How Many Dates Before a Drunken Make-Out Session on the Porch is a Reasonable Expectation?

How Many Dates Before a Drunken Make-Out Session on the Porch is a Reasonable Expectation?

I don’t really have a move. Once in high school, in the back of a car, I turned to my friend and point-blank asked her, “Well…so should we do this or what?” We proceeded to awkwardly kiss/grope/stop hanging out in her parents’ basement. Since then, it’s been about a decade worth of intense bureaucratic foreplay and awkwardly inching closer on the couch.

It’s not that I lack romantic notions. But gangly guys like me are never convinced beautiful women actually have a use for us after the conversation about Ethan Hawke or whatever. Like, I know we’re having “fun.” And I know what I want. But, really? With me? Why not with your Paul Bunyan-ish ex-boyfriend? Ok, well, why don’t we get this in writing before we proceed, so we’re on the same page when I start biting your ears.

That kind of thing.

Anyway, hence why I love post-college. Because if you’re dating in the post-college world, you’ve likely thrown away matters of decorum. The general vibe of dating after college, what you’re laying on the table is, ok, you’re not going to be putting your hands where someone hasn’t put them before, so let’s just get on with it.

And I’m fine with this efficiency. It’s not un-sexy. It’s just like skipping vegetables and getting straight to the pudding cups. Dates end with kisses. Even blind dates! And if you pay for pizza, she’ll reward you with at least an obligatory frisk session in the cab. Life isn’t like a Beyonce song. The only hard-to-get is waiting for the Wells Fargo ATM to spit out cash or an insufficient-funds transaction at the gas station.

Which brings me to the drunken porch makeout session. In high school and even for a while in college, making out on the porch usually took a three- or four-DVD commitment, meeting at least two to three friends, and possibly jungle juice. But since college, the not-really-romantic-but-cute-we’re-stumbling-into-each-other-as-we-awkwardly-say-goodbye-and-oh-shit-that’s-your-tongue has been the reliable go-to. If you haven’t Don Juaned her by the second dive bar, you can rest assured she’s also placed her bet on the moment later on the front porch while you search for her bra snaps and whisper you had a good time.

And this makes sense! The three important parts of dating should be talking, discovering veto-able offenses (like she thinks that Santorum got a bad rap), and bedroom gymnastics. Because I think this is basically the life of a couple: coming home from work and debating what pisses you off over supper before you go sleep together.

So to return to the original question of this post: how many dates before a drunken makeout session on the porch is warranted?

Well, and this is conservative, but I’d say two solo dates. Or like two light luncheons + one craft cocktail night. Or four to five random (but not so random, because you’re using Foursquare) unexpected meet-ups at her favorite bar. I mean really, if you haven’t found out what kind of toothpaste she uses by the third date, you are barking up the wrong tree. I mean, some may argue she’s being old-fashioned. Or that “sex drive” isn’t all that matters. But a night out at funky Old Joe’s Dead-Animals-on-the-Wall bar, two domestic tallboys, and a lemondrop isn’t the pages of a Victorian novel.

And if you’re still calling her after the fourth date and you still haven’t had that perfectly chaotic moment of stepping over her roommates’ shoes while you find a good stance for doing the midnight front porch tango, she’s likely getting back together with that ex-boyfriend. Or she’s a virgin. In which case, dismiss the last 600 words and set up your embargo.

Dunstan McGill