Dating 101: The difference between a journalist and a columnist

Christian Rose

Margaret Fuller was the first female war correspondent. Matthew Brady was a pioneering photographer.

Katherine Graham, Carl Bernstein, Ben Bradley and their modern day contemporaries from Peter Jennings, Anderson Cooper and Katie Couric are all great journalists.

I, however, do not necessarily consider myself a journalist.

True, I write a weekly column for a small newspaper, but instead of covering global wars, stock market ups and downs or even community obituaries, I write a weekly diatribe of my often times frequent, social shortcomings.

Occasionally, I am asked how in the hell did I land a paying gig reporting on the disasters that have turned out to be my dating life.

Believe it or not, there are a few requirements that someone must have besides a bottle of bourbon and a working laptop.

First:

You should probably at least like to date.

Susan Healy is quoted as saying that whenever she wants a really good meal, she starts dating again.

Hunger, however, is not the sole reason you should date.

You should enjoy the ritual itself.

Dating is an art, and if done well, it is a beautiful dance.

For me, I love first dates.

I actually relish those first few awkward seconds right before someone asks me out.

But mostly, I love the infinite possibilities that you get to have the moment right before someone shows up at my door when that little voice inside my head says, “This could be the one.”

I had my first date when I was 14; we went roller skating.

We shared a root beer, chili fries and a couples skate.

And by the end of the evening…that little tramp was skating with some other boy.

Which brings me to my second point…

For every bad date, there is usually a good lesson to be learned.

I learned at 14 never to eat chili fries and expect that someone would be overly eager to kiss you.

Many times, a lesson is going to be obvious. For example, it is never a good idea to accept a dinner invitation from someone you meet a gas station right after you notice he is filling up a hearse with a pentagram bumper sticker on the tailgate.

It seems an obvious conclusion that a devout Catholic should probably not date someone that may or may not worship the prince of darkness.

Yes, subtle nuances are sometimes harder to spot.

Eharmony.com states that one in five relationships now begin online. In my opinion however, you should never be quick to believe anything that boasts that they can take the guesswork out of dating.

That’s like believing a stripper still leaves something to the imagination.

The third and final tip is the most essential.

Simply keep your sense of humor.

Bill Kelley said after God created the world, he made man and woman. Then to keep the whole thing from collapsing, he invented humor.

Dating is fun and frivolous. When did it become a job interview for marriage?

Even a serial dater that puts their love life- or lack thereof- on display for the entertainment of others will never forget that…or that the ultimate happiness in life is the pursuit of love.

It is the journey itself.

Henry Luce said that he became a journalist to come as close as possible to the heart of the world.

Heart…hmm…well maybe this dating columnist is a journalist after all.

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