Saturday, April 1, 2017

A List that Will Save You Money

There’s a very elementary method to saving money. It’s an exercise in budgeting that everyone should perform at least one time in their life. Among ways to save yourself some cash, this is one of the best methods out there. It doesn’t concern being miserly, but rather finding out what it is you truly want and going after said desire. The simplicity of this exercise may make you question trying it, but please do so.

The money-saving method involves a list. Make a list of all the things your money has gone to, is being spent on right now, or have the possibility of spending in the near future. Don’t think of just a few matters. Whatever comes to mind, write everything down. Go over bank statements if necessary, as you should try including everything into this list.

The next thing you need to do is go through this list and give careful consideration to each item. Spend more time on large items, whether the possibilities are future, present or past. If, say, a jointly owned property at a beach is worth 50% of what you invested for it, runs an extra grand annually, and is hardly ever used, you should learn from this. Don’t beat yourself up over it, as this learning will enrich your life.

Think honestly on how many times you will actually use your luxury vehicle and its cost. It might need $200 for each day of use. If it’s worth that much then go for it, but perhaps you would like staying in 4-star hotels more than the luxury vehicle. An even cheaper solution would be to rent out an RV, providing yourself with more money for separate goals.

You don’t have to sacrifice to save money. All of us are mindful of the penny pinchers and scrooges, banking perhaps hundreds or thousands of dollars and not doing anything with it. You should save cash in one aspect of life and use it to make your entire life more fulfilling.

For example, suppose you’re spending ten bucks a month for magazine subscriptions you barely ever read, or dropping insurance money on a motorbike that’s hardly ever ridden. All you would have to do here is cancel the magazine subscriptions or auction away the motorbike. Would it really be such a big deal? what could you do by saving that $10 per month?

If you can save ten bucks per month, then imagine what could be done by saving $200 monthly. This is why you have to determine what you do and do not want.

Labels: A List that Will Save You Money

American Gloriana -- Chapter One


April, 2012

I was on board Air Force Two headed for the Kennedy Space Center when the news flashed that President McCain had been blown up by a suicide bomber in Damascus. The president had been in the Syrian capitol meeting with members of the new, revolutionary government, ironing out details of an aid agreement. He had, perhaps incautiously, taken a tour of the Damascus souk, showing that he wasn’t afraid I suppose.

I was seated in the back of the plane, reading some briefing materials of the upcoming flight of Orion 3, the first manned launch of the new spacecraft that NASA was planning to use to return to the Moon. My ear piece buzzed and the Vice President said, “Jeff, I need you right now.”

Something in her tone made me stand up immediately. I closed the file on my tablet and then walked forward to the conference room compartment. The Secret Service agent opened the door to the compartment and I stepped inside.

The Vice President was seated at the conference table looking at the flat screen, tuned as it usually was to Fox News. The scene was of chaos in a Middle Eastern city. “-far the death toll is 32, with an unknown number of people wounded. It has been confirmed that President John McCain has been assassinated by an Al Qaeda suicide bomber while touring the Damascus souk with officials of the new Syrian government. The White House Chief of Staff, several of the President’s Secret Service Detail, and a number of Syrian government officials are also among the dead.”

The Vice President looked up at me. The look on her face was what one might expect, barely disguised shock with a kind of steely determination taking hold. Before I could speak, she said, “We’re turning around to Washington, obviously.”

I nodded. “I suggest contacting Chief Justice John Roberts and have him meet us at the airport, Madam President.”

She looked like she had been kicked what I said that. But without skipping a beat, she said, “Take care of it. And I want you to issue a statement to the press pool. They’re probably already going crazy back there.”

“I’ll do that. Anything else?”

“After I take the oath of office and make a statement to the press, we’re going to the White House. I want everyone in the National Security Council we can find to be there when I arrive.”

At that point the door opened again and Lacey Hendricks, the chief speech writer for the now president of the United States entered the room. Her face was white and already a little wet. I put my hand on her shoulder and gave her a reassuring nod as I left.

I stopped by the communications center and fired off the messages. The Chief Justice was hearing a case with the rest of the Supreme Court. Of the National Security Council, the Secretary of Defense was in Brussels, so he would be sending in a deputy. The rest would be at the White House when we arrived.

Then I went to the back of the plane. We had three members of the press pool, one each from print, network TV, and cable TV. They all were on cell phones, no doubt talking to editors and producers. They are gave me my attention when they saw me.

“I need to issue a brief statement,” I said. At least two video cameras were already aimed at me. “We have just received word that the president of the United States has been assassinated by a terrorist suicide bomber in Damascus. We have ordered Air Force Two to be turned around and we should be arriving back at Andrews Air Force Base in one hour and twenty minutes. We have already alerted the Chief Justice, who will meet us at the plane and administer the oath of office. After a brief statement at the air field, the newly sworn in president will return to the White House where she will convene a meeting of the National Security Council.

“Any questions?”

The three pool reporters erupted at once.

July, 2008 – November 2008

Just to get the gentle reader up to speed, my name is Jeff Jager and I am the Chief of Staff to the vice president, now apparently serving that same function to the president. I’m a graduate of the Naval Academy and I was, until 2002, a Navy SEAL. An unfortunate encounter with an IED in Afghanistan took my left leg below the knee and thus ended my operator career. After being fitting with a prosthesis, I transferred to Naval Intelligence, spent some time in Iraq, and then in 2007 became the Naval aide to then Senator John McCain.

After about a year, knowing that I was not likely to become an admiral, I began to contemplate work in the private sector. About that time the senator had clinched the nomination for president. He had known of my plans. He called me into his senate office one day and asked if I wanted to join the campaign as a national security advisor. I had grown to admire the senator and thought he would make a great president, though I wondered why he needed such a person, since there was not much McCain did not know about those matters.

I found out a week later when I was asked to fly to a little place called Wasilla, in Alaska. It all fell together. I knew that the governor of Alaska was on the short list to be president. I was suppose to sound her out and asked her questions about defense and foreign policy, the better to gauge what her attitudes and general knowledge were.

I arrived at the governor’s house by a lake in civilian clothes, driving a rented car. I was greeted at the door by a young, handsome teenage girl. She cocked her head and yelled, “Mom, it’s for you!”

A reedy voice from within replied, “Don’t be rude, Willow. Invite him in.”

The girl, whom I took to be Willow, stepped aside and allowed me in. The governor herself, wearing a track suit, glasses, and a smile bounded up and shook my hand warmly, “Glad to meet ya, Captain Jager.”

We sat down in the living room with some coffee and after a few pleasantries, got down the business. I found that the governor had the sort of general knowledge of world affairs that anyone who habitually watched the news and had read a book or two would know. She was sharp, though, and asked me some intelligent questions, taking notes. She had obviously not needed to know the inside outs of Syrian politics or the latest palace intrigue from North Korea. She was very strong in international energy policy, however. All in all, I thought that with some intelligent briefing, she would do well.

The conversation turned after a while when she started to ask me questions. I told her about my boyhood in Texas, time spent deer hunting and working on a shrimp boat during the summer the earn money when school was out. That perked her ears up, I think. We compared notes about stalking white tail vs. moose and how one had to beat haddock upside the head once caught to keep them from bruising themselves.

She asked about my career and how I had lost my leg. She mentioned that her eldest son would soon being doing a tour in Iraq in the Army. She looked at me strangely for a moment, not with the expression that people usually get when they are uncomfortable about the leg. Was she wondering about the possibilities of her boy, coming home maimed or dead? It would be understandable if she did, but she never mentioned that to me in all the time of our association.

Of course I was being interviewed for a job; I could guess that right away. That was confirmed a week later when I was called again to Arizona where the official announcement was made. She hired me on the spot as her chief of staff for the campaign, with the understanding that should we win a permanent appointment would happen. This caused me to accelerate my official separation from the Navy, which I did with some regret. But with no possibility of any more sea or overseas duty, it was for the best.

The rest was a whirlwind. The effect of her candidacy was like an electric charge into McCain’s candidacy. Before he had lagged behind the Democratic nominee, an obscured Illinois senator with the unlikely name of Barack Obama. After, the McCain candidacy went through the roof in the polls.

The convention was a triumph, with the governor having the audience delirious in the aisle. McCain himself won kudos with a speech that touched on his long service and the torment he went through in the Hanoi Hilton. The message was clear, here was a man who had the life experience to be president and would fear nothing that the job would throw at him.

The first hint of trouble arose soon after when we had a meeting with some of the Senator’s people about press interviews. They wanted the governor to talk to Katie Couric, on the theory that they would talk about the sort of morning show girlie things like children and baking cookies that the Perky One liked to talk about when she was on the Today Show.

That didn’t smell right to me. Couric was on the evening news now and was doing hard news. Also some of the contacts I had developed in the media during my time working for McCain had told me that they were in full fledged panic mode over the governor’s candidacy. They had assumed all summer that Obama was going to walk on water into the Oval Office. Now we had presented someone with more charisma and experience than he had.

My thought had been to put her on Hannity on Fox and some of the right wing talk radio to get her some experience in friendly venues before throwing her out into the mainstream media deep end. But I was overruled and the interview was set up.

My worst fears were confirmed when my contact at the network told me that the word had come down to drop the hammer on the governor, to try to rough her up on the air. My gal was ever able to give me a general line of questioning that was going to be tried.

We spent most of two days getting the governor up to speed on what she was going to be asked about. The standard line we were going to give if she was thrown something she didn’t know would be to respond that she was getting up to speed on a variety of subjects, but then offer a related tid bit that would show off what she did know.

I also did one other thing. I insisted that we would have our own camera crew at the interview to record the whole thing. They were not pleased to hear that, nor in fact was McCain’s campaign staff when they heard of it. But I was guarding against shenanigans with tape editing, used from time to time by the networks to make a subject look bad. I told them it was non-negotiable.

The interview went off and the consensus was that the governor did fine. She seemed to blank for a second when the Perky One asked what newspapers she read, but then was able to come back, since we discussed it, and mention a couple of local Alaska papers, as well as the Wall Street Journal and the Washington Times.

Really, the people running the McCain campaign were such morons, I wonder how it was that we won. At one point, the governor felt that she was being so micromanaged that she decided, as she artfully put it, “go rogue” and do her own scheduling. I had to deal with some angry phone calls, but the overflow, delirious crowds that the governor got everywhere she went finally silenced the busy bodies at McCain campaign headquarters.

Still, I wonder sometimes what would have happened if Obama had chose someone else besides John Edwards as his running mate or if the financial crisis had hit in late October instead of late November. As if was, election night was a nail biter, such as it was, so I was told, in 2000. Fortunately we won Florida by a comfortable margin. I figure we were over the top when we picked up Ohio and North Carolina as well. But the popular vote was razor thing and the networks didn’t call the thing until about three in the morning the following day. McCain got the concession phone call from Obama, then made his victory speech. Then the governor made her speech.

And that was how I became chief of staff to the vice president of the United States and, as we shall see, the president.

Chapter Two

Labels: American Gloriana -- Chapter One

Are "For-Profit Degrees" Worth It?

The first thing we need to understand is the meaning of “For-Profit Degrees”; for this article a “for-profit degree” will be any degree obtained from any for-profit College or University. There are several for profit universities available to students of all occupations and lifestyles, the most well advertised might be the University of Phoenix. Everyone has seen the commercials or web advertisements.

I am the product of a for-profit university, having completed my doctoral studies at the University of Phoenix. Prior to my work at the University of Phoenix, I successfully completed a B.S. in Mathematics at St. John’s University in Queens, New York, and an M.B.A. as a dual major in Management and Information Systems at New York University in New York. Therefore, I am quite comfortable with my education, yet when I decided to pursue a doctorate the same question crossed my mind. Are for-profit degrees worth it?

When I decided to pursue my doctorate, I had three children and was firmly rooted in my career; because of my situation, there was no way I could attend a traditional university and sustain my family on a typical university doctoral stipend; I had to work AND go to school. I had to ask myself, why pursue this degree. The answer I found was to pursue the degree for myself. I was planning for MY future, wanting to teach at a college level. While an M.B.A. might work, a doctorate would open many more doors.

In the traditional university setting I typically studied a subject for approximately 15 weeks, a usual semester. While attending the University of Phoenix I spent 8 weeks in class studying a subject and was required to produce well-thought and clear representation of my studies including numerous papers. In the business world, turn-around times are rapid and employees are not afforded months or years to resolve an issue. Which educational format more closely resembles the business environment?

While studying for my MBA, I generally conducted research alone, and completed much of my work alone. While for my doctorate, I worked in small groups with people who had different work experiences , different priorities and who were sometimes working remotely via laptop and email. Again, which format more closely resembles the current business environment?

Traditional colleges and universities tend to weight material more towards the theoretical, while the University of Phoenix, and I am sure other for-profit universities, weight more towards the practical. Business people need to be able to balance both the theoretical as well as the practical.

It seems easy to argue that there is something wrong with “For Profit Education” as opposed to either State or Private schools, after all it’s not the standard and norm to which we are accustomed. Nevertheless, both traditional as well as for-profit colleges and universities are businesses. Both require revenue, have budgets, and are responsible for outcomes. So really, traditional and for-profit education is not very different.

So if you ask me, Are For-Profit Degrees Worth It? Maybe the real question is why do you want a degree?

Labels: Are "For-Profit Degrees" Worth It?

5 Tips for Insuring the Family Car

While car insurance does not give physical protection to you and your family, it does offer significant financial protection. Often in automobile accidents, the cost of the car repair or replacement pales in comparison to the medical and other liability costs. Without proper car insurance, some families will find it nearly impossible to replace the car that provides the transportation to and from the workplace. This can produce even greater financial hardship.

Buy insurance to protect every driver of every vehicle.

Trying to slip young drivers past the insurance company without adding them to the policy can leave you uninsured. Car insurance policies routinely list the minimum age driver for the vehicles. If you do not specify underage drivers, 26 normally is the youngest driver allowed. A young driver having an accident in your vehicle will not be covered on this type of policy. You will be responsible for all of the loss involved on both sides of the accident. The easy way to avoid this is to be honest with the insurer and pay the correct premium for the coverage that you need.

Your personal vehicle needs to be protected unless you can afford to replace it without a major sacrifice.

Most family cars are valued between a couple of thousand and tens of thousands of dollars. Replacing them can be painful if you have to pay the full amount. If your car is financed, the financial institution will require collision insurance as part of the loan agreement. You should at least carry collision insurance as long as your car has debt attached to it. The only thing worse than having to replace a car without insurance is to have to pay off the old car while trying to buy another one. Collision insurance will protect you from this possibility.

The law requires you to buy liability protection on your car.

While the law does not necessarily care about your personal financial well-being, it does care that you can adequately compensate others for a loss that is your fault. Liability insurance will cover both needs. This is the part of your car insurance that takes pays for the medical bills, pain and suffering, and property loss of people involved but not at fault in the accident.

Liability insurance can be purchased to cover minimal amounts to satisfy the legal requirements.

If the cost of car insurance is a financial hardship by itself, you can buy the least amount required by law. However, if you have assets that are at risk in the event of a lawsuit, you may want to reconsider only buying the minimum. These amounts may seem huge when you see figures above $100,000 listed on your policy. However, this type of money can be burned off quickly with huge hospital bills and large court settlements. Amounts less than $250,000 may not be adequate to cover your home equity or retirement accounts.

Always make sure that you carry enough liability to exceed the value of your existing assets.

If you do not want to face financial ruin after an accident, you need enough liability insurance to pay for claims intended to exhaust your future income and current assets. Since many people do not review their car insurance regularly, you should consider buying about 25% more insurance than your assets to protect you as your assets grow.

Labels: 5 Tips for Insuring the Family Car

A 10k Unique to the World of Adventure Racing

Brief Description

Mud Run is a combination of regular citizens, Civil Servants, companies, teams, colleges and some military personnel competing together through a series of boot camp styled obstacles that have been surrounded by (or consist entirely of) mud. The race is 10K and it is unique to the world of adventure racing. This is definitely not something you could set up in your backyard.



All participants are asked to set up a participants donation page. Friends, family and co-workers can support your effort & raise some much needed cash for our charitable partners. We can’t conduct the race w/out their volunteer help & they can’t do the great work they do without ours. 100% of all pledged funds go directly to the charity.

What is DGAP?

DGAP stands for Division for Generally Athletic People or Don’t Give A Poop (about my placement). It is the FUN RUN division. There are no requirements for attire, gender or team size. IT IS AN INDIVIDUAL ENTRY! There’s NO TEAM OPTION DURING REGISTRATION but you can form as a team at the race in any way you want! Again you can wear anything, run as fast or slow as you want, wear tennis shoes, wear shorts, wear costumes, run as a team of any size, have fun, stop and play, anything you want.

Additional Information

All Prize Categories (teams and individuals BUT NOT DGAP) will be wearing “boots and utes”-combat boots and camouflage utility trousers or long pants (no tights). All Prize Categorie Participants MUST wear BOOTS that cover the ankle and loose-fitting pants, cargo pants or sweat-pants. If you don’t like that, run in the fun run called DGAP….in the DGAP division any attire goes (we suggest boots and pants since terrain is rough) and course is basically the same. Unauthorized attire in PRIZE DIVISIONS will result in participant’s removal from the competition. Required race attire in Prize Divisions is for the safety of all participants competing at a much faster pace, a leveling of the playing field and is more conducive to the rough nature of the obstacles along the course. Expect everything you wear to be covered in mud and water by the end of the race. Bring extra clothes and a towel! All DGAP participant are highly encouraged to wear the same attire as the competitive groups but there is no requirement to do so for participation. DGAP is also the CRAZY COSTUME division and there are no requirements to complete all obstacles if a participant does not feel inclined to do so. There are NO DGAP TEAMS….. OFFICIALLY. DGAP is an Individual entry but you can all run together and call yourself a team of any size or gender combination. If you want to run with friends in DGAP…register for the same start time!

There are approximately 25-30 obstacles to overcome along the 6.2 Mile course, most of which contain water and mud. Although none of the obstacles are impossible or dangerous, they do require a certain level of strength and fitness and the potential exists for injury due to falls, trips and crawling. Obstacles can be taken at any pace and thus the course is able to be completed by most anyone. It will challenge you more as you attempt a greater speed completing it. Safety will be the number one priority during the event. Participants will be required to conduct themselves in a controlled and serious manner while navigating obstacles. Anyone deemed to be a danger to themselves or others through reckless behavior, will be removed from the obstacle and/or the course. Volunteers will be course safety monitors and are present throughout the course. IF you do not have the athletic ability to complete an obstacle you are encouraged to skip it. Please adhere to the tenets of the waiver and consult a physician prior to attempting this race. The requirements for stamina, upper body strength and swimming may require the evaluation of a fitness professional.
1. You can pay additional fee and have your packet mailed and then comply to the mail-in process.

You will receive a timing chip, wrist band, waiver, and a coupon for your t-shirt to be redeemed on race day. The waiver will need to be signed and returned with the self address stamped envelope included. You are responsible for the timing chip, if the chip is lost or forgotten you will need to pay a $15 replacement fee on race day. NO EXCEPTIONS.

2. You can pick your packet up – TBA


Labels: A 10k Unique to the World of Adventure Racing

A Pen is Mightier Than the Sword

A pen

Do you wish to protest against someone?
Or write a sentence or a word.
Never forget it is often said that
“A pen is mightier than the sword.”

No it is not used to fight in a war,
Nor it is used to become the lord.
But why is it still said that
“A pen is mightier than the sword?”

It is because when in the hands of press,
To insult someone, enough is one word.
And hence, it is said that
“A pen is mightier than the sword.”

Labels: A Pen is Mightier Than the Sword

Anchor Hocking Vintage Collection Review - All Glass Storage


Each Anchor Hocking Vintage Design glass container and lid is made from a heavy weight sturdy glass. I have dropped these and they have not broken.

Size and Weight: They feel like the weight of a Pyrex dish at a little over a pound for each container, including the glass lid. Each container holds 2 cups and measures 3.5″ tall with the lid on. They are 3.25″ with the lid off. They get wider toward the top measuring 4.5″ square. At the base they are 2.25″ square. The actual container gets wider than that before it starts. The base actually raises the container up about 1/4inch.

The Design: These great containers also have an attractive design. We have used them as serving dishes for small side dishes as well as storage containers. The sides have vertical depressions giving the look of stripes but they are still all glass. There is a flat space on two sides that would be great for adhering a label if you were using these for freezer storage.

On the bottom of the container visible when you look from the inside, is the Anchor Name with 1932 at the top and Vintage Design at the Bottom. Also visible above the Emblem are the words “Oven, Microwave, and Freezer Safe”. Printed below the Anchor Name are the words “No Stovetop or Broiler Use” I like that they printed this on the containers since they could last so long as to be passed down. Any new user can clearly figure out their uses by the easily visible imprinted information.

The Lid: Anchor Hocking designed the Vintage Collection Glass Containers to have lids that just sit on top of the container. The lid has the same design as the sides and has a lip that sits around the inside edge that allows it to stay in place while it is on the container. It does not snap on or have a rubber or plastic gasket to keep it in place or air tight. If you put liquids in this you will want to make sure that they are sitting flat in your refrigerator or freezer. The striped design on the lid sticks out on the underside of the lid leaving the top a flat surface for freezer labels.

Other Available Sizes: I have a larger container that is about the size of four of these small ones combined but about the same height. I have also seen one that is about the size of two of them side by side, and also about the same height. If you have a few different sizes they all will stack nicely in your cabinet.

Use and Care

Uses: I use my 2 cup containers mostly for storage but I have also used them to freeze left overs. Sometimes when I make soup I forget that it is just my husband and myself so I make too much. I have a few glass containers that are about the same 2 cup size so I fill them with soup and then freeze them. Then because the containers are nicely angled wider at the top, the soup can be slid out in a frozen block and stored in a plastic freezer bag. This way I can continue to use my storage containers for everyday things. When I am ready to have some soup I just plop the frozen block in the container and microwave it until it warms up. It is nice having the glass lid because you can microwave without worrying that your soup will explode all over the inside of your microwave.

I have used these containers as serving dishes for side dishes and then if we have left overs they can just go right in the fridge. We will often eat the left overs for a snack right from the containers. To me these were a great find and am I considering buying two more while they are still available!

Oven, Microwave and Freezer Safe: I have not actually used mine in the oven but I have put them in the microwave and the freezer with no issues.

Washing and Care: I have been washing my containers in the dishwasher for at least two years with no issues. I use a high temp wash and a heated dry. They look exactly the same as they did when they were new.

Warnings: Although these can be heated in the oven, do not put these on the stove top or use them with your broiler. I also am careful with any glass containers, to not let them go from freezing to hot, or hot to freezing too quickly. Never place the hot dish in cold water, or a frozen dish in hot water.

Cost, Value and Durability: I have been using these glass containers for at least two years and they look exactly like they did when I first got them. I have put many things in them including spaghetti sauce and the glass has never discolored or stained in any way. This is the type of item that you could easily own for a lifetime and continue to be usable for many many years. I think I paid about $5 each for them, but I think given how well they hold up that they would be worth much more. Compared to plastic containers that only last for a short time these are amazing.

Final thoughts and Rating

The Anchor Hocking Vintage Design 2 cup containers get a full 5 stars from me. I love that I have a container that has no plastic to leak chemicals into my food or degrade over time. These containers are truly timeless and I expect to keep them forever.

Labels: Anchor Hocking Vintage Collection Review - All Glass Storage

7 Good Things that Can Come Out of a Bad Date

We’ve all been there – our BFF sets us up on a blind date with a friend of a friend who she promises is “a perfect match”. You get all dressed up, open the door and are stunned at your friend’s awful taste in men. Or you ask out that hottie you’ve had your eye on for a month only to discover that outside of the office he is an insufferable boor or completely vapid and self-absorbed. We have all had our share of bad, awkward or boring dates. However, not all of us realize that bad dates offer many hidden opportunities.

Here is a list of 7 things that can come out of an awful date. Next time you find yourself trying to force a laugh at a lame joke over a plate of the most awful food you have ever ingested, why not see if you can find the silver lining of the heavy cloud of bad date-ness that is ruining your evening?

1. While the man sitting across from you might not be a great catch, he could be your next best friend

In the dating world it is easy to develop a cynical mindset and a bit of a predatory outlook when it comes to men. But it is important to realize that while you may not be having any sparks with your date, he is still a human being. He might not be your next Prince Charming, but he could very well have a lot of friend potential or even be a good professional networking contact. As long as you are clear with your date about what your intentions are, the transition to having a awful date to having a nice dinner out with a friend can be a smooth one.

2. Maybe you aren’t attracted to your date, but your next major love interest could be right around the corner… or at the next table.

A lot of times when we are out on a bad date we are too bummed out to notice much of anything other than our own unhappiness. But if you keep your eyes open, you might see your next big crush walking by, whether it’s your waiter, the water boy or that guy eating alone at the next table. Just be sure to be very subtle about any advances you are making on a guy other than your date – hurting his feelings can only take a bad date down a notch. But also be honest with him that you just aren’t feeling it.

3. You get a chance to be girly and play dress up.

While there are some ladies out there who get to dress to the nines every day, many of us work in places that have dress codes. Going out on a date, even one that turns out to be pretty lame, can be a good opportunity to pamper yourself, dress in something really lavish and feel like a princess.

4. You get to be treated to a nice meal (or treat yourself if you are paying).

How many times a week do you actually bother to treat yourself to a nice meal you don’t have to cook yourself (No, that sandwich shop that you frequent during your lunch hour does not count)? If you are like most single ladies, you are cooking most of your meals, outside of the occasional “girl’s night out”. Relish the opportunity to enjoy food you didn’t have to slave over. While buying the most expensive thing on the menu isn’t a great idea if your date is paying, there is nothing wrong with trying something new or a little exotic. Think of it as a break from your own home cooking.

5. You now know a cool place to go with friends or to take another date.

Going on a date is a great way to find new restaurants that you might want to revisit someday, either with friends or when it is your turn to plan a date with another potential suitor. It is always good to have an expansive list of possible date spots, especially if a guy asks you out at the last minute (or visa versa).

6.You get to practice your dating skills.

A lot of times we get used to interacting with men as friends or coworkers so much that we sort of forget how to act on a date. While of course you should always be yourself in every situation, dating takes a different mindset then just kicking back with your guy friends. See a bad date as an opportunity to brush on your dating skills – how to get to know a person over the course of a single evening, how to balance talking about who you are and showing interest in your date, and how to keep awkward silences to a minimum. Your bad date might help make you into a master conversationalist, which will be super-helpful for your next date.

7. You get to learn more about what you don’t want in a guy, helping you to understand better what you are looking for.

Bad dates are wonderful opportunities to get to know ourselves better. What we look for in men is sometimes hard to pin down, often taking the form of little more than gut-instinct. A bad date is an excellent time for introspection. What is it about this guy that is turning you off? What about him is annoying you? Knowing what you really aren’t interested in can help you make better dating choices in the future and help solidify your vision of Mr. Perfect.

Labels: 7 Good Things that Can Come Out of a Bad Date

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