If you’re concerned about building romantic chemistry with someone, here’s a tip: FIGHT. A more poetic phrasing would be to say that light only comes from heat. (Perhaps you’re familiar with Heracleitus’ criticism of Homer’s pacifism.) Every conversation is performance art; think of it like composing music. Most memorable pieces underscore the fine line between tension and release; pain and pleasure; suspense and idyll. Harmless disputation charges adrenaline glands and endorphin levels, augmenting your appeal. To be sure, I’m not advising you to go all Donald Trump 2016 on them but if your conversation has been nothing but agreeable and innocent, you’ve only proven one thing and one measly thing only; that you’re safe. No one wants “safe” on the first few dates. “Safe” pays the bills and picks up the kids from soccer practice, sure, but are you there yet? Hopefully not. Instead, everyone wants to ride the bull before they let it graze their pasture. So, how do you instigate a little dissonance?
Say you’re at a diner and they order apple pie to go with their afternoon coffee. Now, sweet apple pie may be your favorite dessert in all existence. In fact, your Aunt Edna (bless her heart) may have expounded to you the delicacies of picking the freshest apples from the lush orchards of upstate New York, constructing the perfect crust, and sharing with you her secret weapon that sets her recipe apart (lemon zest?). You may, at first, want to unleash, as if in dissertation form, all these warm memories of loving apple pie as a kid. Or how your Aunt Edna (bless her heart, again) was the best pie maker in all the world and how your date would have savored every bite of her pie and how you would love to show her the recipe yourself one day so that Aunt Edna’s memory could live on through her perfected palate.
But no, not today.
Today, you fucking hate that vile shit. In fact, how could they even order such a ghastly dish to ruin their coffee on such a sunny day? You were actually having a pleasant date until THEY had to invidiously bankrupt it. Can you believe their insolvency? This is their response to your comportment? Jesus! Have they no common decency to themselves or – at the very least – human courtesy to YOU?!?!?
No, today you will disgrace that apple pie in front of the very makers whom labored tirelessly over it, hoping to serve it to an abject customer until your dying breath. Then, and only then, will your date engulf their overpriced pie. But even in that seemingly “safe” moment, they will think of your mortified self. Oh yes, yes they will.
And that is why they’ll text you back the next day. And that is why you’ll get another date.
-Single Guy in NYC