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Opinion

Dating the Danes | One game you won't win


And then there was one ... Swapping New Zealand for Zealand for her second tour of duty, Emily McLean isn’t, as far as we know, getting hitched anytime soon. She’s out there kissing frogs to find her prince - nobody ever said Dating the Danes was going to be easy.

March 2, 2013
17:00

by Emily McLean


Danish men know how to play the game. While they may not be competing in the traditional dating game as such, they’ve created a much more sinister, craftier, slyer version – I’ll call it ‘slyming’. And sadly, this is one game where participation isn’t optional if you intend to get close to any Danish guy. 

Rule number one in slyming is to keep your options open for as looooooooong as possible. Why commit to one girl when an even hotter, funnier, sweeter one could be just around the corner? A far cry from a NZ man’s approach where flirting takes so much effort that by the time they nab one girl, they’re far too exhausted to try it on another. (In this regard, Danish men know that slyming is about working smarter, not harder.)

Rule number two in slyming is to use the word ‘friendship’ in as broad a term as humanly possible. Danish men always want to appear like the good guys, so by inserting this simple word into any sentence, it makes them appear caring instead of misleading or cuddly instead of flirtatious. 

No joke – I’ve had the following lines said to me in the name of ‘friendship’.

“I just like being close to my female friends, and spooning is a part of that.”

And “I don’t like that I have to tone down my affectionate words for a girl just because she’s my friend.”

Now some Danish guys are slymers for life. But some just enter the game as bench players for a quarter. However, by the time they come off the field, they’ve already solidified their reputation, making the transition from slymer to good guy a very hard one to make. 

Take the latest guy I recently liked – I genuinely thought of him as a great guy, but that came into question when I felt I had been slymed. Now, I really thought he was into me – he emailed often, he was flirty, he was attentive, he told me I had to meet his family and he even texted me ‘princess’. So I was completely shocked when I got the “Oh, I think we’re just good friends” line. What?!

It’s at times like that when I crave a NZ farmer and purely for one reason – they’re honest. They don’t slyme and, come to think of it, they wouldn’t actually know how to.

As I see it, the Danish men I’ve encountered are good men ... but boy do they know how to pull a line, lay on the charm and flirt. 

Those things in themselves are not bad, but if they’re not done with intention, then they just come off as deceitful. 

As a New Zealander, it’s impossible to win this game. It’s not in our DNA to slyme, nor do we have any experience in it. So we either have to be bench-warmers or enter at our own peril. 

I’m a person ... not a game. Don’t play me. 




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