Are you ready for Never do the chasing. Welcome to the ruthless world of romance - New York-style. Though I haven't had as much sex as Carrie Bradshaw and I'm definitely not as thin, I have been dating Manhattan-style for most of my adult life.
I am a year-old showbusiness columnist and an American who lives in London. I have tried out my methods extensively on British men, with great results. Manhattan is the Olympics of dating. It's a city where men are famously unwilling to commit and people juggle multiple dating partners. The women who manage to thrive have learned important lessons that I can share with you. Scroll down for more As a nation where dating is often forgotten in the desperate rush to get someone to commit to you as your boyfriend, the Brits just don't know how to keep things casual without turning into a crazed stalker or feeling like a tart.
Follow my advice and you'll learn how to win at the dating game. How do I get his attention and what do I do once I've got it? Go get him, but make him think he got you It's not hard to get someone's attention - making a fool of yourself is easy, and he will certainly notice that.
The important thing is getting the right kind of attention. The more attractive a man is, the less available you ought to be. He will assume you like him, no matter what you do. Be casual and let him work. My friend Amanda, a year-old TV producer, has a great technique. She was at a big charity event in New York when she spotted a man who was just her type.
She tried to make eye contact, without success. At one point, she overheard someone call him Paul. As the night wore on, she was determined to meet him, but reluctant to make the first move which, by the way, almost never works with men - they like to believe they are in control.
Instead, she took a big breath and approached him smiling. I am racking my brain, but you do look familiar" never underestimate the power of suggestion.
After chatting for an hour, they left the party together. He began calling her and asked her out. They dated for a few months and over a boozy dinner she confessed she had pretended to know him. He was flattered and delighted. You don't have to be as aggressive as this. Sometimes it's just about making eye contact and smiling broadly.
British men need more encouragement than New Yorkers and are often afraid to approach women. As an American with an open face and big grin, men constantly tell me they felt safe coming up to me - and that's why it happened. Give the guys a break - it's not easy making the first move. So now you have his attention, how do you keep his interest? It's an unfortunate truth that men love it if you can cook for them.
NYC girls don't cook - most, like me, use their ovens for extra shoe storage. In Manhattan, you can order virtually any dish and have it delivered in time to appear as if you cooked it. In Britain, it's not always that easy. So, it's essential that you learn to cook one or two things, especially meat. Steak, shepherd's pie, roast lamb. He'll love you for it - and you can get takeaways the rest of the week.
Waxing is the only way to go and you'll never regret it. Men love it and so will you. If you are concerned about pain, take two shots of vodka and a Nurofen beforehand.
That's been the secret of Manhattan girls for years. It certainly takes the edge off. What do I do on the date? Let a man be a man There is one clear rule on which I will not waver: Do not assume you are splitting the bill, which is crucial on the first date. You are a lady, he asked you out if you are playing it the right way and he should treat you. Besides, if you are a true NYC girl, you've spent twice the cost of the meal on your bikini wax, pedicure and blow-dry. It comes down to a little role play.
If you want to be the girl, then let him be the man. It's a sign of respect, as if it's a privilege for him to spend the evening in your company and he wants to take care of you, in some way.
How do I keep his interest? Spread your crazy around. We all have it - the inner psychotic who lives inside of us. We try to keep her under control, but every once in a while we find ourselves grabbing his mobile and furtively looking for inappropriate text messages from other girls, especially ones with lots of xxxxs at the end.
I advise British friends to date more than one man at a time so whatever is crazy inside them isn't aimed at one guy - spread your craziness around! If you're dating Mark and James, and Mark doesn't call when he says he will then it's no problem - you can send a flirty e-mail to James. Or if you're meant to meet up with Dan and he cancels at the last minute, call up an ex you're still friendly with and ask him out for a glass of wine.
I am not suggesting you sleep around, but simply flirting with another man can make you feel great and keep your options and your mind open. Of course, once you are past the casual dating stage, you may have to rethink the multi-dating approach, but at the beginning, it's good to be busy. The second most important way to keep your sanity is to make sure you're dating someone who doesn't encourage your inner crazy.
Avoid these three types: He wants to marry you one minute and doesn't know if he wants a relationship the next. He hates to be pinned down and even the smallest expectation on your part will push him away. He doesn't want a relationship, visibly shivers at the thought of planning mini-breaks and refers to marriage as "the M-word"'. However enamoured with you he says he is, he constantly checks out other women and makes suggestive comments to them - often in front of you.
When confronted, he says: Should I make the first move? Nothing good comes easy, so why should you? When a man cancels a date, let him make it up to you. And it is not acceptable, unless he is in hospital or trapped under something heavy, to cancel a date via text.
Under no circumstances track him down to set up the next date. Remember, you are not chasing him. Don't tie yourself down to one man until you are sure you really like him.
In the meantime, date often and date around - don't go exclusive until you're ready, and don't let him have all your evenings. Keep an air of mystery. You are busy, you have your own life - let him fit into yours.
By following this technique, I landed a date with an underwear model. Actually, he'd caught the eye of every woman in the building. He was one of the best-looking men I'd ever seen - dark hair, dark eyes, great smile, 6 foot body cut out of marble. His name was Jack and he wasn't wearing a wedding ring. We spoke briefly, he seemed shy - as, surprisingly, most great-looking men are.
I felt sure he wasn't the type of man, even if he did like me, to hit on a stranger while sitting on a blue flannel couch at However, I discovered from one of the producers that he would be on the show all week - I was due back in the studio on Wednesday. As I said goodbye, I was breezy, distant even - there was no lingering making small talk hoping he'd ask for my number. I knew something he didn't - we'd be seeing each other again the next day. On our second meeting, he asked for my number.
He texted two hours later, suggesting several places to meet up, that night or one of the following three nights. I said no to all of them, explaining I was busy. I suggested we meet up a week later as it was the first night I had free. He seemed surprised and a little frustrated, but agreed. The thing was I really did fancy him, but if I had jumped at a date with him - especially as he must have had a queue of women far sexier than me at his beck and call - what message would that send?
I know I was taking a risk that by the next week he would have lost interest and lined up a date with a year old glamour model, but would I really want a man who can't sustain interest in me for more than 24 hours without constant reassurance? I had desperately wanted to give him my phone number in case he was too shy or hesitant to ask me for it, but I have learned the hard way that a man is far more likely to call if he asks for your number.
Being unavailable, especially at first, almost always works - in my case, it certainly did.