These are the incontrovertible laws of i*t*rn*t d*t**g.
Never tell the truth in your profile. If, like me, you're a touch on the diminutive side, attest to the fact that you're six feet and three inches tall and you have been this size since birth. If you're a tad on the bookish side, write that you spend all your free time feeding sliotars to the homeless and playing rugby with the huddled elderly masses while making soup from scratch and simultaneously rescuing kittens from something either tall or burning or both. Women love a sensitive sportsman.
2) Never lie.
When the time comes where you've arranged to meet someone to go to the panto, if she sees that you're really an average sized John Doe she WILL walk onwards, pretending that she only paused briefly to get something from her purse. You'll be left with the saddest bunch of carnations in Dublin and a half sunk bottle of Johnnie Walker Red before sundown.
3) Dress well.
Oh this is very important. While full top and tails may overreach a smidgeon, definitely clad yourself in a natty suit of dark colour and white shirt with the buttons casually left unjointed at the top. Shoes are important. Wear several pairs at once because women, as we all know, fucking love shoes.
4) Do not dress too well.
You're already not a rugby player, nor are you over six feet tall, so don't make matters worse by pretending to be something you're not. Day old socks add character and the very small tomato sauce stain on the sleeve of your long sleeved Next t-shirt will hint at a culinary prowess that isn't quite there but she doesn't know that.
5) Tell her she looks great.
You'd be a right old bastard if you didn't acknowledge the fact that she spent 17 minutes ironing the crinkles out of her eyelids before she came out. You don't want to be a right old bastard, do you?
6) Do not, under any cicumstances, compliment her on her looks.
First she'll smell the socks, then she'll sniff the desperation.
7) Ask her about her past relationships.
She'll think you're confident and fearless and not at all bothered that her last boyfriend only dumped her because he had a shot at Jessica Alba which he ultimately fucked up but she wasn't taking him back but you so don't want to go there.
8) Don't mention exes.
'You so don't want to go there.'
9) Ask her what she's reading.
This is always a conversation starter and lets you play to your strengths, or at least would do if the last book you read hadn't been the life story of the nearest deceased football player.
10) Don't ask her what she's reading.
If you hear the words Jade and Goody you'll immediately have to flee. Ignorance is bliss.
11) Ask her what her parents do.
This will give her the chance to wax on and wax off about her folks while you settle into your brand new arse groove somewhere cosy, but not too cosy, while you silently get drunk, but just drunk enough.
12) Do not ask her what her parents do.
They could be dead. And that's just awkward right there.
13) Pretend to fall asleep while she talks.
She'll find this disarming.
14) Don't actually fall asleep while she talks.
You'll wake up to a bill and no wallet.
15) Ask her if she wants to share a taxi home.
She'll be insulted if you don't and she will end up in Coppers, later that night getting sired by the exact person you pretended to be in your original profile.
16) Do not ask her to share a taxi home.
She'll see this as presumptuous in the extreme and it's a real pity because if you'd been a gentleman and waited until the next time - and there WAS going to be a next time - you'd have been doing the no-pants-dance in the flicker of one perfectly smoothed out eyelid.