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6 creative ways to get out of a bad date

The best exit strategies for ending a horrible date fast.
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Jillian Wood, April 29, 2013 12:21:55 PM

1. The Menu Fort

Forget having a friend call your cell phone with a fake emergency (“What? Again?! Oh no! I’ll grab my holy water and crucifix, and be over in a few!”). There are better ways to let the person you’re stuck on date with know that you’re just not interested. Take it from this guy at an Olive Garden in North Carolina who had a loud disagreement with his date and proceeded to construct a fort out several menus to create a barrier between the two. Nothing says “I despise looking at you right now” than a shield of laminated paper.

2. The My Strange Obsession

If you can’t muster up enough nerve to create a physical blockade between you and your date, your best option is just to scare them into ending it quickly by dropping something bizarre and/or scary into the conversation. Keep about 20 to 30 or so pictures of animals dressed up in period costumes on your phone (the more undomesticated, the better – we’re talking squirrels, rare lizards, etc.). Show all of them to your date, while gushing about how much you and your little friend love role-playing scenes from Gone With The Wind on the weekends. If he or she doesn’t end it after the first cocktail, well, you may have just met your match. Maybe your critter can be the ring bearer at the ceremony?

3. The over-share

If you’re a terrible liar, method two or three may not work for you. Instead, try being yourself. Your true self, not the better version you put forward when you first meet someone. You know all of those things you’re not supposed to talk about on a date? Just go there. Exes? Tell them all about it! Politics? Debate to your heart’s content even if you haven’t picked up a newspaper in months. Religion? Issues with your family? A weird growth you need to get checked out? Scare them by just being honest and you’re bound to disagree over some kind of major deal breaker.

4. The cryptic movie/song quote exit

If you can’t bring yourself to utter the old clichéd lines about just wanting to be friends or being really busy, start randomly quoting your favourite movie or song to end things (no conversational segue necessary). A few recommendations include quoting anything from The Godfather (shown masterfully executed in the movie Lola Versus), any part of ‘Imagine’ by John Lennon, the chorus of ‘The Call’ by the Backstreet Boys, or a few lines of ‘Love Stinks’ by the J. Geils Band. Get creative! The more obscure the better. Then finish your drink in one gulp and walk out of there with your coat over your shoulder. They’ll be left them scratching their heads and wondering if they’ve just been dumped or a part of some kind of experimental theatre. (Bonus points if you just managed to dodge paying the bill!)

5. The binge

If you can just tell there’s no way you’re ever going to date or hook-up with the person sitting across from you – but don’t have the courage to try methods one through four – order a ton of drinks and food to make sure the night isn’t a total bust. (Make sure you suggest splitting the bill at the end of the night if you’re a guy – the ladies just love it and you won’t get stuck with the whole tab). Order some shots and enjoy yourself as much as possible. If your pig-out doesn’t turn off your date, the fact that you’ll barely be able to stand by the end of the night should bring the classiness quotient of the evening down so low there’s no way they’ll be calling you for a second date. Warning: Make sure the person does not think you are going home with them. Have a cab number programmed into your phone and get out of there!

6. The Lemon Law

The Lemon Law is the rule, created by the character Barney Stinson (played by Neil Patrick Harris) from How I Met Your Mother, whereby if within the first five minutes of a first date you “deem the union hopeless” you can “abort said date in the interest of time and/or self-respect” without any “hard feelings” or “questions” being asked. Just tell the person they’re being Lemon Law-ed, and peace out. No awkward explanations or made-up excuses necessary. If they don’t know what the Lemon Law is because they don’t watch HIMYM, it probably wasn’t meant to be.


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