11. 6. 2017
We would suppose that the most interesting – and most obvious – question to ask a prospective partner is, ‘To be, or not to be?’ This, after all, is what most of us are wondering every time we venture out on that exciting first date. Some may think it’s a rhetorical question, best left to float about in our own brains, but it’s also a great way of finding out what’s going on in the mind of the person with whom you have just spent the last couple of hours. So, ‘To be, or not to be?’ Question number one!
Why ask questions?
Questions are what make the world go round. Once the question has been asked, there has to be an answer, and, when it comes to dating, most questions are asked in such a way so that the responses will reveal as much information as possible about the ‘other person.’ Imagine trying to start a conversation with someone you don’t know. Where do you begin? Maybe you could break the ice by talking about the weather, particularly if you meet in the middle of a raging storm. More often than not, though, a typical conversation will get under way with the asking of a simple question, such as ‘How did you get here?’ or, ‘Did you have a problem finding the place?’ When you think about it, we ask questions each and every day. ‘What shall we have for dinner?’ ‘Do you want to go and see the latest Star Wars movie?’ ‘Where shall we go for our holiday?’ ‘What’s on the telly?’ simple, every day questions.
What’s in a question?
A question is formulated in such a way as to point the recipient of the question into giving you the information you need. Hopefully, when you ask for directions to Piccadilly Circus, you’ll receive good directions. When you ask the shop assistant, ‘Which is the best laptop on the market?’ he or she will give you an honest appraisal. So, when trying to find out as much as we can about our prospective partner, we design our questions accordingly. Sometimes it can be difficult to ask a direct question, such as, ‘Do you eat meat?’ So we devise a means of going round the houses and asking a more general question which will probably end up giving us the information we need. For example, to find out if your date is a vegetarian or a vegan, we can ask, ‘What sort of food do you like?’ With regards to Piccadilly Circus, it might be a best to ask the person if he or she is local, ‘Do you come from London?’ or, ‘Are you from around here?’ before asking for directions!
Why random questions?
Random questions are often asked if we want to catch someone unawares. Answering a straight forward question is a doddle. ‘Where do you come from?’ is a direct question which will result in a direct response, for example, ‘Boston.’ On the Internet, one can find lists of mundane questions gathered and garnered by people who have the answer to everything. But questions tend to be tailored to the individual, to his or her interests, and to expand the conversation that is already under way. First dates and perhaps second dates, are usually centred around direct questions, as above, but after a while you may like to throw in something out of the blue, such as, ‘Do your mum and dad get on well together?’ or, ‘How do you react to stressful situations?’ Enquiries such as these are not generally anticipated, and will give your partner cause for thought. Other ‘off-the-wall’ questions might include, ‘Do you dream in colour, or are your night-time fantasies restricted to black-and-white?’ ‘If you controlled a television or radio station, what sort of programmes would you transmit?’ And, when you’re sitting in a cosy restaurant with excellent wine, candle-light and romantic background music, how about saying, ‘If that woman over there suddenly fell off her chair and lay on the floor gasping for air, would you rush to her assistance?’ Usually one-offs, random questions keep us on our toes and keep us alert. They can also be fun and amusing because we are treading on uncharted territory, uncertain of what the response will be and therefore unsure about which way the conversation will go. Keep it fun and keep it quirky! Pushing the envelope and the imagination is a sure-fire way of holding your partner’s interest, ‘What’s your favourite colour?’ and ‘Do you have a pet?’ are safe, simplistic and a little passé.
Questions, questions, questions!
‘Goodness, where did that come from?’ is a great response to a question. It means that you have completely surprised your date – he or she now has to spend some time thinking about an answer. This is what we mean by ‘stepping outside the box’, getting away from the ‘What’s your favourite…?’ and ‘Are you good at…?’ questions. Try asking, ‘What do you see when you close your eyes?’ After being treated to a sideways glance, your partner will either turn into a comedian and reply, ‘Nothing!’ or give you a full description of some imaginary Universe. Over to you, go for it, be different! It can happen anywhere and at any time: while driving in a car from A to B; while watching something on television; in the middle of a conversation; while being introduced to someone’s family; and yes, even when making love. We are all different, having different beliefs, different interests, different tastes, and we all come from different social circles. This means that our questions, random or otherwise, will be influenced by who we are and where we come from. A person who is worried or concerned about the future will want to know if you’d be happy to go on a one-way trip to colonise another planet. Or perhaps they’d ask you to join some environmental protection group in the hope of saving the Earth. A lover of literature will wonder how many books you’ve read, and if you are familiar with any of the classics.
Sample random questions might include the following:
- Is there anything you’re really bad at?
- Is there anything you’re really good at?
- What event in your life most annoyed you?
- What world event most affected you?
- Do you believe in a supreme being?
- What do you think impedes humanity’s forward progress?
- What really floats your boat?
- Is there anything about you that makes you unique?
- Do you consider yourself to be a ‘giver’ or a ‘taker?’
- What do you say after having sex for the first time in a new relationship?
- Do you think sunglasses protect or weaken the eyes?
If you don’t happen to be clever at remembering a bunch of questions, it could be useful to make a list. Use some of the examples given above and add a few of your own, remembering that we’re all different and therefore have different levels of importance attached to each question. It’s also worth remembering that in any relationship your partner will be interested in finding out about YOU, in the same way that you want to discover all you can about him or her. The asking of a random question will shake your partner out of his or her complacency and cause them to think more carefully before coming up with a response. It’s also an accepted fact that the closer a couple become, the more familiar they are with each other. Therefore, the sudden, out-of-the-blue question will help to make the relationship even stronger, forcing the respondent to think more deeply about his or her answer, and causing them to understand that their partner, aware of the wider world and all it has to offer, is capable of asking much more than easy, every day type questions. Random questions can cover a huge range of subjects, from the sassy, quirky, humorous topics, to the deeply profound, life-changing themes that can enter our minds at a moment’s notice.
Remember, on the day of the BIG MEET your prospective partner will expect to see the same person they fell in love with when they read your dating site profile.