Exercise 1

A. You’re going to listen to a radio program about first dates. Before you listen, guess what the missing words are in tips 1-6.


 Choose the _______ carefully.

 Make an effort with your _______.

 Be _______, even if you think the date is going nowhere.


4   Don’t forget your _______.

5   Don’t _______ to be anything you’re not.

6   Don’t make an instant _______.

B. Listen to the program and check. Were your answers exactly the same? If not, did they mean the same thing?

C. Listen again. Answer questions 1-6.

What do the tips say about…?

1   the best place for a first date

2   looking good

3   lying

4   politeness

5   exaggeration

6   first impressions



1 venue   2 appearance   3 kind

4 manners   5 pretend   6 judgement


1   The best place for a first date is a quiet coffee shop or a little local place.

2   Looking good shows you care and makes a good impression.

3   Don’t lie or give the other person false hope.

4   Be polite to your date and the people around you.

5   Don’t exaggerate because if the relationship lasts, you will have to live with your lie.

6   First impressions can be wrong, so don’t make up your mind immediately.


H = Host, J = Jenny

H   A first date is loaded with expectation. Will I like them, and will they like me? Is this person going to be “the one” or will I want to run for the door before the appetizer? Will we have anything to talk about and if not, how will we get through the evening? Here’s relationship expert Jenny with some suggestions on how to make sure that your first date is the best it can be – even if it turns out to be your only date.

J   Hello there. My first tip is “Choose the venue carefully,” that is, the place where you’re going to meet. Try to avoid very noisy places where you can’t hear each other, or places where you can’t talk, like movie theaters. So a good place to meet might be a quiet coffee shop for some locally roasted coffee, for example, or lunch in a little local place you know. The advantage of keeping the first date short and sweet, meeting for coffee or for lunch rather than dinner, is that if you don’t like each other, you don’t have to make it through a seven-course meal together. And of course if you do like each other, you can either extend the date, or plan a longer one for next time.

Tip number two is “Make an effort with your appearance.” Obviously you don’t want to make so much of an effort that your date wouldn’t recognize you if they saw you in the street the next day. But getting your hair done, say, or wearing something you know you look good in, those kinds of things show that you care – and that you want to make a good impression. I mean, if you turn up with unwashed hair, wearing yesterday’s clothes, you aren’t likely to win anyone over.

The third tip, and it’s an important one, is “Be kind,” even if you think the date is going nowhere. It doesn’t cost anything, and it’ll make a big difference to how much the other person enjoys themselves. Of course, being kind also means not lying or giving your date false hope. Don’t tell someone that you’ll call and that you can’t wait to see them again if you have absolutely no intention of following through!

Tip number four, which is sort of related to number three, is “Don’t forget your manners.” Make sure you turn up on time, and if you’re going to be late for whatever reason, let your date know. Try not to yawn even if you’re getting a little tired. Turn off your phone, and if the other person is footing the bill, do remember to say “thank you.” And one last thing while we’re on the subject of manners – you can tell a lot about a person by how they treat waiters and waitresses. So don’t just be polite to your date, be polite to the other people too.

Number five is “Don’t pretend to be anything you’re not.” It can be very tempting to exaggerate, or to dress up the truth, or just to plain lie to try to get your date interested. Of course, you may get away with it if you don’t see the person again after the first date, but if the relationship does last any longer, you may find yourself in a tricky situation further down the line. So, for example, if you’re separated, don’t say that you’re divorced. If you hate baseball, don’t say that you can’t think of a better way to spend a Saturday afternoon than cheering for the Chicago Cubs. And if you work part-time in a call center, don’t say you’re something big in communications.

Finally, and this is my last tip, “Don’t make an instant judgement.” Many of us make up our minds whether we like someone in the first few seconds or minutes of meeting them. But you know, first impressions can be misleading, so try not to rule someone out right away. It’s much better to spend a bit of time getting to know them, and if you’re not sure about someone, it may take two or three dates before you can really decide. If you make a snap decision, you may risk missing out on the love of your life.

H   Jenny, thank you very much for the advice. And now we turn to the next…

Exercise 2

A. Listen to five speakers talking about memorable dates. Which speakers had successful dates? Which dates were unsuccessful?

B. Listen again and mark the sentences T (true) or F (false).

 Speaker 1 agreed to the date right away.

 Speaker 1 went out with someone who was desperately in love with her.

 Speaker 2 was the victim of an accident during their memorable date.

 The incident on Speaker 2’s date ruined the relationship.

 Speaker 3 enjoyed herself tremendously.

 Speaker 3 decided it was best not to meet up again.

 Speaker 4 organized the date spontaneously.

 Speaker 4 and their partner often joke about their date.

 Speaker 5 didn’t have the same sense of humor as the person she went out with.

10   Speaker 5 was upset not to get a marriage proposal.



Speakers 2, 4 and 5 had successful dates.

Speakers 1 and 3 had unsuccessful dates.


1 F   2 F   3 T   4 F   5 F   6 T

7 T   8 T   9 F   10 F


Speaker 1   My best friend kept insisting that I meet up with a cute, single male friend of hers. Finally, I gave in and we went on a date. My friend was right: he really was cute and single. But he was totally obsessed with my friend – all he did was talk about her. I finally made an excuse to go home early after he asked me if I thought my friend was happy with her boyfriend!

Speaker 2   I was on my first date with this smart, successful woman, and we went to a nice restaurant. The waiter was bringing our drinks to us when one of the other waiters asked him a question. As he turned around, he spilled our drinks all over me – I was drenched from head to toe. Other than that, the date went really well. We got married after six months and now, fifteen years later, we still laugh about our first date.

Speaker 3   This is one of my more memorable dates, but for quite the wrong reason. What we did was this: he took me for a loooooong drive in his truck – I had absolutely no idea where we were. Then he stopped at a gas station and bought me an ice cream. And then he drove me back home again. That was it. As you can imagine, I didn’t bother to find out what would happen the second time around.

Speaker 4   My most memorable first date was at a fast food restaurant. I’d been trying to get together with this girl for weeks, but our schedules just didn’t coincide. So when I was going out for a burger one evening, I just texted her and asked her to come. Amazingly, she did, and we ended up talking about everything from work to family. We’ve been together for eight months now, and she often pulls my leg about it.

Speaker 5   When my current boyfriend asked me out, we went out for dinner and then back to my place for coffee. At some point he got down on his knees, like he was going to propose, or something – he got me really worried. Then he got a soda tab out of his pocket – you know, the rings that come off of the top of a drink can – and he said, “Will you be my girlfriend?” After that, we couldn’t stop laughing.

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