Hi friends.

Today, I’m going give you a basic tutorial on one of the most important social interactions of the 21st century. Say you find yourself at a church gathering, social function, the middle of a park, wherever. You meet someone new who you feel like you could potentially like, or you reconnect with someone you haven’t seen in years and you really never understood why you didn’t become friends. You put together your social graces enough to carry on a coherent, brief conversation, and as you say goodbye one of you will pose the question:

If he’s the one asking…you don’t even have a choice.

“Oh my gosh it was SO great meeting you! Let’s get coffee sometime soon!

Translation: “Let’s drink overpriced caffeinated beverages and basically have a semi-awkward interview of each other’s lives!”

Yes indeed, the coffee date. Not necessarily “date” in the traditional sense of the word {boys, it’s going to take more than a cup of java to win this girl’s heart.} But a date, nonetheless. Basically, you’ve just been asked to meet with someone that you don’t necessarily know well. The success of this coffee date could make or break this relationship. WhatEVER will you do?

No fear. I’ve been on enough of these so called “coffee dates” in college to bring the thing down to a science. Here we go.

1. Wear the right outfit. There is a certain attire that one wears to a coffee shop, especially if you’re in Nashville. You want to appear put together, but you ALSO want to make it look effortless. Also, coffee shops tend to give off a cozy and intimate vibe, so you want to reflect that as well. You can’t go wrong with a flannel, ladies and gents. It is THE perfect fall outfit.

Pro tip: Don’t try to come across overly hipster or the person you’re meeting may confuse you with the barista. Double-skim-milk-soy-latte say whaaaat?


2. Order the right kind of coffee. This person doesn’t know who you are all that well, so they’re going to be able to tell what you’re like based on the drink you order. Here’s just a few drinks that make a statement when you order them:

A standard cup of Joe: I’m not trying to impress you. Just get the caffeine in my body and let’s go.

Red-eye: It’s been a rough day.

Espresso shot: It’s been a REALLY rough day.

Hot Chocolate: I don’t really like coffee, I just wanted to hang out with you. And I’m also twelve years old.

Hot Tea: I love cats and reading. I’m a really cool person. If you’re nice I might knit you a scarf this fall.

Drink Special: I’m adventurous. I like to try new things, even though I’m going to hate this weird-sounding drink I’m sipping at every point of our conversation.

A Pumpkin Spiced Latte: All my friends said this drink was good…I want you to think I have friends. LOVE ME PLEASE

An Iced Mocha Frappuchino, made with almond milk, two shots of espresso, a tablespoon of raw honey, a dash of cardamom and nutmeg: Consider yourself lucky that I’m on this coffee date with you. I know what I like. I REALLY know what I like. And I’m going to get it.

I’m a PSL girl…and regret nothing.

3. Engage in Casual Conversation: If this isn’t someone you know particularly well, you’re not going to want to engage in extremely deep conversation with them off the bat {if you are, can we go to coffee sometime soon?} Appropriate topics for someone that you don’t know particularly well can include:

-The wonderful fall weather {isn’t it wonderful? yes, yes it is.}

-The tasteful decor in the coffee shop you went to {they do this for a reason}

-Just how delicious your Pumpkin Spice Latte is {perpetuate the craze…}

-Your current Netflix addiction {Orange is the New Black, anyone?}

-Their tasteful choice in hipster clothing

-Miley Cyrus


4. When Your Drink Is Ready, Instagram it. Because if you didn’t take pictures of every event in your life, did they actually happen? Take up to ten minutes taking pictures of your coffee, of your date’s coffee, of the cute barista who served your coffee. The next topic of discussion will inevitably be your favorite filters. You probably forgot this person’s name at this point, so now would be a great time to ask them what their handle is so you can A. Remember and B. Tag them in your post so you can seem somewhat social.

5. Continue talking. Remain engaged. It’s important that whoever you’re having coffee with knows that you’re actually listening to them. Whether you actually are or not is your call. Ways to show that you’re engaged can include head nodding, vocal affirmation {“Preaaaach” is my current favorite}, or looking intently into their eyes as you look up from your coffee mug. This will either make them love you, or feel really uncomfortable. Hey, at least you tried…

6. When you finish with coffee, analyze the situation. Either your coffee date went horrendously {they spilled their coffee all over you, they found everything you said either too funny or not interesting at all, your ex walked by the two of you and went on a rampage about how you broke his heart, etc.} or it went smashingly.

Or this could happen...
Or this could happen…

If it went well…do not invite them on another coffee date.

You may invite them to alternate plans, which may include baking, jumping in leaf piles, Netflix binging together, going to the opera, learning how to twerk, going through embarrassing photos of middle school years, anything. Anything.

It’s not that I’m against the coffee date. I love coffee. I love dates. I just feel like sometimes it tends to be overused and overrated as a way to get to know people. Most coffee dates are scheduled in a perfect hour—just enough time to meet someone before moving on to the next thing. Coffee dates are great ways to get to know someone initially…but beyond that, be intentional. Find out if they actually even like coffee. Learn some of the things that make them unique and explore that. Find something you both love and go out there and do it. All I’m saying is that getting to know people doesn’t have to be so cut and dry. Live a little. Be different. Be you.

But hey, if you’re ever wanting to go out to coffee…I’m so down. And I won’t be the Iced Mocha Frappuchino girl. I promise. :)

Just the overly hipster one.
Just the overly hipster one. {NOT!}




One thought on “The Coffee Date, Debunked.

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