by Jim Harris
The following article is not
recommended for women with husbands, women who are planning to
have husbands, or anyone who cannot keep a secret for more than
Okay men, are you listening?
Good, here's the scoop - never, ever, under any
circumstances should you agree to go on a "date" with
Somewhere along the line, women (probably single women with self-help
books to sell) decided that "going on a date" with one's
partner was a good way to keep some spark in a marriage, and the
practice has spread like wildfire through the once peaceful, bucolic
world of married life.
Please, don't fall for this trick.
Remember, marriage is supposed to be your reward for surviving
the whole dating ritual, and one of the great benefits of being
married is that you don't have to date anymore. Dating
is time-consuming, frightening, and often painful. On a date,
you must look good, be charming, suppress almost all bodily functions,
and generally dote on your date. Does that sound like the kind
of pressure that you can handle? If not, then you will fail, and
it is indeed a pass/fail situation. There are no shades of gray
or honorable mentions.
As a result of interviewing over
100 victims of dates gone bad in preparation for my upcoming
book, "Dates That Will Live In Infamy", I can offer
the following lifesaving tips:
If you go to a cafe after a movie, find something nice to say
about the movie even if you slept through it entirely. "It
was very sweet. I'm glad it all worked out in the end" is
usually a safe statement. Be prepared to talk about clothes, home
furnishings or yesterday's Oprah, and for God's sake, PAY
If the restaurant has a TV, don't look at it, not even for a second,
no matter how big the screen or good the game. Also - and this
would seem to be a no-brainer, but men still fall victim to it
- don't look at other women, no matter how unbelievably skimpy
their outfits or high-pitched their giggles, unless you want your
head ripped off and placed on the dessert tray for all to see.
If you sense that you are failing
the date, take deep breaths, try not to sweat, and think "charming".
Men in this situation have occasionally gone completely catatonic
or even begun to self-mutilate (pull out hair, bang head on table,
etc.) If your wife should run away in tears, don't panic, she's
probably just in the rest room talking to a friend on her cell
phone. Keep phoning her until she answers. Try texting the words
"I'm sorry" over and over.
Make sure she didn't take off
in the car. If she did, pay your tab, call a cab and pick up some
expensive flowers on the way home. There will still be days and
weeks of meticulous rehashing to endure, and of course the failure
will go on your permanent record, but at least you will have learned
a valuable lesson - just say NO to post-marital dating.