The Art of Mastering the First Date an Unofficial Goldman Sachs Guide


Young man making an boring expression gesture on a bad dating

Here’s another guide from our friend @GSElevator

There’s no shortage of people ready to dispense love and dating advice. Aziz Anzari explored the topic through a blend of stories, humor, and science in his newish book, Modern Romance. The audiobook (sample here) is a hilarious; it’s a book that feels like standup.

Tucker Max also took a solid crack at it with Mate: Become The Man Women Want. He has, in the past, talked about how great he is with woman. Well, I’m the opposite – terrible, and totally indifferent to that reality.

I’d typically cockblock myself, pregaming with six or seven beers (or more if day drinking counted) to loosen up the nerves. Add to it, the five or six drinks during the date and then a few after-dinner drinks. If that went well, I might swing a few nightcaps at my place or hers. Some of the dates worked out great. Many were a disaster. And for others, I have no clue how they ended.

As a result, I’ve been on many, many first dates. So while I can’t tell you how to get girls or give relationship advice, I can offer infinite wisdom on vetting and mastering the first date:

  1. Take her some place nice, but not so fancy that her menu doesn’t have prices on it. She should know
  2. If it’s a French restaurant, look up the menu online beforehand and practice pronouncing the names of the dishes. Play it cool when she gets all excited
  3. Japanese is also a good option. Saké is like a legal roofie*, and if she’s good with chopsticks, you’ll know she wasn’t raised in a barn.
  4. If you’re also going to the movies, see a horror flick. It’ll increase the odds that she’ll want to go home with you
  5. If her pre-date text exchange includes multiple emoji and at least one LOL, it’s game on, so remember to manscape
  6. If it’s a blind date, arrange to meet at a crowded bar, and ask her what she’s wearing. That way, you can check her out before committing
  7. Creep on her Instagram page. If her profile says “For booking information,” you’re definitely getting laid, maybe even in the bathroom
  8. If LinkedIn says that she viewed your profile before the date, you’re probably not getting laid, unless of course, your résumé looks like mine
  9. If she has a cracked iPhone screen and a Michael Kors bag, don’t give her your real name, but definitely plan on getting laid
  10. If she’s Italian, check out her ankles and then ask to see a picture of her mother. Just kidding. Who cares what she’s going to look like in twenty years?
  11. Be overly nice to the waiter. Glamour tells chicks that’s a good way to judge a man’s character
  12. If she’s drinking light beer, switch to Bud Light Platinum. It’s got 2% more alcohol, which could factor in later
  13. Don’t order hot wings**
  14. Make a point of not looking at your phone. Keep filling her up with booze and you can check Tinder when she’s in the bathroom
  15. If it’s a group setting and you’re not into her, stick with it. Your performance is being monitored, so use the stage to line up future prospects  
  16. And if she has hot friends, don’t set them up with your buddies. Save them as a backup (See #15)
  17. It’s not going to kill you to pretend to be a democrat for a few hours
  18. But, if she mentions Jezebel, Mattress Girl, social justice warriors, safe zones, or white privilege, order a really nice bottle of wine. Drink most of it, politely excuse yourself for the bathroom, and then get the fuck out of there. Who cares? She already hates men.
  19. If you think you might want a 2nd date and truly want to get to know her, just ask about her first pet or favorite teacher. Then read all of her emails later.


* STFU about consent. Satire is an IQ test

** True story: Super hot wings + drunken finger-blasting = disaster

John LeFevre is the creator of @GSElevator on Twitter, and the author of the New York Times bestselling book, Straight To Hell: True Tales of Deviance, Debauchery, And Billion-Dollar Deals

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