The blind date is a situation every single girl will inevitably find herself in—whether it’s because her well-meaning friends want to get her feet wet in the dating scene or because she needs to start getting over someone. She may even take matters into her own hands and solicit the services of an online dating site (a rising trend nowadays—just think of Sarah and Jake and how well that turned out in Must Love Dogs).
And whether you’re 17, 27, or 37, the idea of spending a couple of hours alone with someone can be nerve-wracking.
Here are some common situations that you may find yourself in during a blind date, compiled in this Girl Scout’s guide to dating on the blind side.
SITUATION #1: OPPOSITES DO NOT ATTRACT
The Problem: You seem to have nothing in common and there is a lot of dead air.
The Solution: Find a topic anyone will have something to contribute to.
There are certain life experiences that are great equalizers—that is to say, no matter who you are, where you grew up, or what your place in society is, you’re bound to have gone through them.
One of them is having had a most embarrassing moment. Ask your date how they coped or bluffed their way out of an embarrassing moment. Not only is it a great ice breaker; but your date’s response is sure to give you an indicator of how seriously he takes himself and his sense of humor.
Another great equalizer is a teacher or coach that gave a strong sense of inspiration.
Can’t find a way to work these into the conversation? Why not try a trending topic—Jejemonese, anyone?
SITUATION #2: THE SPANISH INQUISITION OF 2010
The Problem: You find yourself being interrogated.
The Solution: Lighten it up!
It’s one thing to get to know one another, but it’s another to be barraged by a series of questions shot at you—firing squad style.
To divert this uncomfortable situation, try being upfront about it in a tongue in cheek kind of way and say, “Hey, I feel like a celebrity being asked so many questions!” Or “So this is how beauty pageant contestants feel.” You can also turn the tables on him and tell him it’s your turn—or make a game of Truth or Dare of it.
Chances are your date isn’t aware that he’s going overboard with the line of questioning. He might even be just as nervous as you. Just be careful not to say that in a sarcastic manner or make it appear as if you’re annoyed so as not to offend him.
SITUATION #3: CLOCKWATCHING
The Problem: Your date isn’t going well and you can’t wait for it to end, and neither can he.
The Solution: Have a classy exit plan.
Riza, 32, was on a blind date she describes as being over even before it started.
“We really didn’t have anything to talk about. All our conversation starters wound up as dead ends after the first two replies. I had a party to go to after the date, which was my escape plan,” explains Riza, who thought she had her bases covered.
“I wasn’t prepared when, after dinner, right before ordering dessert, he told me that he had to run because he had another engagement,” says Riza who admits that her ego took a slight blow when the date was over in 45 minutes.
Though she hardly calls herself an expert on blind dates, Riza did learn one thing: “Coffee is a much more innocuous setup for a first date. Even a short lunch in between office hours is better because it provides a convenient excuse for calling it a day after an hour, with no hard feelings. And if, as a pleasant surprise, the date goes well, it’ll make the two of you anticipate the next encounter.”
SITUATION #4: KANYA-KANYANG BAYAD
The Problem: He expects you to pay for (at least) your share.
The Solution: Come prepared!
While many men consider picking up the tab for a date a point of pride, there are those who don’t share this sentiment. To avoid this sticky situation, arm yourself with some extra cash and even your credit card when going out on a date.
Tinee, 24, shares her experience. “I went out with a guy who, when he got the bill, asked me point-blank, ‘This is Dutch, right?’ I was taken aback by the question, but was too proud to admit otherwise, so I said, ‘No problem, how much is my share?’”
Little did Tinee know that this was just the beginning, “When he computed the bill, he said, “Oops, I dropped my only P500 bill in the car. Would you mind taking care of this first?”
Tinee forked over her credit card to avoid any further humiliation and paid for the entire meal. “Then he wanted to go to the arcade and play video games at a near by place that offered free video game testing!”
Not being a video game fan, Tinee took this as her cue to go home—by herself. “Yeah, he stayed and played video games. I had no more cash in my wallet and just asked my dad for cab money when I got home.”
SITUATION #5: DUTY DATE
The Problem: The person who set up the date is someone you trust or owe a favor to (like a parent or close friend) and you don’t know how to say no.
The Solution: Commit to just one date.
It can be weird to have “tita” playing matchmaker, and you can always decline politely, but if they insist, there’s no harm in going out on just one date. That way, you can always say you tried. Whether or not it goes well, thank both your date and well-meaning relative for introducing you to a new friend. Never, under any circumstances, say anything negative about your date to your relative.
SITUATION #6: HE’S ALL THAT—NOT!
The Problem: Your date was all hype and no substance.
The Solution: Give him the benefit of the doubt.
Your date was presented to you as if he was God’s gift to womankind, and you had no choice but to believe the sales pitch because well, it was just so convincing. Turns out, he’s more like God’s curse.
Danna, 28, was set up with a guy who was 6 years her junior, and despite her misgivings about a May-December affair, she eventually agreed to the date. “My friend told me he saw my picture on Facbeook and asked to be set up with me. She enumerated his long list of academic achievements, and he really did seem to be quite a catch,” Danna shares, admitting that the chance to play Demi to a dashing Ashton was too tempting to turn down.
But as it turns out that it was precisely his academic achievements that got in the way. “He kept on whining about how, despite his stellar grades and credentials, he was getting paid a little more than minimum wage. I told him that I started out making a lot less than that, and he blurted, ‘But during your time, that was already a lot of money!’” Danna says incredulously.
The slight feeling of indignation was made worse during the evening as Danna’s date constantly reminded her of how things were different during “her time.”
“I learned my lesson. I can only be a ‘Mrs. Kutcher’ if I have a man with a mindset like Ashton who really thinks that age is just a number,” sighs Danna.
When in this sort of situation, it might be a good idea to remember you have a sense of humor. And that not all bad dates turn out badly.
Anne Mac, a 32-year-old mother of one, is happily married to Myke, whom she met on a blind date. “I guess it helped that we both went into the date without any expectations and were nicely surprised that we hit it off and both wanted to see each other again.”
And maybe, when all is said and done, that’s the key to surviving any kind of blind date—have an open mind and leave those expectations at home—but always bring your credit card... just in case.
(Photos courtesy of Warner Brothers)