Wednesday, February 20, 2002


By Lucinda Rosenfeld

1. Don't tell her how much money you make; sell your personality, not your susceptibility to extortionist divorce settlements.

2. Don't get drunk. You look stupid, and you say stupid things.

3. Do not attempt to rub knees unless you're getting serious signals. These do not include yawning, blinking, or wearing a skimpy top.

4. Don't say her "chi is stalled." New Age men make great yoga instructors. That doesn't mean she wants to date one.

5. Do not use the word "proactive" unless she's specifically told you of her mad attraction to motivational speakers.

6. Do not refer to your "issues" unless she's specifically told you of her mad attraction to men in analysis.

7. Don't dress creatively. On a first date, she needs reassurance that you're normal. Prove you're a "funky guy" some other time.

8. Don't give everything away, especially on the family/ex-girlfriend tragedy front.(a) You'll need something to talk about on the second and third dates. And (b) there's a very real chance she may never return from the ladies' room.

9. Avoid leaving your shirt unbuttoned to your navel. Imagination is a powerful thing.

10. Avoid the Ricky Martin impersonation; dancing is risky and also provokes questions (see number 7).

11. Don't go on and on about high school. There's a certain kind of man for whom the mid- to late teen years still factor as the most glorious period of his life. Chances are she is not interested in getting to know this man any better.

12. If it was your idea to go out, it's your responsibility to pick up the check. If it was hers, split it.

13. Don't wear dirty socks or underwear. (You never know.)


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