Wednesday, February 17, 2010

My Thoughts on a First Date!

A new male blogger who writes about "female friendly" topics, "Bored Jewish Guy" (inspiring name, right?) wrote a post relating his impressions on first dates he's been on which has inspired many other bloggers to do the same. The candid results of this experiment have proved to be surprising and informative.

Now, although the brevity of my dating history goes beyond laughable to downright sad, reading all those accounts has got me interested in expressing some of my own experiences with first dates. I don't have enough patience to go into too great detail, but I feel there is still information I can share that is no less helpful than the insights of those female bloggers who would be hard-pressed to remember whether or not they've been out with a certain individual in the past.

Preparation:
I'm girlishly vain yet perpetually unkempt. There is little I can do about my appearance, even on a date, though I do of course take the time to make the most essential preparations.

Pick up:
I'm generally mortally afraid of being late, since I usually am.

Other than that, I have a low opinion of myself, and therefore feel extremely awkward picking up a girl from her home, since I usually don't feel 'fit' be be taking their pride and joy, who they've raised for 20 years to some undisclosed location. It's too much in the spotlight for me. In fact it kind of feels like they turned the spotlight from the charismatic actors and turned it on the dude who just came in to use the bathroom. Aaaanyways...

The Meet:
My philosophy in all awkward meeting situations is to jump right into it and talk to them as if they're your best bud and see what type of response you get. I'm terrible at hellos and terrible at goodbyes, which is why I try to avoid both...

The Date:
From what I understand the Starbucks/Barnes and Noble setup is far more popular than I once imagined it to be. I've had a few problems with bookstores though, since differences in reading interests lead to discussing differences in philosophies and can create a rift between you early in the date.

In regards to conversation, I saw some of the females say that it usually leaves them bored and uninterested. As a result of a concern for that scenario, having conversation topics is very worrisome for me. In reality though I don't recall a date without interesting conversation. I pride myself in finding everything interesting, hopefully sucking them in with some of my enthusiasm. If that's not working though, both my teaching experiences and dating experiences have proven that one thing I absolutely hate is talking without being listened to. So I'm usually quickly asking or answering a question, or listening, since the prospect of boring the hell out of a girl is the worst case scenario as far as I'm concerned.

I also saw the girls mention that they turn off if they see no potential in the guy and/or the conversation is going nowhere. My own philosophy is that if i can see that we're certainly not meant to be, I start speaking to them more platonicly than romantically, and give them life advice based on what they tell me! Unfortunately, I'm waaay too fascinated by people, so as long as they're interested in talking, I'm always happy to oblige. I usually find what most people have to say to be relatively interesting.

"Erachet" suggests more activity oriented first dates to get around this problem. I think the setup is fine as it is; the first thing you want to do is engage someone verbally. It's obviously your opportunity to verify if you're on the same plain. If so then an activity-oriented second date is surely the way to go. The more involving the task the better.

The Drop Off:
As I said, I'm terrible at goodbyes, which can be a problem when it's time to say goodbye.

The Decision:
I've never been at all conflicted about whether or not I wanted to date someone a second time. Besides once; my very first date. I ended it early and didn't go on a second date. Looking back on it though, I think I should have married that girl...

24 comments:

chanie said...

Why don't you try to look her up again...? Explain that it was your first-ever date, and that you think there might be some potential that you missed in your nervousness.

Bored Jewish Guy said...
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הצעיר שלמה בן רפאל לבית שריקי ס"ט said...

chanie: Well, *ahem*, she married someone else! ...then got divorced! My only way of getting in contact with her would be through her father, which would be difficult enough as it is, since he's my father's friend and my father wouldn't have me wed a divorcee...

"that you missed in your nervousness"- I'm happy for an opportunity to speak about this since I myself am still confused by it. I WAS too nervous, but I think my feeling at the time was that it's silly to settle down with the first one since there might be bigger and better things over the horizon. I mean, everything didn't go downhill since then, but suffice it to say I'm not married. It's just hard to settle down with the first one and give up the opportunity of dating I guess...

הצעיר שלמה בן רפאל לבית שריקי ס"ט said...

BJG: These initials don't really work...

"Not sure what to make of that?"- I mean that, while a lot of the girl blogs talk about dating and relationships and such, most of the guy blogs are about (Jewish) politics, religion, or both. To me, you and "Jughead's Hat" represent a stream of male blogs discussing traditionally "female friendly" topics (not that there aren't girls who write about religion and politics).

"it's when they don't talk that I have a problem"- Like I said, my tactic with the quiet (besides talking myself) is bombarding them with questions, so they're almost forced to be as verbal as possible. ...anyway, most girls are faaaar more verbal than I, so it's rarely ever been a problem.

Bored Jewish Guy said...
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Shades of Grey said...

I agree with Chanie - especially in light of the fact that you mention she's divorced (which in my mind rings of potential hashgacha pratis, however negative that may sound - these stories DO happen). Granted, being divorced carries a lot of baggage with it, and I can certainly understand your hesitation if she has children from her first marriage (which would also give me a pause). But if you're really interested, why not inquire? Do some research and see where she's "holding" these days.

Otherwise, it's nice to see more people writing their own first-date posts... now if I could only find time to finish mine up...

הצעיר שלמה בן רפאל לבית שריקי ס"ט said...

BJG: "Because it doesn't sound good or are you thinking of another connotation?"- Ha. I'm thinking of what you might mean and it ain't good! No, I actually meant it just doesn't sound that catchy.

"I don't intend to make my blog all about dating though"- The majority opinion is that single-subject blogs are more popular, but I prefer those that have a diverse subject matter.

Bored Jewish Guy said...
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הצעיר שלמה בן רפאל לבית שריקי ס"ט said...

Shadesof: "which in my mind rings of potential hashgacha pratis"- And she married this really big bozo (I guess she was sort of desperate to get married. Which is another topic; why are all these girls dying to get married so fast? But that's another story).

"I can certainly understand your hesitation if she has children from her first marriage"- Hells no man. I'd never marry someone who already had kids. Luckily, she was smart enough not to have any kids with that dude (they weren't married for too long anyway).

"But if you're really interested, why not inquire?"- As it happens I know exactly where she's holding, since her dad and my dad've got some business ties. Then again, I myself have changed tremendously since then, and she probably has as well, so we'd be working with totally different variables...

Good luck with your post. The Chicks'll be waitin'! : )

הצעיר שלמה בן רפאל לבית שריקי ס"ט said...

BJG: Ha. I could actually think of more than one or two obscene word groups for those initials...

Jughead's Hat said...

Well, it should come as no surprise that I agree with BJG. I'm not interested in politics (that has cost me a few dates) or talking about religion on the internet (I have Rabbeim for that). I write about what's going on in my life and right now that's mostly school and dating (and a little sports here and there).

But I do agree with you, Shlomo, that BJG does not role off the tongue so well.

Bored Jewish Guy said...
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הצעיר שלמה בן רפאל לבית שריקי ס"ט said...

BJG: Well, it seems that sometimes the first two words of a blogger's name are compounded, like "Shadesof" and "Bad4", so I might be inclined to suggest "BoredJ" or "BoredJew" or "BoredJG" (sorry, nothing with dude)...

הצעיר שלמה בן רפאל לבית שריקי ס"ט said...

Jughead: "I'm not interested in politics or talking about religion on the internet (I have Rabbeim for that)"- First off thanks for commenting dude, but, no offence to you, I feel it's my place to reassert my own position on religion on the internet:

I don't know, to me, just relying on ones clergy for religion seems a little intellectually dishonest. Clergymen are too mainstream. Sure they can give a nice shiur on Reb Chaim or something, but religion is up to every individual to discover. No two Judaisms are the same, yet none are different. Sure you have to have a Rav, but you also have to "discover" mussar for yourself, "discover" hashkafa for yourself and "discover" halacha and anything else for yourself, in my opinion...

(I think I actually still have a post about this "in the making" somewhere.)

Jughead's Hat said...

Ah, so I misunderstood you. For that I apologize. If I need to talk to someone about something like religion (and I don't want to bring in clergy) I will talk to my friends. Speaking about religion is a delicate topic (yes, more delicate than dating) and I feel it needs to be done face-face.

As for your comments on self-discovery, I am not sure what that means. Does that mean picking up a sefer by yourself (which is consulting clergy) or is it posting and getting others' feedback (which is not exactly self-discovery).

Religion is NOT meant to be tackled alone. It is meant to be shared with others. I just feel that it needs to be done face-to-face.

Great, now I am discussing it on-line.

Ha-historion said...

Amigo, just down 3 quarters of a bottle of glenlivet, next time you take a chick out. That should take care of everything;)

הצעיר שלמה בן רפאל לבית שריקי ס"ט said...

Jughead: "Great, now I am discussing it on-line"- Ha. I actually wanted to write earlier, now I kind of forgot what I wanted to say!

Basically, what I don't like is people who blindly follow their rabbis. What if your rabbi is Chasidish and my rabbi is Litvish; you'll never fully understand my form of Judaism. Judaism has many faces. Every individual can understand it in a different way. It's a living religion. I mean, if you don't want to discuss it on blogs that's fine, but it should be a topic of interest to every Jew and Jewess.

Maybe all I'm doing is projecting my own experiences onto others: I went to Haredi yeshivas and felt that a lot of the rabbis were ignorant about things (even Judaism-related things). It could be I would have found more solace with Modern Orthodox rabbis and it could be you're very happy with the rabbis you have...

"I feel it needs to be done face-face"- I think what I was kind of getting at was research. You can talk to your friend, but he's probably not the last word on Judaism. I think Judaism requires a lot of initiative, a lot of self-initiation. Which is the problem with people who only go to "shiurs" or things like that; they're not "exploring" Judaism, they're not reaching their full potential in Judaism, and they're certainly not "ממיתים את עצמם באהלה של תורה".

הצעיר שלמה בן רפאל לבית שריקי ס"ט said...

Ha-historion: "Glenlivet"? G-d man, I don't even know what that sh-t is. I once dated a girl who thought I was a clandestine drug-addict (I guess since I just "sem high") so that's enough for me!).

That's for dropping by by the way, G.

裕瑤 said...
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Jughead's Hat said...

I still don't understand. What do you mean by self-discovery? Do you go to a variety of shiurim from every aspect of Judaism? Will I see you at shiurim from a Rabbi from Gush, Mir, Telshe, Chofetz Chaim, Chaim Berlin, Reform, Conservative, Muntkatch, the St. John's Hillel and YU this week?

Or do you find a cave somewhere in (I'm guessing) Brooklyn where you can be secluded from the rest of the world and become one with G-d's world and truly become HaAdam B'Olamo?

הצעיר שלמה בן רפאל לבית שריקי ס"ט said...

裕瑤: Man Chinese guy, still trying to sell your G-ddamn viagra to me? Even with word verification? Yo, if you don't stop soon I'm gonna' get "comment moderation" on your a$$!

הצעיר שלמה בן רפאל לבית שריקי ס"ט said...

Jughead: "Will I see you at shiurim from a Rabbi from Gush, Mir, Telshe, Chofetz Chaim, Chaim Berlin, Reform, Conservative, Muntkatch, the St. John's Hillel and YU this week?"- ...no. But I do find it important to know how they all feel about things, as opposed to my Rebbe just telling me Conservative Jews are full of poo-poo.

"you can be secluded from the rest of the world and become one with G-d's world and truly become HaAdam B'Olamo?"- That seems to have a negative connotation to me, like I'm "מתבודד". I mean, you can gain knowledge through ספרים as through סופרים, but I still think it's important to "live" Torah as opposed to just reading it.

In regards to the name of this blog: The reality is that we experience things only in our own microcosm, for better or for worse. Again, that doesn't mean we should close ourselves up from the world, or the world of ideas, or the world of religious ideas that your Rebbi might not be telling you about...

kisarita said...

friend her on facebook

הצעיר שלמה בן רפאל לבית שריקי ס"ט said...

ki: *sigh*, that'd be a nice option, but she's way too Haredi for facebook! She's probably not even sure what it actually is!