Sometimes I wonder what would be best.

I am trying to make a point of being who I want to be, following my own rules and moral values, as petty as they might be. Often, though, I find these hypothetical rules clash with what is “proper”.

There are so many unwritten rules in dating: no sex before the third date, no asking a guy out if you’re a girl, no answering texts straight away, no letting a guy know how much you like him. I understand that strategy works, in love just as much as in war. Still, I think it’s fake.

I read two posts recently, both got me thinking and nodding, both tend to go openly against the rules above:

Which side is right?

If I have to think about my own experience, I tend to be able to pretend and stategise only when I don’t really care about the guy. If I do, spontaneity tends to get the better of it.

I guess, most of it has to do with what kind of person you are dealing with. There are people who love the chase, hunters interested in the game much more than the prey itself. Like Maddie. And then there are people who care from the start about what’s real, true feelings, sincerity and affection. Like me. We do not like people who play games, because we can’t fight on equal terms and we feel fooled; they most probably don’t like us because we are easy and boring.

But right at the beginning of all approaches, is it possible to tell to which category our counterpart belongs to?

Even when “true” people get together, it’s always extremely difficult to stick to what’s proper. When you don’t know what kind the other is, it’s a nightmare. Not knowing what the other person thinks of us causes the worst disarray and there is no way we are ever sure what we’re supposed to do.

In a perfect world, where things always go in the best of ways and assholes do not exist, what someone like me would like to do is breaking every single rule: I would kiss on my first date, possibly sleep with them on the same night if I wanted to, tell them how much I like them in the same exact moment as I realise it myself and thank them there and then for being a wonderful creature.

That is not proper.

It’s utterly unacceptable. While I have put into practice the first two, because in some way they can be accepted – and not always with tragic results I would add – the last two are unthinkable.

For the simple reason that there is always the possibility out there lurking that he might only be fooling you around. Now that is possibly the single most unacceptable and improper thing to do in our times: be fooled. It’s the biggest disgrace of all. It deserves the scarlet letter. You must always be prepared and never let your guard down, or you will be dishonoured.

I most honestly wonder why that is. Of course, when it happens you end up hurting beyond comprehension. But the reaction you get from the general population is that you made a fool of yourself. Now, wait a minute. I wouldn’t be the one doing something wrong. If right and wrong still exist, as small and scared as they might be, someone must recognise that we wouldn’t be the bad guys, nor the stupid guys, nor the shallow guys. We would not make a fool of ourselves, we would be fooled. Victims. Undefiled, I might add.

The thing that mostly makes me wonder is when I think of how it would make me feel to hear the same thing said to me. It would sweep me off my feet. I’m outrageously romantic, I know. And in the end, if we feel that way about someone it shouldn’t matter if we wait and let them know some other watered-down way. Or should it?

If we knew that we could trigger this reaction in that special someone, would we pass on it? Should we? Is it possible that we actually do some damage by being proper? How do we recognise someone as special, doesn’t it happen when they cross the line? What would it say about us if we were ready to long-jump across that line?

It would scare the hell away the vastest majority of people.

Imagine all the guys you want to date on a line, in the middle of the desert, like where they do tests on super fast cars. Imagine them one beside each other, all facing you, with the sun in their eyes and the wind ruffling their hair and shirts. Imagine yourself on the opposite side, a line drawn with a stick in the dry earth in front of you. You look at each other straight in the eyes High-Noon style. You start running toward the line and make that jump. You land on your feet and you still stare at them when they decide, cold sweating, to turn and run for their lives. Imagine seeing the dust raised by their feet settle and starting to outline the shape of just one of them who didn’t even flinch.

That’s the guy you want.