Tag Archives: romance

How to Have a Conversation on a First Date (Or: How Not to Have a Conversation on a First Date)

Today’s Role/Reboot post comes to you inspired by the following Facebook exchange:

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I realized after I posted this that it might not be a gendered issue, but I don’t date women, so I really have no idea. There are probably lady-monologuers out there, too. That said, I do think there’s something about the economics of dating (especially online dating) wherein men are encouraged to try to impress, and women are encouraged to sit back and be impressed. The thing is, I’m mostly impressed by curiosity, which gets lost if you’re too busy telling a twenty minute story about CrossFit.

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Related Post: Why online dating sucks for men.

Related Post: OkCupid by the numbers!

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I Think I’m Doing OkCupid Wrong

This week for Role/Reboot, I did a little internal investigation on how I behave on online dating sites. We already know how I feel about gendered traditions once we’re actually on the date (i.e. Who pays?), but what about the sending of and responding to messages? Why do I sit back and wait? Is the answer really because it’s just so freaking easy? That seems like laziness to me, and no one should rest on their laurels when it comes to equalizing the playing field, least of all ladies who write about gender and equality on the internet…

onlinedatingRelated Post: Comparing dating to church.

Related Post: Guest post: the dangers of dating while freelancing

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Courtship

Ahh, the good old days

Ahh, the good old days

Bluuuuurgh. So many people have sent me this idiotic article in the Times on the “End of Courtship” and asked for comment.

I tend to assume that anything that starts with the “end of X” is bound to be histrionic, and this doesn’t disappoint. I have so many strong, negative reactions to this article that I’m having a seriously hard time putting them on paper. The words that come to mind are the following: dumb, moron, silly, archaic, inane, yuck, blech, for realz? See? Those are not even all the same parts of speech!

Slate already did a pretty great job of tearing this bad boy up, so go check that out. In the meantime, here are my biggest beefs:

1. Could you get any more heteronormative? You know what makes courtship a lot easier? When people view each other as people (you know, like other human beings with interests and opinions and preferences and experiences) and go from there. We could all take a couple of pages out of the queer dating handbook and maybe not rely on chromosomes to determine who buys the beers…

2. Ladies, if you want fancy dinners, pay for your own goddamn meal! We are all in our twenties. We are all broke as shit. We are all paying off loans. Do you seriously think an equally broke, equally debt-burdened dude should be buying you stuff because he has a penis? For real? How does that make any sense?

3. What was so great about back-in-the-day? Yeah, courtship looks different, but were the olden days really so golden? Look around you, do you know what you’d be doing if you were dating in the 50s? There might be some malted milkshakes or a whatever, but you’d also be married at 21, you probably wouldn’t have gone to college, and you’d have two or three kids running around your ankles right now. There’s nothing wrong with that, but man, isn’t it nice to have choices?

4. Buying shit is not the way to be gentlemanly. Paying for my crab rangoon does not show me you’re “gentlemanly,” any old schmuck can apply for a credit card. Listening to me talk, answering my questions thoughtfully, asking follow-up questions, respecting my opinions, that’s gentlemanly behavior. Also ladylike behavior! Isn’t that cool how basic courtesy and conversational skills are gender-neutral? Neat-o!

5. Respecting my autonomy is sexy. Do any women ever find it sexy for a man to order on their behalf without asking? Is this a thing? I really can’t imagine a scenario in which this doesn’t result in me leaving the table. If we’re sharing wine, ask my opinion, okay? If I don’t care, I’ll tell you, and you can pick. But the presumption ordering for me? Ick, you don’t even know me!

6. Women are not prizes. “Cheryl Yeoh, a tech entrepreneur in San Francisco, said that she has been on many formal dates of late — plays, fancy restaurants. One suitor even presented her with red roses. For her, the old traditions are alive simply because she refuses to put up with anything less. She generally refuses to go on any date that is not set up a week in advance, involving a degree of forethought. “If he really wants you,” Ms. Yeoh, 29, said, “he has to put in some effort.” Ummmmm, what? Asking for a plan in advance is not unreasonable (see: basic courtesy), but this is the most one-sided load of baloney. If he really wants you? What if you really want him? Does he have to spend a certain amount for you to put out? Is this some sort of transaction? Gross.

Related Post: Online dating, how to make it less unpleasant.

Related Post: Why I like first dates so much…

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Happier Hunting

Today at the Good Men Project I’m covering the exciting world of online dating with five handy rules for happier hunting. Among other things, I address the ubiquitous photobooth profile series, ab shots, how to address your Trekkie love and why online dating is fundamentally unfair.

Read on!

Related Post: More from the GMP, why online dating (and tech heavy dating in general) leave something to be desired…

Related Post: Hilarious messages from OkCupid + some of the fun findings from OkTrends data

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Point/Counterpoint with Hugo

You’d think I’d be sick of talking about who pays on dates by now, but you’d be wrong. Here’s what happened. I wrote that piece for the Good Men Project earlier this week and the comments went a little bit crazy. Among the craziness, my GMP colleague Hugo voiced a few more legitimate observations.  He pointed out two things: 1) women spend more on beauty maintenance and 2) women still make less money than men. Did I think, he wanted to know, that either of those facts could or should play into the debate on who pays for a first date?

What ensued was a mini-debate between Hugo and myself. He says those things matter, I said they’re irrelevant to this issue. Here’s why:

Related Post: Hugo and I saw eye to eye on SlutWalk.

Related Post: My burgeoning relationship with the GMP has put me on some interesting lists.

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Filed under Gender, Really Good Writing by Other People, Republished!, Sex

Splitting the Check

My new piece for The Good Men Project about splitting the check is up! You may recall something similar I wrote here on Rosie Says, but this is bigger and better than ever. The tricky thing about it, I found, was that advice on how to date me doesn’t line up very nicely with how to date other women. Oh, the complexities of dating, so fun!

Related Post: The original Rosie piece on going dutch

Related Post: I’ve been writing a bunch of the GMP lately, on subjects like nostalgia for first date awkwardness and what happens when someone doesn’t orgasm.

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It Used to Involve Fewer Emoticons

I’ve written a piece for The Good Men Project today called “Remember When Courting Happened Face-to-Face?” that accomplishes the following:

  • Admits that I’m online dating
  • Brags about how many times I’ve been asked out
  • Waxes poetic about the good old days (which I do not remember)
  • Overuses the word “awkward” (which I find really does not have a great synonym)

Go there. Read it. Then read the crazy comments that it will no doubt incite. Let’s hope that at least one commenter mentions kegels, because that was soooo fun last time.

Related Post: Speaking of dating…some notes on the moment when the bill arrives.

Related Post: OkCupid does some pretty neat stuff with data. Behold.

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