The J Spot

AskJustin: First date topics and dating games

Ask Justin Bird

Patti always says stay on neutral subjects on first dates. What are some safe topics you use on a first date while still getting to know your date better?

Beth 22, New York, New York

You just sat down for dinner or drinks and you either want to a) sprint out the door or b) you are excited to get to know your date better. You are going to need neutral topics regardless of the situation, or maybe a solid excuse to leave.
Here are some ideas for neutral subjects to use on your first date:

  • DO ask him/her what qualities they find attractive in a man/woman and further it by asking what qualities are deal-breakers
  • DO discuss siblings and family. This gives some insight into their family tree as well as how they grew up.
  • DO ask about what kind of food/drinks you each prefer, especially if the date is taking place at a restaurant or bar. Sharing your culinary preferences is great because these topics are endless.
  • DO talk about career plans. This will tell you if there is any ambition behind that attractive exterior.
  • DO discuss hobbies and passions. Are they a couch potato on their time off, active, or a balance of both? You decide.
  • DON’T talk about religion, politics, or past relationships on the first date. The idea here is to get to know the person better so you build a solid foundation with your date. There will always be next to bring in the heavy artillery to get under the hood of the car and learn what makes your date tick.

With all the games people play nowadays, how do you know if he’s truly into you?

Amber, 29
Seattle, Washington

I believe people have always played games—it’s human nature. The game has been the same, but the approach to dating has changed.Now, why do people play games? I never have understood why. The number one important quality that I see in someone is being genuine. It’s refreshing when those types of people come along. If you have to put on an act, you’re wasting time because your true colors will surface soon.

It sounds cliché, but just be yourself! Let people like you for you! You are not here to please everybody, not everyone will like you. The respect you earn in for being real with yourself and your date will take you far in life.

We have all played games before at some point and I’m not pretending I never have in my life. I learned from doing so that it is not going to help you find your mate. Life is too short, make the best of every situation.