About This Book

Lots of books have been written about how to be the perfect date — how to mold yourself into a package that no one of the opposite sex will be able to resist. I want you to resist this notion strenuously. Think about it for a minute: If you pretend to be a stud muffin or a Barbie doll or a pretty woman or a man in black and that's not the real you, and if your date likes what you're pretending to be, you have to continue pretending endlessly or, when the real you emerges, the deal is blown. Even if you decide to be your best possible self, are you going to be able to maintain that posture endlessly? If not, when you let yourself unwind you may find your date hurt, angry, and confused about how you presented yourself initially and who you are now. The whole thing about dating is maintainability.

I wrote this book to be about real-life dating:

il In this book, I tell you where to find members of the opposite sex, explain the difference between good and bad pick-up lines, give you pointers on what to wear and what to avoid, describe the perfect place to begin scouting for the perfect date and the perfect date place, and offer a lot of other information, including how much happier you'll be if you don't worry about the "perfect" anything. After all, a little imperfection makes the world go round.

I The time frame of this book spans from the time you decide you want to date (or date smarter) until six to nine months after your first date, which is the watershed period: the time when most daters either break up, which means they go back to the beginning, or go on to couplehood. That's a fair amount of leeway, and it depends on lots of factors that I discuss in the chapters that follow.

Dating stops when couplehood begins; relationships deal with commitment and the M word (marriage) and cheating and money and parents and babies and all that sort of stuff.

Remember: The nice thing about a date is that it's just a date. It's an opportunity, a time, a place, and a situation for one person to get to know another person. It's not an invitation for sex or marriage or to meet Mom or to find someone to produce a child with or to impress your friends or to get your folks off your back or to prove that you're not a loner. Dating is no big deal. But it can feel really, really scary because it has to do with big-ticket items: the opposite sex and rejection. Yikes! I don't promise to take all the adrenaline out of dating 'cause that would also remove the fun, but at least I can try to smooth out some of the panic and show you why your palms are sweating and the origin of those tummy butterflies so you can enjoy the ride.

Continue reading here: Conventions Used in This Book

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