Friday, December 16, 2011



ELISE: Invite me to dinner, Frank.
ELISE: [gives him a look]
FRANK TAYLOR: Would you like to have dinner?
ELISE: Women don’t like questions.
FRANK TAYLOR: Join me for dinner.
ELISE: Too demanding.
FRANK TAYLOR: Join me for dinner?
ELISE: Another question.
FRANK TAYLOR: [thinks for a moment] I’m having dinner, if you’d care to join me.
ELISE: [smiles at him]

                                             —The Tourist, 2010, Florian Henckel von Donnersmarck.

DATING is fun, yet asking out can be treacherous.

One thing is still not crystal clear to me. When a woman likes a man, should she ask him out for the first date? Or is this man’s job? I consider it would be great if either man or woman could make the first move—nothing to do with claiming for equal rights1, though—,  simply just going with the flow. You like him, so you ask him out. What’s the big deal?

Nevertheless, as a close friend likes to remind me once and again, “If a man likes you, he will definitely make the move, and sooner rather than later.” I kinda give her the reason. After all, my experience sustains the affirmation that men love hunting, like our primitive ancestors. Period.

This summer, over mojitos, I discussed this topic with some friends of mine. I remember I raised this controversial question: What if I go to that table, you see that good-looking guy, and I give my personal card to him?

Alas, my Dedicated Readers, women doing that can be taken as aggressive, desperate, and masculine. So that man would have looked at me, saying “Oh man, another desperate woman” or would have taken my number, rubbing his hands and shouting (or singing) Waiting for tonight!

So what are the non-written but almost mandatory rules for women? Kids, listen well, never ask a man out for the first date, but use feminine wiles—namely, eye contact and the whitest and sweetest smile as a sign for him to ask you out.

I wonder if men disagree with this rule.

I think I need to do an experiment. Wait. Let me recall my experiences.

Okay, here we go.

Once I asked a man to meet me for a coffee. Result: he never replied to me. Ha! You see? Okay, I did not ask him for a date. Just to know him better sipping some coffee. The thing is, I will never know whether he was shocked by a woman taking the plunge—C’mon, an inoffensive coffee!—, or he was embarrassed to answer with a resounding No! What’s the big deal? It was just a coffee, for Heaven’s sake!

On the other hand, I’ve been asked out recently (I swear I didn’t use any of the above feminine wiles) and the result was quite interesting. Some men don’t take no for an answer. Actually, it is an exciting challenge for them.

One guy invited me for dinner—the classic guy. Let me tell you, when I politely declined his offer, he said: “No??? And if I ever see you again?” That was quite dramatic but he made me laugh. So I said: “Okay, if tomorrow never comes, I’ll see what I can do.” Another one asked me to join him to see a flamenco show—the trendy guy. The elevator’s door opened and closed, following with the ring, while the poor man tried to convince me to join him for the event. And another one, grabbing my hand, and with that cute French accent told me: “If you want love, you should come to Paris”—the romantic guy.

Yes, Rick, we’ll always have Paris.

1 Two weeks ago, some male friends were seated comfortably on a couch while I was seated on an uncomfortable chair. One of them told me, “Don’t you women claim equal rights?!” Damn it! It was easier to live in the 18th century!

Copyright © 2011 by THE PYTHAGOREAN STORYTELLER. All rights reserved.

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