I suggest you start a Hotmail account, with one quick little catch: set your home country to be in the UK (My personal choice is Edinburgh, Scotland). They have better news, better random personal crap articles, and you will be more highly entertained by the way the Hotmail staff attempts to ask you to extend your coverage.
You will also routinely encounter articles related to dating people in the UK, which are funny enough to take seriously. Like this one. Annotations follow.
1. Explore new hobbies and interests
You may wonder what this has to do with dating, but is there anything worse than silences during a romantic evening out? Expanding your horizons will make you a more interesting person. In addition, it will ensure you have a great time pursuing the things you may have always wanted to do.
In general, boring people are not very attractive. Unless you are physically attractive (with a flash intro) and intellectually devoid of interesting content. Which really means that your personality should follow the same principles of good web design. Or something.
2. Give someone a chance
Sooner or later, whether it’s at the coffee shop or searching Match.com, you’ll meet someone who doesn't quite fit your idea of the person you think you’re looking for. Maybe their job or educational background isn't in your league, maybe you despise their taste in music and films, but if that person interests you, go with the flow. What do you really have to lose?
I have to disagree. There is one universal rule about interests and tastes, which involves black licorice and Stanley Kubrick movies, which is either/or in the same sense of the trivalent pickles/onions/relish tuna salad question.
And much like a certain band, the phrase exceedingly liberal, when applied to women, is a turn-on.
3. Get real
Stop falling for the idea of a person and see them as they really are. For example, not all builders are cowboy merchants and not all doctors are rich.
That first sentence - very true. And nigh impossible with the rose-colored glasses of attraction. But the second sentence? This falls into the same semantic bucket as "if it weren't for my horse, I wouldn't have spent that year in college". Seriously - what the fuck? I can understand if this is a Britishism that I don't understand, in which case I will be amused by my own naïvete, but if this is dating lingo I have failed to acquire from Cosmo, I will live a fuller life. It has also been established that while doctors may be rich, if you learn to savor them like a fine cheesecake, this is less a problem in practice.
4. Watch you eye contact
While it’s sensible and good dating etiquette to look your date in the eye during conversation (it suggests that you're interested in what's being said), gazing too deeply tends to scare off potential winners.
Once again, the Internet fails to take into account that men might read some of it. "Watch your eye contact" has two meanings, at least.
5. Be assertive
Change your behaviour; don't be passive. If you like what you see, go for it!
This might as well be titled "Become a rocket scientist. Chicks dig that.". While changing behavior is a difficult and arduous process, in the real world you sometimes have to suck it up and play ball in the court of public opinion. Or take a piss in the marketplace of ideas.
Aw, fuck it.
6. "So when I was eight and a half..."
Resist the impulse to:
a) Tell your life story on a first date
b) Show off tattoos and body piercings
c) Admit a desire to have children within the next six months
Honesty is good. Honesty is great. But holding back a little during the initial dating stages is even better.
This is definitely true for myself. Although I find that humorous anecdotes about dating during grade school always liven up an otherwise dreary evening. Most of my dating experience during grade school involves being picked up and thrown off of playground equipment by girls.
7. Take a deep breath
Relaxation is key in order to avoid last-minute panic and hysteria before a date. For example, resist the urge to experiment with your hair just before you step out of the door.
This is also true. The physiological and chemical properties of hair have been well-established by scientists smarter than you - leave your penchant for self-experimentation at the door, unless it comes up in conversation.
8. Tell it like it is
Don't be afraid of being honest. If you're not attracted to someone, it isn't a sin to say so. Just be diplomatic and considerate with your choice of words.
In other words - dating is like hostage negotiation. Treat it just as casually.
9. Don't worry; be happy
Play a dancefloor filler (Holiday by Madonna, Hot In Herre by Nelly, Crazy In Love by Beyoncé etc.) or watch your favourite football match or comedy series - anything that puts you in a great mood so that you leave the house feeling energised and confident before your big date.
In other words, you need a warm-up. Play that tape of Manchester United vs. Liverpool, which always gets you in the mood for a rigorous and light-hearted conversation about the nature of human existence.
10. Fallen off your bike? Climb back on
Nobody will think you're pretty underneath a wrecked bike. Fix it and hop on.
Make a resolution to bounce back better from life's disappointments. There are downs as well as ups in the dating game and you’ve got to learn to take the rough with the smooth and move on.
Good advice for all walks of like - learn to take the chunky wth the plain, the spearmint with the wintergreen, and the cinnamon with the turmeric.
In other words, you have to learn how to roll with the punches, which is why you should take up boxing. Failing that, bar fights can be an acceptable substitute.