Saturday, January 5, 2008

WE Relationships – Rules of Engagement: Dating Etiquette…

By Niama S. Sandy

As it is a New Year let us truly start anew! Just as the New Year brings endless new possibilities, so do new relationships. When it goin good yuh have de bliss and de excitement but there’s always the chance that it can go terribly wrong before you’re really out of the gate. In true Rules of Engagement fashion I will prove my case with a story…

Some months back I met a man – let’s call him Courtney. We went once; he paid- only indicating his intent to do so after I pulled out my own money. A few weeks later, I had passes to an event. I invited him. He replied “Sure, could you treat to dinner?”

Honestly, I had a deer-in-the-headlights moment. I know this a new era for women and all; nowadays a woman can pay on a date but here’s the thing: don’t ask me to!

Then I thought about it again. Depending on your thought processes there is an argument to be made that he could have been 1) just being honest and open or 2) testing me. I decided to put my schema aside and go with it; so I finally said “Sure why not.”

So I tell him what time to get there. A little after the appointed time, Courtney calls – “I will be there in 10 minutes.” Twenty minutes later this one waltzes in, his breathe smelling like I don’t even know what and furthermore now a half an hour late. He was already pushing his luck with the “can you treat” thing; this lateness was kicking it into overdrive. Needless to say there hasn’t been another excursion.

So our Rules for the New Year…

1. Look your best!
You may call me superficial but hear me out. For me, looking “your best” translates to emanating confidence and being inviting. Make sure yuh doh have no lint in yuh hair or nuttin so.

2. Be on time!
Hell be a few minutes early! Your lateness can read as your complete disregard for the time of others. If you know you’re going to be late – call!

3. Put the Crackberry down!
In today’s world there are so many things that fracture our attention into a million little pieces. The incessant texting, e-mailing, and whatever else your device of distraction does can go on hold for the next couple of hours. There is nothing worse than hearing “One More Time” come blasting out of your date’s phone when in the middle of a conversation. It may be exceedingly difficult but try giving your date your full attention.

4. Mind your manners.
Common courtesy seems to be something that’s lacking in many everyday interactions; fill that void. Gentleman: stand when she gets up to go to the bathroom, take off your hat when you enter her house, open her door - and my personal old-fashioned favorite – make sure she walks on the inside of the street. Ladies: laugh at his jokes!

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