Written by Edward Little – Student Writer
Work and Studies
The majority of someone’s day more often that not revolves around studying or working, and I find that getting someone to talk about their ‘grind’ can safely let them boast or blow steam. We all have different ways of approaching this, and mine is by asking ‘What’s your thing?’ This reduces the possibility of embarrassment if someone is between jobs, or if education simply wasn’t their cup of tea. Allowing someone the opportunity to avoid any awkwardness the first time you meet them goes a long way, especially if they are more introverted. There are tonnes of ways you can word this: such as ‘How do you spend your nine-to-five?’, and ‘What’s your area of interest?’ Of course, you don’t have to word your sentences this way, I just do because I think I’m funny, and it gives the chance for my date to remind me I’m not. But I’m getting off topic. We all want to boast in our own little way, be that about the amazing event we managed to host during our last shift, or the very contemporary essay we just finished on first date psychology. We don’t want to come across egotistical when we are sitting opposite a stranger for the first time, but our world often revolves around the things we should be able to brag about, such as our education and career. Give someone the chance to shower you with rants about their thing, like a faulty sprinkler, as they avoid being labelled as cocky.
If music isn’t a safe bet during a first date, then you’re meeting someone for the first time who has managed to avoid daydreaming about becoming a better person, as they trot down Penny Lane in Liverpool, as they listen to the Beatles. If you have happened to snag yourself a first date with this unique person, then talking about why they don’t listen to music is simultaneously an interesting topic. For now though, I’m going to pretend those people don’t exist. Music is one of those subjects I find loses any pretension as it’s a drastically different artform from literature, art, etc. There’s more of a chance to bore someone with your interpretation of Gatsby, than there is talking about why you still shamelessly head bang in your room to Greenday or Busted. I love reading more than I do listening to music, yet nothing changes my mood as quickly as listening to a song I loved as a kid, or hearing something new for the first time. Your body tenses or relaxes involuntarily, and I feel this is something most people can relate to. You could be into jazz, punk, hip-hop, or pop, yet you can agree with the person who has just bought you coffee that the song on the café’s speaker is making you feel good
‘What’s Your Poison?’
Back to the playful sentences, and I love asking this question. There’s something about knowing someone is a blank canvas to you that makes you want to know their impulses, be it alcohol, cigarettes, blue cheese, or watching Friends as they’re dressed as Elmo. If knowing that someone just loves listening to classic music as they walk next to a river, then the plan for date two is already underway if you know it’s going well. We want to know we can relax with someone, and that if we get a shot of whiskey to go in our coffee, we won’t be judged (unless it’s 9am then some might judge). Habits are a fun starting point as they can be hilarious and strange, but they are also handy to know because you don’t want to find out that your date considers anyone who gets an Irish coffee in the morning to be an alcoholic. I can’t picture that relationship working out, but hey, there are still other people willing to put alcohol in coffee. Have fun and let someone know what you are into! It saves a lot of hassle and can even lead to pleasant walks listening to Beethoven.