All the Single Ladies: 13 Frightening Tips on How to Snag a Man (in 1938, Anyway)

Dating tips

Tip #10: Don't get sloppy drunk, because then you might violate Tip #8 (heaven forbid!)

Boy, am I glad I found someone to marry me. It’s rough out there. At least I assume it is (I’ve been with my husband for 8 years, so I wouldn’t really know, but I still kind of know, you know?).

I don’t think dating is or has ever been really easy. But I’m just grateful to not be doing it anymore, and I’m certainly thankful that I wasn’t dating in 1938. The tips single women got then to not be single anymore? F-r-i-g-h-t-e-n-i-n-g. What’s even scarier? Some of the tips kind of hold up today.

Check out this little photo guide for single women to land a husband in 1938 (think of it as The Rules: The Early Years). Times have changed, but have they really changed? Yeah, no. And, uh, ugh (all images courtesy of Retronaut.co):

 

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  • DO YOUR DRESSING 1 of 13
    DO YOUR DRESSING
    ...in your boudoir to keep your allure. Be ready to go when he arrives; don't keep him waiting. Greet him with a smile
    Wow, men used to pick up women on dates! That probably meant they had cars, which meant they had jobs, which meant they probably didn't live with their parents. Seems like the men of 1938 have at least one thing on the men of 2012 (from what I read, anyway).
  • MEN DON’T LIKE 2 of 13
    MEN DON'T LIKE
    ...girls who borrow their handkerchief and smudge them with lipstick. Makeup in privacy, not where he sees you.
    And women don't like handkerchiefs. Can you say germs?
  • DON’T SIT IN AWKWARD POSITIONS 3 of 13
    DON'T SIT IN AWKWARD POSITIONS
    ...and never look bored, even if you are. Be alert, and if you must chew gum (not advised), do it silently, mouth closed.
    Maybe she wouldn't look so bored if he didn't look so boring (and inexplicably angry).
  • CARELESS WOMEN 4 of 13
    CARELESS WOMEN
    ...never appeal to gentlemen. Don't talk while dancing, for when a man dances he wants to dance.
    Yes, heaven forbid you try to have fun while dancing. Dancing, after all, is serious business.
  • IF YOU NEED 5 of 13
    IF YOU NEED
    ...a brassiere, wear one. Don't tug at your girdle, and be careful you're stockings are not wrinkled.
    Well, that's something that hasn't changed in 74 years: Ladies, by all means, if you need a bra, wear one.
  • DON’T USE THE CAR MIRROR 6 of 13
    DON'T USE THE CAR MIRROR
    ...to fix your makeup. Man needs it in driving, and it annoys him very much to have to turn around to see what's behind him.
    Don't annoy your dates, ladies! Heaven forbid!
  • DON’T BE FAMILIAR 7 of 13
    DON'T BE FAMILIAR
    ...with your escort by caressing him in public. Any open show of affection is in bad taste, usually embarrasses or humiliates him.
    Actually, it just kind of depends on where you caress him, no? That hasn't changed, has it?
  • DON’T BE SENTIMENTAL 8 of 13
    DON'T BE SENTIMENTAL
    ...or try to get him to say something he doesn't want to by working on his emotions. Men don't like tears, especially in public places.
    Yeah, that's pretty much still true today.
  • DON’T BE FAMILIAR 9 of 13
    DON'T BE FAMILIAR
    ...with the headwaiter talking about the fun you had with someone else another time. Men deserve, desire your entire attention.
    Translation: Don't let on that you're a slut.
  • DON’T TALK ABOUT CLOTHES 10 of 13
    DON'T TALK ABOUT CLOTHES
    ...or try to describe your new gown to a man. Please and flatter your date by talking about the things he wants to talk about.
    Well, not much has changed there, either, ladies. Am I right?
  • DON’T DRINK TOO MUCH 11 of 13
    DON'T DRINK TOO MUCH
    ...as a man expects you to keep your dignity all evening. Drinking may make some girls seem clever, but most get silly.
    So true. So, so true. Then and now.
  • DON’T BE CONSPICUOUS 12 of 13
    DON'T BE CONSPICUOUS
    ...talking to other men. The last straw is to pass out from too much liquor. Chances are your date will never call you again!
    But if you're lucky, maybe the guy from the next table who didn't mind that you were too familiar with him will call you for a date.
  • UNLESS 13 of 13
    UNLESS
    ...passing out from too much liquor is your strategy to ensure he (you know, the easily bored, offended, annoyed and prudish guy) never calls you again? In that case, bottoms up!

All images courtesy of Retronaut.co

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