You Do “What” Before A Date

You won’t believe what these singles do to get psyched for a night out with someone special (hey, who cares as long as it works?)

By Amy Keyishian

our hair looks great. There’s no spinach in your teeth. You’ve even dabbed on a little perfume or cologne for good measure. While this level of pre-date
Like baseball players who tap home plate seven times before an at-bat, some singles have rituals they observe before a date to bring them good luck.
preparation might be enough to get some singles out the door, for others, it’s—how shall we put it—a bit more complicated. Like baseball players who tap home plate seven times before taking a swing, some singles have time-honored rituals they observe before a date to help them stay calm, get psyched, or bring them a little good luck. Of course, there’s no scientific proof these things will help you ace your date, but hey, who couldn’t stand for a little confidence boost right before walking out the door? Take a peek at these people’s get-ready habits (we applaud them for their ingenuity, not to mention their honesty!) and see if one of them might work for you.

Al’s alter-ego
“This is really silly, I admit it. I have a postcard of Al Pacino as Serpico that has followed me around since college. It’s tacked to my wall next to the door. Before I leave for a date, I go, ‘See you later, Serpico. Think I’ll come home alone?’ He pretty much just stares at me, but it makes me laugh so I feel less nervous. It reminds me of that scene in the beginning of Reservoir Dogs where Tim Roth looks in the mirror and says, ‘You’re Baretta and they’re going to believe every word you say because you’re super-cool.’”
—Vincent Amendola, Middle Village, NY

“Before I leave I play with my dog, so I’ll remember if the night ends in disappointment, I still have someone waiting to give me kisses.”
Working it out
“I do thirty pushups. Not to make me look any bigger, just so I feel a bit more pumped up.”
—Jimmy Moock, Philadelphia, PA

A three-part plan
“I have a glass of red wine to give a healthy flush to my cheeks, dilate my pupils (I heard that somewhere), and relax me for the date. Then, of course, I brush my teeth to get rid of Purple Mouth. I scan the newspaper to see what we might talk about if conversation stalls. And the last thing I do is play with my dog, so I’ll remember if the night ends in disappointment or frustration, I still have someone waiting to give me kisses.”
—Marguerita Rollins, Washington, DC

Burn this
“I light a white candle to burn any negative energy from my busy day. Then I take a relaxing bubble bath to embrace my feminine side. This makes me feel relaxed, smiley, positive, and open to possibilities!”
—Athena Navarro, Los Angeles, CA

Welcome to the dance
“I get completely ready to go, and then I put on the soundtrack to Great Expectations really loud and dance around my living room for fifteen to twenty minutes. It’s a tradition of sorts: I started dancing to it before first dates when I had my first first date at age fifteen. I just kept doing it as a good-luck thing. It takes the date jitters away because I’m having fun instead of overthinking the events to come!”
—Jennifer, Seattle, WA

Car talk
“I take my car through the car wash, have it vacuumed, and of course toss out the old 7-11 coffee cups. What’s the point of putting product in my hair and ironing my shirt if my Honda’s going to look like a subway car?”
—Joe Durk, Munster, IN

Comic relief
“I call my sister, because I totally crack her up with my level of anxiety. When I dial her, I always think it’s because I need her support to get me out of the date: I say things like, ‘Why am I going out with this guy? I already know he is a total loser. I never want to get married. I have all these DVDs to watch, and I never get to watch them because I waste my time on these stupid dates…’ None of this is true, all of it is ridiculous, and when I hear her peals of laughter coming through the phone, I have to laugh at myself, which feels good.”
—Lila Hicks, Woodstock, NY

Don’t cry for me...
“This is completely embarrassing to admit, but I sing the entire score of Evita in the shower before a date. It takes me through the whole range of emotions and gets me pumped and excited for a night out.”
—Tamara Young, Boston, MA

Amy Keyishian is a freelance writer living in New York City. She’s written for Cosmopolitan and, among others.
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