I have a philosophy when dating...it is called not trying too hard. Again, this is a philosophy and works in theory, but it a little harder in practice (like--communism and lettuce wraps with extra dressing...both sound good but are in reality a disaster).
The problem is this: you don't just have to find a girl that you like; but she has to actually like you. (queue gasp of self-realization [BWAHHH?] ...and we're back) I see this statistical anomaly prove itself out in every descent marriage. Getting a good guy to like a good girl...and having that SAME good girl liking that good guy. (Why can't we just go back to how it used to be in having the girl settling for the guy?)
But in the end folks, even thought I've heard mixed reviews about it, I believe in marriage. (Take a deep breath for this next runnonsentence) I believe that two people can fall madly in love and sift that facet-filled fairy-tale feeling (+4) up through the raging sands of reality to settle on top as a polished stone of true joy, where the 'happily ever after' will be something two out of tune mortals are working towards, and not a daily musical.
And on this quest to find that right arithmetic fit of an unquantifiable i, it really is tough to not try too hard. I'm sorry that I can't help but think if a girl can be a future wife on a first date, or if I wonder what our kids will look like on the second or wonder what a third date would look like at all...but with something so important, how can you tell a guy not to try too hard? The fact that this person may be the one girl I will fall for this year, I need to TRY to be my best self to give her a chance to feel the same way.
And if you have patience, I think you'll find that there is more to me and every other person looking to 'settle up' than a little too much red dressing.