“Soooooooooo, ummm, I mean what you like to do, for you know, fun or whatever?”
Sigh. That’s actually how my conversation started with this guy who wanted to take me out on a date a few years ago. I mean, really – there’s awkward (which I definitely know a lot about) and then there’s just wrong.
This conversation was all kinds of wrong. It felt so forced, it was literally painful to continue forward. And the crazy part is that after 20 minutes of an extremely stalled conversation in which the man actually offered taking me to church on a first date (what?!) and then tried to tell me how he liked trying different types of food, like “you know macaroni and cheese and baked chicken,” I was done. I knew right then, this was not going to go anywhere.
But obviously, every time you meet someone or go on a first date, it won’t necessarily be that obvious that a second date shouldn’t occur. Sometimes the date will be going well and one word will ruin the night or maybe as nice as the guy is, the chemistry just wasn’t there. Now I’m no dating expert, but I think we all have red flags that tell us it’s time to get the heck up outta here.
Here are a few of mine:
You don’t listen
This same guy started off so well, y’all. When he approached me, it was very respectful and not on some, “yo ma with the blue jeans on” type mess. No, he walked up to me, said HI, told me his name and said he would like to get to know me. Cool, I thought to myself… so I gave him name and phone number and told him to call me when he had a chance. When he called, as I explained, the conversation wasn’t the best but not all guys are comfortable on the phone so I tried to give the guy a chance… until I realized he wasn’t listening to a word I was saying. In one minute he’d asked me what I’d like to do on a first date, to which my response was that I’m pretty open but the one thing I don’t want to do is go to the movies. Do you know this fool then turned around and suggested we go to the movies on our first date? Seriously? THEN he suggested church. At that point, I felt like I was getting punked. Fellas, please whatever you do – just make sure you listen to our answers. I promise that one thing right there will take you further than anything else.
You can’t find the funny
Now I’ve told you all that I can be a bit of a cornball sometimes. And you already know I’ve had my fair share of word vomitty moments. Heck, I was so nervous with this one guy that I sizzled my hand in his car. Yeah, you read that right. His window fogged up and when he mentioned that it was strange for that to happen and he wasn’t sure why it did that, your girl here said, “It’s because I’m so hot.” And then proceeded to take my right pointer finger, touch my left hand and make the sizzle noise. I was embarrassed when I did it. I was embarrassed when I told my friends. I’m thoroughly embarrassed writing about it right now. But you know what? He didn’t look at me like I was crazy. He made a joke about it. We laughed and we moved on. I mean, if you can’t find the funny in someone being so nervous that they not only commit serious word vomit, but they also SIZZLE THEIR OWN FRIGGIN HAND, you can’t find the funny in anything really.
Interview vs. Conversation
I’m a writer. Not just on the blog, but like in life. My job is as a writer. But I started off as a journalist. Daily newspapers, broadcast TV, hard news – you name it… that was me. So unfortunately, there are 2 problems that come with that. A) I’m much more comfortable asking questions than answering them and B) it’s very easy for me to go into interview mode if the conversation is stalling. Now you may be asking why my issues affect the guy getting a second date. Here’s why – because the mere fact that either one of us is asking questions as if it’s an interview means that the conversation isn’t organic. You’ve been there before. It goes a little something like this:
Guy: “Oh, so what do you like to do for fun?”
Girl: Umm, all kinds of stuff. I love sports, but I also like history and museums. I love music, so I’m always down for a concert. I mean, really as long as I’m spending time with good people, I’m probably going to enjoy myself. What about you?
Guy: Oh you know the same.
Guy: Soooo what’s your favorite sport?
Girl: Football. You?
Girl: Oh yeah, who’s your favorite team?
Guy: I don’t really have one.
Girl: Oh ok, well I’m a huge Laker fan.
Really??? This conversation is blowing me and I totally just made it up. Although it is indicative of some conversations I’ve had in the past. Really, sir? Your favorite sport is basketball and you have no favorite team? AND you have NO thoughts on the Lakers being my favorite team? Everybody knows if you love basketball, you either love or hate the Lakers. There’s really no in between. Let me move on before this fake convo infuriates me even more lol,
I can’t take you home to my family
Ok, this is very subjective, but really everything on here is – so whatevs. What does it mean when I say I can’t take you home to my family? I think it’s kind of like porn in that there’s no real definition, but you know it when you see it. I once dated a guy who had a tongue ring. He was a really nice guy, but there’s absolutely no way he was going to make into my parents’ house, my grandparents’ house or be around any of my cousins or sisters with that tongue ring. It just wasn’t going to happen. I can hear my uncle/god father pulling me to the side right now to have a conversation with me. And yes, we’re only talking about date #2 here (and incidentally we dated for awhile, so this wasn’t as much of a deal breaker as I initially thought), but if I can’t take you home to my family if things get serious with us – what are we doing here?
And if you think I’m just being paranoid, I’d like to present exhibit a) my mom’s dad (my pawpaw) tells us all the time how one of my uncle’s called himself getting braids one time. My pawpaw saw him coming up the driveway, so he dead bolted all the doors and wouldn’t let my uncle in the house until he took the braids out. As far as he was concerned, only women wore braids, so unless my uncle had something he needed to tell him – he had to go change his hair before he was let back in that house. And exhibit b) in High school, one of my cousins’ close friends made the mistake of telling him that he was interested in me. So 5 of my guy cousins took him into the kitchen and had a 25 minute conversation with this guy. Whatever they said, he was scared to even look at me afterward. And they thought this was the funniest thing in the world. Still clown me about it to this day.
And you think I’m bringing a guy with a tongue ring to these people??? Hell nah.
What about you all? What are some dating red flags for you?