First Date Faux Pas

from http://slingerman43.deviantart.com/

A few years ago now, I went on a date with a boy. I had met him at the Social, and he came over to me without saying as much as two words before he asked me out on a date. I figured, sure, why not. He was 30, and the drummer of a band. I give him my phone number as I leave the bar, and he tells me he is going to call me. Cool. The next day, I don’t receive a call, but a text message saying “Hey it’s __. Would you like to go for dinner on Wednesday night?”. Ok, still normal, great. I accept. Wednesday night rolls around and we still havent confirmed where we are going to go. He says “we’ll figure it out when I get to your house”. I know what that means. I lived across the street from Sneaky Dees at this point, so I always get this gut feeling, this worry, that one day someone would actually think of suggesting to go there for a first date. That or Bistro 422.

So he arrives, 15 minutes late, for our date. He gets to my house, and SHOCK ME SHOCK ME, he suggests Sneaky Dees (not even on a Tuesday where at least we could have fajitas). I shoot it down, as I had indulged in fajitas with some girlfriends the night prior, so it was a great excuse not to go. Not wanting to leave him up to potentially suggesting Toby’s or Bistro, I suggest going to Kalendar. So we do. I feel as though he is worried at this point of what type of place this is going to be. He gets quiet on the walk, asks questions about the place. He lives in this neighbourhood, and doesn’t even know? Odd.

from http://tatielle.tumblr.com/page/10

We get to Kalendar, and the date begins. We both order beers and some food. He takes down a beer within minutes, and I have barely had a sip of mine. We start to talk about our jobs, where  I was working in the Financial Services industry at the time. He did construction work while he was trying to make it with his band. He proceeded to trash the suit lifestyle (note: I was a suit at this point), and talk about how much better his life is because he has all the time in the world for artistic expression. He isn’t confined to the cubicle. Okay. I’ve heard this all before, whatever. I disagree entirely, and I actually quite enjoy having some routine in my life (whether it be work hours, or more importantly, paycheque), but I just let it go. It’s such a cliché argument, I’m bored.

So after he has torn into my job at this point, I’m not really loving the date so much so I remind him that I need to leave by 10 O’Clock as the first Canucks game of the season is about to start. This is immediately followed by laughter. “Haven’t you grown out of that yet?”. Yes, the 30 year old drummer who is trying to “make it” with his band is asking me if have grown out of liking hockey. This date is just turning awful. He then goes on a long tangent about how much of a waste of money all professional sports are, and that his favourite sport is riding his bike to the island, and that all real sports are individual sports. This is getting to be too much.

from http://wolfganged.com/travels/downtown/

I have a hockey game, that I have now been shamed for liking, that I have to get to, so we get the bill. He grabs it immediately and looks through it. The bill is $50 and he puts down a 20. We ordered the same thing, but he had 2 more beers than I did. Strange. Whatever, I put down $45, and he makes some remark about how I am a suit I can afford to pay a bigger amount. Then he has a great idea! He takes out his credit card, and decides that he will put the whole tab on his card so he can take the (read: MY) cash so he doesn’t have to go to a bank machine. So he takes the cash, and puts down his card, and I look closely to see what tip he leaves. $5. He made MONEY off of this date.

The date is finally over, thank god. I feel at this point he isn’t into me, I pretty much hate him at this point, so let’s just part and go our separate ways. Obviously, right? After this guy has insulted my job, my love of hockey, and taken my money, he asks me if he can walk me to the next bar I’m going to go watch the game at. While we were walking, he asks if he can come along (!!! WHAT ??). I turn him down, saying I like to geek out in my jersey and it will be embarrassing etc etc. He walks me to my house so I can grab a jersey. Then, he goes in for the kill. This guy, who seemingly hated me, and I hated in return, has just tried to kiss me. I give him the cheek, and send him on his way. Within minutes I receive a text message saying “that was an amazing date, can we get together again in a few days?”. Yeah… no.

While I fully admit to not being the greatest date of all time, there are some obvious things that many guys do, that are a faux pas on a first date.

  • Venue Selection: This is key. No one wants to be taken to a complete dive bar, unless it’s only for a drink. If the restaurant you have in mind is well known for it’s after 2AM rush, chances are you shouldn’t take a girl there.
  • Conversation Topics: While some people say you should steer clear of politics and religion, I think it to be the opposite. It’s nice to feel out what their background is, and find anywhere you might clash beforehand. It’s not cool to tear into the other person’s job, or hobbies, right off the bat. Light, gentle teasing is fair game, but making someone legitimately feel bad about something is bad form.
  • Communication Method: Call, don’t text. Sure, we are in the digital age, and everything is communicated via a Tweet, Text or Facebook Status, but there are some things that you need to go back to the roots for. I can’t tell you how nice it feels to have a boy call me, and not text me, to set up something. You can hear their voice again, and get a sense of their mood and personality.
  • Payment: Did you ask her out? You should pay. Always. After a few dates, I am all for splitting the bill, but there isn’t a girl out there who wouldn’t love being treated on a date. I honestly will sometimes take it as a sign that you don’t like me if you don’t treat me. I’m a strong minded woman, independant, blah blah blah, but I still love to be wined and dined. Chivalry is not dead, some just choose to ignore it. The best tactic I’ve seen? He used to always pay the bill while I was in the washroom. Smooth.
  • Kiss or No Kiss: Feel out the date. Has she touched you at all? If she has, even in the slightest way, she’s into you. If she cuts the date short, and says she has to be somewhere else, then it’s a good idea to save the kiss. There is only one thing that’s worse than going in for the kill if she’s not into it, and that’s not going in for the kill if she is. Make that first move if you are into her, otherwise she’ll assume you aren’t.

Edit: If anyone is questioning whether or not this is actually a true story, a little proof.

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  • http://amandalaird.wordpress.com/ Amanda

    Wow, I didn't believe it was possible to ruin a date at Kalendar — that place was made for dates, first and otherwise!

  • http://twitter.com/boyreporter Ron Nurwisah

    Seconded… Kalendar is pretty much the perfect first date place…. also the paying not paying thing is annoying. I've had things get tense over whether I can grab the bill. I WANT to pay the bill but man sometimes my date gets annoyed about it.

    I do like the stealth “I'm going to hit the bathroom” payment option.

  • http://www.theashcan.com/ Anupa

    Even worse than not getting the bill is the utter stingy-ness! He couldn't even pay for at least HALF plus tip (if he was really that hard up)?! I've been in a similar position, it's so audacious.

  • http://www.darkshadesbrightlips.com/ Andrea De Rubeis

    Every boy/man/dater should read, study and memorize the list of topics re: venue, conversation….

    This guy sounds like such a nightmare!
    If that was a good date for him, I'd hate to be on a bad one?
    Seemed like you were much nicer to him than he deserved!

  • http://www.unbrelievable.com/ Breanna Hughes

    I probably was, until I publicly posted our date on my blog :) Now, not so nice.

  • http://www.theoutfitmaker.blogspot.com/ Sarah M

    OMG ahhhhhhhhh worst date ever. He sounds like a demon. I hate guys like that who fornulate opinions based on everything but the norm .. only to “not conform” .. hes a puppet.

  • http://twitter.com/patbateman_ Pat

    Excellent read. Sorry about the money, I was really strapped.

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  • http://twitter.com/jessicawilkes82 Jessica Wilkes

    Great read! I should direct all my future dates to your blog and make this post prerequisite reading material. haha!

  • CUT HERE

    Wow, I don't know if it's often like this here but your date sucks. It's the best practices to miss a date ! So weird…
    It's the opposite of my vision of a “french date”. Do you have often this kind of date here in Toronto ? Shame on this guys ^^. Nobody is perfect, sure, but here it's like a joke :s.
    I like your advises at the end.

  • 2wicky

    Nice post Breanna, yes us guys can be clueless and not read the signs sometimes but this guy sounds like he just didn't have a clue at all. Women should be able to use signs like this to identify a guy who is just after you for your looks and not someone who is interested in you as a person. If they just push forward with no inclination that you are having a horrible time, this is why.

    Oh, and never date a drummer.

  • http://twitter.com/tomfromhr Tom

    Really enjoyed this! Agreed that every guy should read this, though I also liked the linked post about your own date quirks. A lot of it is common sense and a lot of this post feels like inside info.

    I always offer to get the cheque but never seem to be able to, girl always wants to split.

    Thanks for sharing!

  • mayamoose

    hmmmm…..does this post provide any insight as to how your saturday “first date” went……

    venue – check (well I am biased since my fav (non vino) drink is a dirty martini so good vodka is a must
    communication – you met online so this may be a non-check

    oops – hope that this comment doesn't ruin chances for a second date if first date went well…….but hey that's what being a big sis is all about……ruining your chances at dating….ahahaha

  • adam

    I'll tell you one thing from my personal experience, if a guy ask you out and is really “meh” about finding a spot to take you out, chances are he doesn't really care and might be looking for more of a quick thing than anything longer term.

    as for text messaging you in order to ask you out… thats also seriously non-committal too…

    im glad to hear you're putting a quick end to this guy

  • http://www.unbrelievable.com/ Breanna Hughes

    We met at a bar, so what can I expect, right? Well, don't waste my time. If you are “meh” about me and don't really give a shit, then why even bother? This is an extreme case to make an example for others. I've heard many stories from friends, and experienced things first hand that more guys do this out there than you think. And based on the reactions they/I've received after (this guy continued to text for me a few months afterwards), it might seem like they at least wanted a few dates out of it. Maybe they just want some ass, but this post is telling them that hey, you have to try harder than that for something non-committal even. If he's that lazy when it comes to a date, I can only imagine how lazy he'll be in other areas.

    When I go into a first date, I am never ever thinking “this is going to be a long term relationship”. It always starts short term, and could potentially evolve into something more serious. Maybe for some guys it is more black and white.. but this should be even more of a lesson because you never know and you might blow it before you know it.

    It's amazing how high maintenance this is making me sound, but really, I'm just saying what other girls who are afraid of being called high maintenance are afraid to say. Girls that settle for less than what they deserve: a little effort. I can, and have, planned amazing dates in less than 5 minutes.

    I bet you're glad you aren't dating me, huh!

  • http://www.unbrelievable.com/ Breanna Hughes

    The date venues were good. Communication was definitely a non-check. I had to do all the talking, which led to rambling. Hot, but kind of boring. (Is this maybe not a conversation for the public??!)

    He's not into me either, so mutual departure.

  • http://www.unbrelievable.com/ Breanna Hughes

    Yeah, people always warned me that drummers are weird, but they aren't as self absorbed as lead singers, so maybe I should just stay away from band guys in general!

  • http://www.unbrelievable.com/ Breanna Hughes

    It's always SO awkward. Like do I do the obligatory reach for my wallet, “aww thank you”.

    Sigh. I hate dating sometimes.

  • Ju

    I'd have to agree with the general consensus that this guy had absolutely no clue, let alone class or manners. If he had any of the above, he would've known that the host (i.e. the person who asks the other out always pays), the host also chooses the venue — granted, sometimes it's nice to ask your date out of courtesy, but this happens well before date-night. And for the most part the host chooses the venue because he/she is responsible for picking up the tab, so they'll know which place they can afford…it avoids situations like this, which seem to be very common…good thing is if a guy knows this etiquette, it's an easy way to stand out! Manners…so simple!

    I read an article recently on the daters, which touches on this very same topic http://bit.ly/cboqk3 it was a pretty good read too…

  • http://www.unbrelievable.com/ Breanna Hughes

    The date venues were good. Communication was definitely a non-check. I had
    to do all the talking, which led to rambling. Hot, but kind of boring. (Is
    this maybe not a conversation for the public??!)

  • http://www.unbrelievable.com/ Breanna Hughes

    Also, he's not into me either. It's all good.

  • http://www.unbrelievable.com/ Breanna Hughes

    We met at a bar, so what can I expect, right? Well, don't waste my time. If
    you are “meh” about me and don't really give a shit, then why even bother?
    This is an extreme case to make an example for others. I've heard many
    stories from friends, and experienced things first hand that more guys do
    this out there than you think. And based on the reactions they/I've received
    after (this guy continued to text for me a few months afterwards), it might
    seem like they at least wanted a few dates out of it. Maybe they just want
    some ass, but this post is telling them that hey, you have to try harder
    than that for something non-committal even. If he's that lazy when it comes
    to a date, I can only imagine how lazy he'll be in other areas.

    When I go into a first date, I am never ever thinking “this is going to be a
    long term relationship”. It always starts short term, and could potentially
    evolve into something more serious. Maybe for some guys it is more black and
    white.. but this should be even more of a lesson because you never know and
    you might blow it before you know it.

    It's amazing how high maintenance this is making me sound, but really, I'm
    just saying what other girls who are afraid of being called high maintenance
    are afraid to say. Girls that settle for less than what they deserve: a
    little effort. I can, and have, planned amazing dates in less than 5
    minutes.

    I bet you're glad you aren't dating me, huh!

  • skinny_dip

    I didn't realize hockey was something people were supposed to “grow out of”. My 85 year old grandparents are the biggest Canucks fans I know in real life. I'm sure this guy would think they were hopelessly immature! ha. But seriously, WTF-is this guy actually Canadian?!!

    I agree on all your first date 'must-do's'. Here is a link to my worst first date. It involves freestyle rapping gone wrong & free movie coupons:

    http://www.skinnydip.ca/?id=9034550017156805585

    (The fact that this happened when I was in my early 20's makes this slightly more excusable. Guys in their 30's however should know better!!)

  • adam

    hey, i know more guys do it than everyone would expect, but thats also why most guys are jerks. I'll tell you why they think they can get away with it too. The guys i know that are like this either 1) simply just suck and are not good with women or 2) think they're great and expect their man prowess to get them places
    In both cases i'd think that this type of guy is a complete waste of your time.

    The thing to remember are that if you walk past a guy on the street or are on a subway or at a bar and you smile at him, he immediately assumes you want him. Thats how quickly us guys react: smile=bed in the brain of a man.

    So I'm guessing something along the way made him think you were into him (i'm not saying you did anything that you shouldn't have, just remember if a guy smells a rose he automatically assumes theres an entire field behind him… if you catch my drift) or maybe he just thought you were hot and shot for the stars.

    Either way though it sounds like he ended up being a dud and as you said, a lesson to all of us guys is that 5min is all it takes to come up with a date idea
    great stuff breanna :)

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