August 13, 2007

It's not about the man, it's about the meat

The New York Times recently ran an article about an increasing number of women ordering steak on the first date in order to impress men.

Apparently, instead of ordering what they want to eat because they are comfortable with who they are, women are ordering what they think MEN want them to eat to PROVE that they’re comfortable with who they are.

Besides, what could men possibly find sexier than a beautiful woman devouring a hunk of meat? Just look at Paris’s infamous commercial for Karl’s Jr.

The article goes on to interview women who feel jipped because of their vegetarian status, which forces them to settle on wimpy greens and noodles.

The best part, of course, is that it doesn’t seem to work both ways.

My favorite quote: “When a guy sits down and eats something fatty and big, you wonder if they eat like that all the time. It crosses my mind they’ll probably die early.”

I couldn’t have said it better, but I find it equally disconcerting if my date orders a salad. How can I dig into a New York strip while he’s picking at his rabbit food?

So maybe no date of mine can ever win.

I’m only interested in guys who take care of their bodies, but I don’t want to know they do it. I don’t like knowing they care what they eat or how often they work out -- I’d rather it just magically happen.

So in my case, if he orders a steak, he’s on the verge of heart failure, and if he orders a salad, his masculinity’s at stake (no pun intended).

But I think there’s another side to this steak story.

Maybe some women think they’re impressing the world with their fat-filled meals, but I bet the rest of ‘em order the steak because they can.

It’s generally the most expensive thing on the menu, short of lobster, and if a date’s paying, why not?

This is especially true if it’s a first date and you’ve already decided you don’t like the guy. Might as well cut your losses and enjoy a nice dinner.

Another thing to consider is this: ordering an expensive meal on the first date tells the guy you aren’t a cheap date -- he’ll have to keep those steak dinners coming if he wants to keep you around.

This isn’t a bad standard to establish, although concessions must be made if he’s a student or a bum still living in his parents’ basement.

But then again, your steak-loving self knows better than to go out with THAT guy in the first place. He’d probably order a salad (the cheapest thing on the menu) and talk about how many push-ups he did that afternoon.

Which brings us to another of my theories on this steak-eating craze.

Maybe the guys taking these women out are such terrible, mind-numbing dates that gals have the urge to kill themselves before the meal even starts, and they order the meat in hopes that they’ll have a heart attack right then and there.

However, I recommend excusing yourself for the restroom and never returning. It’s less messy, and has an equally high success rate.

1 comment:

Amanda said...

um, what? there is way too much thought put into this whole eating on dates thing in general. (not a criticism against you, caroline- against society!) and...
"The article goes on to interview women who feel jipped because of their vegetarian status, which forces them to settle on wimpy greens and noodles."
The only time I might feel jipped about my veggie food is if I go to a restaurant that only has one or two vegetarian options. However, any guy worth a second date, in my experience, has been more than willing to go to a place with more options for me, and the best one was even veg himself. (And might I add that "wimpy" is a cultural construct related to meat's culturally constructed masculine status? There was nothing wimpy about the super-buff, tattooed vegan in my old apartment complex.)