Monday, March 8, 2010

Dating is Like Super Mario

Love is like rice - start with good ingredients, bring to a rolling boil, reduce to a simmer and put a lid on it :)

Dating is like Super Mario - play the game, get the bonus points. You win. Easy.

Actually I think both are hard.

I think the latter is especially hard for men, so I'm going to start there. And you married guys may want a refresher, because of course all good marriages are treated more like dating, at least some of the time, right?

We all know Super Mario, the video game, right? It's invaded the culture, like all kinds of electronic games, and we know that you have a mission, or a maze to travel, and you have to navigate obstacles. This is the "real life" part of living that Mario has to deal with. He has somewhere to go, and he has to jump, run, leap and dodge stuff to get there. He's a man, tho small, and seems to love the challenge.

Along the way he has chances to grab bonus points. This is the extra fun part, because once you learn NOT to fall off ledges, you get to go after what looks, really, like low hanging fruit, or coins, and BA BING you get MORE points!! How cool!

But if you get lots of bonus points, and still can't navigate the basics, you lose, at least that life. No matter how many bonus points you got along the way. And if you don't learn how to get the bonus points you have NO (zero) insurance when you make a mistake and therefore you never really get all that good at climbing the levels (cause you don't get more chances), and are going to be a pretty mediocre player. Who wants that??

So the game is easy. Play the basics, get the bonus points (insurance), you win.

Dating isn't all that hard either. Play the basic game, get the bonus points, you win.

Here's the trouble. Lots of folks are great at one (the basics) or the other (bonus points) and then they can't understand why they keep losing!

So I've been telling my guy friends the Secret lately. Figure out what you aren't good at and do it more!

Big Grin.

This means, for some guys who are so good at the basics of life, (they work, make a good living, and know how to balance having a personal life with the demands of being a responsible adult) that they need to go for more bonus points.

For other guys, who have the bonus point system down that they have to get better at the basics - start playing the game consistently.

The Basics
Sometimes this means working more, but a lot of times it means working less and balancing your life better. It could mean stabilizing your financial house, or getting your ex-wife out of your hair (better known as fencing in the three headed monster). For some guys you have children that need you, and you have to learn to make room for a love life. Other men have children who DON'T need them, but will hang on perpetually slurping from Daddy's Money Fountain forever, unless you start showing some backbone, and respect them (and yourself) enough to cut them off.

Some guys need to finish school. Others need to start. And one or two men out there need to learn some very basic things like "Go to the doctor once in a while." and "Don't try to have a bunch of women or flirtations, 'cause you ain't that good."

Do what you say you are going to do, and call or text your lady once a day, whether dating, married or shackin' up. Try to be sweet once in a while. But if you are naturally somewhat gruff (Stan the Elder) then you can rely on bonus points :)

So those are some basics. Just normal grown up stuff.

The bonus points are totally fun.

These are so easy. And yet so many guys just don't get it/them.

Bonus points come from things you know about but like to pretend you forget! (Newsflash: We women are on to you!)

Easiest bonus points : flowers. Candy. Jewelery (even costume jewelery). Nice dinner out. Movie with popcorn and sodas. Call or text everyday (yeah, it's basic, but the more consistent you are the more she loves it)

Mouth-breathing, knuckle dragging guys can figure out the easy bonus points. Funny thing is that so many pretty sophisticated guys forget the easy ones. lol

Medium bonus points:
  • Movie that isn't violent with popcorn and soda and holding hands.
  • Dinner at home that you cook together.
  • Going to a place she loves - day trip like antique stores, or a park.
  • Sweet texts or calls or emails.
  • Sending her a link to a romantic song
  • Taking out the trash without any reminders :)
  • Fueling up her car, getting it washed
  • Hanging in bed with her on a weekend with coffee you made and the newspaper. Taking her to brunch.
  • A picnic you put together. Pick a good spot. If it's cold bring blankets and find a sunny rock :)
  • Open doors for her, even the car door once in a while.
  • Teach her something you love - pool, fishing, hunting, racing, mud wrestling (jk), Shakespeare, Chamber music, geocaching, rare books, good wines.
  • Do chores and fix things willingly, with and without her.
  • Don't bite when she's stressed out and needs a hug. (Ask first - hugging a pissed off Woman without warning can be hazardous)
  • Rub her feet. Understand that high heels are an American form of Chinese foot binding.
Major Bonus Points
  • Getting her car serviced. Yeah, even just an oil change. BIG points if you do it yourself.
  • Going to a chick flick - with popcorn, soda and snuggling
  • Going to a social event and making her look good. Dress the part. Respectfully letting people know she's hot ;) Making sure you can drive home.
  • Start (or keep) opening doors for her. If you do it sometimes, do it more.
  • Take her to a concert she really wants to go to - extra bonus points if you don't really love Celene Dion or Elton John, but you go anyway.
  • Big jewelery, of course is always big big bonus points. Stuff that makes her friends gasp is going to do you some good for a LONG time :)
  • Making dinner (something she likes and you can do well) without her and adding music, wine and candles.
  • Take her on a trip - a weekend or a week. Somewhere romantic, just the two of you and let your hair down. Could be camping, but could be a cruise. Whatever works.
  • Get her something she's been learning with you - a fishing rod, a wine basket, a CD of the music you both love.
  • Listen to a problem she's having without offering advice. Help her decide what SHE wants to do about it. (hint: ask a lot of questions, let her ramble)
  • When she's upset/tense/out of sorts, be sweet. Learn the three Golden Scripts :
    "It sounds like you've had a hard day."
    "Want to tell me about it?"
    "Is there anything I can do to help?"
  • Do chores and fix things without her asking
  • And the classic, but true: Give her a back rub and don't ask for sex :) (but let her ask ;) (no kidding hint: if you divide up chores evenly, or help her with hers, then she's gonna have more energy for the fun stuff )
So easy, bonus points. Not all the time, not always the same ones, and never always at the same level, but if you can play the game, and get the low hanging fruit too, then trust me you win.

And of course the same goes for women. Just different different different stuff to do.

hmmm... I guess I better get on that blog entry - what women can do for guys :) (and it's not just show up naked. With beer lol)

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