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How to Survive a Date with an Arts student

“Vivacious and lovable.”
Every night, the intelligent nerds, earthly geeks and persistent muggers dream about what their ideal date for Valentine’s Day should be like. More often than not, they do not get their ideal, but instead would be happy with any date in general.

What happens when your date is from Arts as well? Surely, he or she would have certain expectations. Alan Teo and Lee Sze Hong break it down in hopes that by the end of this article, anyone will know how to survive a date with an Arts student.* Live on, venturous e-reader!

*only Psychology, CNM, Sociology and Economics students covered. No money-back guarantee.


Communications and New Media

CNM majors are extremely savvy with social media, such as Twitter and Facebook, and will most likely be following you or stalking your Facebook page for updates. We know it’s a dying urge for you to tweet or post a status about how nervous you are about your date – or worse, how much you are dreading and lamenting over your lack of choice as he/she was your last option – but don’t.

Be very careful about what you say or do on the date. A CNM major is equipped with the necessary tools to destroy your reputation overnight. Say one wrong thing or perform one wrong action and the whole Twitter-verse could know about your blunder before you even reach home. Who knows? Your date could be the owner of some popular Twitter account with legions of followers. In such a case, news will spread faster than butter on hot toast.

Twitter updates during the date are to be avoided as well. You don’t want him to complain to his bros (or her to her jie mei (sisterhood)) about ‘#thatawkwardmoment when your V-Day date keeps tweeting about it instead of talking to you’. (Yes, it’s wrong for you to do it but not for him/her. Go figure.)

At the end of the date, remember to request to follow him or her on Twitter if you haven’t – it will minimize the chances of your date complaining about you post-date. If you get lucky, he or she may gush about the good time spent as a Facebook status update. Remember to ‘like’ it.


Psychology students like to analyze behaviour, so if you possess some repetitive bad habits such as tapping your fingers or shaking your leg, do try to suppress those or you may end up with a mental diagnosis of obsessive-compulsive disorder.

Take her out for something exciting – perhaps a ride on the Singapore Flyer or a trip to the Integrated Resorts. Get creative. Whatever it is, as long as it quickens her pulse and gets her flustered, she may end up misattributing her physiological arousal to an attraction towards you (works on guys as well). Be careful though – she may well be aware of this concept of excitation transfer and be privy to your trick.

Studies have shown that many good dates end with a kiss – and guys being guys will try to steal a kiss at any opportunity – but as all Psychology majors will know, correlation does not imply causation, so kissing her at the end will not make a bad date turn into a good one, and may instead earn you a hard slap.


Your Sociology major partner may either

1) Believe Valentine’s Day embodies the ritualistic, sacred concept of love and romance in a relationship and therefore will obligingly fulfil her role in society as your dating partner and potential spouse.


2) Believe it is a socially constructed, commercial holiday that imposes Western notions of love and marriage onto

Eastern values. Tough luck trying to ask him or her out!

If your date belongs to (1), you have no problems, but if he or she belongs to (2), perhaps you can try to sway sentiment by suggesting that he or she break free of social norms and cultural expectations when with you.

If you are a dude, insist that you two make this year’s Valentine’s Day special by reversing roles. In Japanese culture, women have to give chocolates or other gifts to the guys, so that explains why Japanese dramas always portraying guys in schools running away from over-enthusiastic girls on Valentine’s Day. If you are a girl, try to surprise your guy with flowers or food (Oh yes, guys LOVE food, especially if it’s lovingly prepared).

Of course, once you get to the date, try not to over-analyse the symbolism behind your partner’s words (symbolic interactionist perspective, anyone?). Keep it relaxed!


It may take some careful planning before you even ask an Economics major out. She may not consider the opportunity cost of going out with you worth her effort, as the potential costs outweigh the potential benefits. It’s up to you to package an offer she can’t refuse.

Prepare by learning more about basic game theory, including aspects of Bayesian equilibrium and how it applies to economics – such as in duopolies and bargaining. You never know when you will be engaged in a bargain with her and you want to be well-prepared to contest her decision matrix.

Remember to pay for the meal, the movie ticket, and whatever other costs there may be – this will help your case when she considers the exchange relationship between the two of you. Keep all the receipts so that you have information ready should she want to launch into a comparative-static analysis or other economic analyses about the value of your relationship.

At the end of your date, try to gauge if there’s any interest, and assure her that investment in you would be a good choice with little uncertainty or fluctuations. All you can do after that would be to cross your fingers and hope that after her portfolio analysis, the results would favour a second date with you.

General Tips

What if your date is not in any of these majors? Here are three general tips that will no doubt help you with all Arts students (and possibly with any date):

  • Dress well. If Arts students can dress to the nines just for school, you can be certain they will be looking to dress to impress. You don’t want to look like someone she picked up from the homeless shelter out of pity. For guys, when in doubt, settle for a fitting shirt with tapered jeans. For girls, just do your usual preparation (e.g. makeup, hair, accessory-matching, etc), and if you are really struggling to decide on an outfit, that LBD will do the trick.
  • Think of a few interesting stories to share. Whether it is your dog doing somersaults off your bed or your baby sister letting loose an expletive at a wedding ceremony, build up a reservoir of funny experiences to keep the atmosphere up throughout the date.
  • Pay up. If you are a guy, be the gentleman, take the bill and pay it before she realizes. If you are the girl, try to push money onto him even if he pays. Some girls do believe that ‘the guy should always pay on the first date’, and all guys dream of the girl who willingly ‘goes dutch’. A small investment will go a long way.

And… that’s a wrap! Did you realize that the first letter of the article’s first nine words spelt out ‘Valentine’? Or that the first letter of the last four words in the introduction spelt out ‘Love’? What about the Modern Family reference? Hopefully you will be more attentive on your Valentine’s Day date! All the best!


Comments ( 2 )

Have Something To Say ?

  1. PS Lover February 13, 2012 Reply

    I really wish for a cover on Political Science students.

  2. SOCIAL WORK ADDICT April 7, 2012 Reply

    how about giving this underrated major some attention it kind of deserves?

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