To all my single ladies…
You’re reading this post because you are curious about what it’s like to date in Spain. Or maybe you want to live vicariously through me and you want me to tell stories about hot, steamy Spanish men, their charm, and their super sexy accents. And you probably think they all look like the guy at the top of this post.
Okay, I’m not going to lie, there are defffffinitely some sexy-asses around here.
But it’s crazy to expect that we just have a bunch of Ricky Martins & Enrique’s walking around here. I guess I was… so it’s probably obvious that they are fewer and farther between than I expected. In addition… when you compare the men of (this part of) Spain to our corn-fed, Idaho-grown mountain men, these guys are half the size of our purebred ‘Mericans. I know it’s unfair to compare, but we all do it. On average, they’re just much smaller people.
Aside from the physical aspect, there are other, more important differences between Spanish and American men. Here are some real-life comparisons that’ll give you a good idea about what those are.
***These are completely subjective personal observations and generalizations, some in favor of Americans, other in favor of Spaniards.
- American: “Let’s meet on Thursday at 7pm.” (Decisive. Typically, they’ll show up on time.)
- Spaniard: <insert Spanish accent> “Hmm, I don’t know, maybe we meet Thursday, maybe we meet Friday… we will see.” (It’s not that they’re avoiding a date. It’s that they’re indecisive and dislike commitment. Maybe they like to keep their options open. So the date may or may not happen. If you can finally get them to agree on a time, 9/10 times, they’ll be late.)
Living situation (men in their late 20’s, even early 30’s):
- American: Has roommates, or lives alone.
- Spaniard: Few live alone. Has roommates, or lives at home. (It’s generally accepted that men and women live with their parents until their mid/late 20’s, even 30’s. It’s not bad, just a cultural difference.)
- American: Lives to work. Probably works too much.
- Spaniard: Works to live. Life is more about enjoying time with friends and family. Definitely more of a work/life balance for them.
- American: regular jeans, T-shirt, baseball cap.
- Spaniard: definitely better-dressed, have more style. Tighter pants to highlight all the things.
Assertiveness (in my experiences):
- American: Will try to kiss you on the first date (or more…) if it goes well.
- Spaniard: Typically is a little less assertive. Sometimes 2-3 dates will go by until they kiss you. Typically, they will ask for permission before they do it!*
*There’s a big caveat here… If men think you’re a tourist and are only here temporarily, they think you’ll put out. It’s probably the case anywhere you go. A few funny circumstances where Spanish men were overly assertive because they thought I’m just some dumb American blonde looking to hook up…
- I had a guy grab my face at a fully-packed bar and tell me that I absolutely must kiss him, because it’s just what you do in Spain on a first date, to supposedly demonstrate to your date that you’re comfortable with him… Nice try, guy!
- Another time, a guy sat next to me and directly asked me if I want to “tikki-tikki, takka-takka.” I told him I didn’t understand. Then he got frustrated, and used his fingers to show me exactly what “tikki-tikki, takka-takka” meant (signaling sex!) I shook my head furiousty, NO! Then, he said “Okay, well, you and I have nothing to talk about then”, and stood up and left!
- Last one: this guy must have been 85 years old. Not joking. I was under the impression that he was the owner of this restaurant where I was lunching, because he came up to me during my meal asking how everything tastes. After I ate, he invited me to have a shot with him, which I understood as a token of his appreciation for me as a customer in his restaurant. After I learned that he’s just a client, I told him that I’d rather just have a coffee. He then took out a pen from his tweed jacket, asking for my phone number, telling me he’s alone. My Spanish was still pretty bad, and I wasn’t exactly sure what he was implying. I asked why he’s alone, and he grabbed my leg, saying “because I love women too much!” Wow. I got hit on by a grandpa.
Needless to say, men are men everywhere. You can find great guys, and you can also find a fair share of assholes.
How about the online dating game?
Using Tinder/Bumble in Spain has been interesting (it was also interesting in the US.)
- Instead of John, everyone is named Jesus.
- Instead of fishing, everyone surfs.
- They still take mirror selfies and pictures with their ex-girlfriends.
Last but not least, they love their short shorts!