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Just a Thought - Topics to avoid on a first date
Lisa Hobbs, new mugshot.jpg

There have always been pitfalls in dating, but some topics of discussion should be avoided. 

Warning: The following may contain horror stories based on real-life events. I may have to sprinkle an “allegedly” here and there. Will a disclaimer work? Any similarity to actual persons, living or dead, or actual events, is purely coincidental. If that works, let me know. 

One. Avoid talking about exes. Under no circumstances should you talk about exes on a first, second and third date. Unless you have an insane ex who might be a danger to future girlfriends, we don’t want to hear about it. Without a doubt, I do not want to hear about the tummy tuck you (allegedly) paid for that she (allegedly) insisted on. 

Also, never ask about her ex. If she wants to talk about it, she will. Not before. Women are good at venting, but that’s why we have girlfriends. When we want to talk about he, who shall not be named, we will. When the floodgates finally open, you may wish they hadn’t. 

Two. Never ask her viewpoint on abortion. I don’t care how relevant the topic of Roe v. Wade is in the world today, it’s not appropriate on a first date. Yes, people, this happened on a first date. What was he thinking? Maybe he wasn’t. 

Also, avoid religion and politics altogether. While these topics must someday be brought to the forefront, those are heavy discussions that can sometimes stir strong feelings. I think they can wait a week or two or three. If you feel very strongly about either topic, go ahead. Do it. See how well that works out. 

Three, watch what jokes you tell. Keep them lighthearted and clean. Any that suggest you might harbor unattractive qualities, such as being a racist or sexist, will not win you a follow-up date. I don’t appreciate either, as one third-dater discovered. I transformed that inappropriate witticism into a sports metaphor: three strikes and you’re out.

Four. It’s a big "yes" to a man holding doors open. Even strong, independent women appreciate it. What we don’t appreciate is a man telling us what we shouldn’t order at a restaurant. I’m not a steak, lobster or shrimp girl. If you take me to a steakhouse and I order a chicken salad, just bite your tongue. For some reason, my food choices can be a big thing to some guys. Why they care, I have no idea. 

Five. If you are in a bad mood and if the relationship is in its initial stages, cancel the date. Not sure why someone wouldn’t. A canceled date is far more attractive than listening to someone griping and complaining all evening. 

Maybe the moral to this story is never date a newspaper reporter. Laughing emoji. If you do, Google “topics to avoid on a first date.” It might help. 

Standard reporter Lisa Hobbs can be reached at 473-2191.