I’d also suggest that you call your beautiful lady the next day, but you won’t have to. She’ll call you to say, “Thanks for the flowers.” Then, the two of you can figure out what happens next.

Of course, you can put your own personal perspective on these guidelines, Romeo. Hopefully, you’re already on board with some of this. Still, I can all but assure you that, if you just do this stuff, you’ll be, at the very least, a one-eyed man in a kingdom of the blind.

Happy Valentine’s Day, my brothers.