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Comment of the Week: How to Pay for Dinner, and How to Let Someone Else Pay

April 8th, 2015


photo via flickr

MVP commenter Johnny weighs in on our post “Who Do Men Think Should Pay On a Date?” We would say that his final line, “Two drinks buys you nothing but a chance,” should be put on T-shirts and handed out to college guys across the country. Except that certain fraternity members would probably take this to mean that plying women with drinks gives them a better chance of getting a woman in bed. Sigh.

“Whoever does the asking” is almost always the same as “the guy should pay,” because women almost never do the asking. Also I’m assuming this is an early date here, before the relationship is established.

The guy should pay. The woman should politely go for her purse, and the guy should nonchalantly tell her not to. If she insists on paying, the guy should let her.

With this in mind, the smart guy chooses an inexpensive early date. This not only saves him money, but spares her the discomfort of accepting a large offering from a suitor she might not even like. Who pays for a couple drinks shouldn’t be a big deal for either person.

If a woman can’t just accept two drinks with a demure “thank you,” she either definitely doesn’t like you, or has issues with men that will become annoying later on. Either way I wouldn’t ask her on a second date.

The guy should of course expect nothing in return – not even a second date. Two drinks buys you nothing but a chance.

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20 Rand Paul Quotes That Tell You Everything You Need to Know

April 7th, 2015


photo via Wikimedia Commons

So Senator Rand Paul is running for president. The good news is, there’s no need to do any hard-core investigative reporting in order to figure out if he’s the man for the job. His own oh-so-quotabe quotes tell you everything you need to know. You know, whichever way you’re planning on voting.

1. “My opponents call me a libertarian but I want to assure you that I am 100% pro-life.”

2. “I’m not going to change who I am or what I believe in. I am an old-fashioned traditionalist. I believe in the historical definition of marriage. That being said, I think contracts between adults — I’m not for limiting contracts between adults. In fact, if there are ways to make the tax code more neutral where it doesn’t mention the word marriage, then we don’t have to redefine what marriage is. We just don’t have marriage in the tax code. If health benefits are a problem, why don’t we not define them by marriage? Why don’t we say, you have another adult who lives in the house, and a kid who lives in the house can be part of family coverage? Then you don’t have to redefine, and have people like myself, and people who live in the southeastern part of the country, we don’t have to change our definition of what we think marriage is, but we allow contracts to occur so there is more ability to [make] the law neutral.”

3. “I have heard of many tragic cases of walking, talking normal children who wound up with profound mental disorders after vaccines.”

4. “The coarsening of our culture towards violent death has more consequences than war. Tragically, this same culture has led to the death of 50 million unborn children in the last 40 years. I don’t think a civilization can long endure that does not have respect for all human life, born and not yet born. I believe there will come a time when we are all judged on whether or not we took a stand in defense of all life from the moment of conception until our last natural breath.”

5. “As a doctor I will make it my mission to heal the nation, reverse the course of Obamacare and repeal every last bit of it.”

6. “If we have no laws on [gay marriage] people take it to one extension further. Does it have to be humans?”

7. “The Life at Conception Act [proposed by Rand] legislatively declares what most Americans believe and what science has long known — that human life begins at the moment of conception, and therefore is entitled to legal protection from that point forward. The right to life is guaranteed to all Americans in the Declaration of Independence and ensuring this is upheld is the Constitutional duty of all Members of Congress.”

8. “The First Amendment says keep government out of religion, not religion out of government.”

9. “With regard to the idea of whether you have a right to health care, you have to realize what that implies. It’s not an abstraction. I’m a physician. That means you have a right to come to my house and conscript me. It means you believe in slavery. It means that you’re going to enslave not only me, but the janitor at my hospital, the person who cleans my office, the assistants who work in my office, the nurses.”

10. “I never, ever cheated [at med school]. I don’t condone cheating. But I would sometimes spread misinformation. This is a great tactic. Misinformation can be very important.”

11. “Maybe we have to say ‘Enough’s enough, you shouldn’t be having kids after a certain amount.’ … “[Being] married with kids versus unmarried with kids is the difference between living in poverty and not. We should sell that message. Not in a mean way to tell people who already have made a bad decision, but if you’ve had one child and you’re not married, you shouldn’t have another one.”

12. “Just because a couple people on the Supreme Court declare something to be ‘constitutional’ does not make it so.”

13. “I’m not in favor of any discrimination of any form; I would never belong to any club that excluded anybody for race. We still do have private clubs in America that can discriminate based on race. But I think what’s important about this debate is not written into any specific “gotcha” on this, but asking the question: what about freedom of speech? Should we limit speech from people we find abhorrent? Should we limit racists from speaking? I don’t want to be associated with those people, but I also don’t want to limit their speech in any way in the sense that we tolerate boorish and uncivilized behavior because that’s one of the things freedom requires is that we allow people to be boorish and uncivilized, but that doesn’t mean we approve of it. I think the problem with this debate is by getting muddled down into it, the implication is somehow that I would approve of any racism or discrimination, and I don’t in any form or fashion.”

14. “[It is a] moral crisis that allows people to think that there would be some sort of other marriage.”

15. “A Tea Party tidal wave is coming.”

16. “I believe life begins at conception and it is the duty of our government to protect this life…. I have stated many times that I will always vote for any and all legislation that would end abortion or lead us in the direction of ending abortion.”

17. “As humans, yeah, we do have an obligation to give people water, to give people food, to give people health care. … But it’s not a right, because once you conscript people and say, ‘Oh, it’s a right,’ then really you’re in charge, it’s servitude, you’re in charge of me and I’m supposed to do whatever you tell me to do. … It really shouldn’t be seen that way.”

18. “Unless you want a government that can enter your house at will, check to see if you have trigger locks, measure the length of your guns and rapidity of their ability to fire, you must oppose violations of the Fourth Amendment like the PATRIOT Act.”

19. “I don’t think I’m really open to having Washington change me.”

20. “I read all of Ayn Rand’s novels when I was 17.”

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Who Do Men Think Should Pay on a Date?

April 7th, 2015

photo via flickr

Advice from three of our guy friends. This week they answer the following: Who should pay on a first date?

Gay Committed Guy (Terence): A general rule that you can’t go wrong with: whoever asked their date out should pay. Real simple, eh? Now if you want  to be real smooth, then if A asked B out, then A should pay for the dinner, movie, show, ski trip, whatever, but B should offer up a scoop of gelato after the dinner, popcorn at the movies, or hot chocolate on the slopes. That’s what gets you both to the second date.

Straight Married Guy (Matt): I know feminists get all hot and bothered over this one, but I always liked to pay on the first date. It’s not like I expected anything in return or made any kind of big deal about it, but I just think it’s a nice thing to do. I usually asked the girl out on the date in the first place, so I felt like I should pay. If a girl insisted on paying half, I’d say, hey, you can buy me a drink later on. I think it’s okay to believe that women are 100% equal and still enjoy holding the door open for a woman, pulling out her chair, and paying for a first-date dinner. Read the rest of this entry »

Your Haiku Horoscopes: April 6th, 2015

April 6th, 2015

photo by Simply Schmoopie

Each week, we at EMandLO.com predict the course of your love life for the week with our own version of irreverent horoscopes — ignore our advice at your own peril. (Hyperbole intended for dramatic effect.)

aries (Mar. 21st-Apr. 20th)
I eat an apple.
Outside it’s red, inside brown.
Next time, banana.

taurus (Apr. 21st-May 20th)
Don’t sell yourself short.
You’ve got so much to offer.
And you’re very tall.

gemini (May 21st-June 21st)
They say “When pigs fly.”
So throw Porky off the bridge
And then you’ll get some.

cancer (June 22nd-July 22nd)
Let’s get physical
Sang Olivia Newton.
Don’t listen to her!

leo (July 23rd-Aug. 22nd)
Don’t get into a
Trivial argument. Play
Trivial Pursuits.

virgo (Aug. 23rd-Sept. 22nd)
So many fishes.
Which one deserves mouth-to-mouth?
Reel only ONE in.

libra (Sept. 23rd-Oct. 23rd)
Be a social whore.
Parties will lead to booty.
Nights with Netflix won’t.

scorpio (Oct. 24th-Nov. 22nd)
There is a reason
Why Clue is a great board game.
Maintain mystery.

sagittarius (Nov. 23rd-Dec. 21st)
Today is the day.
Like a horny toad jumping,
go get your freak on.

capricorn (Dec. 22nd-Jan. 20th)
Anger Management
is a terrible movie.
But a worthwhile move.

aquarius (Jan. 21st-Feb. 18th)
Don’t be so picky.
They even find your toots cute.
Not a bad deal, dude.

pisces (Feb. 19th-Mar. 20th)
Share your moodiness.
Sometimes you feel like a “nut,”
and sometimes you don’t.

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Your Call: I Almost Climax Just Thinking About a Date, Is This Normal?

April 6th, 2015

We get a lot of questions coming in at EMandLO.com, but sadly, we just can’t answer them all. Which is why, once a week, we turn to you to decide how best to respond to a reader. Make your call on the letter below by leaving your thoughts in the comments section. 

 

Dear Em & Lo, 

I’m a 22-year-old female and I find it very strange that every time I plan to see my boyfriend, I experience near climaxing experiences on my own without anything initiating it. They begin one after the other, and I physically have to stop them. Is that normal? This has happened with every guy I dated, even if we are not going to have sex.

– Eager Beaver

Do you have any words of wisdom for, or stories to share with, Eager Beaver? Leave your suggestions for her in the comments section below. 

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Photos of the Week: I Am Lion, Hear Me Roar

April 3rd, 2015

When you do a search for “sex” on Getty Images, you get a lot of interesting results — so many, in fact, that we were compelled to create a superlative series of Getty “sex” search images. Lions, shall we say, come up a lot. (So often, in fact, that this is our second installment of jungle royalty getting it on.) Many of them remind us of the old joke: “My doctor asked me if I’m sexually active and I said, ‘No. I usually just lie there.’”

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My Boyfriend and I Separately Dreamed of the Same Shadowy Man

April 2nd, 2015


 photo via flickr

Other people’s dreams are never interesting…except when they’re about sex. Each week, our dream analyst Lauri Loewenberg tells one lucky reader what their dirty dream means. Got a dream you want Lauri to analyze? Click here to submit it (18 and older only, please). This week, a reader asks Lauri:

Last night my boyfriend and I slept apart at our respective houses. We both had a dream of a very tall “shadow man” watching us. In his, he was go-karting and the man was part of the crowd watching, but taller than the other people and quite distinctive. But in mine, my boyfriend and I were both in my bed and I woke up and my boyfriend was sitting cross-legged on the bed looking out the window. When I woke up he asked, “Are you expecting someone?” And I replied “No…” and rolled over and sat up to look outside also.

I saw a very tall shadow figure standing on the driveway, and even though it did not have discernible eyes, I knew it was looking into my window. I did not look away and my boyfriend said, “You should go down and say hi since he’s your friend.” And my boyfriend was being very nonchalant and almost cheery as if it was a friend of mine just stopping by. I got scared and started saying to him I didn’t want to and I didn’t want him to make me go down there and asking how we should make it go away. I didn’t stop looking out onto the driveway and it didn’t move or stop staring and it TERRIFIED me. What does this mean? Also how is it possible that we both had a dream of the same figure on the same night in two different houses?

LauriVery interesting! This shadow man that you both dreamed about symbolizes some sort of dark, negative presence in your relationship. In both of your dreams he was watching you so that’s a clue as to what it is. Are there people around you who look down on your relationship, such as family members or an ex?

What I find particularly interesting is that, in your boyfriend’s dream, the shadow was very distinctive, but in your dream his eyes were indiscernible. This shows us that your boyfriend has a clearer perspective or opinion on this negative element in your relationship than you do. And just like in your dream, he probably wants you to confront the issue and appease the situation.

In your dream he tells you that shadow man is your friend. This could mean that the negative element is coming from your side (your friends, family or ex or even your issue). Or your dreaming mind is encouraging you — through your boyfriend’s voice — to not worry so much about it. In your real life, what is it that you want to go away but that your boyfriend thinks isn’t such a big deal? That’s what the shadow man is, and you both dreamed about it the same night because it is an issue you probably discussed or dealt with that day. I have to go along with your boyfriend on this; you can’t wish this negative thing away, you have to confront it.

Visit Lauri’s site, WhatYourDreamMeans.com, for even more dream interpretations! If you want to be able to figure out your own dreams each morning, check out her latest book, Dream On It: Unlock Your Dreams Change Your Life, which will give you the tools you need to become a dream expert. You can see all of Lauri’s books here. And hey, if you want your very own pin-up painting of you or your luvva (either vintage or modern), Lauri can do that, too! 

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6 Tips for How to Date Without Drinking (Plus Tips for Drinkers Dating Teetotalers)

April 2nd, 2015

by Laura Barcella for YourTango  |  photo via flickr

Single and sober? Stay healthy with advice and tips on dating without alcohol.

You don’t want to know the ludicrous number of possible love connections I’ve squashed by getting sloshed on a first or second date. The things that have come out of my mouth—both figuratively and literally—on nights out with strangers make me want to crawl into the cozy cocoon of my bed and stay there.

So it’s probably—no, definitely—smart that in 2006 I decided to give up drinking. I’d had enough embarrassing nights out; I’d woken up beside more than my fair share of unattractive strangers, and was, in turn, more than ready to bid farewell to the drunken rants, crying jags and battles with lovers, friends, cab drivers, cashiers and waiters. I also thrilled at the notion of never having another hangover. (Seriously, my hangovers were baaaaaad.)

I’m not sure whether I classified as an alcoholic. I didn’t have to drink every day, though most days I did. Sometimes alcohol helped me relax and have fun. Sometimes it turned me into a yelling, crying beast. And there was no way to tell, when I was tossing back a vodka soda, which me would emerge that night.

But when I said goodbye to alcohol and its commensurate drama, I didn’t intend to bid farewell to dating. I saw my romantic future shimmering atop a cotton candy cloud of contentment and stability. Once I was sober and ready, Mr. Right would surely be waiting for me, albeit at the local coffee shop instead of the next bar stool.

It sucked to discover that alcohol-free dating was still, well, dating: an ouchy dance of anticipation, expectations and artifice. And for those of us who don’t drink, dating can be even more of a mixed bag. Why? Because in case you missed the memo, most Americans are all about alcohol. We meet for happy hour at 5 p.m., dine with wine at 7 p.m., meet lovers at a bar later on, and make every excuse to have another round. And we don’t always do it gracefully—about 18 million Americans have alcohol problems, but only 1.5 million have been treated for them. Yes, it’s depressing; almost makes you want to hit the bottle. Just kidding.

So here are some tips to help you navigate the wild world of dating without drinking. If nothing else, you’ll remember the sex afterward—and, hopefully, actually like the people you wake up with the next morning.

1. Find folks worth dating.

You’re sober, stable and on the prowl. Problem is, you have no clue where to meet potential love connections now that pub-crawling isn’t an option. Where to find cuties who are cool with your new lifestyle? Try asking supportive friends whether they know any awesome, eligible bachelor/ettes who aren’t big drinkers. Like attracts like. You can also try the ever-evolving world of sober online dating: not only can you search for non-drinkers on all the usual dating sites, there are also sober-only services like soberseek.com, sobersocial.com, recoveringmates.com, and soberkiss.com. If a date has difficulty grasping the fact that you don’t drink, drop him and move on. There are too many options out there to waste time with someone who won’t support your attempts to live your happiest life.

2. Coffee, coffee, coffee

You’ve been flirting online with Mr. SexyPants via SnookFinder.com for a week when he asks if you’d like to meet up. You say yes. He asks where. You freeze, cough, check your work email, Google your high school sweetheart again and put away the computer. Now take a deep breath and break that laptop back out. When someone who doesn’t know you’re alcohol-free asks where you’d like to go on a first date, it’s best to suggest a quiet spot where alcohol isn’t readily available. Meeting for coffee or tea is a great first date option; there’s no lengthy dinner service to endure, so if s/he doesn’t float your boat, you’re free to bail post-latte.

What if Mr. HotBuns doesn’t request your input about where to meet and instead asks, point-blank, “Want to meet for drinks on Thursday?” Now is the time to tell him you don’t drink. Offer these three words: “I don’t drink,” followed by something you will do, i.e. “I don’t drink, but I’d love to meet you for coffee on Thursday.” Or, if you’re cool with watching him imbibe, say that—”Sure, although I don’t drink, but I don’t mind watching you while I sip a Diet Coke.” No need to explain further.

3. The dinner option

If you choose to meet McHottie for dinner, you’ll probably have to handle the Weird Wine Hurdle. This occurs when the waiter asks whether you have any questions about the wine list, you say “no,” your date orders a glass of something and then either the waiter or Yummy asks whether you’d like a glass too. What now?

My friend Kelly, a 33-year-old makeup artist and recovering alcoholic, suggests keeping it simple: “No, thank you—water [or whatever I'm drinking] is fine.” Then, quick-like and before your date has time to notice, ask a question to steer the conversation to something more interesting than alcohol.

If you find that sipping on something other than water helps distract from first date awkwardness, nurse a Shirley Temple, Diet Coke or ginger ale. You’ll feel like less of an oddball, and your probably date won’t notice s/he’s the only one getting buzzed. If s/he does notice—or if you feel uncomfortable with your date drinking around you—you have every right to cut the date short and walk away. One of the healthiest things you can do for yourself as a dry dater is learn how to leave when you’re in an awkward situation. Remember, you don’t have to stay anywhere, or with anyone, that makes you feel anxious. Your mental health comes first.

4. If s/he asks why you don’t drink, be coy.

Unless you want to pop open a can of inappropriate, be evasive when your date asks why you don’t drink.

My friend Michelle, a 29-year-old recovering alcoholic, tells guys she dates that she’s a “reformed party girl” or an “ex-bad girl.” She doesn’t explain further, and they usually don’t ask. If they do, she just says “long story” and changes the subject.

Kelly tells dates that she’s “allergic to alcohol” (an idea that’s common among recovering alcoholics, because drinking makes them sick). Remember, it’s just a date—you have the right to reveal personal details about yourself as slowly as you want.

5. Relax already.

For me, the hardest part of dating sans drinking is the lack of lubrication to calm my nerves. It sounds corny, but taking some long, deep breaths before a date both centers you and settles the ever-spinning “what if?” thought loop. Inhale the essence of serenity, confidence and sex appeal; exhale the anxiety.

6. Learn subtle flirting techniques. 

It’s harder to feel uninhibited when you’re not tipsy, so get used to the idea of subtle, grade-school style flirting techniques, like frequently patting your prey on the knee or arm, maintaining steady eye contact, and smiling and laughing at his or her better jokes.

You might feel too shy to bust a move without the help of vodka’s loosening properties, but if you let your interest and intentions be known subtly, your date should get the hint.

If the chemistry is kicking and you feel like you’ll explode if s/he doesn’t touch you, take the initiative and invite Boytoy upstairs for tea or hot cocoa at the end of the date. Remember, “come upstairs” is pretty clear in any language—drunk or not.

The Other Side Of The Table: You’re A Drinker Who’s Dating Someone Sober

What if you’re not a recovering alcoholic, but you’re dating someone who is? Generally speaking, sober folks want support and encouragement. You don’t have to abstain from drinking all the time, but refraining from imbibing around them is always appreciated. “I try to date women who don’t find it weird that I’m sober,” says Craig, who’s been clean for three years. “The worst thing a woman can do is get wasted around me, or try to push me to have some. I need someone who really supports my recovery.”

Jeannette, a sober alcoholic who hasn’t has a drink in 10 months, agrees. “I don’t necessarily feel tempted if I’m someplace where people are drinking, but it’s just not that fun to be around a guy who’s throwing them back.

Don’t question your date’s decision not to drink. Respect her sobriety, don’t push her, and—if you want to make a really good impression—don’t drink in her presence. If, heaven forbid, your partner relapses, the best thing to do is give her time and space to get her proverbial sh*t together. Don’t disappear on her—your support is necessary in times like these—but give her leeway to work through her feelings.

More from YourTango:

10 Dating Tips I REALLY Wish I’d Followed While I Was Single

How To Flirt With A Guy: 7 Powerful Tips

10 Heartbreaking Truths Single People Never Talk About

6 Fun Ways to Seduce Your Husband

April 2nd, 2015


photo via Flickr

Let’s face it: seducing straight guys ain’t that hard. A little cleavage and some footsie is pretty much all it takes. The challenge comes after 10 years of marriage, when a lot of the mystery is gone and Internet porn never has a headache. What follows are six classic approaches to seduction that you can make your own, even when you know your fella’s a sure thing.

  1. The Detective: It’s the quintessential seduction technique: Show up at the door (the front or the bedroom) or pick him up somewhere (work or the airport) in a trench coat, heels and not much else. It’s a bold move that takes nerve and confidence. But before you bust it out, just be sure you’ve got a backup outfit handy in case of emergencies. And don’t feel obligated to wear the traditional lace garter-belt ensemble underneath. An oversized “Go Mets!” T-shirt, especially if he’s a fan, might work just as well. What’s sexier than a sense of humor?
  2. The Anais Nin: In an email, text or–get this–a handwritten lust note (yes, they still make nice pens), tell him what you want to do to him right now in great graphic detail, preferably sent to him when he’s in the middle of an important business meeting. This also works whispered in his ear in the middle of a crowded party, a movie theater, or a restaurant.
  3. The Centerfold: No need to have bleach blonde hair, fake boobs or access to an airbrush. A softly lit digital pic taken from a flattering angle will do the trick. Send him one on your camera phone, leave one in his briefcase, or slip one under his pillow, etc. When you take it yourself, you can art direct so as to leave something (including your identity) to the imagination. Note: Only for the man you really, really trust…Not recommended for marriages on the rocks.
  4. The Julie McCoy: Plan a guy date: take note of his likes (e.g. microbrews), hobbies (e.g. fly fishing), and interests (e.g. politics) and then plan a surprise date around them. For example, pack a picnic with a six pack of his favorite ale and have him teach you how to fish while you debate the merits of the electoral college system. From then on, he’ll be happy (okay, willing) to go shopping with you and hold your purse.
  5. The Mrs. Robinson: You take erotic control: make the first move, tell him what you’re going to do to him, have him lie back while you call the shots (you can even tie him up so he complies), you undress him, then yourself (or not)…guaranteed he’ll be putty in your hands (again, unless he’s one of those aforementioned meatheads).
  6. The Pretty Woman: Creating the illusion of variety can help spice things up. Like Julia Roberts, don a blonde bobbed wig and some thigh-high boots (or whatever outfit or Halloween costume makes you look and feel like a new person) and have fun with a little light role-playing: “Hey there, stranger…”

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