Picture this: A man approaches a woman and asks her out on a date. She isn't romantically interested, but she also isn't repulsed, so she says yes 'cause hey, at least there's going to be free food.
What do you think about that situation?
Actually, it's manipulative to agree to what is clearly a date if you know deep down you have no plans of pursuing this relationship. And according to a recent study published in the journal Social Psychological and Personality Science, women who found this kind of behavior acceptable scored high on the "dark triad" of personality traits, which includes psychopathy, Machiavellianism, and narcissism.
This phenomenon is called the "foodie call."
Researchers from Azusa Pacific University, an evangelical Christian university in California, performed two studies. The first study involved 820 female participants: 40 percent reporting they were single, 33 percent married, and 27 percent saying they were in a relationship. 85 percent of these women were straight and became the focus of the study. The participants were asked several questions to measure their personality traits, gender role beliefs, and foodie call views, including if they found it socially acceptable. The first study found that 23 percent of the women have engaged in a foodie call.
The second study had 357 straight women answering similar questions; 33 percent of those participants have some experience with foodie calls.
In both studies, those who've engaged in foodie calls scored higher in the "dark triad" personality traits. One of the researchers, Brian Collisson, said, "Several dark traits have been linked to deceptive and exploitative behavior in romantic relationships, such as one-night stands, faking an orgasm, or sending unsolicited sexual pictures."
The researchers believe that foodie calls aren't limited to women; all genders might have tendencies of engaging in them.
The moral of the story? Be straightforward with your intentions. You wouldn't want someone hanging out with you just because you're buying them food, only to ghost you right after.