February 16, 2006

Just Say Yes

Thursday, February 16, 2006

I know my friends are tired of me preaching about how you should never turn down a reasonable date, even if you may just want to be friends. A date is a date and its good practice. One girlfriend of mine emailed me saying I was going to say no, because I had a lot going on that weekend and then I thought ‘what would Tara do?’ So yeah, she went on the date and supposedly had fun, so there you go. Even if it doesn’t lead to something erstwhile, my philosophy is that it gets you that more comfortable dating and out there. I’m not saying to date a real jerk just because they asked you out, I mean accepting dates within reason and if you're not interested after that you don't have to go on a second.

The following Newsweek article Dating: Positive Thinking
about the book, The Year of Yes, just goes to show that my advice might be sound after all...

Maria Dahvana Headley grew up listening to the "Just Say No" anti-drug campaign of the 1980s. As a student at NYU in the late '90s, she applied that advice to her love life, turning down most men who asked her out and dating only intellectual, literary types. Frustrated by those guys, she reversed course, resolving to spend one year responding positively to all flirting and saying yes to literally anyone who asked her out. The ensuing 150 dates included a homeless man, several non-English speakers, 10 taxi drivers, two lesbians and a mime.

Headley's memoir of the experience, The Year of Yes, is now in bookstores, and Hollywood's already calling. She urges other people to say yes more often, despite some horrible dates. (One guy took her to a bar that, it became clear, was a strip club—and that's a tame example.) "Lots of women are pretty set in what they think they have to have in order to be happy, but it doesn't hurt to date people who are not that," she says. It worked for her: during her dating spree, she met a playwright who was divorced and 25 years older and had two children—baggage that would have ordinarily nixed his chances. They married in 2003; now 28, Headley lives in Seattle with two teenage stepchildren. "It's something I never would have picked, but it's turned out to be this kind of amazing experience," she says.

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