Some people think that the goal of dating is to get to know another person well. They think it’s about getting to know their likes and dislikes, their goals and ambitions, and whether or not they’ll make a good long-term life partner.
Well, those people are fucking wrong. Dating is about hiding your crazy for as long as possible until you can convince the other person you’re a nice, normal, stable human who has your shit together.
This charade of normalcy starts from the very beginning of date #1 when they ask you what you like to do for fun.
“Haha, oh I like to workout five days a week, go to free classical music performances in the park, volunteer at the animal shelter on weekends, and tutor the kids in my neighborhood!”
Lol, k. We all know you maybe fit in two days of light cardio a week and spend the rest of your time microwaving frozen dinners and binging television, but keep up those aspirational alternative truths.
Let’s say you sift through the dumpster fire of gym selfies, “fluent in sarcasm,” and “Paleo, hope you are too!” on your app of choice and actually find someone literate and moderately attractive to go on a date with. You guys have enough wine and bourbon to make each other seem slightly more attractive than your profiles and just witty enough to be charming without being cheesy.
You make it through dates two and three without disaster striking. You’ve successfully convinced them that you’re a normal, functioning adult and have decided that they’re pretty ok too. You’ve decided that it’s time for the next step: inviting them to your apartment to watch Netflix and furiously dry hump each other until you stumble back to your room and seal the deal.
However, there’s preparation that goes into having new romantic guests over. You can’t just invite them into your home as it is. I mean, sure, you have to clean and do all the shit your mom yelled at you about when guests come over, but when it comes to guests that you want to bump uglies with there’s a whole new level of preparation. If you haven’t been staging your home for optimum romantic partner potential, well… that’s probably why you’re still single. If you don’t know where to start, I got you, fam. See below for my definitive guide of things to hide in your house when a new date comes over.
I don’t care how innocuous it is. Hide. Your. Shit. You don’t have allergies, you don’t have blocked sinuses, you don’t have a rash, and you definitely don’t have regularly occurring nausea, gas, or anything else that makes you seem less than a perfectly healthy human in pristine condition.
This goes for you too, guys. As far as your date is concerned, you are a naturally beautiful perfect swan. You’re tan without tanning lotion, you’re naturally hairless (ladies) or naturally have a full head of hair (gentlemen), you don’t pay half of your rent check on exorbitantly priced wrinkle prevention cream, and you didn’t buy those weight loss supplements at CVS based on an Instagram celebrity endorsement.
Embarrassing Self-Help Books
Look, there’s nothing wrong with self-help books and there’s nothing wrong with trying to improve yourself. We all have them. However, you don’t need to point out your weak spots to your potential romantic partner right away. Having “He’s Just Not That Into You” and “The Sex God Bible” right out there on your bookshelf just screams “HERE IS THE THING I AM MOST INSECURE ABOUT.” Exceptions: business books (The Four Hour Work Week, Who Moved My Cheese, etc.). Ambition and business savvy are sexy.
Your Browsing History
I hear you, “Why the hell would I open my computer/iPad around my date?” Listen, you. never. know. I don’t know about you, but I’ve been in situations on dates where we bonded over some mutual show or book or interest and suddenly thought of something the other one MUST see online: a video, a meme, an article. They pull out their iPad, open Safari, and then I see the slow panic in their eyes as they frantically struggle to remember if they closed out that porn tab.
Your “Sex” Stash
I of ALL people support you having all the freaky crazy weird ass sex you want to have. However, the first time you see each other naked is NOT the time to pull out those whips or furry costumes unless you’ve previously discussed it. I think you could maybe get away with a small vibrator, ladies. I’m also all for being prepared and safe, but gentlemen, if you bought a 200 pack of condoms off of Amazon, maybe break them down into a few smaller stashes so your date doesn’t think you’re running a prostitution ring out of your bedroom. Once you get more comfortable with each other and establish more trust, hell yes, bring out that sexy shit and go to town on each other.
This includes the piled empty Malbec boxes, your laundry pile, your jazzercise DVDs, pictures of you and your ex (seriously? Why do you still have those?), your childhood stuffed animals, clothes for your dogs, family photos in your bedroom, or anything else that you even think could be embarrassing or awkward.
Just so we’re clear, I’m not saying you should hide or change the real you from a potential life partner. Be yourself. However, in the initial stages of a new relationship when things are still uncertain, people can be more judgmental than usual and be scared off by the smallest things. Just take this opportunity to present the best version of yourself to your potential new bae, and save the Pepto Bismol and bed restraints for later. .