You're broke, but you still gotta date

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The economy is so far in the tank that Ford didn't produce a Mustang commercial last night during the Super Bowl.

So, that got me thinking: How do you still date in a recession? (If it seems like a big jump, just know that everything always goes back to getting some.)

Every date can't be sitting on your sofa watching TV. That's going to cause your dearest to consider playing the field again.

An MSN article has a few suggestions. The sexiest one is:

Just have coffee and dessert. "It's romantic to share your food, and women love to linger over chocolate while gazing into their lovers' eyes," says relationship coach Kathy Stafford. Of course, the tricky part about this is how one goes about scheduling a coffee-and-dessert date without actually having dinner. Since neither of you will want to clean the dishes after dating tip #1, above, this may be a good way to a) avoid your responsibilities and b) show that you still have some folding money.

Also, you can help a struggling coffee company **cough** Starbucks**cough** stay open in your quest to get some booty without looking cheap.

Ben McCoy of 236.com, has even better tips.

When it comes to drinking on dates, and saving money, I have a few suggestions. First of all, let's go for the Keira Knightley approach. No one gets more intoxicated quicker then a skinny bitch. So I suggest skipping breakfast and dinner, and just heading straight to the drinking on your date. Your partner will mistake your hunger for wide-eyed attentiveness.

And then there is this gem:

Another tip is to simply go out earlier. Happy hour is a great way to double up on the drinking without exaggerating the price. When it comes to dating however, no body likes a Scrimpy McScrimperstein, or Ebenezer Scrooge. So practice your skills in fiction and say that your schedule has been so trying lately, or that you have an important audition/meeting with an editor/photoshoot to do the next day and can't stay out too late, but still wanted to spend time with your date. Not only will you sound more accomplished and like you actually have a job and a life, but you'll do less damage to your bank account without seeming so blatantly cheap.

Keeping your date short in a recession saves money and builds desire, according to the folks at Datingonline.org.

Keep Her Wanting More - Whether you're having a great time or a disastrous first date, make sure the date doesn't stretch out too long. Less is more. It's better to leave your date wanting more. If you're having a horrible first date, it's better you just tell her that the two of you obviously aren't made for each other, and why not just call off the date. It's cheaper, but you also let her off the hook and retain your dignity. She'll respect you for that much, at least. If she's been rude, insulting or obviously disinterested, then there's no reason for you to waste anymore or your time and money. Things won't get better. If things are going well, ending the date a little early retains the mystery. Mention to her you enjoyed her company - end bad dates quick - cut your losses - don't mess around - if she's rude, insulting or disinterested, just call it of.

So, where do you take your date in the Q.C.? Let's face it, Uptown was pricey before.

First thing, find spots that are on the light rail line. Riding Lynx at night can be romantic and sexy. Just realize that there are cameras watching you. No need to make a sex tape you can't watch.

Explore NoDa during a gallery crawl. Even if you don't like art, you will look cultured and many galleries have free wine and cheese. SouthEnd, which is on the train line, also has gallery crawl.

Go the the museum. The Charlotte Museum has free days and you can add more fun by finding a spot to have a PDA. The trick is not to get caught or carried away.

If you want a cheap, but interesting meal? Hit a taco stand on the corner of just about any Charlotte street. Better get there before 9 p.m. though.

And after you do all of that, then you can say you need a massage or offer to give one. Before you know it, everyone's naked and having sex.

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