Dating expert visits Dartmouth

by Deborah Bernstein | 5/1/98 5:00am

"Dating Doctor" David Coleman told a boisterous standing-room-only crowd in 105 Dartmouth Hall last night that "it's not how many dates you go on that's important, but how well they go, and if they lead to a second date."

Coleman's speech and workshop, "Creative Dating: Building Better Relationships," part of Greek Week, included self-analysis tests for the audience, descriptions of fantasy dates, repetition of bad pick-up lines and advice for the opposite sex.

Coleman defined a date as "any event which allows you to spend meaningful time with a significant other in hope that you'll spend increasingly more time with them in the future or just have an enjoyable experience."

He said dates do not need to include sex, talk of money or alcohol. He also stressed the importance of understanding the dangers alcohol and Rophynol -- the "date rape drug" -- could potentially play for both men and women in social settings.

He shared dating tips for college students, saying the only pickup line women need to learn is "eye contact, half a smile and the word 'hello.'"

The simple act of asking someone on a date has to be approached more optimistically by both men and women, since "if you don't ask, they'll never go out with you," Coleman said.

Coleman said college campuses allow plenty of opportunities for students to meet people with interests similar to theirs. In addition, small campuses allow them to "force serendipity to occur."

However, Coleman stressed that "accidental" meetings should not happen everyday since "there's a fine line between serendipity and stalking."

Coleman also answered the number one question females ask about males: why they do not call after they say they will.

Coleman's survey of college students found that men could not call because they lost the girl's number, were not looking for anything other than a one-night stand or didn't want to risk rejection by calling.

Why women go to the bathroom in groups is the number one question males have about females.

Coleman said his survey found women go to the bathroom in groups to analyze how dates are going so far, to avoid being the brunt of gossip or to form a plan of action for later in the evening.

Coleman left time for the audience to address each other and offer suggestions for behavior improvement.

Females in the audience told the males they needed to "figure out how to return a blitz," "stop drinking so much," "spend as much time analyzing conversations as girls" and "open the freakin' door."

Males told females they needed to "stop analyzing everything," "ask us out," "give men clearer signals," and "forget BlitzMail and pick up the phone."

Dating fantasies shared anonymously by the audience included "me and Winnie Cooper from 'The Wonder Years,'" "me with someone who doesn't annoy me, great conversation and a feminist so she picks up the check," "me front-row in the Oscars in between my dates, Brad Pitt and Johnny Depp."

Coleman called the College audience "the sickest audience of spring semester," but one of the most fun.