“You Got Fine Written All Over You!” Pt IV

Date Night Advice (DNA) series: TOP 10 Signs You’re on a Bad First Date
Sign #10

This is our Last week to address this whopper of a one-liner: “Are you a parking ticket cuz you got fine written all over you!” (Check out the inspiration behind this discussion here.) Depending on how much you enjoy the movie Dumb and Dumber, you could even be flattered by such a silly compliment. But that’s just it. This kind of come-on is flattery and flattery by its very nature is disingenuous.DNA-MC Hammer

Now as I prepare to find fault with flirting, I must confess that one of my nicknames back in college was MC Scammer, because I liked to flirt quite a bit with the ladies. (True story.) I never used this pick-up line in particular, but only because I never heard of it. So know I’m admonishing you as one who’s already been there, done that. And wishes he hadn’t.

The beauty of flirting is that it enables you to test the waters with someone you find attractive (or fine as a parking ticket) to see if they might feel similarly about you. You say, “Is it hot in here or is it just you,” and then gauge their reaction. If they laugh awkwardly and then suggest you might be coming down with a fever, you can laugh too and know you just had your thermostat set to “Cool It.” You were able to find out someone didn’t think of you “in that way” and you did so without risking anything. You were just having fun. Congratulations.

Consider the straight forward alternative:
You: I find you very attractive and am wondering if you feel the same about me.
The other person: No I do not.

OUCH! No wonder I preferred flirting to straight forward inquiry.

However, what if you say something like: It’s really nice to meet you, but I think I should call heaven right away and let them know I found their missing angel.

And they reply: Oh I’m not missing. I asked to be assigned to you.

Well then now you’ve a match made in heaven. Or do you? Actually, since neither of you have engaged in a straight forward conversation you don’t really know if the person responded sincerely. But with as lighthearted as their flirtatious response made you feel who cares. (You might have even experienced a shot of endorphins just reading that little exchange. This is why we flirt and read romance novels.)

The reality is that any of the following could be true of a positive response to your own flirtatious remark:
A. They’ve been dreaming of this moment their whole lives.
B. They’re actually more interested in your friend, but you’ll do.
C. They appreciate your wit and wanted to showcase their own.
D. They just like to flirt and would be just as happy to do so with a hamster.

Here’s the deal, wise individual, sure it’s fun to flirt, but what are you playing around with here? YOUR HEART (and theirs). Momma said, “It’s all fun and games until someone loses an eye!” And in flirting, it’s all fun and games until someone loses their confidence or sense of self-worth. (And remember, our worth shouldn’t be found in how attractive others find us physically.)

If you spend a first date exchanging empty flirtatious banter designed to tease each other while entertaining yourselves, you establish no relationship by night’s end. Neither party reveals anything nor learns anything significant about the other. What a waste.

Is that what you want from your dating life – a series of scripted soap opera or sitcom episodes that you can tell your friends about? (“I can’t believe they said that! Are you serious?!? What did you say?!”) Or do you want to grow in healthy life-giving relationships?

Life is short and relationships are precious. First, seek to truly get to know people in authentic community. Then prayerfully consider taking a specific relationship to the next level. You should already be past shallow pick-up lines before you’re ever on your first official date.

Am I making sense here? Am I taking this too seriously? If you disagree, share how flirting helped you start a great relationship.

And head on over to our FMU YouTube channel to check out the series, How to Flirt like a Christian, on LoveEd with Julie & MJ. Here’s the first episode in that playlist:

Next week we address #9 of the TOP10 Signs You’re on a Bad First Date: After picking you up, your date stops by their mom’s place for cash to pay for dinner. (Oh baby, this is going to be fun!)

DNA: It’s What’s For Dating

Dug this weekend’s DNA? Be a good friend and share with your friends on the social media platform of choice: Instagram, Youtube, Facebook, or Twitter.

The LoveEd discipleship series, Beyond Sex & Salvation, will empower you to prepare for relational success when it counts: BEFORE you fall in love!

It’s NOT for couples, but for any wise individual who thinks they might want to get married sometime before they die. And would like to learn how to better build healthy relationships in the meantime.

Check out all three study guides in our store. You can walk through them on your own, but it’s more fun with friends (that and it kinda makes sense to grow in relational success in actual relationships with others), so consider putting together an FMU LoveEd small group study.

Even better?  And ask a rock star married couple you respect to lead it!

Categories: DATING, First Date Horror Stories, First Date: FAIL, TOP10 Signs You're on a Bad First Date, You've Got Fine Written All Over You
  • Founding relationships on flirtation only ended with awkward relationships for me. Neither party knew where each other really was, and I had far too many define the relationship talks with girls I never ended up taking on a date. I hurt many girls, I’m sure. I’m not sure how many. You may seem too serious to the casual reader, but as one who is now married and out of college I completely agree with this less exciting approach to dating.

  • Thanks for backing me up. And good to hear from the other side. You feel like you lead many a lady on. I could have only dreamed of doing that (and did). Instead, I was the one who always seemed to get hurt. I probably hurt some girl somewhere, but none that forced the old DTR talk. I was always the DTR talk initiator. Again, thanks for your thoughts.

  • Anonymous

    I wonder if there is no lighthearted banter at all… will the romantic bond begin?

    I can have great conversations with a lot of people (I often do), but until the guy begins to reveal that he’s “into” me in that way (usually through flirting/banter), I have no reason to believe that anyone who speaks with me is interested in me for dating.

    I think there has to be some balance. I mean, leading off with flirting isn’t a good way to start a solid relationship. But if you never move the we’re-just-talking-as-two-humans to the next level, then all you’re going to have is a “we’re just friends” acquaintanceship. And if that’s all that you want with that person, okay. But… if you want to date each other, there might need to be some lead-up signals before the guy asks the gal out? I dunno. Maybe it depends on the personalities, how the two people are wired.

    I’m just not convinced that all flirting is about using people.

    • GREAT POINTS! And I might even agree! Remember, in this whole series we’re talking about FIRST dates. I guess in my “perfect” little world if a guy got to know you as a friend (and got to know your friends too) in group settings and found he was interested in seeing if there might be “more” he would simply ask you out. And you, being asked out on a date, would already know there was clearly some interest in you on his part (otherwise he wouldn’t have asked you out) and he would have some indication from you that you had interest as well (otherwise you wouldn’t have accepted the invitation). No silly flirting necessary. Just a lot of guts on his part to say something like this, “I’ve really enjoyed getting to know you and your friends over the last year and was hoping you might allow me the priviledge to get to know you more over dinner and a couple rounds of put-put golf next Friday, just the two of us.” But what do I know? I haven’t asked someone out on a first date since the 1900s. (smile) Seriously, I’d love your reaction to that. Again, I’m not trying to be legalistic (I don’t have to try, it’s in my blood). It’s not that I think flirting is as much “bad” as I feel it is “dangerous.” It’s “flirting” with insincerity disguised as intimacy. Feel free to tell me I’m crazy. And thanks for joining the discussion at all! You’ve made me think more. (not a bad thing.)