More About Young People and Dating

Like that awesome title? Took me two seconds to think it up.

//pro move

So last week I expressed some shock over what I’d found regarding what young people do instead of traditionally dating. More and more are resorting to hanging out. Less pressure, not as awkward, doesn’t feel like a job interview. I get it.

But I still thought that if a girl did meet a guy she liked and he offered free food then she’d probably accept. Apparently not.

I asked a friend, 25, if she or girls younger than her dated. “No” was the answer I got.

Then I did what all guys do when confronted with a question regarding women (or girls, more accurately): I asked a guy that doles out fantasy football advice on the internet. His response to my particular situation:

I have no idea. I just turned 33, and my girlfriend is [REDACTED], close enough in age to be on the same page from jump. By the time I reached my late 20s, I realized I couldn’t find much common ground with a woman younger than about 26, not unless she was on at least her second job since college and had life stories to tell that didn’t happen on campus. So I’m not exactly tuned in to the young folk outside of the emails I get for the mailbag and the brief glimpses of the CW and MTV I get while writing about TV. So I don’t know.

But if I had to guess… maybe younger people think of a “date” as something more antiquated than it really is? Whether you want to blame the societal move toward sexual equality or the pussification of our nation’s young people, there are fewer strong male role models in America, and as the chivalrous “strong, silent type” archetype has crumbled, so too has the notion of a “date” where the man shows up to the door holding flowers and drives the woman to dinner and a movie. Kids grow up hanging out in groups and making out at parties, not going out on a traditional dates. So even though taking a woman out to dinner is the most normal thing to do with a girl you’ve met and hit it off with, it’s possible — even likely — that it’s a foreign concept to her.

Anyway, that’s my theory, and if it’s true, young people are even stupider than I thought. It’s free food with someone you like! Fucking say yes!

Moving forward, perhaps it would be better not to say the words “date” or “Can I take you out?” I like the question, “Would you like to meet up for a drink?” It’s not as formal as a full-on date, it doesn’t sound immature like “hanging out,” and it offers both of you several options: you meet on neutral territory; she has the option of leaving after a harmless drink; you have the option to be chivalrous and pay for her drink; and — best of all — a drink can become several drinks, which could lead to anything from dinner (!) to sexy bad decisions.

Probably good advice. If I had it to do over again, I wouldn’t have asked her out. “Meet up”, “get a drink”…whatever. It probably accomplishes the same thing, whether it’s called a date or not.

YOU’RE SO WISE, FANTASY FOOTBALL DUDE.

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