Dating After 50: Avoid Lame Pickup Lines - dummies

Dating After 50: Avoid Lame Pickup Lines

By Pepper Schwartz

Copyright © 2014 AARP. All rights reserved.

Daters over 50 must realize that giving a bad opening line could mean all is lost when you’re looking for a potential date. Give a good one — even a passable one — and the door is at least halfway open.

A good pickup line is complimentary without being extravagant. It compliments the person, not the body. It doesn’t involve bragging. It locates you (the neighborhood, the hangout, your work) and gives you a topic to proceed with. And it sets the stage for the next sentence.

Good opening lines for daters over 50

Otherwise, there really isn’t much to talk about, or at least much to talk about that would be interesting. And most important, a good opening line doesn’t scare someone and perhaps put the person on the defensive. Here are some examples that start out the conversation in a nice direction:

  • “I just came here from work across the street. Do you work around here?”

  • “You have the nicest smile. You seem like a really nice person.”

  • “I’m not a bar (party) kind of animal. It’s nice to see someone who looks friendly.”

  • “Do you come here often? This is my neighborhood hangout.”

  • “I like your laugh. I saw you with your friends, and you seem like a really happy person.”

As a general rule, don’t open with a joke. You don’t know this person very well, and sometimes, jokes come off as snarky, impolite, puzzling, or just plain stupid.

People generally say something corny or insulting when they’re nervous or drunk. You can avoid approaching a person when you’re drunk, but being nervous may be a bit harder to fix.

That’s why you have to practice not just your first line but a few follow-up lines to make sure you don’t say something you’ll groan about later. After something comes out of your mouth, it’s hard to take it back, even if you apologize.

Here are some good things to avoid:

  • Anything about extreme emotions: “I fell in love just seeing you walk across the room.”

  • Anything with excess flattery: “You remind me of (name of movie star)” or “You had me at hello.”

  • Anything overtly sexual: “You are so sexy” or “What a sexy dress.”

  • Anything that’s obviously false or sounds like bragging: “I have a summer home near here; weren’t you around my beach yesterday?”

  • Any quotes by Shakespeare or any other writer: It just sounds too slick and practiced.

You’ll be walking a tight line between just being warm, friendly, and sincere and clearly asking the person out for a date. You don’t want to come off as an overeager puppy, nor do you want to look insecure and too shy. The important thing is to make sure you clearly ask the person out.

Otherwise, the person may be confused about your intentions. Your biggest fear may be coming on too strong; actually, the more common mistake is not to come on strong enough! As long as you’re not draping yourself all over the person or acting cheesy or arrogant, a clear expression of interest is the right way to go.

Worst of the worst: Lame pickup lines

A bad pickup line is met with derision and contempt. Here are some of the worst lines for men to say to women:

  • “I’m here because you’re the most beautiful woman in the room.”

  • “You and I were meant for each other. Fate has brought us together.”

  • “Baby, where have you been all my life?”

  • “Don’t I know you from somewhere?” (This one is a cliché, so you should avoid saying it even if it’s true.)

  • “You seem to be all alone . . . need company?”

Women are less likely to initiate contact. That’s too bad, because some men are shy and need someone else to take the first step. But if you do initiate contact, avoid being too seductive and steer clear of the following openers:

  • “I saw you looking at me.”

  • “Want to buy me a drink?”

  • “Hi handsome.”

  • “That’s an expensive suit you’re wearing. Is it Armani? Or Hugo Boss?” (said while stroking the material)

  • “I was just trying to figure out your sign. Are you a Gemini?”