"Paging Sadie Hawkins"... a conversation

Sadie Hawkins.
Read for continuity, then continue.

Disclosure:
On Saturday night after Katie got off of work, she asked me if I wanted to go out and get something to eat (more on the details on this during my answer at the end) and the encounter found us in IHOP...
While there, we witnessed a dude and a chick, obviously on a date -- which appeared to be their first -- who had been seated and had drinks and menus in hand when we even arrived. We get our drinks and order our food, they're still mumbling over the menu.
Then it happened...
The server came to refill our drinks and see about taking their order, and the dude asks, pointing at the menu on each item "well, how big is that? you think it's about big enough for 2 people?" quite obviously negotiating with his "date" over the split of a meal to save dough. They wound up getting their food to go (presumably to avoid leaving a tip) and leaving. On the way out, he asked for SOMETHING that the server informed him would be a $0.99 additional charge, and he balked harder than ANYONE should over a dollar when dining in public.
Those of you connected to me on Facebook saw the discussion over it, quite hilariously if you ask me. But that is not the point here. The point is today's Question of the Day...

"What decides when WHO pays for a date? As in when does the man pay and when/if the woman does?"

I figured this'd be an interesting topic of conversation and before I was back inside from sending the text off to the Book of Face, I had a response or two.

First former coworker, Chanetta (no relation, lol), with...
"I say it depends on who ask who outn or suggest to go out!! If the guy ask, then he should be prepared to pay 4 the date, if the chick ask, then she should be prepared, however... In either instance, both should be willing ant anytime.. "

Next respondent was former coworker Lovetta, with...
"I agree with Chanetta...You asked, You pay. Now if they are in a relationship, then I think the girl should pay every other date. "

Up next was the homie Galen, with...
" If it's a blind/first date, you pay for you, she pays for her. And if she's annoying as all hell, do the move where... oh yeah, can't post that around here. Women-folks would get pissed off. I'll inform the SMPF of that one later.

In a relationship, alternate who pays. One night he pays, another night she pays. That way it keeps it fair."

After that was my Mexican cousin friend, Steve, with...
"i grew up with certain rules that were told by my old man...guy pays...dont matter who asks...its the gentlemen thing to do for a lady...but if she decides argue about it and take my sincerity out of the situation like all im tryin to do is get ass...then fuck it...she can go ahead and pay w/e"

Then back came Galen, with...
"@Steve don't get me wrong, I was taught that too. HOWEVER!! I have seen cases where when the man makes an attempt to pay, the woman gets upset and calls him a chauvinistic pig! I'm like WTF! So I take it on a case-by-case scenario"

Lovetta returned...
"@Galen Lol, yeah I've heard that as well. However, the reason I choose to pay every other date is because I want to lighten the load for my man. He has bills, just like I have bills, and eating out can be expensive. I think it's just common courtesy. "

Steve came back with...
"yeah ive ran into that...its a retarded response...and some just say shit just to say it too...and when u call there bluff...u get the old "ohh no...u got this...ill get us next time"...right..."
and followed up with
"i should clarify that...in my last post...i was talking about a scenario in which i buy steak and lobster...she buys...mcdee's dollar menu?...wtf..."

[Phlip note - see, the back and forth without arguing? THAT is what these conversations are about!]

Next respondent would be Roger, with...
"Ok phil, in that case, i say in general, a man should ALWAYS be "able" and "prepared" to pay. I dont believe in the "he/she who asks pays" rule b/c i consider it bullskittles. Why?b/c the vast majority of females want to be chased and/or will never ask for whatever reason. That said, i think in initial dating stages, guys pay, do the old fashioned thing. Anything more serious, and its case by case. There is no right or wrong, but if a woman can cop mountains of clothes/shoes, spend hundreds on hair/nails, but cant spring for a 14 dollar entree' just b/c she appreciates u, might wanna evaluate the young ladies long term value"

Then was the return of Galen (I think responding to Steve still), with...
"Oh I feel you on that. Which is why the ideal scenario would be this: If out on a first/blind date, she starts tripping, you slip & tell your server that it's gonna be on two separate tickets. You let her order whatever the hell she wants. You get the lowest cost item & a drink and call it a day"

Steve came back with his response...
"ive done that...she asks what she could order after...i told her w/e...checks came, i payed mine...she didnt even bring her wallet, just her ID...i left...lol "

[Phlip note - Steve, this conversation started at 6am your time, what in the blue hell are you even doing up?!!?]

Then came Joe, with...
"I go old school, I figure its just chivalry for the guy to pay, and thusly I do as such."

To which Steve retorted...
"@ joe-same here brodah...some times though...females dont get that and call me sexes...right...ahah!"

After some cooldown in a conversation that had burned hard and fast to begin with, Rashida chimed in with...
"I agree with James, context matters, and in the initial stages of a dating, I'm a big fan of chivalry- which amounts to paying for the date. And I'm as modern/feminist you get. I don't know who these women who are crying sexist, when a brother is trying to be nice, but yeah that is a problem. Now after a couple of dates, and it is clear that you may be doing it often, then it needs to alternate--Like Lovetta said- lighten up the load.
And realize the expectation that a man pays is not about funds necessarily, it's me trying to get a sense of what he's about. And even tho I have the expectation, I'll offer to pay for the tip, or if we go somewhere else and just have a drink, I may offer to buy the drink. There needs to be a give and take-- yes, but in the early stages a woman (like me I guess) wants to know that I am with someone whose "got me"- (in all it's forms)."

Next came former coworker April, with...
"How about instead of "u get what u pay for" we say "u pay for what u get"! Errybody pay for "they" own food/drinks! That will solve the Red Lobster/McD issue, alternating to lighten up each others' load issue, no one feelin like they "owe" the other person a meal (especially if the first date was a hott mess), etc. I'm just sayin..."

Friend since middle school, Enjoli dropped by with...
"This post is funny to me and all of yall are funny. Seriously though, I feel like no woman ever wants to pay at least I know i don't. I have five brothers and between them and my dad I just expect to be treated a certain way. So I would prefer that he pays as often as possible. Now the reality check in me realizes that we are in living in a completely different time period and with jobs like they are these days you just never know. So it usually ends up being if we are dating and you are asking me out I honestly expect you to pay. If we are in a serious relationship I would still prefer that you pay but in the end whoever has $ at the time of the outing should pay. Hell, I work hard for my money and if I want Red Lobster and you don't have enough to pay then lets go anyway and got it. I wouldn't be so rude as to go there alone and leave you to eat Ramen noodles at the crib. LOL!"

Steve responded...
"an honest female...its like finding a do-do birds...youve heard of em...but never seen or heard one...lol..."

Enjoli's retort was...
"Ha ha ha @ Steve- poor thing you don't know me Hun. Tell' em Phillip. LOL!"

For Steve to respond with...
"my point is...i rather have an honest,no game lady...than one that doesnt know wtf she wants...problem is...i live in SoCal...capitol of the superficial and ignorant..."

Rashida's response was...
"LOL @ STeve. Yes the land of the superficial and ignorant is probably a bit frustrating, but I promise there is another side to life. That being said, there is always a bit of ambiguity and feeling each other out in the dating (early) game. And our capitalist tendencies coupled with the funky economic state of things just heightens the angst. I'm not necessarily a fan of you pay for yours_ I pay for mine, because it sets a precedent of "you do you and I do me" in a relationship.
Also just because someone is monetarily paying for the date, doesn't mean they've contributed equally (that is prolly another question right PHil? Lol)... Did you hold your own in the convo? was I inspired by something you said? Was there chemistry (on a first or second date maybe).? I think these may also be considerations in the decision of what happens when the check comes."

Steve's response was a simple...
"im just gonna roll with the punches"

Next was former co-worker, Toi, with...
"I think chivalry is a great thing. But since I haven't really experienced it much it's not a major thing. But when it comes to paying I was taught to always have enough money on you to 1) buy yourself something to eat and 2) get a way home. So it doesn't matter who pays, I will always be able to pay for myself. (unlike Steve's horrible date) I also thinks it sexy when a woman can front the bill. I like being able to say I will pay this time. No just need to find someone worth taking out on a date."

Forum member Austin chimed in with...
"if i invite her, im comfortable paying.. ive had good dates pay sometimes.. the good ones are when she will pay for one part of the night *like the meal* and then ill get whatever *like the movie* etc.. If she orders the same food you ordere, she has low self esteem."

Next was Transformers/Zombie Fanatic Mel, with...
"If it's early dates, then the guy should pay. Chivalry isn't dead in my book and I don't think it should be. But if you get into a relationship then the women should pay when she can/wants to. "

Good friend/former Coworker April came with...
"If its the first date they guy should pay. However I never go anywhere w/o enough$ to cover the whole check and get home.....my dady taught me that...however I will pay as well. I feel like men have it hard w all these expectations sometimes...let me take you out and lighten your load sometimes...."

Another former coworker/comic fan chick (I don't forget ANYTHING) Kendra dropped off...
"I say who ever asks who out. If the girl asked the guy then she should be willing to pay and if he declines her offer during the dateshe should at least leave the tip."

Next after that was former coworker Adonya with...
"I agree w/ Kendra. If I ask I should pay & vice versa. If he asks & we do smthn I like tho (like a movie I want 2 see), I still feel I should pay. After all, it was my idea ;-)"
and then...
"And Austin just b/c a chick orders what u order doesn't mean she has low self esteem. Smtimes what u order sounds good!"

Last response was from La'Donnica (real name, no gimmicks, lol), with...
"True to character, I'm gonna say that with regard to general rules, there are none. I remember going on my first date in high school and not eating lunch for a week to save up to pay my way on our "date"; my mom picked at me all week for not eating lunch, but I didn't care. Of course, Friday we got to the movies and he also laughed at me for pulling out my lunch money. I don't think I've changed much in that regard; I don't mind paying for things but I think that in a relationship, there should be balance and compromise in some regard. I don't think anyone should have an expectation that someone should pay, but I certainly thing that there should be proper communication and understanding between the couple in every part of their relationship."


As for me? It goes a little something like this.
In general, the person who asks should be the one who expects to pay, simple as that. That has nothing to do with "first date" status or any other variables not discussed prior to actually agreeing to the date.
"Variables," you ask?
Sure, isht happens. Take The Katie and I for instance...
We get paid on opposite weeks, so it USUALLY happens that the person who has gotten paid on a given week will be the one who suggests what and where we go out to do, usually reflecting how much cash we have to spend. Then that person pays, even if it is a movie in the house and pizza and/or Chinese takeout.
Extenuating circumstances do come up though, which brings us back to Saturday. This last week was my pay week, but I am socking money away for a piece of jewelry, and still reeling from my birthday weekend just one week prior, so I was and am a little short on liquid cash to be spent on anything other than food to cook and gasoline. When she suggested we go out, I balked at it, knowing that the only money I had was...
  1. in a bank account for which I do not have any means of drawing out of except between 9-5 M-T, 9-6 F, and 9-12 Sat.
  2. am not allowing myself to spend of that money on myself yet, period.

She simply gave the "don't worry, I got this one," and we were on our way. There, though is a thing that we have In general, it is carried in the "whomever asks, pays" whenever she and I go out on a date. It was like that for our initial few dates, actually. They were all initiated/suggested by me, so I carried the cost of them. After two or three, she asked me if I wanted to go out, and while I made sure of my ability to carry the cost, she paid those times.

[Phlip note - and yes, we still call them "dates" even though we've been together for 22 months and are now engaged]

Communication -- HONEST communication -- is key to these situations. Otherwise, you find yourself caught the ufck out there on a date where you find you will have to have to split a meal, dine-n-ditch with a lame because they asked you out and you EXPECTED them to pay and left all your payment devices at home. At best -- and this still sucks as far as "dates" are concerned -- you go Dutch.

The issue, here, is not so much the money, or even being monetarily invested, so much as it is about simple fairness and common courtesy. Part of the expectation of being TREATED as independent is the onus of being EXPECTED to be independent. That knows no gender, it just is what it is.
If you ask someone out, you will come off as SUPER pretentious if you do so with the expectation that they pay for it. Unless, of course you are a person who Produces Income Managing Prostitutes or are dealing with a classic simp who will let you get away with such disrespectful acts.
Or you're a LeBron James-level douche master, and either way, you are worthy of being shamed.

I recall once, some (4ish?) years ago, taking a phonecall that began with "you know what? you should take me to PF Chang" and she was dead-ass serious. I was JUST as serious when I responded with "sheeit, you should take ME to PF Chang, 'ufck you talkin' bout?" and never entertained the advance with any suggestion that we would be eating there on that night. Needless to say, I have only eaten PF Chang once in my life and it was not with her.

If chivalry is dead, then it was murdered by women who say and believe isht like this.

Lucky for me and mine, chivalry lives on in my house. We handle these things the way responsible adults who can talk to one another handle things.
None of that "take it how you choose" chivalry shit either. I will be a gentleman, but expectations are all based in realism and respect, no bull isht accepted. That way I do not receive invites to let someone else spend my money and in return I don't have to split meals (unless of course I cooked them in which case there is plenty to go around AND leftovers) or leave anyone at the table with a separate check while I leave.

[Phlip note - not that I COULD do that, as we have not arrived in separate cars since the lunch where she met my mother]




And all this just because some dude with braids like O-Dog in Menace (see below) was trying to split a meal in IHOP with some chick with holes in her pants.

http://cm1.theinsider.com/thumbnail/640/480/cm1.theinsider.com/media/0/43/20/O-Dog.jpg
"ay, y'all wanna cheeseburger?!!?"
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