First Date – July 29, 2013

This is a post from a couple of years ago (although I’ve expanded it for this post). I’m reminded of it as a couple of friends are going on first dates…


I have a friend going on a first date this Friday. It’s been fun walking through this process with her, evaluating her date’s comments, witnessing the anxiety. And of course, the best part, picking an outfit to wear. It’s so much more relaxing when you’re not the datee. I can sit back, relax and express my inner fashion guru. “Wedge heels are a must!” “And you should tie something in your hair.” However, the big question was, where he was going to take her. Tonight our question was answered, a gastro pub. We both agreed it was a good choice. Casual, but fun. Comfort food and a good beer selection. What more could a girl ask for? As a side note, my friend mentioned she was glad he didn’t ask her to Red Lobster. Well, that got me thinking about the worst restaurants for first dates. Here’s the list we started, with a few additional gems:

-Red Lobster: I don’t remember why this was on the list, but as I’m not a fan of fish it’s definitely a no-go.

-McDonalds: And pretty much any other fast food place, except In-N-Out. I’d let them cater my wedding.

-Hometown Buffet: What, is your date 70?  Are you eating dinner at 4pm?  As a rule, I’m anti-buffet when it comes to restaurants.  Not just for first dates, but for any eating experience.  I’ve been disappointed way too many times.

-Norms: I went to eat there once, but saw a rat run out of the kitchen as I was parking my car.  So, unless you’re into rat burgers, don’t go there.

-Sizzler: Funny thing.  When I was a kid I loved Sizzler.  I went there for numerous birthday dinners, where I would eat plateful after plateful of nachos and finish them off with a soft serve sundae.  Now the thought of the restaurant nauseates me.

-Long John Silver: Fast food fish definitely deserves its own mention.

-Medieval Times: Unless you both are into Renaissance Faires.  Then, this gets a pass.  Otherwise, I’m pretty sure no woman wants to cheer for fast food knights while eating greasy chicken with her hands.

-The Waffle House (for my friends in the South): Any place that has jokes about it referencing your server not having teeth while smoking, is probably not the most romantic spot out there.

-Hooters: Do I really have to explain this one?

-Chuck E. Cheese: If he also has a 1970’s era van and a mustache it might be time to call the authorities.

And possibly the winner:

-Costco food court (or too cheap and goes just for the samples inside): I don’t know if this has ever happened, but man, wouldn’t that be a great story?  And this is nothing against the Costco food court.  In fact, I’m a fan of the place…in its proper context.

Best Ironic location:

-Ikea: Ok, so Ikea meatballs may be made of horses, but after seeing 500 Days of Summer it’s become oddly cute and original for a first date (in my mind).  Who doesn’t want to freely run through the Ikea showroom whilst simultaneously creeping out families?

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