Money Manners

Get a clue, get a date

Note: This story originally appeared Sunday, November 6, 2005

Guys: This should go without saying. But we still have to say it: Be perceptive. Announce you're going to hug her (so she doesn't freak when you lean in) and then give her a (short) hug.

Girls: Touch his arm, playfully grab his hand, make eye contact and smile sincerely. If he's not a dolt, he should get the hint that you are interested.

No sex, please. We've all heard the urban myth of relationships that started with sex on the first date. But sex so early is emotionally confusing. You might confuse liking someone's values and personality with the sex. It's just not a safe - emotionally or disease-wise - thing to do.

Talk about a second date if you must. But don't put your date in an awkward position by asking how the date is going or whether he or she would like to see you again. If the answer's no, he or she will just lie. And you'll look desperate.

No, no, no empty promises! No I'll-call-you's if you aren't going to call. Say "Thanks for meeting me. I had a good time." No need to verbalize that you'd rather lose an arm than endure a second date. Your date will get the picture when you a) don't call and b) don't return calls.

- Source: Rob Thompson, writer, producer and director of the film "How to Succeed With Women"