On Her Flying Trapeze

Tuesday, May 16, 2006

Tip Tuesday – First Impressions

"You never get a second chance to make a first impression."

~Them, those one people~

I think that is one the dumbest phrases in the English language. Of course you do. If that pharse were true, Dan never would have married me. It’s not that I made a bad impression on him. I just didn’t make one at all. We knew each other for several moths before he remembered my name.

hikingWhen he finally did, he asked me out every day until we got married. It was very sweet, really. There have been many times when I have misjudged someone the first time I’ve met them and found out later that they were actually very nice, regardless of how pretty or talented they were.

This weekend, many of us will be making first impressions with babes we’ve been chatting with online for months. I know first impressions can be overcome with time, but time…she ain’t what we’ve got this weekend. One dinner. That’s it. I make an impression over salad and then I only have until the last bite of pasta and exchange of marvelous wit to leave a lasting impression on my internet idols.

My suggestions for myself for this specific occasion are:
-Don’t tell anyone, “Wow, your picture online is really really flattering! I hardly recognize you.”
-Don’t spill food, spew on anyone, or horkle soda out your nose when laughing at some funny thing Karen says.
-Say at least one sentence that does not involve computers or small people.
-Stop talking.

Please share your words of wisdom on how to make a good first impression or at least not come across as a total goober in front of new acquaintances. This does not have to be specific to meeting people you know from the internet. You may not be “that kind” of person. I’d also be happy to hear about ways you’ve completely embarrassed yourself when meeting someone for the first time. Those are always fun… in retrospect.

P.S. The house hunting is progressing. I even think we’ve found a winner. Keep your fingers, toes and nostrils crossed for us.


Anonymous Jeana said...

I had to read this twice "and found out later that they were actually very nice, regardless of how pretty or talented they were." And then it made me laugh. And horckle? Never heard the word, but I like it. I'm going to be using that one.

5/16/2006 3:58 AM

Blogger Chilihead2 said...

Don't drink too much wine! ;) I won't go into specifics, but let's just say I KNOW that won't end well.

I hope you all have a fantastic time! I only wish I could have made it!

5/16/2006 5:31 AM

Blogger Betsy Wasser said...

Don't forget to smile.

5/16/2006 5:40 AM

Anonymous sarah hart kingston said...

It's so interesting to know that DYM thought I wastn't nice the first time she met me. I mean, I know I can be intimidating with my myriad talents and fantastical super-model pulchritude, but I mostly pretend to be nice all the time in public. You were talking about me, right DYM?

My advice is to forget about what they think about you and start taking notes on the awesomely funny things they do and say. Also, it may be a good idea to have someone you know around to kick you if you start standing on tables, divulging past sins, or horkling.

5/16/2006 5:56 AM

Blogger Heth said...

Brush your teeth and wear clean underwear. Not that I think you don't...it's just good advice all around.

5/16/2006 5:57 AM

Blogger Peach said...

I think the best thing to do when meeting someone for the first time is to keep them talking about themselves. Ask questions, be genuinely interested. No one can resist a full-on opportunity to spill their guts about themselves. It's virtually impossible.

Look at all we're willing to divulge to an unseen audience. Just imagine how you'll get going with actual faces there to respond to your wittiness!!

Have a great time, btw!! Sure wish I didn't live on the other side of the world.

5/16/2006 6:07 AM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

I had a dear friend once tell me when I was struggling with self esteem, when you walk into a room, pretend everyone in that room loves you. If you can convince yourself of that, then you instantly become confortable in your surroundings. It has worked for me ever since then.

5/16/2006 6:11 AM

Blogger Tess said...

ohmygoodness I wish I was there. To think...all those gals with awesome writing styles, all talking at the same time, horkling soda, man oh man I wish I was going to be there.

My advice? Wear Depends. It sounds like it's going to be a pants-peeing good time.

5/16/2006 6:27 AM

Blogger Tigersue said...

Don't ask me how to make a good first impression. I'm one of those that stands in a corner completely unsure of what to say or do. That's me, a wall flower.
Okay go off hiding once again.

5/16/2006 6:47 AM

Blogger Antique Mommy said...

Most of my best friends are people I didn't like even a little bit at first and those that I fell in love with immediately didn't stand the test of time.

On making a good impression - ask more questions than you answer. That's what someone told me once. Seems reasonable. Sounds like a fun fun gathering!

5/16/2006 7:19 AM

Blogger ABC Momma said...

I'm a little worried because this is something I struggle with. It usually takes a while for me to warm up to people. So, to prepare for Saturday, I'm going to read the book "How to Win Friends and Influence People" and then start drinking (I hear it helps people relax a bit). :)

Actually, I think if we don't try to impress people when we meet them, they tend to like us better. Be yourself, and be more concerned about getting to know others.

5/16/2006 8:01 AM

Blogger Mel said...

I say everyone brings their laptops and you just instant-message rather than speak out loud.

5/16/2006 9:05 AM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Just smile and nod, smile and nod! Just kidding! I used to think that this one saying that says something like, "You can look wise in a crowd even if you're not just by being silent" was soo true!
I'm not helping am I? I'm teasing you! Actually I think the best way to be is relaxed and kind and do lot's of listening to others. That is a tool I have found to be really great when meeting new people. First impressions are not usually good anyways because people are automatically looking for bad in someone. Just don't be like that and you'll be happy! The first impressions I had on my husband were let's see, "I inhaled a gnat on our first date and didn't want to hack and choke it out and therefore kept clearing my throat when he finally said, "just cough it out!" Nice one, eh? Yeah and during our first month of dating, I locked the keys in my car three times in one week, and rolled my car with him in it! Yup, I was total dork!

5/16/2006 9:06 AM

Blogger aquamarine said...

I am afraid I feel quite socially inept and making first impressions, but I can't remember were I heard it, but that if you always believe others have the best of intentions when first meeting them, it makes it easier to see who they really are. And honestly, I think every one is just as nervous!

5/16/2006 10:17 AM

Anonymous surcie said...

I bet it'll be a fun gathering. But if I were going, I'd be so nervous! My blog only reflects my personality to a point--the fact that I struggle with shyness doesn't really show up in my posts.

I say, keep an open mind and try not to compare the people you meet to the way they sound in their blog. At least not too much.

5/16/2006 10:32 AM

Anonymous Pam in Utah said...

Oh, amen to walking fine art. It's always good to give the person the benefit of the doubt, especially when you don't really know them very well. Also, I love to be with someone who is comfortable keeping the conversation going, because I'd rather listen than talk, but if I have a comment, it sure is nice to be able to get it in edgewise! I had a distant relative who always monopolized the conversation at family gatherings. Everyone loved her, just couldn't communicate with each other when she was around! It was a little humorous, actually. :) She had a good excuse, though. She was the wife of a diplomat and had the habit of keeping the conversation going no matter what. She was just so good at it! :)

5/16/2006 10:45 AM

Blogger Karen said...

Don't go into it with any preconceived notions about people, especially in this situation when you only know a person based on what they choose to write and publish.

Some of the best people I've ever met are the most different from me. Open minds are a good thing.

5/16/2006 11:13 AM

Blogger Stephanie said...

I so wish I was there. You are all such lovely women. Maybe next lunch I could kidnap Itybtyfrog to make the seven hour drive there.

Don't do what I do. I talk WAY TOO FAST when I first meet people. Have a great time!

5/16/2006 11:58 AM

Anonymous shannon from rocks in my dryer said...

I'll be jealously thinking of you! I can relate to your trepidation, though, because Chilihead and I are meeting two blogging friends for coffee later in the week--my first time to do such a thing. Very excited, but a little nervous!

Just have fun...

5/16/2006 1:04 PM

Blogger emlouisa said...

I like Mel's idea.

My problem whenever I am with ANYONE, whether I have known them forever or whether I just meet them is that I talk WAY too much. And sometimes say really innappropriate things trying to be funny and then people look at me weird.

Yikes. I hadn't thought about this before you posted it. Thanks so much for making me nervous!

5/16/2006 3:11 PM

Blogger Stephanie said...

If someone says, "I do this," or "I really like this," and you don't like it, restraing yourself. DO NOT say, "Oh, then you don't want to hear MY opinion about it." Yeah. Don't do that. Someone did that to me once. It has taken a long time to get past that impression.

5/16/2006 3:48 PM

Blogger Cmommy said...

I want to come to Idaho!!! Whhaaaaahhhh!

The 'first impression' quote jumped out at me 'cause I read it today in my new library book about The Interview. Just remember that hearts and minds connected here without, well almost without, visual input. Listen to your heart! :-)

(ps: IF you have a sec, will you hop over to my typepad site and give me your opinion? thanks!)

5/16/2006 3:56 PM

Blogger Grammy said...

K, How does one cross their nostrils?

The best piece of advice I've ever been given for th is is. Don't worry so much about what people think of you, but more about what they think about themselves when they are with you.

I love you. You are a building kind of person. You'll do fine.

5/16/2006 4:21 PM

Anonymous misha said...

break into mary poppins songs. that'll seperate the wheat from the chaff....

5/16/2006 4:42 PM

Blogger elliespen said...

Okay, if anyone actually manages to cross their nostrils, you are solemnly bound to take a picture and post it here for all to see.

Wish I could be there on Saturday, but alas, 'tis not to be. I'll have to wait and read about it later. Have fun!

5/16/2006 7:00 PM

Blogger smartmama said...

may i suggest some hello my name is name tags, good girl friend pick up lines (so whats your screen name) and lame party mixers to break the ice...

5/16/2006 8:01 PM

Blogger EvaRob said...

I hear you on the first impression front. How about...no ice breakers? They're too stressful.

5/16/2006 8:18 PM

Blogger Heather said...

I think the best suggestion I can make is to not judge others. Be open with everyone and they will be the same with you. I had a girl from high school tell me that she thought that I was stuck-up until she got to know me and found out that I was just quiet. It's hard to tell what a person is really like until you talk with them and get to know them a little better.

5/16/2006 8:36 PM

Blogger bon said...

MMmmmm... not much help here.

All I know is this... there are kinds of people in this world... The kind of person who walks into a room with a "here I am!" attitude (this includes the folks who are so painfully shy that they cannot get past themselves and their shyness/discomfort/shortcomings etc), and the person who walks in with the attitude of "there you are!"

I'm still working on the "there you are" bit. It always surprises me when folks say they like having me around 'cuz it feel like I never shut up sometimes. Sigh, workin' on it.

5/16/2006 9:13 PM

Blogger Taffi said...

My plan for a decent first impression this weekend? SuperGluing my lips shut so as not to embarrass myself. (I'm just going so I can say that I got to meet the cool bloggers!) :-)

5/16/2006 11:52 PM

Blogger The Constant Gardener said...

I have to hijack this blog for a moment and inform Emlouisa that the people who look at her wierd when she says funny things are wierd themselves. I've never heard you say anything (and I've heard you say lots and lots of things) that invited a wierd look.

Back to me...

I'll try not to get on my soapbox about anything and just be nice and happy.

I have too many soapboxes.

5/17/2006 7:01 AM


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