First dates are a time of whines and sometimes roses. They're a time of conjuring up a flattering facade, of battling nerves and unrealistic expectations, of making judgment calls often so charged and delicate they would test the wisdom of Solomon (''Should I offer to pick up the check? If I do and he says okay, I'll think he's a cheapskate and never want to see him again. If I don't offer, he might think I'm just out for an expensive meal ...''). Yet first dates are a necessary evil in the lives of singles. Handle them correctly and you might just find yourself on the verge of a relationship. For that to happen -- or just to make it to date #2 -- you need to know how to make a good first impression, what topics of conversation to avoid when you're just getting to know someone and how to ease the pressure so that you can (both) shine.
Don't end a date by saying, ''When will I see you again?'' Uttering that vulnerability-ridden phrase so soon can end your new relationship fast.