BY ALISA HRUSTIC
There are plenty of ways to ace the first date: You feel the chemistry immediately. You both love the food at dinner. She compliments your jacket. You make her laugh. Better yet, she makes you laugh. You end the night with a kiss if you’re lucky—and a second date if you’re really lucky.
But one third of Americans don’t enjoy going on first dates, according a recent EliteSingles survey. Of the two thirds of people who do enjoy it, more than 80 percent don’t know what to talk about and about 1 in 5 feel super nervous beforehand. That’s because there are so many ways a first date can just go horribly, horribly wrong: You show up late. The conversation gets awkward. Your card gets declined. You go in for the kiss and she shakes your hand instead.
Or, you could suffer through one of the following scenarios.
“He took me back to his apartment after dinner… to watch him play FIFA. He genuinely thought he was a godsend at FIFA. I texted my friend to have her call me with an ‘S.O.S. You have to come quick!’ scenario. I feel like this is a general consensus amongst most women: Your ‘talent’ at video games does not make us want to become intimate with you. It probably just reminds us of our brothers.” —Brielle, 22
“A Rihanna song comes on and my date said: ‘Getting beaten up by Chris Brown was the best thing to ever happen to her career.’ Mind you, I oversee a domestic violence shelter.” —Heather, 27
“I got coffee with a dude who kept insisting we go back to one of our houses and get me inebriated somehow. Not him, just me—either weed or alcohol, and he wasn’t even subtle about it. He kept asking every 10 minutes if I wanted to go back to my/his place and ‘try some vodka gummy bears or smoke a bowl,’ but he made it very clear that he didn’t plan on getting intoxicated.” —Jenna, 23
“First off, he didn’t tell me it was a date. I legitimately thought we were just hanging out and playing Scrabble because he asked me to via Twitter. Then he invited his ex-girlfriend to hang out with us, which I later found out was his way of showing her he had moved on. I felt used.” —Dylan, 23
“We were supposed to go to a movie on a Friday night. He said his friends kind of wanted to go and asked if any of mine would want to join. It was already Friday night so my friends had plans. He asked if I still wanted to go, so I said sure. I figured he meant just the two of us and he would leave his two other guy friends at home. I figured wrong, and me and him sat in between the two of them for the duration of the movie. It was the worst. Never went out again.” —Maddie, 23
“One time I went on a blind date and the first thing the guy said to me was ‘Is that your real hair color?’ I had been dyeing my hair a dark red for a few months and he actually mentioned something about it… like how do you respond to that?” —Alexis, 22
“The worst thing a guy has done on a first date is blow his nose at the dinner table. 1) How rude! 2) Now my burrito is ruined because of your snot.” —Lauren, 23
“After dinner, he took me back to his apartment and queued up ‘Machine Gun Preacher’ on Netflix—kind of a jarring movie for a first date.” —Jessica, 24
“I once met up with a guy from OkCupid for coffee, and rather than engage in the usual getting-to-know-you chit-chat, he avoided eye contact and kept commenting on people at other tables with snarky remarks about their appearance or topics of conversation. Hearing how judgmental he was within 10 minutes of meeting him was a major turn-off, and I was happy to get out of there when my mug was empty. I’ve been on lots of Internet dates and usually enjoy the conversation, even if I’m not attracted to the guy, but this was the first time I counted down the minutes until it was over.” —Leah, 27