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/ September 30, 2011
How To Win Date Night

The weather’s getting colder (or you’ve already mailed your tanktops home and got a big box of your sweaters, so) and that can only mean one thing: time to find a fine gentleman or female to cuddle up on, put on your winter weight and stop trying. Or, as the leading sexologists call it, BOYFRIEND SEASON.

And while the embrace of another might bring even the highest of walls down, you still want to keep your special friend under the illusion that you’re hip and urbane. Even if we think we’re Carrie, we all want to be Mr. Big. In today’s instant-gratification, quick-hook up, morally devoid culture, it seems that dating has gone out the window altogether. But it’s important nonetheless to charm and be charmed in the great game of lies and deceit called romance. It’s also important to note that as broke-but-not-broke college students, and to woo in extravagance might be out of the budgetary picture. Here are some snazzy date night ideas that’ll guarantee your lady in the street will promptly turn to freak in the bed (but not in your wallet!).  

Walk The Brooklyn Bridge

One of the city’s best cliches, a walk from the cold, empty financial district, to the beautiful, snooty, you-don’t-belong here Brooklyn Heights is a great way to feel like you’re spending money that you don’t have. And you only have to do about five minutes of research before heading out to make it look like you know stuff about the city and it’s landmarks (architecture is totally hot right now.) Also, after such an intense cardiovascular feat your bodies will be primed and ready for some athletic screwin’.

Estimated Price: $4.50, assuming you have to take the subway to lower Manhattan (Brooklyn Bridge – City Hall on the 6) or Brooklyn Heights (High Street on the A/C, Clark Street on the 2/3)

Make a Lame Movie Seem Fancier at BAM 

Yeah, a movie might be a bit contrived date-wise, but if you head down to BAM Rose Cinemas at the Brooklyn Academy of Music, you and your hubby can watch Contagion Ball or whatever the hell you kids are watching these days in a beautifully furbished theatre, slowly being tarnished by an increasingly vapid American cinema culture. And stuff. Be warned that the theatre (the main theatre, at least) is traditional stadium seating, so definitely not your best bet for one of those handjob-in-the-popcorn deals.

Estimated Price: Only $9 a pop if you go between Monday and Thursday, when BAM offers student prices (like, you know, the way sane movie theatres outside of New York City sometimes do)

Bring a Picnic to Prospect Park

Sure, sure, Central Park is beautiful, but Prospect Park is a land of mystery and wonder which as you learn better becomes that much more bewildering to navigate, much like a new lover’s body. Here you might actually find a quiet spot to sip wine out of a Deer Park bottle, if AND the date’s going poorly, you can go “find a place to pee” and disappear with relative ease.

Estimated Price: I don’t know, how much is bologna these days?

“Go To Times Square”

Hahaha this is silly why are we drinking Jamba Juice right!?

Estimated Price: “Priceless” AM I RIGHT!?

Go to an Animal Shelter

To prove your deep compassion (chicks and some gay dudes dig that, they tell me) head to some kind of cat rescue racket and pretend that you want to bring a fury little fucker into your life. Pick a sad one — the more they look like they’re from those Sarah McLachlin commercials the better — hold it, come up with a name for it (might I recommend “Butter”) and give off the false impression that you have the follow-through to care for another life. It will also demonstrate your ability to fix that which is broken, like the wound-ridden void of a relationship that is festering between you and Mr. Right Now. ALSO, you’re probably going to have to go pretty far out for this one (Queens!?) which means you’ll have plenty of train time to talk. Let all the crazy out. You’ve worked hard, and if you deserve one thing it’s an emotional punching bag.

Estimated Price: $100 seems to be the going rate for a sad little critter, but don’t worry you’re not going through with that shit.

If it’s going well: Tarzian West

The best way to combat the commitment-phobia which runs rampant in our generation is to remind yourself that it’s never too early to take the F train to 7th Avenue, ogle the babies, and have a serious conversation about housewares.

Estimated Price: A totally market-fair $22 for an artisanal apron with abstract drawings of local pickles on it.

If you’re not sure how well it’s going: McNally Jackson’s

It’s sad but true, the pretty ones are all stupid. If you’re like me you probably tell yourself I’m smart enough on my own! I don’t need to be defined by another smart person! I deserve some eye candy in this life gahdammit! But let’s be honest, there’s a point where stupid just goes to far. If you’re worried that you might have landed a dumb-beyond-repair one, try taking them to a snooty bookstore and watch what happens. If they also pretend that they read that book with the circles on the cover then you’re probably in the clear. If they pick up The Help and remark that they didn’t know Viola Davis was also a novelist, it might be time to hit on the cute barista.

Estimated Price: Your dignity.

Once you get home: Home-Made Sangria

Let’s just say — and I know, I know, it’s a rare and mysterious thing but LET’S JUST SAY — that it all goes according to plan. Let’s say that this whole crazy game might work out for the better. Let’s just say it might work out for a long time. Then, my friend, it is time to move in for the kill. It is time to get that beautiful creature with whom you have just bonded with as few other humans can bond so. fucking. drunk.

Since ancient times, Sangria has been used as “the everyman’s” aphrodisiac. Just complicated enough to be impressive, but easy enough to make, nothing says “I really think we’ve got something going here” like wine mixed with a little bit of rum mixed with fruit that has soaked up said alcohol and, by dint of sugar (or, you know, however science works) gets you fucking wasted.

Estimated Price: Cheaper than “conversation,” that’s for goddamn sure.