Monday, September 8, 2008

More about figuring out who pays for the first date

Used to be easy figuring out who paid, because men paid for everything (of course, they were the only ones doing the asking), and women kept their mad money tucked neatly in their little velvet purses and paid for nothing. Of course, after so many eons of men feeling that they had to pay and women feeling that men expected something for their money, women got a bit more aggressive about paying their share (rather than being fearful that the guy would “take it out in trade”).

But it gets pretty tedious figuring out what your fair share is when you order the salad and your date orders the prime rib, and you still have to figure in the tip. My solution was to play liar’s poker, which is a game played with the serial number on dollar bills in which bluffing is allowed until you are called. Whoever lost had to pay for dinner. I got really good at offering and really good at liar’s poker, which seemed to cover all bases. These days, it’s okay to offer to pay the tip, buy the popcorn, pay for the next date, bring the picnic, pay for the gas, and so on, not only on the first date but as an ongoing statement of equality, friendliness, and generosity unless it drives your date nuts.

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