Not too hopping, not too stuffy, flatteringly low lighting…these five spots set the scene for the ideal first date post-divorce, and each offers signature drinks for a mild, ice-breaking buzz.
1. Clio, Boston, cliorestaurant.com. Creative drinks, romantically lit corners, and not a hint of neon. Libation Todd Collins.
2. West Bridge, Cambridge, westbridgerestaurant.com. Locavore and Cambridge—casual, with good acoustics and cute waiters, you know, just in case. Libation The Correspondent.
3. Cinquecento, Boston, cinquecentoboston.com. Italian plates meant for sharing and a lengthy by-the-glass list for noncommittal types. Libation Whiskey alla Moda.
4. Brine, Newburyport, brineoyster.com. Oysters ($1 each on Thursdays after 9), caviar, and bubbly for her; beef and craft beers for him. Libation High Heels + Cobblestones.
5. The Sinclair, Cambridge, sinclaircambridge.com. Concert-venue-and-upscale-restaurant hybrid relieves pressure to sustain three courses of small talk. Libation Ambre Empire.
What Divorcees Want
The top 15 words and phrases used by newly single locals on the Internet dating site OkCupid.
Saloon etiquette for the newbie.
“If you’re at the bar waiting for a date, always chat up the bartender. It’s a great way to feel comfortable, fast. After that, just be sure to drink at the same pace as your date, and know what to order. A white zinfandel or green-apple martini will send the signal that this is your first time out in years. Instead, choose something more current—you can never go wrong with a glass of wine (a rosé, if you like white zin) or a classic cocktail like a Manhattan.”—Marcus Palmer, bartender, vinebrooktavern.com
Secrets of Great Skype Sex
Because phone sex is so 2011.
For the modern divorcee, Skype offers fun without the sleepover—or the risk of STDs. OkCupid reports that the vast majority of Boston singles have done it via live-streaming at least once. “Skype sex is a form of exhibitionist sex,” says Good Vibrations staff sexologist Carol Queen, who suggests dim lighting that’s just bright enough to allow lip-reading. But practice first. “A good camera angle can erase a few years, a double chin, and even make certain body parts look smaller—or bigger.”
The Nasty Bits
A quick guide to adult sex in 2013.
Why After divorce, it’s natural to crave intimacy and pleasure, says relationship expert Karen Ruskin. Fortunately, newly minted singles don’t need to be coy, but they do need to be honest with themselves and their partners about what they’re looking for (drkarenruskin.com).
When First date or third? First base or second? “There are no rules if you don’t want them,” Ruskin says. “But if you really want some hot encounter because you’ve been shut off sexually for years, be up-front about it. Then your experience will be pure and feel good.”
Where Looking for a fling or a friend with benefits? Ruskin says that meeting up at a hotel may be safer than shagging in someone’s home. It will also help everyone involved compartmentalize life and lust (libertyhotel.com).
Attire After a long, unhealthy marriage, it’s common to feel insecure about your body and your performance. “Anything you can do to feel more attractive to yourself is a good idea,” says Ruskin, including picking up sexy lingerie or using a hint of cologne (agentprovocateur.com).
How When hooking up with someone for the first time, do it safely (condoms, ladies and gentlemen) and stick to the classics. Kink can come later once you know, and trust, your new partner (condomworldboston.com).
Check out the rest of our divorce primer: Welcome to Splitsville.