Will date for food


Wine me, dine me… actually just wine me, dine me:

A new trend has emerged on the dating scene in which a person schedules a date with someone they aren’t really interested in, just to get a free meal. The tactic has been dubbed a “foodie call,” and while it sounds absolutely ridiculous at first consideration, new research reveals it is happening quite often.

Researchers at Azusa Pacific University and UC Merced had 357 heterosexual women answer a series of questions about their personalities, thoughts on traditional gender roles, and their personal foodie call histories. Interestingly, 33% of the participants admitted to engaging in at least one foodie call.

A second study was also performed, this time on 820 women. Of the women collected, 85% reported being heterosexual, and they were used as the focus of the study. Respondents were asked a similar set of questions as the first group, and 23% acknowledged participating in a foodie call. It’s worth noting that most of the women surveyed believed a foodie call was anywhere from moderately to extremely unacceptable.

Among both groups of women, those who admitted to foodie calls scored higher in the “dark triad” (narcissism, psychopathy, and Machiavellianism) of personality traits. Women who expressed belief in more traditional gender roles were also more likely to engage in a foodie call.

As a male, have you ever been a “victim” of a foodie call? Did your date treat you as a piece of meat provider? Were you expected to put out your credit card on the first date?

If so, you are unlikely to ever know, unless your date has been exceptionally honest – only after you paid the bill, presumably. Otherwise, there is nothing to tell apart a foodie call from a first date where you simply did not impress the woman enough to make her consider a second date.

With the above proviso in mind, my only exposure to this apparent trend have been through second-hand stories about friends of friends or friends of my dates who have serially engaged in it to the extent of setting up a date with a different men each night with an express purpose of being taken out for a meal. It’s not as uncommon as you might think. But as one commented, “I can’t imagine doing it myself; it seems like an awful lot of effort to get free dinners”. I guess we all have different priorities and expectations – and personality trends. Not to mention budgets; considering how many female university students dabble in being a sugar baby it’s surprising that there are not more dinner daddies out there to put some variety into the instant noodles and canned tuna diet.

Foodie calls of course depend entirely on men continuing to subscribe to the traditional dating etiquette of picking up the bill at the very least on the first date, if not the few subsequent ones. Clearly, chivalry is not quite dead yet in our age of equality if foodie calling can be a sustainable culinary model.