tips for dates

  • If you’re going to a bar to have some drinks and chat, don’t choose a place where you’ll be sitting on opposite ends of a table. This is terrible: it (i) places a physical distance between your bodies, preventing physical contact from arising throughout the date, (ii) generates an overall oppositional mood, which ends up reflecting itself in the conversational tone and in the feelings generated, (iii) forces you to always be looking straight ahead in order to look at the other person, so you can’t try out different configurations of your body. You should always aim to sit either side by side at a bar or long table, or sit on adjacent corners of a table. This problem can be prevented by… well, going to bars where that’s the table layout. If there’s no other option, then maybe have a drink there and suggest moving elsewhere.
  • Move through different locations throughout the date — it’ll increase the sense of familiarity and time spent together, which will, some could say artificially, increase the sense of closeness. Obviously be sensible, don’t take 3 trains across the entire city, etc. Ideally when selecting a date location you should have a couple of nearby places in mind. At night these will probably just be bars; during the day maybe include a museum and a garden.
  • Be present and confident. Nothing boosts your presence and confidence like cocaine. So, do cocaine before dates? Alternatively, work out before the date, which makes you focused and alert and generates a physical bias-towards-action. Maybe avoid planks or too much ab work, if you’re a straight man.
  • Bring a notebook and pen. This can serve to write down notes that arise in conversation (like “Share Portuguese music playlist“) or, even better, ideas for future dates that arise in conversation. If you can manage it without getting too distracted, having a parallel conversation happening on the notebook can be cute/teasing too.
  • Make a mental list of topics you want to address in conversation, both general ones (if you sometimes struggle with those) and specific ones that you may have come up with from their online profile or previous online chatting. If you’re bold enough, you can even use the notebook to write down a couple of the specific ones, as long as you own the choice to (see: confidence, cocaine).
  • Obvious, but listen to music beforehand that puts you in the right head-space and counteracts your own failure modes (this, for me).
  • Me-specific, use as applicable:
    • Don’t sit somewhere with too much of a view on the street outside: you’ll get easily distracted
    • Don’t drink red wine: you’ll get sleepy
    • Don’t have sugar/carbs/white wine: you’ll sugar-crash

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