Rule Five: Shut Up

You’ve arrived on time, and so has she. Sweeter than you had imagined – or remembered – she’s smiling and actually seems to be into you. It is at precisely this point you should look down, and realize that the palm fronds beneath your feet hide a man-trap. A deep, well crafted man-trap with many sharp, poisoned wooden spikes waiting at the bottom. Just for you. How do we men avoid falling into this dating horror?

First we need to momentarily change the way we think, and actually put yourself in your date’s shoes. (My mind naturally imagines she’s wearing high-heeled Manolos, but not here in Seattle, sadly, where even hetero chicks wear comfortable shoes. One wonders whether Washington State Victoria’s Secret stores stock anti-sexual politically-correct liberal undies as well.) By which I mean, what is it that a woman is looking for, social intercourse-wise, in a date? Men, she’s not looking for answers. She doesn’t want your resume, and she really doesn’t care about your golf handicap.

To explain this, we need to examine the different way in which men and women view the world. In short, women look for support, men look for the perfect home theater. Women like to talk, men look for a lower gas price. Women make their decisions in public, men make them surfing internet porn.

Let’s face it, for the first few dates, we want to make a good impression, and have the babe think the best of us. Make it easy for them, by asking questions and actually listening to the answers. Open-enders are best, and at least make an attempt at tailoring them to the individual. Asking whether she plans to watch the Bush Inaugural is truly a stupid start here in Dem-land, but something about raising money for Tsunami-ed unfortunates will be closer to the mark.

Which leads us to that awful time when you find that despite her cute visage and clinging blouse, all her gas-bagging is boring your tits off. Refer here to Rule Two: Concentrate. Under even the most adverse verbal overspill, keep eye contact, maintain the sympathetic sighs and tsks, and just tough it out. And if you are asked a direct question, be direct back, answer it, attempt humor if possible and gently lead your way back to her. It’s all about her.

If you find that over the course of the next few weeks that she gave you the heave-ho, recall whether you talked more than thirty percent of the time. If so, you fell headlong into that dating man-trap. I’d check for puncture wounds, splinters and get some blood work done. Don’t worry, the poison isn’t fatal.

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