Often men will approach me acting as though they are interested in doing business with me when they clearly have ulterior motives. The most common (and most innocent) example of how men work the business angle is when I tell them I teach Pilates one-on-one. I can’t tell you how many guys will say they want to take Pilates when they first meet me, when they are really hoping to get a date. I used to offer a complimentary thirty-minute session to prospective clients, until I realized that most of the men who were taking advantage of this offer were simply wasting my time. After their thirty minutes were up, they would not purchase a package and would ask me out to dinner instead. My answer would unequivocally be, “No!” These men honestly would have had a better chance with me had they been upfront about their intentions.
A man once approached me at a club telling me he could help me build my Pilates business. He had connections to the cast of a popular primetime evening show and offered to help market me as a “Pilates instructor to the stars.” I agreed to meet him for dinner, but as he drew the curtains around the table and poured me a glass of red wine, I realized this was not a business meeting. Later when I refused to kiss this guy, he accused me of using him. Excuse me—Who had offered to help who? I was only guilty of being too naïve thinking that his help didn’t come with strings attached. If he had wanted a date, he should have just asked if he could take me to dinner. I may or may not have said yes, but at least neither one of us would have felt taken advantage of.
The best example of a man not being clear with his intentions occurred a few years ago when a modeling agency sent me on a job interview for a personal assistant position. I thought it was odd that someone would call a modeling agency for a PA, but I trusted the agency that sent me out on the interview. I suppose, given the choice, any man would prefer to have an assistant who is easy on the eyes. Once at the job interview, I asked what my daily tasks would be. My prospective employer told me that there would be some clerical work, but when we are slow, we would take hikes, get manicures, and go shopping together. Now that sounded like my kind of job! But of course, I’m smart enough to know that this position did not seem legit. This man then proceeded to tell me that he would take me to dinner at some of the best restaurants in town as well as on trips to Vegas and Miami. When he asked me how I felt if he “put a giant diamond necklace on me,” I mustered the courage to ask him whether he was looking for an assistant or a girlfriend. He assured me that he was indeed looking for an assistant, but that we would be spending a lot of time together, and I just might end up liking him. Needless to say, I declined that job and resented losing three hours of my life at that “job interview.”
I’m sure this kind of thing happens all the time with the models and actresses here in Los Angeles, and it’s very unfortunate because a lot of us girls are out there working really hard to pay the bills. When guys like these offer us opportunities, we want to be open to the possibility; however, when we discover that many of these men have ulterior motives, we feel upset because they’ve not only wasted our time, but also messed with our money. Then we really don’t want to go out with them.
If you’re a guy who has used this tactic in the past, I really hope you start to become clear about your intentions from now on. If a date is what you want, ask for a date! She might say yes, and if she says no, then you are saving yourself a great deal of frustration. Now, of course, you’re always welcome to help a girl out, but if you want more than a business relationship, please either let her know so she doesn’t feel duped, or don’t get mad if she rejects your advances later on. A woman always wants to be taken seriously in her profession, so she might not want to mix business with pleasure, and her time is just as precious as yours. A true gent is impeccable with his word and will never offer to help if he doesn’t intend to follow through, regardless of what he’s getting—or not getting–out of the situation♥
**Originally published in Southern Vixens Magazine**