Rendezvous Revelation!

An optomistic look at dating for 20-somethings in the LDS community. You're not a lost cause! ...You know, yet.


Pulling the Trigger

One of the major issues with the date story Wanderer isn’t that he abandoned his date and then replaced her, it was that he never established the actual date to begin with. One could argue the girl should not have been hurt because he never clearly asked.

In this case, I think we can appropriately identify the real problem as not “Pulling the Trigger.” Do it. In one explosive move …and it’s over. You await results.

This is the biggest way to determine if you are in fact on date or hanging out: Was the Trigger Pulled? And it doesn’t matter if it was done by the boy or the girl, you should still hear the BANG.

Bad examples:

“Are you busy this weekend?”
“What are you doing [date]?”
“We should go together.”
“Maybe we can do something together sometime.”
“Do you like [insert activity]?”
“I’ll pick you up.”

...Do you hear the distinct lack of a ‘bang’? That’s because there isn’t one. In some cases, there wasn’t even a question mark. You heard it, but the other person might not have. Or worse- the other person can hear you fiddling with your gun before awkwardly trying shooting them in the face. Not good.

The Mac-Daddy of preparation questions “Are you busy?” is, ihmo, the worst and most overused way to avoid Pulling the Trigger. You are trying to respectfully ask for someone’s time- always assume they might be busy. Think to yourself in positive terms that of course they have plans- they are an active and popular person. It’s embarrassing to have to admit you have nothing going on in your life, don’t make someone else declare it! If they want to be with you, they will be willing to clear their schedule for you. Most likely, they do have something going on- even if they have not yet planned it. Washing their car, playing Parcheesi, eating cheetos out of their navel. It’s their business. The real question is would they rather spend that time with you?

The second major issue with a question like “Are you busy” is you are holding them hostage- threatening, but not firing yet. They still have time to negotiate or bring in the SWAT team. If the person you’re asking has any kind of sense, they will recognize what you’re trying to do and their mind starts to spin:
- Are they asking me what I think they’re asking me or am I overreacting?
- Do I play dumb?
- Will I look like a loser if I say I’m free?
- Do I have to mention my D&D game?
- Quick, I have to make something up so I can famously cancel it!
- Wait, am I busy? I have no idea if that thing is this weekend or next…
- I have another date then- I can’t say that!!!
- Anything but a direct answer until I know what they want.

But if the person really isn’t clued in, they might actually not see the potential doom and answer honestly- of course they’re busy…why do you ask? But then, are they playing dumb or not?!

A plethora of other favorable and unfavorable responses none of which constitute a real answer to your question- ‘would you go out with me?’ Are you starting to see how important Pulling the Trigger is? Without a clear answer to your question, you have no idea what they meant and you’re back to square one anyway- but with more drama layered on top. Stop the middleman in this already awkward flirtation.

Good Examples:
“I’d like to take you out [date]. Are you busy then?”
“Would you come with me to [insert activity]?”
“I have two tickets to [event], would be able to go with me?” (‘with me’ is important!!!)
“Are you free to spend an evening with me this week?”

Did you hear that? It was a crystal clean sound of a date commencing. I know it’s tough to be so direct, but the likelihood that you’ll get a direct answer is 900% more probable. Unless you’re dealing with a date ninja- they can avoid bullets no matter how close you thought the barrel was.

The thing to keep in mind about Pulling the Trigger is only use it if you want an answer. If you’ve done your prep work and you feel primed to take this person out, then you should feel ready enough to do it right. If you’re not ready, don’t ask.

In the sad case the other person doesn’t want to go out, they’ll likely say no and you should thank your stars because they are not someone you want to be with either. As we say in sales, expedite the No. If that’s the end conclusion, then you’d rather know before they cost you 30$ to listen to a lot of complaining.

And do it boldly. Not because it’s impressive when a person knows what they want (it is by the way), it’s also polite. Go ahead. They probably know what you’re up to anyway.


Ps. Please send me your favorite lines. I’m making a compilation.

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DS #2: The Wanderer

I was accused today of something I think I should defend myself against.
A friend and I were talking about online dating (essentially) when he got a little on the offensive about our relationship:

“I wanted to ask you out for a while but you seemed to make a special effort to not be available...
Don't get me wrong... I get shut down all the time and it's totally cool, but most people will at least give me a chance and you and I get along great... there was no reason not to go out a time or two. but you simply wouldn't have it for whatever reason”

We are going to talk about perusing and how to make choices- and stop the wishy-washy hanging out.

I can explain what happened between this person and I quite clearly because I distinctly remember the night I put him in the ‘out placement’ file. First I’ll start with the date and then create a new entry for the lesson we learn from this.

This was barely a date. For weeks this particular guy had been hinting about getting together. I was hesitant for a few reasons. First- he was a little too handsome for me. That sounds dumb but specifically speaking, I wasn’t attracted him. He’d ask me pretty personal questions out of the blue and then wander away or accuse me of not being a real friend to him when I refused to answer. I hardly knew him and didn’t think he was right for me. But third, and more importantly I had seen him with lots of other girls and had heard plenty of stories about his flirtatious ways. I wasn’t a sucker for games but like most girls, I kinda liked the idea of being the one who caught his eye above all the rest. Stupid girl.

This kind of thing happened a lot:
A: “Are you going to the ______ tonight?”
Me: “No. I don’t know where it is.”
A: “I know where it is. I’ll come get you.”
Me: “Thanks, I’m not really interested in going.”
A: “That’s lame! Well, what are you going to do instead?!” (Btw- I loath that question.)
Me: “Nothing. I just want to go home and be alone. I haven’t eaten yet and it’s been a long day.”
A: “LAME. You always ignore me! What is wrong with you? Why don't you want to go out when I invite you? Lame!”

This run around was getting silly after several attempts and at one point he cornered me with the same situation.

A: “Are you going to the fireside tonight?”
Me: “Yeah, sure.”
A: “What? Well… can I pick you up at 7:30?”
Me: “That sounds fine.” I grinned.
A: "Finally."

You may want to note at this point, he never used the word ‘date’ or really asked. He just implied it.

At 7:35 he came and I was in his car, looking as adorable as I could muster within an hour. I tired to make it as comfortable as possible when we got lost, generally enjoy ourselves but neither of us completely comfortable. Why why why had I agreed to this?
We sat together, but that was basically the last thing we did together all night. As soon as the session was over, he spotted some friend he wanted to talk to and bolted. That was fine, I wanted time away from him to gather my thoughts and I didn’t blame him for wanting to see his friends. He reluctantly returned to me and half-heartedly suggested we make our way to the refreshments. I agreed and lead the way out. It was around the time I had almost reached the table of cookies when I turned around to find out I had been talking to myself for the last few minutes.

Apparently during a lull in my over the shoulder conversation, he had spotted more friends and left me. After wandering around for a while, I found him- with some other people. I guess I shouldn’t be upset at his abandoning me to a room full of older people I didn’t know. After all, it’s not like this was an official date. I found a dark room to sit in for a few minutes until I was brave enough to find him again to ask if he could take me home.

Not long into my search I found him walking towards me- with another girl with him. This girl was very nice and proceeded to follow the guy and myself back to his car. She obviously has no idea what was going on. But what was she doing? It wasn’t until we opened the doors and the girl still had not departed that I realized she was coming WITH us.

I sat in the back while the two of them talked in the front seat. They called back and asked if I was interested in hanging out more that night.

No, I said. I just wanted to be dropped off. When I got out of the car, the two of them were still talking. He did not ask me out again. I did not give him the opportunity. Even if this had been a hangout and not a date, I still felt very poorly treated.

In my next entry we are going to talk about what went wrong here- and it’s not just about abandoning your partner. That’s just too obvious.

the end.

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DS #1: Pretending part3

Alright, I guess I should wrap this story up so I can start on the next one.

In truth, it was rough. After not listening to me about parking, we drove in a circle, parked, re-parked, and then found the place I had originally suggested. He complained about the price. So I offered to pay for it. “No, It’s fine…” He reluctantly said as he walked distracted to our destination. And by walked, I mean in front of me. Perhaps it’s a habit some people gain after being a lone for long periods of time, but my date was obviously not used to walking with someone else or taking care of where they were.

I know some guys make it a policy to walk on the side of the street at all times to protect the lady. That’s nice! Not necessary by any means in today’s society, but a kind (if awkward) gesture none the less. What IS necessary is to not LOSE your date in the crowd because of your (you guessed it) carelessness. Which seems to be the theme for this date.

It did however, give me a good view of what he was wearing. Wrinkled pants, wrinkled suit coat, over a wrinkled t-shirt, and dirty sneakers. I don’t have to say anything about this do I? Okay good.

The place we went to was Mr. Noodle. A place he wanted to try. Look, I’m not picky about this particular rule- but for those men who are reading this looking for tips on how to do it right, it’s polite to visit a restaurant before you take a girl. It helps that you don’t look like an idiot when ordering and you can recommend something to her if she asks. As well as getting a feeling for the place (to advise how she should appropriately dress) and how expensive it is. In general, for a first date- unless the goal is to try something new- don’t take a young lady to a restaurant you’ve never been before.

This guy was 100% negative the entire time. Negative, and also a poor conversationalist. That’s okay though because if you’ve ever met me, even for a minute, you’d know I happen to be a great conversationalist. So with a large platter of help from me, conversation flowed pretty easily. Halfway though our meal (which was only so-so btw), I felt guilty for making him do this. Maybe he was really set up and had no desire to see me? And here I was p0wning his evening with my stupid girly needs like EYE CONTACT. So I offered to pay for the movie. You may now roll your eyes at me but I really did feel guilty. He agreed. Idiot.

The movie I had asked to see wasn’t even playing at that theater- or any theater around us. Please refer back to the entry on planning. So we saw ‘Prince of Persia’ instead. Which turned out to be Disney-Decent. It put me in a good mood for our drive home.

I can’t remember if I mentioned this before- I admit to having a soft spot for guys who don’t know how to socialize and be with others. Oh lets face it- I really adore awkward people in general. Their honesty and attempts are endearing, and up until the end of this date I had assumed that that is what this guy was- inexperienced and sweet, covering up his insecurities with a negative and rather rude attitude. On a personal note- I’m not looking for a boyfriend who is THIS inexperienced (I don’t want to date someone I babysit) but I do have a talent for making bad situations like this into comfortable ones.

It’s just in my nature to hug someone at the end of a date. Handshaking is so awful in my humble opinion. No one ever said a handshake is rude, but for me it’s unnatural. You know I’ve had a truly bad time if I shake your hand. But as I said, I was feeling ok and wanted to get home in a hurry. He reluctantly walked to the sidewalk in front of my car. I hugged him (which he did not return) and I moved to open my car door.

SUDDENLY- he steps forward.

“Wait!” He says, his hand extended towards me as though the unconscious movement might stop me from climbing in and driving away forever.

“Yes?” I smile.

“I just want you to know…don’t fall for me too much. I’m not really looking for a girlfriend.”

I was dumbfounded.

This wasn’t a shy person who really was happy to be there. This was an arrogant jerk. I had been fooled. Biggest goomba of all time.

“Oh that’s OK.” I chirped. “I don’t date Non-mormons! Goodnight!” The look on his face I’ll never forget. One of shock. Like it was impossible not to have fallen in love with his lazy, thoughtless, selfish, discourteous, bad-mannered behavior. I couldn’t even believe such a person existed in real life. I was not in a poorly written sitcom, I was on a date.

If you’re wondering why this date has been labeled ‘pretending’ it because that’s what it was. Pretending to have any interest in each other. Which clearly, we didn’t. and won’t.

At least not from my side.

The end.

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