There’s a story about modern love in the new issue of Glamour magazine that reports that, when out with a potential paramour, 73 (yes, SEVENTY THREE) percent of women have no idea if they’re on a date or not. This confusion is attributed to several factors in the modern-love world, but mostly, “we’re all so ruined by booty calls, text-based love affairs, and the long-term fantasy relationships we have with people’s Tinder profiles before even speaking to them.”
The takeaway here could easily be that technology is killing true, palpable IRL love and the pleasures of courtship. But has it really? Or has it just made dating a bit harder to define? Can we actually navigate these strange waters better with a few more tools? If you’ve got a hot outing coming up and you’re unsure of what to make of it here are some signs that you are truly on a date with someone who is interested in potentially pursuing a real, live relationship—as opposed to a not-date date, a booty call, a buddy-ship, a networking meeting or some other fantasy non-thing we have yet to sort out:
1. He dressed up
In some way shape or form, your date put a little bit of extra effort in his outfit. Maybe he ditched the gross Adidas sandals with socks for a pair of clean Converse. Or perhaps he’s wearing a pair of jeans he recently washed. As long as he spent more than five minutes putting himself together and doesn’t look like he spent the day on the couch, then you’re in good shape so far.
2. He’s not constantly poking at his smart phone
Unplugging during dates is key to success! Okay, maybe you can sneak an Instagram of your dinner plate, or a quick update for your friend on how things are going while he’s in the bathroom, but that’s IT. If this dude is completely engrossed in his precious device throughout the entire night, then he’s a crappy dater. And maybe a crappy person. Avoid!
3. He asks you about yourself
If an hour has gone by, and not one fact about you has been requested, maybe this guy has gross intentions. Or maybe he’s just really good at talking about himself. Either way, ditch the selfish blabbermouth, stat.
4. He doesn’t bring friends along
Let’s say you tell a guy to meet you at your favorite restaurant at 6pm, and let’s say when you see him arrive, he’s got his whole posse with him like you didn’t just ask him out to dinner. Ugh. Unless you two have decided on a double or triple date (or you just want others around when you meet for the first time), too much company does not a romantic date make.
5. The chosen environment is someplace besides a bedroom or couch
Look. Beds are very comfy places, and so are couches. But they have certain implications, and unless you’re cool with that, stay away from soft, convenient surfaces.
6. The person doesn’t get super sloshed
Do not get super drunk on a date! You are not at a frat party. You are not polishing off a bottle of wine with your bestie as you two watch New Girl. Dates are designed by the date gods to get to know people in the most sincere way possible. Impairing your judgment with six shots of Fireball may lead to a hilariously fun time, but there is a good chance you’ll end up regretting something you said or did.
7. The person does not immediately ask you about a friend, sister, or job openings.
You’re a smart girl. You know this sounds suspicious, so don’t stand for this a-hole behavior even for a second. This is not a date, this is a disingenuous and shifty ulterior-motives meeting.
Happy dating, Gigglers!