Ever notice that when you dine at chain restaurants, you often see an abundance of silent, unhappy looking couples on dates? You know, the ones where the girl is wearing a spaghetti strap tanktop from JC Penney pre-brand reinvention, and the guy is always in a t-shirt and shorts – maybe even cut-off jean shorts? Well, my theory is that the date venue is (mostly) to blame.
I recently found myself contemplating the effects of independent restaurants, those in New York City for instance, on the success of first dates. I believe that there is a direct relationship between the number of franchises a restaurant has despersed throughout America, and the silence, lack of connection, and lack of style involved in a date.
A chain restaurant bestows upon you zero incentive to dress to impress. A more chic independent locale, on the other hand, coaxes you to live up to its standards via your outfit. When it comes to conversation and connection at a chain restaurant, what is there to talk about? Your totally incorrectly portioned conglomerate of fried vegetables, cheese, and meat? Maybe the mass-produced, cliché-segment-of-the-color-wheel decor? And don’t expect any compliments on that spaghetti strap tank. Your local boutique restaurant, however, will present you with an array of conversation starters ranging from your no doubt interesting and aesthetically pleasing entrée to the well-thought-out decor with a mood and charm all its own. All of these positive environmental factors can translate to an intriguing, if not successful dating experience.
Disclaimer: I love Dunkin Donuts and Outback Steakhouse no matter how many poor color choices or uncultured design decisions they make.