Date Like a Dinosaur!

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These 10 Tips Will Perk Up Your Prehistoric Love Life

Dinosaurs in love

As the dinosaur expert, I'm constantly being asked, "Hey, Bob, how can I apply the stark evolutionary lessons of the Mesozoic Era to my nonexistent love life?" Well, never let it be said that I'm unsympathetic to the plight of my readers. Here are 10 dinosaur-themed dating tips that will be sure to land you the guy or girl of your dreams (or at least secure you the lead item on the 11 o'clock news).

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Always Secure the Permission of the Herd Alpha

Andrey Atuchin

Think about it: if you wouldn't dare to migrate south, or even take a sip from the local watering hole, without first asking your herd leader, why in the world would you embark upon something as dangerous as the courtship process? (Tip: If you don't know who your herd leader is, that's either because you've been deemed too unimportant to be entrusted with this information, or you're actually the herd leader yourself. Try asking a few close friends for guidance.)

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Wear an Outlandish Hat

Alain Beneteau

Backwards-pointing baseball caps imprinted with the logo of your favorite team are for evolutionary also-rans. If you really want to impress your prospective mate, you need to think big, cartoon big: a three-foot-tall stovepipe hat, an entire stuffed ostrich glued to the top of a pink sombrero, a Stetson big enough to hold the Western Interior Sea. Remember, no Cryolophosaurus ever became the pack alpha by pretending to be Patrick Stewart!

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Stash the Toothbrush and Dental Floss

tyrannosaurus rex
Wikimedia Commons

If you're a seven-ton T. Rex on the prowl, a wide, shiny, spotless smile will only convey the message that you are an incompetent predator and will probably die of starvation within a few days. Nothing impresses the opposite sex more than gnarled canines, toxic breath, and rotting slivers of days-old flesh wedged between your bicuspids. If you're an especially sloppy eater, you won't even have to spring for a meal on the first date!

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Vladimir Nikolov

"Car car caroo! Car car caroo!" ("It is early spring, I feel the sudden need for the companionship of the opposite sex") can easily be mistaken for "Gar gar baroo! Gar gar baroo!" ("I am infested with worms, please preserve the herd by maintaining your distance"), especially from five miles away. A few elocution lessons, preferably when you're immobilized by sub-zero winter temperatures and have nothing better to do, can help you avoid this embarrassing faux pas.

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Share Your Meals

Charles R. Knight

No matter the species, females want their mates to be good providers. If you've just slashed and gutted a teenaged Iguanodon, be sure to leave the hind limbs and one or two internal organs for your girlfriend. By the same token, devouring an entire rotting gingko tree all by yourself may be physically satisfying, but will leave you emotionally hollow in the long run. At least offer your date the stinkiest fruits, even if you have to kick them a few dozen feet away.

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Pick a Fight

Alain Beneteau

In today's competitive economic climate, the only way a female can identify you as a genetically desirable mate if if you kick some Jurassic butt. Did that guy at the sushi bar just shoot you a funny look? Head-butt him in the stomach, a la Zinedine Zidane. Did your coworker just get that promotion you coveted? Launch yourself over his cubicle and don't stop swinging until one of you is unconscious. It's not antisocial behavior, it's Darwinism in action!

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Play Up Your Egg-Laying Prowess

Wikimedia Commons

Us dinosaur writers don't get out much, so it's unclear to me whether human females lay eggs or employ some other, more mysterious means of reproduction. If you do happen to be oviparous, though, a carefully tended display of hatched eggshells (preferably on the mantelpiece adjoining your peat bog) will help broadcast your fecundity to available males. You can also try dropping remarks like, "I have 70 kids, and do any of them send me a card on Mother's Day?"

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Preen Your Feathers

Government of China

Sure, feathers help keep you warm during chilly Arctic nights, and they provide that extra bit of "lift" you need when chasing voles through the underbrush. But did you know they're also an irresistible enticement to the opposite sex? That's why you should preen and fluff yourself at least once a week, and ask your packmates to pick the nits out of your quills. (If you don't happen to have feathers, just drape a dead Troodon across your shoulders and watch the alpha males line up!)

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Plan Your Rendezvous Carefully

Jura Park

"Hey, honey, let's meet on the craggy rock at midnight and count the Quetzalcoatlus as they fly overhead!" Not such a good idea if you're a ten-pound Chirostenotes, and only slightly less suicidal if you and your prospective beau are three-ton Triceratops with footing issues. A dank, roomy cave is a better trysting option, or, if you live by the shore, try climbing onto a thatch of driftwood and getting to know your soulmate as you slowly drift to another continent.

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Remember, There Are Plenty of Prehistoric Fish in the Sea

Wikimedia Commons

Shot down by the scaly green object of your desire? Don't despair. If the aforementioned tips haven't secured you the opportunity to mate, there's always next year, when disease, predation, and random asteroid strikes will have culled down the ranks of your competitors and given you a fresh opportunity to win the evolutionary sweepstakes. In the meantime, nurse your wounds, find yourself a nice carcass to gnaw on, and whatever you do, don't be discouraged by your walnut-sized brain.