Love, Part 1 of 5: Dating Dunzo: “The Shimmy Out”

7 Feb

I’m going to come right out and say it: Dating blows. If you’re my friend on Facebook or follow me on Twitter, my feelings on the subject aren’t news to you. Instead, finally dedicating an entire blog series to the subject seems way overdue.

Before I begin, let me be clear: I am NOT one of those man-hating women complaining about the opposite sex all the time, nor will “man-hating” ever be a topic of discussion. Further, I am not one of those women who thinks a bad dating experience is all a man’s fault. In fact, I think the bad experience is the woman’s fault much of the time. Wait one second though – before all my female readers start sending me hate mail – I have a good reason:

Women are fantastic at knowing if something is going SOMEWHERE very quickly. If she’s wavering and thinks dating this guy is going nowhere, she develops tactics to “shimmy” her way out. Hence, ending the experience becomes this long, arduous, stressed-filled process for absolutely no good reason (You could – *gasp* – just tell him you’d be better off as friends. Not a fun conversation, but at least honest).

Is this “shimmy out” fact about women enlightening? Before I take a deep dive into the topic, I want to provide some context on two things: What goes through a woman’s mind on a date and close-to-perfect dates that happen now and again. Both will help set up the stories of the lame-o “shimmy out.”

Men: Do you know how many times women hear “just be yourself,” “relax,” or “you’ll be fine” before a date with you? Our moms say it. Our friends say it. Hell, when we’re really nervous, we think our stuffed animals are saying it. However, while we are on the date, all of this good advice goes out the window. Instead we spend the time wondering if our hair is OK, if we’re pretty enough, or does our breath smell like the chili margarita we had two hours ago. P.S. – While we are obsessing over our physical appearance and a dude’s body language, we are also freaking out about our behavior. Are we talking/laughing too loud? Not looking at him enough? Looking at him too long? Asking too many questions? Not making him laugh enough? I’m exhausted just talking about it.

Of course, there is an exception to the above stress: A concept called “love at first date.” This concept may sound silly, but I really believe it can happen. These are the dates where everything is perfect. He magically makes us feel comfortable and confident. He looks adorable. We spend three hours discussing favorite Johnny Depp movies and rolling meatballs to each other with our noses (hey, Lady and the Tramp did it). Whatever your idea of “perfect,” you get the point: The date was awesome and subsequent dates are seamless and enjoyable. Before we know it, the girlfriend/boyfriend label magically appears. Sounds nice, doesn’t it? Sigh. If only it happened to all of us.

For the rest of us, dates are usually “fine,” “good,” or “promising.” Subsequent dates are then “better” “something to do,” or “omg I need to call ___ as soon as I get home.” What’s interesting about the latter two buckets is we know dating this person is probably going nowhere, yet we don’t necessarily want to stop seeing the guy. Dating him is “good enough,” but doesn’t make us “happy” or “fulfilled” (two things we consider highly between dates 5-10). So, instead of breaking it off, (like we should) women do one of three things:

1. Drag it out as long as we can (because it’s better than being alone)
2. Slowly phase him out
3. Conduct the lame-o “shimmy out”

I’ll get into #’s 1 and 2 in different blog posts, but today I want to focus on the “shimmy out.” It’s the one no one talks about.

Disclaimer: I’m calling myself out here, as I’m more than guilty of using the “shimmy out” on multiple occasions.

First, let’s do a little defining…

“Shimmy Out” (n) = a concept, post-subsequent romantic “dates” or encounters, when a person knows the person they are seeing will not end up a significant other. Even though this is known, the person feeling this way does not necessarily want to end the dating experience because they are A. Chicken. B. Bored. C. In denial. Thus, the person conjures up excuses to avoid seeing the person and hopes with enough avoidance, the other person will stop trying (I totally made this up, but it sounds intelligent, right?)

When This Strategy is a Woman’s Best Friend: When we know the guy likes us more than we like him.

Some Common “Shimmy Out” Examples:

“I’m So Busy”: This one is classic. We tell the guy we’re dating we are crazy busy and can’t see him for weeks at a time. I’m not saying this never happens (not seeing him for a few weeks at a time – every once in awhile – is completely possible. Hey, we have many plans that don’t revolve around him). I’m talking about purposely not finding an hour for brunch or dinner or MAKING UP PLANS ENTIRELY (imaginary family in town, non-existent homework, a 10-year dead dog suddenly needs to go to the vet…) Here’s the deal: Yes, we are busy people BUT, if we see super potential in a man, and truly enjoy his company, we WILL always find time to see him. I don’t care how busy we are or seem to be. Trust me, we’ll make the time.

“This is Moving Too Fast:” In my opinion, women overuse this one on the regular. First of all, has anyone noticed we drop this line often, yet never explain the rationale behind it? Do you know why we don’t explain it? It’s because most of the time, we are full of crap. If we really like a guy and we are dating him in hopes of something more, then going at whatever pace it naturally moves – most of the time fast – is a non-issue. However, if we say this and we do have an immediate answer (we just got out of a relationship or some sort of other emotional issue) then guess what? We probably aren’t ready to be dating someone seriously, anyway. Also, (fun fact) guys can see through this line if you give it without a reason. Don’t expect him to stick around.

“I Never Check My Phone”: Lies, lies, and more lies. Women are forever checking their phones. Any guy who believes you don’t is pretty oblivious. Let’s break it down: If a guy is texting or calling, that means he’s interested. If we don’t respond, it doesn’t mean we didn’t see his text message or listen to his voicemail. We did (and to be quite honest, we probably did within the first half hour of hearing the “ding”). If we don’t respond to the text or call him back until 12-24 hours later (or at all), we really aren’t all that interested in the guy. Instead, we just want to keep him around until something better comes along (ouch).

“OMG I TOTES Didn’t Realize I Had XYZ Tonight! Can We Reschedule?”/”OMG I Suddenly Came Down With the Ebola Virus/Horse Clamp (HORSE CLAMP??). I’m Too Sick To Go Out”: Womp. Womp. Busted. The truth is we just spent the better part of an hour deciding which of these elaborate excuses we’ll use to cancel. Taking this one step further, we’ll say we’ll reschedule, but we won’t. If we do, we don’t mean it and will probably cancel the next time too. The worst part is the poor guy usually gives us the benefit of the doubt in either case, which makes this tactic plain mean. Unfortunately, this is the one we use the most because we think we’ll never get caught. News flash: We always do.

These are just a few of the many excuses women use to “shimmy out.” What’s your favorite?

Stay tuned for more on this topic in the coming weeks. Don’t worry, I’m going to be writing about how guys get out of dates, too…

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One Response to “Love, Part 1 of 5: Dating Dunzo: “The Shimmy Out””

  1. Ray Anemaet February 18, 2013 at 8:44 am #

    Hey I’ve heard all those and used others as well,think its all bout chemistry at first and you find yourself in a naked wrestling match for how ever long it takes,then if it turns into a relationship who knows they say we are genetically programed to pick certain traits subconsciously and when you both match bingo to be more successful maybe we should unlock this in our own minds first,once you know it can be used to your advantage,but everyone has a tell learn to read these and become a master of the game but that doesn’t mean you can’t fall in love and get played what comes around goes around but at least you recognize it.If you want to know more the truth is out there,think he plays for the Celtics thats what I heard.

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