Allow me to veer slightly out of my business etiquette lane to offer some thoughts on dating etiquette during these days of social distancing.
Social distancing, as I have said before, doesn’t mean you have to be socially distant. My husband and I have participated in multiple virtual cocktail hours and dinners. We order out or prepare our own meal, sit down at the computer, and engage with our friends.
But what if it's a dating situation and you want to ramp up the "specialness" of it? You can still ask someone you're interested in out on a dinner date. You’ll still be in different places. But you can add those extra touches and make it work. Here’s how.
1. As with any invitation, ask your date for a specific day and time. Since this date will be virtual, make arrangements to schedule a session on Zoom or whatever platform you are comfortable with. Send your date the link. Confirm the day before.
2. Make sure that you look good for your date. Computer camera at or just above eye level is the best angle. Lighting should come at your face and not be behind you. Tinker with this before your date. Use the camera function on your computer to ensure that you and your background are in tip top shape.
3. Dress for your date. Select fabrics and colors that complement your features. If you have blue eyes, for example, wear something that highlights them.
4. A day or so before your scheduled evening, send your date a menu from the restaurant from which you will be ordering dinner. Make sure to also ask what they'd like to drink.
5. Order from said restaurant and have the meal delivered to their house. Make sure to include the tip.
6. Even though your date won’t be able to see your plate, good table manners still count, so make sure yours are up to par.
7. Enjoy your evening!
While this scenario is great for first dates and newly dating couples, it can also work well for long-distance relationships when travel isn’t possible. And if you really want to add a wow factor, send flowers the next day to say how much you enjoyed your virtual time together.