Listen, we'll spare you any lame, uncomfortable jokes about "spring fever" or whatever, but I think everyone can agree that spring is one of the very best times of year for dating. Not just hanging out in the bed or on the couch of whoever it is you're seeing, like actually going out into the world, making an effort, and doing something nice together. Not expensive-nice, necessarily, but something that requires clothes, and maybe a few minutes of forethought.
And there are so many of those things in Brooklyn! Come on. Most of us are still shaking off the winter crazies, the weather's nice enough that you don't want to end your own life (but not so nice that you're constantly sweaty and itchy), lots of amenities are opening back up for the season. Take someone you love—or like, or maybe like, or have never actually met in person—out. On a date. In Brooklyn.
Nobody doesn't love sea lions. At least, no one worth dating in any capacity, so, test number one. This is already so efficient! Anyway, at the Prospect Park Zoo, public feedings happen for the sea lions three times a day, and are not to be missed.
In and of itself, this isn't long enough to constitute an entire date, but it does put you a short walk from tons of bars and restaurants, and two-part dates are almost always a good idea. There's no easier, more painless way to gauge a person's interest than seeing whether or not they feel like coming to a second location with you. Always try for the second location.
You may have missed the official Cherry Blossom Festival, but look on the bright side: you can still go to the Botanic Gardens and, you know, see some cherry blossoms, all for the normal (as opposed to special event) price of admission. Look how romantic this is! Maybe a little much for a very first date, but with someone you really like-like, and maybe a little, uh, herbal refreshment beforehand? Perfect.
Yeah, I know, you could do this on your couch. I get it. But you should go learn something together, drink nicer wine than you usually do, and support the Red Hook Winery, who are still in the process of bouncing back from Sandy, but also just generally excellent. (More on them here). It's right on the water, which is actually a nice thing now, and they usually bring in local snacks, including chocolate from Cacao Prieto. It'll be very worth your while.
Probably best to do this before the air is hotter and, uh, more fragrant. It's an interesting view, and if taking cool pictures (or making sure everyone, especially future sex partners, knows about your ability to take cool pictures) is your thing, this is the perfect spot. Then! You guessed it! Second location. Take a walk to Manhattan Inn, our best bar to get laid.
Unless you're at some kind of tense stage where real estate is a major point of contention between you two (yikes man), this is nothing but aspirational, voyeuristic fun. The best kind of fun! Pretend you have the money to afford it, play with all the fancy kitchen appliances, make yourself at home (until you have to leave, because this home will never belong to you).
Not one you just found tied up outside a store, creep. One at a shelter that allows volunteers to come in and walk the pups, like Sean Casey, in Windsor Terrace, or Barc, in Williamsburg. Best to pre-register ahead of time, but it's worth it—is there anything that breaks the ice in any situation better than a dog? Or any better litmus test of whether a person is acceptable to date than watching them interact with animals? And hey, if you end up caving and adopting a new pet on the spot, what a crazy, spontaneous story you guys now have together! This is meant to be.
Serves the same purpose as the last thing (other than helping out a living creature in need, wa waaaaa), but with sitting, and alcohol. Two cornerstones of any good date, be it romantic or platonic. Also, most dog-friendly bars (here are a few of our favorites) have at least some kind of outdoor area where you can bask in the fickle, lukewarm spring sun. Is anything better than this? Oh right, falling in love. Probably.
Follow Virginia K. Smith on Twitter @vksmith.