September 21

Don’t just read the Kopi Date Reddit review: I tried 5.

5  comments

I’m not a piece of meat.

I’m not a piece of meat.

I have to remind myself of that each time I go on a date.

You, probably should too.

Because our modern dating life has degraded to just that.

Where the typical lady has 20 bagels screaming at her, and if she faces the mild discomfort with you as her date, she always has a safety net.

She knows, she has more dates to go for.

No, scratch that. She doesn’t just know.

She is guaranteed that number.

Where does that leave you, the male?

Fighting with others for the hope that you can progress.

That was initially why I paid that $540 for 12 Kopi Dates, blind dates that would be set up for me.

And 5 dates later, I’m here to report back.

Does it work? What’s wrong?

Oh, love is not that easy to find
Oh, love is not that easy to find

Physical attraction does matter

As banal as this sounds, physical attraction does matter.

Especially for guys. And when you have no chance of saying no, you may find yourself silently facepalming when you see the date walk through the door. Just don’t let her know, though.

I spoke to Zhi Qun, the male cofounder of Kopi Date, and he did say that physical attractiveness doesn’t last.

I do agree. But I do think that you need to have a certain degree of liking for the person’s looks to want to progress with the person.

With Kopi Date, you can’t actually say no to the date.

And as mean as this sounds, there were times when I would come 10 minutes away to stalk out the rendezvous point (say a tree outside a cafe) to see if the person was physically attractive (for me), before I went onto talk to her. There weren’t any times when I walked away.

At least not yet.

But you do need to know this, because you might be, and you could be heavily disappointed if you go into Kopi Date thinking that you’re going to have a drop-dead gorgeous, high-flying lady.

Remember why both of you are there

I initially went into the blind dating game because I assumed that the other party would be there for the same reasons.

  1. You’re busy and don’t have time to text.
  2. You’re tired and don’t want to arrange dates (logistics like time, place, location, what to do, can take up more energy than you think).

I assumed that these were going to be high-flying, powerful women.

They may not be the high powered career women you see in the dramas.
They may not be the high powered career women you see in the dramas.

Not really.

Really, no.

5 dates later, I’ve realised that the dates tend to be there for these reasons.

  1. They can’t find what they want on a dating app and think that an outsourced, neutral party will be able to do better.
  2. They may not match as easily because of their physical appearance.

Please don’t get me wrong.

I’m not saying that the dates I’ve seen are ugly. They were just not my type, but I couldn’t control that.

Then one day I remembered what a friend said.

As cruel as this sounds, you also have to remember why you’re there.

Maybe you’re not that physically attractive too.

We are both there because we have flaws

I’m not saying that I’m a fantastic conversationalist, but as a journalist and writer, I’ve to engage people well enough to get the stories I want.

But it also meant that I could read people’s comfort with questions, and how fast they could think on their feet.

4 of the 5 dates I met led me to see how poor we generally are at conversation.

It was like playing conversational tennis on my own. In one extreme example, I counted at least 10 questions before she asked one. And for the entire 1.5 hours, she asked all of 2 questions.

Conversational tennis is not a natural skill for the dates I’ve seen - so use the app
Conversational tennis is not a natural skill for the dates I’ve seen – so use the app

Mate, use the app.

Don’t let the date tell you that they are content to take it easy. It’s not for their sake.

It’s for your sake.

If you don’t have the natural flow of questions, most people can’t think of that many questions on the spot that are deep enough to take the conversation further.

Ladies there (and maybe everywhere) cut fast

Maybe it’s got to do with the fact that they are paying for it. But I’ve come to see that the ladies there do have expectations.

One date left me a 1-star review (like a Grab driver, I know, I know), and said that I’d been rude to the waiter.

In my defence, I had an awkward moment where a friend unexpectedly popped up beside us, (right beside us), and I asked her if she was comfortable changing locations. She said yes, and in my hurry, I didn’t thank the waiter.

Maybe that was why.

Another date told me that because I didn’t seem to respond in a timely fashion to her, she wasn’t carrying on.

Well.

I couldn’t tell her the efforts I’d put in, and I didn’t think it would be very sightly to beg her for a second chance.

Ghosting, is a phenomenon you have to get used to.
Ghosting, is a phenomenon you have to get used to.

I met another date I was interested in knowing more about, and told her that I wanted to know her more and asked for her number (which she gave). But when I asked for a second date, she kicked it into the long-grass, telling me she was busy that weekend.

When I offered a consequent date, she didn’t even bother replying.

They cut fast. Very fast.

But in dates worth keeping, Henry Cloud talks about how you should ideally give your dates the benefit of doubt, and give them 4 dates, before you decide.

After all, how much is one date going to tell you about someone?

Well, a lot, according to the Kopi Dates I’ve been on.

What works?

Tell the person that you’re actually interested. Not over text, but in real life.

As much as they may not have the courage to tell you no in real life, at least you rose to the occasion. You dared to ask.

And ultimately, I think that’s what dating is about.

Not about changing the other party, but about changing you.

Not about growing the other person, but about you growing.

So put yourself out of the comfort zone.

Whether Kopi Date is going to be right for you depends on how much physical attractiveness matters to you (it probably does more if you are a guy), and how content you are with being ghosted by ladies who may not have the maturity to tell you that this is not working out.

It’s going to be much the same everywhere else.

For me, I’d much rather outsource the time spent on an app to someone else. Sure, they may not be as attractive as someone I’d like.

But serendipity, does sometimes matter.

 


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  • Interesting. The modern dating landscape with all the dating apps sure sounds complicated. But some things never change. Singaporean ladies can be picky. Many would rather stay single than be with somebody that doesn’t meet their expectations. Have you rejected or ghosted anyone before?

  • i’ve gone on both kopi date and lunch actually, and found them both to be crap… Not a single attractive girl, and they were neither interesting nor trying to be interesting for the date. (Not sure if its because I might have gone on dates with the rumoured “paid actors”?). Grew some balls after and resorted to the legendary “rental dating” services. Benefit was I get to chat with and meet only the girls I was physically attracted to. Tried a few platforms, got lucky with elitely social… celebrating my 9th month anniversary with my SO whom I met there. Moral of story bros? Physical attraction DOES matter, after that it is up to serendipity… is the same everywhere. But IF you’re paying good money, don’t leave the physical attraction part up to serendipity…

    • Hey Ben! Thanks for the comment. I think what you say about dates being boring is incredibly true – though paying more money doesn’t necessarily get you ‘prettier’ dates (I think). Haven’t tried the rental dating thing you mentioned, but thanks for the tip.

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