It's Friday night, and your boss has been riding you like American Pharaoh. Nothing sounds better than a night full of mouth-watering food, a few drinks and great company.
Coincidentally, your phone goes off. It's a text from your boys, saying they're going to be at the new bar that just opened a few blocks from your place. Yahtzee!
Your Facebook status says "single," so on top of looking forward to a memorable evening, you're not opposed to meeting someone new.
With this in mind, you shower and shave, dab on your favorite cologne, throw on that form-fitting shirt and bolt out the door.
Upon arrival, your first instinct is to scope out the scene, find an empty table and set up shop. Your crew is buying the first round, which gives you plenty of time to survey the field for a beautiful lady.
You look to your 3 o'clock, and your jaw drops. She's sporting the all-American white top, skinny jeans and ruby red lips look that will never go out of style.
A few seconds later, she catches you looking. Busted! It got a chuckle out of her, and as a result, you sport a silly grin from a distance. You're already on her radar.
Your vision slowly makes its way to her hand. In it, there is a cosmopolitan, no surprise there. Lo and behold, she isn't wearing a ring. She's up for grabs. Mentally, you claim dibs.
Luckily for you, her friend total is on the same playing field as yours, so no matter what happens, everyone gets a fair shot. Before you even take a sip of your Jack Daniel's, you review the most memorable quotes from "The Game" in your head.
"How you doing?" was the first thing out of your mouth. That's how you know your brain is fried. Oddly enough, it got a smile out of the woman, and you're in. BOOM! The ice is broken.
After exchanging pleasantries, we're going to fast-forward to when you bust a move. By now, your stomach is full of wings and whiskey, you're feeling good and you've created enough rapport with the lady to ask for her number.
In a surprising move, she doesn't just give it to you, but she grabbed your phone and plugged it in herself! So much win! It's getting late, and you part ways amicably with the promise to keep in touch.
Here's where the real fun begins.
In order to prevent generalizing, let's divide you gentlemen into two simple groups: ages 18 to 25 and everything else above 26.
If you're just now getting started in today's dating scene, you'll probably play it by ear, invite her out to a cup of coffee and do your best to appear like the smooth operator.
On the other hand, if you're in my group of more experienced fellas, you believe you have in your hand the ticket to a bright future. Additionally, your days of one-night stands and casual flings are slowly fading or a thing of the past.
At this point in our lives, it's important not to pull a "Tommy Boy." We need to be very careful as to how we play the cards we've just been dealt.
I'd like to share with you three things I've actually experienced myself, so you don't fall victim to the same mistakes.
Nobody Wins At The Waiting Game
Having a number means you now have access to this woman at your earliest convenience. More importantly, she granted you that access because at this stage in her life, she believes that, after just a few hours of knowing you, you possess the most basic qualities necessary for long-term potential.
To her, those might be a steady job, some great hobbies and the fact that the "looks decent wagon" didn't leave you behind. This is, of course, assuming you mentioned it during your first encounter.
So, if you're in the driver's seat, why don't you start the engines? Text her the very next day. Nobody enjoys waiting.
When I think of having to wait, I think of that long line at the concert to use the porta-potty, not hearing back from the lab that drew my blood and seeing women anxious out of their minds after peeing on a stick.
Here's the thing: If you hit it off with a woman and had that instant click, there's no point in delaying a prospective relationship. If companionship is what you're looking for, it would be negligent on your part to wait.
Regardless of what they tell you, women hate suspense, especially when it comes to dating.
I'm willing to bet that the first thing she did after waking up is check her messages to see if she has any from you. If she doesn't, she'll undoubtedly be disappointed.
Do you know how I know this? That's because I experienced it first-hand.
Back in the day, I was bartending at a local restaurant. Midway into my shift, a gorgeous woman sat down at my bar.
She set her Sidekick to the side and grabbed a menu. Immediately, I complimented her choice of cell phone. One thing let to another and, by the end of her visit, we were trading AIM screen names.
By the time I woke up the next morning, I had a message from her, saying it was wonderful meeting me and that she was looking forward to our first date. I was elated and floating on cloud nine.
What's the lesson here? Be refreshing. Don't waste her time, much less yours. Send her a text saying you had a great time last night, and you would love to grab some dinner and finish the conversation you started.
If you think it's going to make you come off as clingy, needy or desperate, then you're lacking confidence. I see something I like, and I go for it. I suggest you do the same.
Skip The Starbucks
The only reason you should invite her out for a cup of coffee is if you're taking a barista course and want to impress her with your mad skills.
Coffee dates are way too casual, and any average Joe can pull it off.
Invite her out to dinner, and not just any dinner. Be specific; make it Italian or any other cuisine of your choice. By doing this, she'll come to the conclusion you had her in mind, and you were looking forward to seeing her.
Why dinner? An evening with delicious food and face-to-face conversation can open up many doors for both of you. It's a great opportunity to ask her in-depth questions about herself and her life.
Judging by their quality, she'll flip them right back to you. If she does, you're golden. It means she's interested, so keep it going.
Let's not kid ourselves: Dinner for two is a bit pricier than two cups of java. If you're serious about her, why not? Fork over a couple of bucks, and stop being stingy. Don't be afraid to show her she matters to you already.
If it puts a dent in your pocket, who gives a sh*t? You're paying for her time, which is something she'll never get back. The least you can do is foot the bill.
Want to get her attention these days? Do what most guys aren't doing. Be different.
Don't Make Her Guess
Women are the most analytical creatures on the face of the earth. Although they might appreciate words, they love action. Show emotion.
If the woman is checking off every single box, why hide it and not let it be known? Imagine the sigh of relief she'll feel when she doesn't have to read between the lines the entire time she's with you.
Women hate walking on eggshells. The last thing she wants to be doing is hypothesizing about where she stands with you. Give her that peace of mind, and she'll give you her undivided attention.
Besides, do you realize the degree of maturity you'll present when she doesn't feel she's grasping at straws? You're going to set yourself apart and lodge yourself in her mental real estate.
Women enjoy feeling confident and secure about themselves. You can help them do so by vocalizing your thoughts. Comfort her by telling her how much you're enjoying her company. Reassurance goes a long way, especially starting out.
Don't hold back from your feelings. If you do, she will, and that's going to prevent progress.
You do want a second date, don't you?