Table of Contents

Introduction 1

About This Book 2

Conventions Used in This Book 3

What's Not Required Reading 4

Assumptions about You 4

How This Book Is Organized 5

Part III: Setting Up the Date 6

Part IV: Date Day Preparations 6

Part V: The Date 6

Part VI: The Day After and Beyond 7

Part VII: Playing It Safe and Keeping It Fresh 7

Part VIII: The Part of Tens 7

Appendixes 7

Icons Used in This Book 8

Where to Go from Here 9

Chapter 1: Thoroughly Modern Dating 13

Scoping Out the Changing Dating World 13

Speed bumps 14

Changing definitions of marriage: When and why 14

Fantasies and realities 15

Terrorism and war 15

Gadgets, gadgets everywhere! 16

Money matters 19

Sex 19

Safety 19

Meeting Your Match in Today's Dating Scene 20

Keeping a Dating Notebook 20

Chapter 2: Being Confident 21

Handling Fear 21

The Confidence Game 23

Confidence on the inside 25

Confidence on the outside 26

Confidence builders 28

When you're confident enough to date 29

False Confidence 30

Chapter 3: Polishing Your Social Self 31

hhhThree-Heart Ideas 32

Taking yourself off house arrest 32

Making friends 34

hhTwo-Heart Ideas 38

Charm practice 38

Reading the personals 39

Writing a personal ad for practice or real 40

hOne-Heart Ideas 42

Making a good first impression 42

Considering a mini-makeover 42

Learning from past experiences 45

Turning your fantasy self to reality 47

HBroken-Heart Ideas 49

Comparing yourself to others 49

Throwing pity parties 50

Vowing never again 50

Beating yourself up 51

Beating up Mom 51

Putting yourself under house arrest 52

Whining 52

Chapter 4: Finding Out What Makes You Tick 53

Starting with Mom and Dad 54

How Mom and Dad can still ground you 54

Escaping parental haunting 54

Looking for Patterns 56

Describing an Ideal Match 58

Being the real you 59

A personal ad with no purse strings attached 60

Chapter 5: Making Sure You're Ready 63

The Wrong Time 63

The Right Time 65

The Final Word 67

Chapter 6: Finding a Date 71

A Word about Attitude — Yours 71

Searching for the Best Places to Meet Someone 73

The halls of academia 73

The people in your neighborhood 73

Parties, vacations, and other fun stuff 74

Grocery stores, bus stops, and other public places 75

Spiritualism and altruism — a dating duo 76

Good sports win big 76

Friends, relatives, and — believe it or not — exes 77

The personals: Online and off 78

Avoiding Certain Places Like the Plague 79

Chapter 7: Planning a Cool Approach 81

The Eyes Have It 81

From Your Mouth 81

Using what works 82

Avoiding what doesn't work 83

A word on compliments 83

Admitting you're not perfect 85

Perking up pick-up lines 86

Part HI: Setting Up the Date 87

Chapter 8: Asking for a Date 89

Risking Rejection 90

Improving Your Odds 91

Never ask for a first date for a Friday or Saturday night 91

Never say, "Would you like to go out sometime?" 92

Always offer options about the date 92

Remember that timing is everything 93

Always go for it if you're having a good hair or anything else day 93

The Invitation: Sending the Message 93

Getting an Answer 95

Dealing with a no 96

Getting some feedback 96

Chapter 9: Getting a Phone Number 97

Asking for a Number 98

You want to get in touch with the person 98

You want to keep your options open 99

You're not interested in the other person, but you feel it's expected of you to ask for a number 100

Giving Your Phone Number 101

You'd like to see the person again 101

You're not sure whether you're interested 102

No way, Jose 102

Home phone or not? 103

Life-saving cells 103

Phone number alternatives 104

Decoding Girl Time versus Boy Time 104

Talking Once You're on the Phone 105

Rules in a Nutshell 105

Chapter 10: Plotting the Place for Your First Date 107

First Things First 107

Rule 1: Pick an activity that you enjoy 108

Rule 2: Pick an activity that you can easily afford 108

Rule 3: Do something that doesn't require new clothes 108

Rule 4: Go where you can talk without getting thrown out 109

Rule 5: Go to a place that's easy to get to 109

Rule 6: Do something that isn't competitive 109

Rule 7: Pick an activity that doesn't involve a lot of alcohol 110

Rule 8: Leave time to get to know each other 110

Rule 9: Do something that doesn't involve high-ticket others 110

Rule 10: Find an activity that doesn't last more than a couple of hours 111

Exploring First Date Ideas 111

Places and things to avoid 111

So-so ideas 112

Good places for a first date 113

Doing the restaurant thing 115

Who Pays? 117

Part IV: Date Day Preparations 119

Chapter 11: Getting Your Outside Ready 121

Considering Cosmetic Improvements 122

First Impressions Count 123

Suiting Up 123

Dressing for real-world dates 125

Bearing other factors in mind 129

Putting together an emergency repair kit 130

Cleanliness Is Next to Dateliness 130

Don't sweat it 131

Hair apparent 132

D-day hygiene checklist 133

Taking Care of Business: Practical Details Before You

Leave the House 133

Time 134

Transportation 135

Money 135

Directions 136

One Final Checklist 137

Ten Minutes to Lift-Off 138

Chapter 12: Getting Your Inside Ready 141

Understanding the Psychology of Stress 141

The stress wall 142

Creating chaos 144

Easing Your Mind 144

Mind over what's-the-matter 145

Looking at every dater's fears 146

Relaxing body and soul 147

Relaxing Your Body 148

Step 1: Heavy breathing 148

Step 2: Progressive relaxation 149

Step 3: Visualization 151

Pre-Date Affirmations: Sweet Talking to Self 153

Chapter 13: Polishing the Act 155

Before You Begin 155

Say What? Knowing What to Say 156

Opening gambits 156

Small talk 158

Safe subjects 159

Avoiding Taboo Topics 159

Sex 160

Exes 160

Politics 160

Religion 161

Flirting Fun 161

Interpreting Body Language 162

Positive signs 164

Negative signs 164

Mirroring 165

Listening Attentively and Effectively 166

Part V: The Date 167

Chapter 14: Having a Way Cool Time 169

Enjoying Yourself 170

Making the Most of the Place You Picked 170

Restaurants 170

Movies or plays 173

Concerts 173

Sporting events 173

Special events 174

A Word about Silence 174

Fielding the Curve Balls 175

Surviving dating's most embarrassing moments 175

Lighten up 178

Picking Up the Check 178

Ending the Date Gracefully 179

Successful date 180

So-so date 180

Disaster date 180

The Kiss Question 181

The signs 183

What about sex on the first date? 185

Post-Datem 186

Gaining a little perspective 186

Chilling out 187

Chapter 15: Your Date Hates You 189

Me, Paranoid? 190

Reading the Signs 191

Getting More Info 192

No Whining! 192

Ending on a Positive Note 193

Tuition for Dating 101 194

Chapter 16: You Hate Your Date 197

Making It to the (Not) Bitter End 197

Deploying survival strategies 197

Avoiding blame 198

Being polite 198

Proclaiming Truth: Honesty Is a Tricky Policy 199

Using tact 200

Telling the whole truth and nothing but the truth, sort of 200

Handling Hurt Feelings 201

Chalking It Up to Experience 202

Chapter 17: You Hate Each Other 203

Facing Facts 203

Speed bumps 204

Total turnoffs 205

Acknowledging the Moment of Truth 205

Exiting with Style 206

Reviewing Expectations 207

Starting Over 208

Part VI: The Day After and Beyond 209

Chapter 18: The Next Day 211

Second Thoughts on First Impressions 211

After an Icky Date 212

Paying life's tuition 213

Restoring your confidence 213

After a So-So Date 214

Valium for the soul 214

All the right moves 215

After the Perfect Date 215

Testosterone versus Estrogen Central 217

Nine hints for limbo and surviving the wait 219

Men's ten-day rule 220

Believe in fate 221

Nix the gossip 221

Chapter 19: The Second Date 223

Is It Really a Second Date? 223

Dates versus date-ettes 224

Anatomy of a true second date 224

Good places for a second date 226

In Between One and Two 227

Date Expectations 227

Mind over what's-the-matter 228

Old patterns, new people 228

The First Fifteen Minutes of a Second Date 229

Getting to Know You 230

Trust or Consequences 231

The Last Fifteen Minutes of a Second Date 232

Chapter 20: Learning about Each Other 233

Volunteering Information 233

Things to tell immediately 235

Things to tell eventually 236

Things to tell before sex 237

Things to tell if asked or pushed 238

Sharing Feelings 239

Keeping Mum 241

Past sexual experiences 242

Past relationships 244

Showing Interest 244

Good questions to ask 244

The Spanish Inquisition phenomenon 245

Avoiding Pitfalls 245

Chapter 21: Speed Bumps on Life's Highway 247

Scoping Out the Four Stages of Attachment: The Gospel

According to Dr. Joy 248

Applying the Brakes 248

Putting Off Sex 250

Baring your soul 251

Trusting your emotions 252

Not Getting Ahead of Yourself 253

Being Patient: You Can't Hurry Love 255

Chapter 22: Casual, Serious, and Heavy Dating 257

Casual vs. Serious vs. Heavy Dating 257

Casual dating 257

Serious dating 258

Heavy dating 259

The Role of Sex in a Relationship 259

What sex isn't 260

What sex is 260

The Thing about Sex 261

Identifying the right time 262

Saying yes 264

Saying no 265

Soul Mates: Fact or Fiction? 265

Fish or Cut Bait: Relationship Evaluation 266

Chapter 23: Breaking Up 269

Decoding Warning Signs 270

Dealing with Evidence of Problems 272

Understanding the Break Up 273

Timing 273

Incompatibility 274

Hauntings by ghosts 275

Geography 275

Sex 276

Money 276

Friends and family 277

Kids 277

Work 278

Health 279

Substance abuse 279

Lack of trust 279

Violence 280

Making Last-Ditch Efforts 280

Apologizing 280

Taking responsibility 281

Keeping your fantasies to yourself 281

Avoiding ship-sinking mistakes 281

Taking time out 282

Making a Clean Break 283

Avoiding blame 283

Don't ask why 283

Beyond the Breakup 284

Looking for patterns 284

Accepting that things don't last forever 286

Always looking forward 286

Scrutinizing the details 287

Spending time alone 287

Sidestepping emotional pitfalls 287

Chapter 24: Rebound 291

Loosening the Ties That Bind 292

Defining Rebound 293

Using the Time Productively 294

Waiting It Out 296

Avoiding the Still Married, Separated, and Newly Divorced 298

Part VU: Playing It Safe and Keeping It Fresh 301

Chapter 25: Safety First 303

Telling Somebody Where You're Going 304

Getting Your Date's Name, Rank, and Serial Number 305

Getting There Can Be Fun 306

Meeting there 306

Meeting at the office, workplace, or school 306

Meeting in your 'hood 307

Taking Cash 308

Achieving Safety in Numbers 308

Paying Attention to Your Intuition 309

Intuition is 309

Intuition versus paranoia 309

It's okay to get the heck out 310

Chapter 26: Dating Sight Unseen 313

Online Connections 313

Personal Ads 314

Blind Dates 315

Chapter 27: Dangerous Dates: The Dark Side 317

Date Rape 317

Myths and facts about date rape 318

How to protect yourself if you're a man 319

How to protect yourself if you're a woman 319

How to protect yourself from the date rape drug 320

Stalking 321

Profile of a stalker 322

How to protect yourself from a stalker 323

Chapter 28: Keeping It Fresh, Alive, and Healthy 325

Send Flowers for No Reason 326

Write a Love Note 328

Reminisce about Your First Mutual Date 329

Share Baby Pictures and Stories 329

Give a Massage 330

Shampoo and Bathe Your Love 330

Clean Your Love's Place 331

Give a "Generous Soul" Gift Certificate 331

Plan a Mystery Date 332

Take a Hike to Someplace New 333

Part V111: The Part of Tens 335

Chapter 29: Ten+ Do's and Don'ts of Internet Dating 337

The To-Do List of Online Dating 337

Be precise 338

Make your English teacher proud 338

Keep the fibs to a minimum 338

Use an appropriate photo 339

Provide only a cell phone number 340

Date within a 25-mile radius 340

Meet publicly and make sure someone knows where you are 340

The Never-Do List of Online Dating 341

Don't stay online too long before a meeting 341

Never online date on an office computer 341

Don't get seduced in online "shopping" 342

Don't rely on humor or sexual innuendo 342

Chapter 30: Ten Ways to Know You're in Love 343

You Actually Want to Meet the Parents 343

You're Willing to Explain Why You Don't Want to Date Others 344

You'll Ditch Your Little Black Book 344

You Breathe Easier When He or She Is Around 345

You Hum Love Songs under Your Breath 345

You're Full of Energy 345

You're Willing to Go Somewhere You Hate 346

You're Willing to Save If You're a Spendthrift and Spend If

You're Chintzy 347

The Idea of Doing Nothing Together Sounds Terrific 347

You're Willing to Risk Being Yourself 348

Chapter 31: Ten Sexual Commandments of Dating 349

Don't Get Naked Too Soon 350

No House Calls Until Sex 350

Slow Down 351

No Sleeping Together Until You're Ready for Sex 351

Don't Have Unprotected Sex 352

Don't Assume Your Date Is Responsible Sexually 352

Beware of Back Rubs 353

Don't Confess 353

Don't Fake It 353

Don't Compare 354

Chapter 32: Ten Times Not to Date 355

You've Lost Your Job 355

You've Lost Your Housing 356

You've Lost a Friend 356

You've Lost a Parent 357

You've Lost Your Dog 357

You're Lost 357

You're Married 358

You're Still Involved 358

You're Separated 359

You've Been Divorced Less Than a Year 359

Chapter 33: Ten Tips to Happy Dating 361

Be Realistic 361

Be Specific 362

Take Responsibility 363

Be Active 364

Don't Settle 364

Reevaluate Often 365

Write Stuff Down 365

Be Creative 366

Be Aware 366

Analyze Fear 367

Chapter 34: Ten Ways to Make You and Your Date Miserable 369

Whine 370

Blame 370

Compare 371

Pout 371

Holler 372

Swear 372

Say "You Always . . ." or "You Never . . ." 373

Complain 373

Be Passive 374

Find Fault 374

Appendix A: Specialized Dating Situations 375

Appendix B: Catch Phrases 389

Index 393

Continue reading here: Introduction

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