The lies a guy tells on a first date

pinocchio’s editor was guest columnist for Australian laydeeeeez magazine, CLEO, this month. Check out his words of questionable wisdom:

A first date is a terrible way to get to know a guy. You see, no matter how hard they pretend, very few blokes are the same species as those devilishly handsome, sartorially elegant fellows you see in fragrance commercials. Yet, in order to come across more like one of those mythical romantic figures on the billboards and less like Kyle Sandilands, on a first date men will subtly alter almost every facet of their personalities.

Although they struggle to admit it – even to themselves – many blokes find it astonishing that any woman would even entertain the idea of letting them put their penis remotely near them, so when they get so far as securing a date, it’s a mighty big deal. While your average dude may have spent the afternoon sitting in saggy underpants watching Star Wars for the zillionth time and shoving chips into his gob, by first date night he’s more foppish and gentlemanly than Hugh Grant in Notting Hill and fantastically generous to boot.

Make no mistake, a first date will see a man on his sweaty-palmed best-behaviour, but if a second rendezvous comes of it, their demeanour will noticeably switch. By now, the nerves have been displaced by a rare sense of unflinching self-belief. While you might simply be meeting him again because he seemed nice and you’d like to get to know him a little better, he’s now thinking, “This chick totally wants to get into my pants.” Sweaty palms will be replaced by a swagger and his thoughts will jump between trying to picture you naked and hoping you don’t order the same expensive wine as last time.

At this point, his impeccable behaviour last time can pretty much be discarded and you’ll now learn if you’re genuinely compatible. In round two, if he’s still chatting freely about the latest Francis Bacon exhibition, then maybe he really is cultured and didn’t just memorise what he read about it in the newspaper. If he spends 20 minutes bemoaning the Aussie cricket team’s latest performance despite your blank expression, you can be pretty sure of two things: 1, he’s very comfortable in your company (hooray), and 2, his topic of conversation will often be this dull in the future (boo). Be warned, if your date is an exotic foreigner who tells you he lives in a lively place with cool flatmates, he’s probably a backpacker in a two-bedroom hovel with nine other people. If his housemates are “a chilled older couple,” then, yep, he still lives with his parents. Also, if he tells you he is “completely over his ex,” the fact that he even mentioned her on your date suggests he more likely still obsessively stalks her on Facebook.

You might have had to fight the urge to pash him after a few cocktails on the first date, but do you really wanna go in for a kiss now that you’ve noticed that bit of food stuck in his teeth? If you do, then, before you lunge in, take a moment to imagine him sitting on the couch in his saggy undies with chip crumbs peppering his belly while his gaze is relentlessly fixed on cricket/footy/Star Wars on the TV. This could be a window into your not-too-distant future. And if you still like the guy after that, then pash away, because this might just be as good as it gets. After all, those handsome dudes from the perfume commercials don’t really exist, remember?

bobby townsend


Words by Bobby Townsend.