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Not Exactly Steve’s Script: My Favorite First Date Questions

One of my good friends, who is an excellent blogger, inspired me today. She wrote a great post about the movie, “Think Like A Man.”

I had been thinking about writing a post inspired by “Think Like A Man” (that actually beat “Hunger Games” this weekend) after I saw it the other day. I really enjoyed it. Great cast, solid writing.

The movie is based on the best-selling book, “Act Like A Lady, Think Like A Man” by comedian Steve Harvey.

Some women consider this book to be the best thing since “The Rules” and “He’s Just Not That Into You” when it comes to romantic strategy to help women land the men they want.

My friend argues in her blog that Steve Harvey wasn’t really saying anything new, but his folksy, brutally honest black Dr. Phil-style delivery seems to have resonated with gazillions of women. She said, basically your parents told you the same thing or an auntie and you didn’t listen, but you gladly ponied up $16.95 to listen to Uncle Steve.

The book discusses a 90-day rule before having sex and questions you should ask a man right out the gate (long-term goals, short-term goals). It also tells you how to distinguish if the man is a mamma’s boy or not very serious about you.

I was thinking in particular about the questions and then I thought of my favorite questions I like to ask guys when I’m out on a first date. Steve’s questions are fine, but I think some of my questions give me insight into what the guy is about and doesn’t feel as intense as, “Well what do you think about marriage and kids?”

My favorite date question is, “What was your first job?”

I like asking that question because most men are going to have a funny story about delivering pizzas in college or working in a fast food restaurant, retail store, or for a family business. It seems that going back to that time and talking about it takes down the wall of trying to impress and they relax without realizing it. It’s non-sexual, it’s not talking about our future, or his current job and what he has or doesn’t have. It’s a safe place.  

They get to open up about what they hated about it, and how they swore they’d find a way to never have to do that again.

If he never had a “first job,” and does not have a trust fund to explain not ever having a “first job,” grab your purse and go.

In most cases, successful men who had to suffer through jobs they hated prior to becoming successful all agree those jobs helped to make them better men, and made them appreciate where they are today even more. They usually have a good laugh and say they hadn’t thought about their first job in ages.

These stories show me how hard a man is willing to work to handle business even if it isn’t the greatest job in the world and if his work ethic started early. Did he stick with the job until he reached a certain goal and then quit? Or did he bounce around a lot (quit or get fired) because he couldn’t get a long with the boss? When he left those early jobs, who does he blame today? The boss? Or does he now recognize certain things about himself back then?

A male friend gave me another great question to ask and that is, “When was the last time you went home to visit your parents/family?”

This friend is big on family and loyalty and respecting his elders. He said how a woman answers this question says a lot about her and her connection to family. I thought it was a great idea and started to incorporate that into my questions now too.

For me, I try not to let three months pass without going to visit my parents. When I lived the very furthest away from them than I ever lived, the longest I went was six months to a year.

People who live far away from their folks, I think, should at least try to see them at a minimum once a year. If a person says they haven’t seen their parents in four years (and they aren’t fighting a war or the parents aren’t deceased), that raises a red flag for me. It doesn’t necessarily have to be parents, it can also be siblings or nieces or nephews. Just show me a connection to the people you love and that you aren’t some island.

So while Steve’s questions are worthwile, I like my questions too.

What do you think are key questions to ask in the early stages of dating?

Are relationship books full of bunk or is there some merit to them?

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