Spooky – first dates and trick or treating – boo!


Have you noticed: your first date and

trick-or-treating are hauntingly similar?

Both require identical preparations and it’s all about wear and where.


Dressing – or selecting a costume- for Trick or Treating on Halloween and for that all-important first date requires an inordinate amount of time. You want to look good and make a statement. You forage through closets and drawers to select the right thing to wear. Women often aim for hauntingly beautiful or the girl-next-door costume. Good advice for guys is to appear like more like a superhero, less like a monster.


Deciding where to go ‘Trick or Treating’ or for a first date requires that you carefully plan and plot. Both parties agree to meeting in a safe, well lighted neighborhood. You naturally avoids ‘dark and spooky,’ at all costs. You agree upon the perfect witching hour. Your spirits are up, and it’s time! The scariest thing that can happen? You don’t look like your picture. One of you is spooky, kooky or creepy.  Your costume is all wrong.

At the end of the night, you want to think, “Sweet!”


You don’t want to walk away thinking, “What a witch,” or “What a monster,” and return home empty handed.

Remember: A few kisses are good. You want to avoid sours, Nerds, Screaming Yellow Zonkers, Snickers, jawbreakers and gobstoppers. Relax, enjoy one another and skip the trick, have fun and go straight for the ‘treats’.


San Francisco Dating@50 Examiner, Page Larkin, welcomes your feedback, questions and queries at Page.Larkin@gmail.com. .

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Flirting 101: The Irish joust and the French flirt

Flirting 101: The Irish joust and the French pursue

 When it comes to the rhythms of romance, flirtation, and seduction there are distinct national styles of flirting.

 The French are much more about charm, persuasion, and allure. They are apt to touch your arm, your cheek, look longingly into your eyes and kiss you on both cheeks and wax poetic… while calling you ‘mon petite Chou.’

French men do not blink when they throw you a kooky pick up line – like one of these:

Excuse-moi. Est-ce que tu embrasses les inconnus? Non? Donc, je me présente.
Excuse me, do you kiss strangers? No? Then let me introduce myself….

Bon Jour…Je viens d’arriver dans ta ville. Est-ce que tu pourrais m’indiquer le chemin jusqu’à ton appartement?
Whatszup…I just arrived in this city. Could you tell me the way to your apartment?

The French are famous for hedonism and prioritizing… and  fashion, wine, champagne, cheese, the Musee D’Orsay, the Pompidou Centre and of course the Louvre..for famous authors including Cyrano de Bergerac, Albert Camus, Gustave Flaubert, Jules Verne, Victor Hugo and Alexandre Dumas…and for flirtatious French Men. All women prefer Maurice Chevalier over Dominique Strauss Kahn

The French are true romantics. They feel the only difference between a man of forty and one of seventy is thirty years of experience.    Maurice Chevalier

Irish9The Irish embrace a ‘rugged charm’ and are more apt to slap you on the back, give you a bear hug and offer to buy you a pint… the Irish male may have a small

Repertoire of funny stories and may say you are ‘as comfortable as an old shoe.’

The Irish are very well known for their wit, quick humor, compassion and for the likes of Oscar Wilde, George Bernard Shaw, James Joyce, Roddy Doyle, Frank McCourt, Samuel Beckett, Kelly, Walsh, Donovan, Monaghan, Callaghan, Burns, Murphy…


Their Pick Up lines May Run the Gamut from A – B….

  • How Ya doin?
  • Do you come her often?
  • Want to come home with me? Can I go home with you?
  • You look like I need a drink, join me?

Sure now, with little training… miracles happen. Irish men are generally clever, people pleasing, easy going, optimistic and respect their mothers…

What the Irish know – conversation is seduction.

Generally speaking: The Irish Male makes contact with a woman -and they talk about what they have in common. Often this is infused with much teasing, wit, a wink, a nudge and a smile… Mutually, the couple decides what they have in common and then…plan on developing it.

I’ll have a pint!

clover_t588Do you wish to spar or spark? Joust and joke or flirt and play? 


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What does an online dating email scam look like?

Gator20081017Everyone talks about the hustles, the hustlers, the gold-diggers on the                Top Online Dating Sites.

How can you tell if you are being hit up by a scoundrel scammer?

His opening email will look just like this:

Hello dear,
How are you doing ? Wow! You look very beautiful, i really like what am seeing in you as a woman… I would like to communicate with you, kindly text me, (650) 434-7—-. or you feel free to email me ( randyvincent @ /y/a/h/o/o/. com ) I think i am capable to offer your heart desires. I have heard about so i gave it a trial but i will be glad to use this opportunity to meet someone that i can build friendship with and probably go from there. Thank you and i will look forward to hear from you.


Top Clues:

1. English is not his first language, dear.

2. Afflicted by Bad Punctuation or an ee cummings wannabe?

3. Wants to get off the dating site ASAP and go to Y/a/h/o/o –  and will look forward  to build friendship with…and perhaps you have some money he needs…wow, you beautiful woman.


Quits20060522These guys troll EHarmony, Match, Ourtime…all the major dating websites.

You better watch out – – your better not reply~

You better tell the dating company about Not so Randy Vincent.

Good luck!

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Top 20 Best Ice Breaking Conversation Starters

photo_21523_20120317Kevin, is brand new at the dating game was clueless when it came to “chatting.”

He was a superb interviewer and adroit cross-examiner, and eloquent closing argument kind of a guy…He was too nervous for small talk on a first, (or second, date.)

He asked me for 10 – 20 Opening Lines/Ice Breakers when talking to ‘Someone of the Opposite Sex.’   Voila!

 The Top 20 Questions to Break the Ice

1. Tell me about your best friend.

2. Tell me about your very worst job.

  1. What was your very first car?
  2. What was your very best job?

5. Tell me about your family and where you grew up.

6. Tell me about your very favorite relative.

7. Tell me the Top Five places you’ve worked

8. Who is your all-time favorite female movie star?

  1. What passions / hobbies do you spend money on?
  2. What’s you very favorite song?
  3. Tell me one really life-changing moment?
  4. When did you meet your very first girlfriend/boyfriend?
  5. Where and when was your first kiss and with whom?
  6. What is the silliest thing you have ever done?
  7. What is the worst prank you’ve pulled?
  8. Tell me the most romantic date you’ve ever planned.
  9. They say, “Women shop and men buy.” What is one store you wouldn’t be caught dead in?
  10. Alaska or Hawaii – what is your choice?
  11. Tell me what your perfect day-off looks like?

20. If someone gave you two free tickets to anywhere in the world – where would you go?

photo_8735_20081228 Note To Dater: Do Not ask all these questions – at once- to the same person. Your goals to create a conversation – not conduct a job interview.

Have fun out there!

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Lost: Dating Mojo – last seen 1977

lock on old broken doorwayAfter another five dead-end, awkward dates, Kevin swore off dating. His original visions of wild and sexy affairs with lurid, wanton women weren’t happening.

He had watched one too many eHarmony television commercials and thought everything was going to be a bed of roses…well, at least a bed of something.

Confused and Confounded

He was confused by things women wrote: “Not going Glamping” What the heck was glamping? “I only drink Holy Water?” What? And what was a “Burning Man- Lover?”

Always one to defer to research, he read a few “How-to” dating books and slowly realized he was out of his element and not quite in the 2014 swing of things

One woman, “SF Frisky,” responded to Kevin’s opening, email, with “TLTR.” He had to Google the acronym to learn it meant, Too Long to Read. Really, one paragraph? Kevin had lost his patience and mojo.

Try, Try, Again?

A week later, Sherrey from Tiburon contacted him. She was bubbly, friendly and wanted to meet him. She said she really liked his picture.  Nobody had liked this picture- until now.

According to her profile she was blonde, 39+, loved skiing, tennis, wine tasting and the opera.

What’s not to like?

He wrote back immediately and agreed to meet her Saturday morning at the Starbucks in San Rafael.

Kevin was ready! Finally, a woman found him attractive and had contacted him. Things were beginning to look up. He found the Starbucks and scored a table. He sat next to a brunette woman and pretended to read his Wall Street Journal, his eye on the door.

Only a few minutes went by before the woman on his right tapped him on the shoulder and asked him if he was “Kevin SF Giants.”

Startled, he nodded and she announced that she was Sherrey from Tiburon. Kevin stared. He was supposed to meet a blonde 39-year-old tennis playing, opera buff.

This woman was 50 – if she was a day -and she had long dark hair. She couldn’t be the blonde, tennis player- there had to be a mistake. He was flummoxed – mumbled and fumbled. Again, not knowing what to make of this total stranger.

“You play tennis?” popped out of his mouth. She laughed. It was a raspy, smoker’s voice and said, “No, but I love to watch it on TV.”

Eventually, he calmed down and went through the motions. His mind was flapping back to the online photo he had glanced at, just this morning, and the woman sitting across from him. There was absolutely no resemblance. This would not be a one-time-only event.

Flash Forward: Six Months.

Kevin had a total of 32 first dates and no second dates. Was he  a slow study or just striking out? He claimed he had met every “possible” 35 to 55-year-old woman (under 200 pounds) within 30 miles of his ZIP code.


Kevin Learns the Ropes

In time, with practice and a spread sheet- he eventually became a more astute “dater.”

First, he devised, a formulaic introductory e-mail. Statistically, five out of 10 women responded.

Second: Two e-mails later: he invited a phone conversation and included his telephone number. He even suggested a good time for the woman to call him. Seven out of ten women called him back.

Kevin had a “Top-Five Question List” that he nonchalantly asked each woman. He thought he was getting really good at this. Never mind about the person on the other end of the phone was feeling like she was on a job interview.

Note to reader: Predictable questions are a buzz kill- they indicate no joi de vivre – no spontaneity. Dull times three.


NEXT: The Secret to Kevin’s Success -

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Can a small town girl meet a great guy? The first step



Take the first step…

Cathy: 53, divorced, two kids launched, decided to start looking for her ‘Date for Life.’ No more speed- dating or redundant coffee dates or hiking buddies – she wanted a relationship.

One small drawback: Geography?

She lives in a very, very, small town nestled in the redwoods in Northern California. A writer and an English major who loves the Pacific Northwest and the Arts, she subscribes to the New York Review of Books. Last year – a little lonely and fuelled by one too many espressos- she decided try the NYRB Personal Ads.

For months, she had been amused and intrigued by the ads and – in a C’est le guerre kind of mood – she crafted a succinct and attractive ad.

$5.00 will buy you one word

Cathy ponied up $150 for a well-crafted, 30-word ad and sat back. Who would respond? David in Brooklyn or Donald in New Haven? John E-Be-Good in San Francisco?

The ad ran for one week and produced one, single, beguiling response from ‘John M. D.’

Stranger than fiction

Quelle surprise: John M D lived 15 miles away. He, too read the New York Review of Books and was intrigued by Cathy’s well-written 30-word ad. They met for the first time, they clicked, and have been together ever since. It happens.

Dare to write your Personal Ad?  Avoid dangling your participles.

When you are paying a hefty $5 per word for a Personals Ad, one tends to choose their nouns carefully. On the other hand, if you are writing a Craigslist ad – free of charge – you might be a little less discreet about your word choice and message. Who said, “You get what you pay for?”

Why not try a 7-Day Free Online Dating offer? Seriously check out an join a Meetup.com Group (see: hiking, biking wine-tasting, dancing, music, film-lovers, Mount Tam Wednesday Walkers) …Give it a try!

Page Larkin’s Rules of the Day

Stop complaining that all the good ones are taken.

Start smiling more and talking to people – talk to strangers. Everyday.

So what if you live in a small town? Open your eyes, open your heart and you will meet ‘people.’

Go outside and play.

Blank white sandwich board on a city sidewalk


What do you say?

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Oh! San Rafael! Oh! San Rafael, where the h*** is San Rafael?

“The San Rafael Song”


The Domincan College Fight Song

(It used to be a college and ‘No Boys Allowed’ was the sad truth…)

Once upon a time – the strident hazing of Freshmen Girls at Dominican consisted of learning the above referenced lyrics and  attending a Mixer at (choose your poison) USF or St. Mary’s College (located in a rural community called Moraga)

san rafael30


However, San Rafael will be wild this weekend!

Liquake is crossing the Bridge and San Raf will be teeming with literati, writers, readers, poets, bloggers, wanna be writers and fans – fan boys and fan girls.

A little something called the 37th Annual Mill Valley Film Festival will have people lining up in front of the Rafael Theater – many to see Dave Iverson’s outstanding film called, Capturing Grace. Bravo!

brifhe-29Welcome to San Rafael:

Let the

LITQUAKE Party Begin!


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