Bucktown / Wicker Park

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Bucktown / Wicker Park

On splitting the check: dating in Chicago

I’ve been on a lot of dates lately. (Bold Moves October working out well for me.) In my 29 years on the planet, this also leaves about 14 years of dating, and almost 4 years being single and living in Chicago. This works out to quite a lot of first dates. These dates have been with guys I’ve met out at a bar, in online dating forums, through friends, basically, a variety of different ways.

But seemingly the trend as of late is splitting the check on dates. Here in the 21st century, I’m all about feminism and in relationships, I’m all for equality in paying for things, but splitting the check on a first (and second) date is just embarrassing.

I went on a date recently, to one of my favorite spots for a first date, the Blue Line, on a Tuesday night. I literally drank three $3.50 beers that were on special. But I, and I think most women, feel like you have to play the wallet dance when the check comes. I had cash in my wallet, and threw down what I had, as he did not offer to pay or tell me to put away my wallet.

But what was most embarrassing was that he then counted the money, and gave me back a few dollars. Dude, just take the money. I’d rather just pick up the entire thing than split it with you and have you give me change back. I’m not just here catching up with my girlfriend I haven’t seen in a few days. No dude, I’m on a date.  A date where I didn’t eat or order anything expensive. And I know what this dude does for a living, he’s not a poor grad student or a starving artist. He works in a legit job in one of the largest office buildings in the Loop, he can at least afford $10.00 worth of beer on a date.

So guys, the girl will eventually pick up the check, or offer to, if there are second or third dates. In the meantime, just go the traditional route. If you’re broke, take her to BYOB Thai food and tell her to bring a bottle of wine. Or do something that is free (museum, walk around the park, etc.), but have a plan.

Because splitting the check is something I do with my platonic friends who are not attempting to woo me.

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