Thursday, July 31, 2014

Chit Chat: Dating

So we have some proposed subjects for chit chat. We'll try to address them all. But first up, Adrew "Spambot" Miller wants to talk about dating:1

"Dating" is a funny word. Its meaning seems to have shifted over time. These days, it often just means a pair is a romantic couple.2 So-and-so and so-and-so are dating. They may never actually go on a "date" per se.

But more traditionally, it asserts that a couple is actually going on dates. And what exactly is a date? The line is blurry. I might provisionally describe it as an arranged meeting between two people (a prospective or current couple) in a neutral place, e.g. a restaurant.3 But that's a little too rigid. Dinner, movie: unambiguously neutral territory; classic date material. Going to a party together? Maybe sort of, but it's not archetypal. Is it a date, or are they "just hanging out"? (In general, couples seem to be doing less formal dating and more "hanging out".) Dinner at one or the other person's home? That could, at one stage in a relationship, be considered a date. At a later stage of romantic entanglement, it's just plain old dinner.

I dunno. Times change. Words change. Behaviors change. Dating is complicated. That's what I've got to say.4

Thank you for the suggested topic, Adrew "Spambot" Miller.

1 I'll preface this by saying that I've been off the market a long time, so I can't claim any sort of expertise on the subject whatsoever.

2 Though typically the term describes a couple in the early stages of their relationship. I don't think I would describe a couple that's been together for five years as "dating".

3 During my years waiting tables, it was always fun to play "spot the first date". It wasn't hard. There's a distinctive combination of body language and conversation that sets a first date apart from other sorts of social engagements.

4 See? I can babble crapa about just about anything.
a Maybe I'll rename this blog "Babble Crap".b

b Entirely tangentially, I had a weird dream/low-grade nightmare last night that Blogger/Blogspot automatically restyled this blog with some sort of hideous over-the top style with icky fonts and a gross hyper-graphic background image; and I spent a long time trying to change it back, and never succeeded. Yikes.

1 comment:

  1. Interesting commentary. I have been wondering about courting. We don't talk about it anymore. When did it go out it style? Is it the same as dating?