Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Date Expectations

One of the biggest differences between any first date and second date is expectation. Be very careful here. You don’t want your expectations to be sky-high any more than you want them to be so low you’re grateful for the slightest crumb your date flicks across the table. I know it’s hard trying to enter a date with a blank slate, but you really owe it to yourself and your date to try to enter with your eyes, heart, and mind open. Expectation is no simple matter. The dictionary defines expectation as looking for what’s “due, proper, or necessary.” Interestingly, the word comes from the same root as “spectacle,” the Latin spectare, meaning “to gaze at.” What this all means is that you form your expectation of any event by instantaneously “gazing at” your past experiences, stuff that’s happened to your friends or your parents or your family, what the media has convinced you is proper, and what your peers have convinced you you’re due. So you walk into any situation with at least some expectation as to how it would, could, or —worse — should turn out.
Trouble is, your date doesn’t have your same history. Your date isn’t carrying the same baggage. He has a whole different set of luggage. That’s when expectations can get a bit dicey. You expect your date to think and feel as you do. When it doesn’t happen as you anticipated, feelings get hurt and tempers flare and the whole experience takes a kamikaze nosedive. Don’t fall into this trap. You can’t erase expectation completely — it’s okay to expect to have a good time with someone you already like — but try to identify what your expectations are before your second date begins. That way, you’ll recognize immediately when (or if) your expectations are dashed, and you can put the whole thing in perspective. You may want to refer to Chapter 17 to understand your dating expectations.

In Between One and Two

Everything that happens between the first date and the second has an effect on date number two:
  • If it was lust at first sight and you both have been whispering sweet nothings over the phone all week, your second date will look much different than it would if your date took ten days to call you again. Bear that in mind when you embark on date number two. Your second date may seem either more intense or more subdued than it actually is. There’s simply no substitution for time when it comes to really knowing someone and understanding how he or she will (or won’t) fit into your life. Don’t short-circuit the time you really need to tap how you really feel.
  • If more than two weeks have passed between date number one and date number two, your second date is likely to feel more like a first date. Adjust your expectations accordingly.

Good places for a second date

Given that a second date is about delving deeper, getting to know someone better, flirting a bit more, and just plain being more intimate, pick a place that lets you do those things:

_ Quiet restaurant or café
_ Public park
_ Sporting event
_ Museum

Following are some not-so-good places to do those things:
_ Noisy bar
_ Quiet bar
_ Movie marathon
_ Your parents’ house
_ Your date’s parents’ house
_ Your place