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Dating advice from Vox and Amanda Marcotte: No wonder no one knows what a date is anymore

June 27, 2014

My latest blog post for the Los Angeles Times:

[A]lex Abad-Santos of Vox chimed in with an almost 2,000-word Vox-splanation titled “How Dates Got So Complicated” that itself sounded pretty complicated. Here’s what Abad-Santos has to say:

“Part of this confusion is that each person has their own working definition of what it means. This idea varies from person to person, and is usually something culled from what that person has been told a ‘date’ is, rather than from personal experience.”

How helpful!

Then, Amanda Marcotte of Slate weighs in with “Defense of the Nondate Date”:

“Sure, that can be confusing, but I would like to defend the much maligned maybe-date. What that Glamour poll recorded is actually the widespread use of the maybe-date as a dating device, a phenomenon where two people go on an outing that is ostensibly platonic but also has the possibility of morphing into something sexier. Going on maybe-dates is a way for a lot of young people to experiment with dating with a safety net. If you go on a maybe-date with someone and there’s no spark there, you don’t have to deal with outright rejection — giving or getting it — because it wasn’t officially a date anyway.”

Let’s set up a blind date for Alex Abad-Santos and Amanda Marcotte.

Posted by Charlotte Allen

 

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4 Comments
  1. Jason R. permalink

    Amanda,

    Although your blog which I just read in the LATimes regarding “dating” was actually interesting to me, I would say that you are roughly my age and therefore really not in the age realm where you should be trying to define “dating.” The “dates” of yesterday had their own rules for that era and they are NOT necessarily the same rules for today.

    That said, I read somewhere that you often wrote on feminism.

    Okay, the first “rule” you should accept is that you and your feminist crowd demanded “equality.” Remember that demand? I do. Clearly.

    “Equality” means a “date” is a 50-50 proposition as far as “who pays.” Its only fair. For you to say anything else is to neutralize your apparent previous political demands.

    In today’s world, I am moving back into “dating.” And I am offended by any female who thinks that merely because she is female that the male “is supposed to pay.” Thats absurd in our current era. I actually had a woman say to me, “buy me a drink” …. to which I responded…. “buy your own”….. to which she then caustically muttered, “Oh, you’re so tough.”

    Yeah. That woman also failed to have updated her thinking. And she later admitted to me she had a hard time finding men. I wonder why.

    If you would like to compare notes further, feel free to drop me a note.

    I’m laughing at the women I meet these days.

  2. Lastango permalink

    “Marcotte writes: “But for young people who need a low-stakes space to figure out what they want and don’t want from romantic partners and friends, maybe-dates can provide just the right amount of ambiguity to explore the options.”

    What else could she write? She can’t admit the truth, and neither can Abad-Santos. He posits that dating became complicated by technology, etc.

    Here’s what they can’t and won’t say: Dating died because marriage died.

    Dating is a formalized interaction, aimed at exploring enduring relationships. It’s a step along a path that had a goal: marriage. When marriage died, the goal was gone. That’s when the structure collapsed. Without an organizing principle, nothing had meaning anymore. Brownian Motion ensued. All the pool balls ricocheting off each other became the same.

    So… when any he+she get together, are they hanging out? FWB? Dating? Meeting on the fly? Just grabbing a coffee? Being merely social?

    WGAF. If neither of them has marriage and a family as a life goal, what difference does it make?

    But Marcotte must, as part of her strategic and tactical political mission, avoid discussing that because it raises a series of unpleasant questions: To what extent is feminism responsible for the confusion of women and the lack of marriage-minded men? Have women been ego-tripping themselves (and each other) into a long walk off a short pier? Are men leaving the building? Are men actually on strike, behaving as rational economic actors? If so, why? Could this have something to do with 40 years of feminists demonizing men?

    The answers to those sorts of questions make feminism a tough sell to young women, so Marcotte can’t go there. Her only alternative is to spin the chaos as a Good Thing, and hope women fall for it.

    Abad-Santos, on the other hand, is just another mushy-middle triangulator who never made a judgement call in his life. So he straddles, points in every direction, and concludes, “Wow – look at all this stuff happening!” Thanks, buddy. You’re a huge help.

  3. You know I am Right! permalink

    I get the feminism theory. Why should a man pay for a date now? When more women are attending colleges and earning more money than men? If you truly believe in this equality of both genders. Woman can ask men out and pay for their lunches and dinners. I would suggest reading the book from a female author Helen Smith and her book “Men on Strike”. With the male equivalent of Feminism MGTOW. Men are starting to wake up to try to reclaim mens rights. If this nation was a true equal nation for both genders we as a country. We would not need the Women Against Violence act. Violence is Violence regardless of gender. With shows like Tom Leykis shedding a light on this matter as well. All I can do as A Man is not marry until divorce, alimony, and child support laws are to my favor. Currently marriage has no financial incentive for men. Change that, then we can talk. I am not going to spend my hard earn money on a “modern” woman that can’t cook, clean, or work for herself. You ladies can’t have it both ways. You want to be independent yet depended on men for alimony and child support. I am happy going my own my way. I can cook, grill, bake, crockpot, smoke, and fry my food. I keep my place clean, do my own laundry, pay my bills and getting close to paying off my students loans. Zero Debt I am shooting for now. Why would I mess my empire by bringing in a deadbeat, moocher, that will take half of my earning and future earnings because she is married to me. Forget you ladies.

    http://www.smh.com.au/federal-politics/society-and-culture/why-women-lose-the-dating-game-20120421-1xdn0.html Read that article the guys described in the article is what my dating life is now. As long I am successful I can date the younger girls. You single moms and divorced moms don’t pay any attention to me. If I want kids I will pay for a surrogate to have my child and never pay any woman a dime of child support. Pay for a nanny, house cleaner and still be cheaper than having a wife. I live in a Nag Free Zone.

    • Jason R. permalink

      Look at the Federal Senator Diane Feinstein.

      She is what our government calls one of our “leaders.”
      She’s a life long government “leader” to be more specific.

      Yet in an interview with her daughter a number of years back, the interviewer asked if Mrs. Feinstein could cook. The daughter, not wanting to be dishonest, rolled her eyes and replied, “well, mom can boil water well.”

      There you have it. A woman who is supposedly a government “leader” can’t even cook. And wouldn’t you know? Diane Feinstein is married to a very, very wealthy man.

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