Several years ago, when your MatchGirl was living in Boston and freshly out of a four year relationship, she had a friend who would always tell her to make sure she was wooed. To make the boy work for it. And, while perhaps some of the advice that this friend gave bordered on game-playing or was simply too close to "The Rules", much of it was good advice.
Over the years, and through the guys she has dated, gentle readers, your MatchGirl has thought a lot about this advice. I've never been a girl to play games. But, as I get older, and the eligible (and interesting) men are more elusive, I spend more time thinking about the advice of my friend (who is professionally successful and married with a child) and the appropriate way to deal with a multitude of dating situations.
In speaking with another single, Greenpoint girl a few days ago, the topic of wooing came up once again. My fellow single lady mentioned that she has noticed how men don't woo anymore. They seem to not know how. She mentioned that they don't call - they text. They don't plan a date - they just wanna "hang". And, of course, once you have gone out once or twice with a guy (whether you have made out with him, let alone slept with him or not) the late night texts to "meet for a drink" come. The other single lady mentioned that she didn't really care if it was PC or not, but that she wanted to be wooed. She wants a phone call to set up the date. She wants the first date planned, and, whether it sounds bad or not, she wants the guy to pay for that first date. Your MatchGirl, though she may be a mostly independent woman, dear readers, agrees 100%.
I recently came across the blog Rules For My Unborn Son and while many of the rules are simply good advice for anyone, and while some are funny and some are too true, there are also many reminding the young man that the woman he is dating/sleeping with/whatever is the daughter or sister of someone. And to treat her well. And, though not the point of the site (which is also chock full of dapper men one should look up to and great songs one should listen to), there is a lot of advice that one could well use to woo a girl.
It's not about the money spent that matters. A restaurant that's hard to get into and has a great review by Frank Bruni is great, but it's not necessary (though it's fun from time to time). For the most part, the gal would prefer something a little more thoughtful. I promise she wants to be impressed by your personality and consideration more than your bank account. One of the sweetest first dates I ever had was a bottle of wine and some Whole Foods sushi on a blanket on Boston Common followed by browsing in a dusty book store. It was a thoughtful date. It was planned. It was set up with a phone call. It ended with a chaste good-afternoon kiss. And it made me left feeling like the gentleman had taken the time to plan it and pursue it. Not that he was just looking for a piece of ass.
Every time I post a piece on dating, gentle ones, I get a lot of responses from the guys, telling me that is not the way they act. Or that every guy knows better than to behave on one way or another. And perhaps the men who are posting to me are truly that aware and do know how to treat a lady right (and like a lady), but, boys, your female friends complain about these things for a reason. They've experienced the cads.
So follow this advice: "Always offer your date the seat with the best view of the restaurant." It shows you care.