1. Rapid-fire questions to determine if you are the same person
I was once on a coffee date that felt more like a speed date. After a minute or so of small talk he started mentioning his favorite movies, TV shows and musicians and asking if I also liked them. I mentioned one that I had in common with him from the extensive list. I could tell he was already writing me off. I know questions about movies, TV shows, musicians and books are pretty common for first dates since you know so little about the other person, but these questions should be asked in a casual way and it’s really not the end of the world if you don’t have many or even any books, musicians, movies and tv shows in common. As a matter of fact, it can be fun getting someone addicted to the same TV show you’re addicted to, but you have to make it past the first date for this to happen.
2. The date who shows up late and it is either his day off or a weekend day
Running a little late for a first date scheduled shortly after a work day is understandable. Sometimes your boss gives you a project at the last minute. A simple text to say you’re running late is more than enough. Running late for a first date when it’s your day off or a weekend day is something else. Typical excuses range from “I couldn’t find parking” to “trains were running slow.” I’m sorry but you have to give yourself extra time to make it on time for a first date so as to start a potential relationship on the right foot.
3. The date who considers himself a very upbeat/funny person
This is the date who tells you that he loves making people smile and/or laugh. This is also the date who whenever you smile or laugh will point out that he sees he brought a smile to your face or made you laugh. It is extremely tiring to be on a date with someone who seems to be counting how many times you’ve smiled or laughed. As the date is almost ending you’ll be especially smiley over the prospect of almost being in bed under the covers with your fave tv show playing on your macbook, which will make him say things like “It looks like you had a good time, I know I did.” For the record, I don’t think this type of hunky dory person is fake or anything like that, but this type just gives off the impression of not being able to process complex emotions and thoughts which for me eliminates the possibility of a second date.
4. The date who wants to know how you’re liking the online dating site you met on
I understand this is one of those questions usually thrown out there to fill an awkward silence, but talking about what kind of dates you’ve been on, what kind of emails you receive, and how long you’ve been on the site is a romance killer. It takes you out of the one-on-one experience you’re having and brings other people into the equation.
5. The cheapskate
This is the date who suggests eating at this little spot he loves that has huge portions large enough for two people. 9 out of 10 times he is trying to get you to share a meal. This is also the date who says no to your offer of splitting the check but says you can get the tip. Run now.
6. The guy who walks on the outside of a sidewalk
I was once on a date where we were walking for a bit. At one point I started inching towards the outside of the sidewalk in a natural, unconscious manner before I was stopped by the “as a gentleman I always walk on the outside of the sidewalk” police. Oh great, I’m stuck in a bad Nicholas Sparks movie but he’s no Ryan Gosling.
7. The date who wants you to keep drinking
This is the date who pouts when you say you don’t want another drink or who says “let’s just do one last shot.” There might be countless drinks on the horizon but not if you come off as pushy on the first date.
8. The “nice guy”
This is the guy who tells you he has a hard time dating because a lot of women only like “bad guys.” This type of guy wants you to give him a lot of credit for not being a serial killer, rapist, cheater, or physically abusive romantic partner, which is hard to do because not being any of those things is the bare minimum for being date-worthy. This type of guy does not seem to understand that you’re looking for more than just a decent human being, you want to be excited, intrigued, challenged, and a ton of other things you didn’t even know you wanted until you observed them in someone you’re actually smitten with.
9. The date checking his cell phone
On a first date cell phone usage should be limited to the use of navigation apps when you’re trying to find the next spot to hit up.
10. The date who wants you to help him figure out the opposite sex
This is the date who asks questions like “Ok, be honest, do women want guys to pay for the first date?” or “Do women like chivalry?” I can not possibly solve the mystery of women for you because every woman is different. Oh wait… did I just solve it? In any case, first dates are about beginning to get to know someone potentially different from anyone else you’ve ever met and resorting to generalizations and misconceptions can definitely make the other person feel like you’re not even trying to get to know them.