Dating’s “pre-game” activities

Super BowlHave you been inundated with the Super Bowl pre-game activity options? You could easily devote the whole weekend to Super Bowl shows if you wanted. In scanning the various proceeding, it reminded me of a conversation I had recently with a single gal pal.

We were talking about how important first impressions are in dating. But we realized the definition of “first impression” was a bit nebulous. Was it the first wink or email? The first phone conversation? Or the first meeting? All are important and can be a telling prelude to the outcome of the “game.”

The “pre-game” activities — pre-meeting, if you will — set the tone for the first face-to-face. I’ve had wonderful email and phone conversations with a man before meeting him, so that when we met it felt like I’d known him a long time. I was already drawn to him when I met him physically. This can set up a touch down much earlier than if you allow the game to progress as painstakingly as it does on the gridiron. Just as in football each yard is won with difficulty (if the teams are evenly matched), in dating each next step evolves quickly or slowly depending on the players.

But as often as the pre-game activities segued into a wonderful first — and subsequent — encounters, they can also build tremendous expectations among the players and fans (your friends who you’ve told about this great guy with whom you’re talking). And as we know, expectations can fall flat as often as not. I’ve experienced this on many occasions. A guy is amazing on the phone and in email (the pre-game interviews and hype of the game), yet when you meet, no sizzle.

My current guy was like that. We’d had wonderful calls and emails for 10 days before meeting for coffee. When we met, he was very tired and he’d momentarily nod off. I thought I must be the most boring person he’d ever talked to. If we hadn’t already set up dinner the next night, I’m afraid I would have sent him a “You’re a nice guy, but I didn’t feel any spark” email. But because of our delicious pre-meeting communication, I decided to give him another chance and the dinner went well (he’d gotten some sleep). So sometimes the pre-game intrigue encourages you to give someone some grace — and another chance.

If you watch the Super Bowl on Sunday, see if you can see parallels to dating. Yes, occasionally your date will be called for “holding,” but you may like it so there is no penalty. “Roughing the passer” is if he gets too fresh but instead of costing him yardage, you make him sit on the bench — alone. No one likes to be on a date with someone who displays “unsportsmanlike conduct.” And sometimes being “sacked” is a good thing. 🙂

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4 responses to “Dating’s “pre-game” activities”

  1. cat Avatar

    it’s all the preparation before the game that ensures a good match. Such a great analogy, even a non-american can understand.
    currently dating a guy that has kept the ‘momentum-going’ between dates, with conversations & nice emails, ensuring a sucessful second date & my good opinion.
    really enjoy your blog & will recommend. cheers, cat

  2. A Avatar

    There’s a book called “Winning Your Wife Back Before It’s Too Late” by Gary Smalley that uses these and other football penalties to describe situations in (trying to save a failing) marriage.

  3. Gatti Avatar

    I’m becoming of the mind that it’s better to get to face to face as soon as possible, before you get too “involved” over the phone and with emails. Then if there isn’t a physical chemistry, you haven’t got as far to fall to get over the disappointment.

    On that note, DG, you may be interested to hear that the guy who really wanted to get involved with me but someone from the past showed up and, well, he couldn’t have two relationships at once and all like that (the “have a nice life” email came on Christmas morning, after a lovely chat on the phone on Christmas Eve, we hadn’t met yet)…in any event, he’s back on the site with an updated profile (the same one, actually, with a new photo).

    Gosh! Wonder what happened??? And…will he get in touch with me? What do you think??? (Irony button firmly pressed…)

  4. Jan Avatar

    Happened to me before DG. I talked to this guy on the phone a long long time ago, when I was like 20 and we hit it off right away… he was funny charming yada yada… and when I met him, he was only 5’4. I am 5’6 by the way. And needless to say, when he called me back after the date, I didn’t have to heart to tell him how I felt. I was too young… so I just went POOF! on him!