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A blind date occurs when the two persons going out on the date are meeting for the first time. The word blind in this case doesn't mean that one or both of the persons involved is visually impaired, but rather that no in-person meeting has occurred previously. In a regular first date, the two individuals have met at least once before and one of the pair has asked out the other. In the case of blind dates, another person that knows both people helps initiate the date.
Today, most blind dates aren't totally blind per se, as thanks to online social sites such as Facebook and MySpace, many people have photographs of themselves online that are easily accessible by others. Dates arranged through personal ads may still be blind if no photos or last names are exchanged. In this type of blind date, a phone call or two as well as first names are often exchanged before a meeting is arranged in a public place such as a cafe. The term blind date generally and traditionally implies not having set eyes on a person before going out on a date with him or her.
Commonly, a person that knows two single persons that have never met each other before decides that there could be a potential for a romantic relationship between them. He or she then contacts them separately and mentions the other person and provides phone numbers and/or other information so that the two can meet if they both agree. However it is arranged, a blind date can be a great way to meet a new person that someone you know thinks could be a possible love interest for you.
The worst thing to do though is to expect too much from blind dates. Just because a person knows and likes two people doesn't guarantee anything. The best way to approach a blind date situation is to just think of it as an opportunity to meet someone new. A great opener for conversation on a blind date is to talk about the person that suggested the date. A discussion about how long and in what way each person knows that person can get the conversation flowing onto other topics.
Ah yes -- the blind date. Sometimes they work, sometimes they don't.
In addition to always meeting in a public place, I would strongly suggest that each person always have his or her own transportation (not the bus or subway) if possible, so a hasty getaway can be arranged, if necessary. It's just a good idea when both parties are able to leave without depending on someone else to get them home. Makes it safer for everyone.
I might also suggest bringing a friend along, if the date is just for coffee or something similar. Diffuses the tension and reduces expectations.
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