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This morning, my co-workers and I got into a discussion about how we define what a Date/Dating is. Needless to say, folks over here had various views and definitions regarding the matter. I happen to believe people use these terms so loosely that confusion ensues, and that’s how everything ends up convoluted (see my past postings for examples of muddy relationships). We came to the conclusion that our views on dating/relationships stem from how we were brought up. I was raised on the Southside of Chicago by a single mother, grandmother, and five aunts. Which subsequently led me to being great with women later in life. Here are a few ways to define male-female interaction:

A Date: I define a date as two people (with romantic interest or attraction) spending time together with the intention of getting to know each other better. I think a date can come in several forms. The traditional Dinner-and-a-Movie-On-a-Saturday-Night notwithstanding, meeting one another for drinks after work, going to a museum, or shooting pool at a local bar, to name a few, are all dates to me. During our discussion this morning, I was told that those activities are not “dates.” It was explained to me that those activities are actually defined as “hanging out.” According to some people over here, a date is a formalized meeting that is meant to go toward something romantically greater.

Hanging Out: To me, a hangout and a date are the exact same things. I never knew there was a difference. Apparently, I’ve rarely dated – so say some of my fellow staff members. According to them, my interaction with women has been limited to nothing but hanging out. I need to consult my fiancĂ©e and see what she thinks.

Dating: Now, this is where the difference is to me, and where some confusion lies with others. I define “dating” as something with a notion of exclusivity. This is the point where both parties have come to an understanding of where they stand with one another. At this stage, the couple is seen out in public with one another. Everyone associates the two of you as a couple. Both of them know one another’s friends and family. In other words, you are officially “going steady.” LOL.

Kicking it: This is no commitment-driven interaction when two people are kicking it. Some people call it “jumping off” or being “F*ck Buddies,” but call it whatever you want – it’s just a relationship that is based on good times. Casual, 100%. Generally, you don’t share your hopes and dreams with this type of relationship. There are no springtime picnics or expensive dinners in SoHo. It’s a temporary involvement based on convenience. The problem with this is that, most of the time, one of the parties involved is disillusioned. They don’t know the parameters of the relationship. They think they can move up in the hierarchy. Sometimes it happens, but most of the time it does not. Then hearts get broken, and tires get slashed.

What do you all think? I want to know how you define what a Date (or Dating) is.



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