Okay, so I have 10,000 things to post about (and just about as many half finished posts), but this needs to jump to the top of the list. Here it is, for all of you that flunked Miss-Adventures' Dating 101 course. Don't worry, I've kept it brief, because I know your attention spans are short:
Remedial Courses in Dating
by The Nugget
1. Do not show up intoxicated.
Seriously, don't do it. I have had two dates show up intoxicated (that I knew of), and that was two too many. The first date was an hour late, intoxicated, and ended up whispering, "I am the 1%" (for those of you that didn't follow the Occupy movement, this is like trying to impress me with his AmEx black card) while spitting popcorn in my hair. Intoxicated Date Number Two? Oh, you'll soon see how that went.
2. Take some pride in your appearance.
Listen, I'm not saying dates are like beauty pageants, where you're going to be judged based solely on evening wear and your bikini body, but let's get real. You have one chance to make an impression. Do you really want that impression to be, "I just rolled out of my bed in my mom's basement and grabbed whatever clothes didn't smell like cat urine off the bathroom floor because I really couldn't care less about you or this date (or my appearance)." Date Number Two? Well...at least he didn't smell like cat urine.
3. Engage in conversation.
This is hard. I know it, you know it, even your mom knows it. It's hard to talk to strangers. We've been socialized not to, and what do you really say to someone you don't know? Well, guess what, folks. This is the internet age, and you've probably met your date through an internet dating site. You have a wealth of information at your fingertips. Something in their profile made you laugh? Ask them more about it. You have a few shared interests? Tell them a story about the last time you engaged in those interests. Their profile was boring and basic? Well, what the hell are you doing there, then? If all else fails, always have a light-hearted emergency question or two (you know the kind: "If you were stranded on a desert island, what three items would you hope to have with you?" "If you were an animal, which would you be?" "Star Trek or Star Wars?" Actually, maybe keep that last one to yourself). Your date may be shy or nervous, too, and your asking questions could inspire her to relax and open up as well. If, however, you let her sit in awkward silence so long that she's making eyes at the person behind you, date's over, buddy.
4. Don't be a bigot.
Listen, I don't know you. I mean, I might, but I can't see through this screen, so you're totally anonymous. You could be of any gender, religion, ethnicity, nationality, sexuality, creed, background, status, etc. I don't know. Even when I'm presented with someone live and in person, sharing my space, I don't know most of these things about you. I don't know your background, I don't know your identity, and I'm sure not going to make any assumptions. But even if I DID know these things, I've invited you to share my space. You're doing that. Why would I then going and say something offensive about you, or someone you know, or someone you might know, or someone you might identify with?
Date Number Two at least had the courtesy to wait an hour and two drinks to show he was a bigot. We were discussing his family, and he mentioned his sister was gay. "I'm totally fine with it, except when she pulls her [insert homophobic slur here] stuff." I sat in stunned silence for a second, then looked him in the eye and said, "I'm queer." He was quiet for a minute, and then said, "I guess I shouldn't use that word." I agreed with that. "But in the future, those words will be rendered meaningless, so people should just be okay with them." "Oh," I replied, "So I should be okay with you calling me a [insert anti-Semitic slur here]?" "Yes!" he said. "I should be able to say [homophobic slur], [anti-Semitic slur] and [racist slur] because in your lifetime, those won't mean anything." "But they mean something now," I said. "You're living in a future utopia that doesn't yet exist, and there's a huge chasm between you and where we are presently, with not even a solid foundation for a bridge yet." "Listen," he replied, sighing. "They're adjectives. Do you know what adjectives are? They're--" "I may be a 'dumb female,'" I interrupted, "but I know what an adjective is. Listen, let's just end this here, because neither of
us are going to change our minds. You're going to continue thinking it's
okay to use words that people have used for decades to oppress and
humiliate and hurt people, and I'm going to continue to think you an
asshole for it. It was nice meeting you." With that, I walked out.
Everyone is entitled to their own beliefs. If those beliefs lead you to engage in language or actions that hurt other people, you're probably an asshole. If you're an asshole, you have four options. First, don't go on dates. This is an excellent choice if you really enjoy being an asshole. Second, go on dates, but pretend you're not an asshole until the person is lulled to a sense of security, and then BAM! Spring your asshole-iness on them. You'll probably get dumped, but hey, at least you probably got some action. Third, throw all of your asshole-iness into the ring right away, and see if your date doesn't flee the scene immediately. If they don't, congratulations! You may have found yourself another asshole. Fourth, and this is the best option, STOP BEING AN ASSHOLE.