At least that’s what Amy Alkon says in her new book Good Manners for Nice People Who Sometimes Say F*ck. I have been reading and re-reading the book this week and her chapter on dating was particularly interesting.
In a section called “Dating is War,” Amy describes dating rudeness and perceived rudeness. She makes a good point: “The truth is, in dating, a good bit of the hurt and anger people feel is caused not by rude behavior but by misconceptions about the opposite sex and the way things ‘should’ work as opposed to the ways they actually do.” The war between the sexes, according to the book, is one that goes back millions of years and has to do with the ensuing differences in what sex can end up costing us. Women want men who can provide if they get pregnant and men like the sight of a good-looking woman. Well, it’s more complicated than that, but you get the idea.
She says we need to accept that men act like men and women act like women when it comes to dating and that it is evolutionary. Perhaps, but then, many things are “evolutionary” but we strive to be better than that or to change our response to something that may have served us well as cave men but now, not so much.
That said, Amy has great advice for those who are dating, for example: Don’t date people you aren’t attracted to, assume that everyone you meet on the Internet is lying their ass off until proven otherwise, and politely tell a potential sexual partner that you have an STD (prior to having sex is the first step). Luckily, she provides good advice on how to deal with each of these areas so that you come out of the dating experience with some dignity!
The book is loads of fun and very entertaining. If you want to learn manners on anything from dealing with a bad neighbor to eating, drinking and socializing in modern times, read it.