1. Buy a bed. A real bed. I once dated someone who lived in a basement and slept on a mattress on top of cinder blocks. It didn’t last long. A headboard, a matching set of sheets, two pillows. That’s all.
2. Hang something on the walls. Whether you live in a studio by yourself or share a house with 8 roommates, put something in a frame and hang it on the wall. You don’t have to throw down hundreds of dollars on the perfect piece of art, but you should have something that you can look at daily that represents you. I dated a guy that went to UGA and had the Georgia ‘G’ framed in his living room. It worked. He also had a massive self-portrait above his bed. That one, uh, was mostly just weird.
3. Know how to cook a signature meal. Women love men that can cook. If you are getting dangerously close to 30 years old, or have passed it, you should probably be able to throw together a meal. Call your mom and ask her for a simple recipe that you can easily perfect. Invite a girl over for the third date. Then impress the pants off her.
4. Have a go-to date idea. First dates are incredibly predictable. You meet at a bar and have a few drinks. The only variables are the bar you choose and whether or not drinks leads to dinner. However, if you meet a girl that you actually seriously interested in, having a trick up your sleeve is a good idea. One date took me to the volleyball pits by the Lincoln Memorial for people watching. Another date took me on a walking tour of his neighborhood on H St. Another guy took me to Gravelly Point to watch the planes fly in. They all probably did this with other girls, I’m sure it was their signature move, but it impressed me more than the usual, “Hey, want to grab a drink?”
5. Wear clothes that fit. I already wrote about the appeal of a man that dresses like a man, but I do feel the need to reiterate this. A man should own: pants that don’t drag on the ground, basic undershirts, fitted t-shirts or dress shirts, a good pair of jeans, and the knowledge that a black belt doesn’t go with brown shoes. And by the way, switching from boxers to boxer-briefs is a good idea.
6. Clean your bathroom. The most terrifying moment in any new relationship is seeing a man’s bathroom for the first time. You never know what you’ll find. All you can hope is that there is toilet paper that’s actually on the roll, a shower curtain that isn’t covered in mildew, and trash that’s in the trashcan, not on the floor. If you really want to impress a girl, own a hairdryer and a pack of spare toothbrushes. She’ll thank you.
This list is not something to live by, but merely suggestions. You could do none or all of these things. None of this really matters all that much. As long as you are a nice guy, comfortable with who you are, and respect others, you are already accomplishing the basic musts of being a man…but seriously, clean your bathroom.
- Suzie Robb