It’s the ultimate test. You just enjoyed a delicious dinner, the conversation didn’t stall, his sense of humor was enhanced by your glass of wine (as is your libido) and you’re thinking date #2 might be in the cards. The check arrives: you eyeball it, while laughing at his perfect imitation of George Bush, all the while dreading this moment that every first date eventually arrives at. He reaches for the tab and you pause. Then, as you reach for your purse, you casually chime in: “Would you like me to chip in?” And there’s your answer to whether there will ever be a second date.

I know, I know—all you independent women are cursing my name, but suit yourselves. You are also the reason men are afraid to open our doors, and the reason they now honk when they come to pick a woman up for a date (if they pick us up at all). I am not fighting against women’s rights here; I am fighting for some simple, old-fashioned courtesy. Maybe it makes me old-fashioned, but wouldn’t it be nice to keep some of that intact?

I don’t expect a man to provide his woman with a free ride through life. Just like no man should expect me to have dinner ready on the table every night. But, if you ask a woman out on a date, especially when it’s the first, do not take her up on the offer to split or cover the bill. Some women may not even bother to offer, but if and when we do, it’s not because we intend to hear acceptance in return. A woman enjoys being wooed, whether she was born in the 18th Century or in the last few decades. Plus, taking her up on her offer simply makes you look cheap, and that leaves a lasting impression.

Now, ladies, have some courtesy as well. If he bought dinner the first night, took you to a movie the second, then insisted on paying for snowmobiling the third, at least buy the guy some hot chocolate, and offer to pay up (and mean it this time) by the fourth round. I am all about leveling out the playing field; you just have to hook me first.


Vicky fills the shoes of local Carrie Bradshaw in CandiDates, a blog about her own quest to explore the intricacies of relationships. Originally from Kiev, Ukraine, she has made Denver her home and playground. A writer and copy editor for 303 Magazine by day, Vicky spends her nights pursuing her passion of ballroom dance.