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"Foodie Calls"

kshama2001 Posts: 25,571 Member
Heard about this on another thread and thought that it might be a fun discussion topic. Who's done this? Who thinks it was done to them?

Dark personality traits predict women’s propensity to go on deceptive “foodie calls” for a free meal

"...a foodie call occurs when a person, despite their lack of romantic attraction to someone, agrees to go on a date just to get a free meal."

[The study authors wondered what sort of person would do this. They studied heterosexual women.]

"...“However, I think it’s more revealing to ask what type of women are most likely to engage in foodie calls. We found that women who score high in the dark triad — a constellation of three antisocial personality traits known as Narcissism, Machiavellianism, and subclinical Psychopathy — were most likely to engage in foodie calls,” he added.

In other words, participants who agreed more strongly with statements such as “I tend to manipulate others to get my way” (Machiavellianism), “I tend to expect special favors from others” (Narcissism), and “I tend to lack remorse” (Psychopathy) were more likely to engage in greater foodie call behavior.

“Although men tend to score higher on the dark triad than women, and many studies have already documented the negative dating behaviors exhibited by men, our study showcased how women’s dark traits can also predict exploitative and manipulative dating behavior,” Collisson said.

The researchers also found that women who endorsed traditional gender role beliefs were more likely to engage in foodie calls and find it acceptable.


  • MsCzar
    MsCzar Posts: 730 Member
    Yeah, the "associate Professor at Azusa Pacific University" source has me a bit skeptical on this one. Not that foodie calls don't ever happen, especially in places like Manhattan where a simple dinner with drinks might easily exceed $200USD; but I'm guessing that this dubious study also included things like plus-ones at weddings.
  • Jruzer
    Jruzer Posts: 3,500 Member
    Is this supposed to be like a booty call except for food instead of sex?

    This reeks of MRA/redpill/incel nonsense.

    I wonder if the study authors Jennifer and Trista are incels?
  • AnnPT77
    AnnPT77 Posts: 24,404 Member
    edited February 2021
    I've never done it, and never would. I suspect I'd score pretty high on 2 of the 3 "dark triad" traits, not sure about the 3rd but I think not. Two things would disincline me:

    1. I don't like to feel beholden to others, or to exploit them. (I do think that exchanging kind gestures is part of developing friendship, but that's mutualistic over time, not IMO exploitive.)
    2. I think it's unethical, even though I'm one of those squishy "situational ethics" people.

    I don't think I've been in a situation where it could've been done to me. Occasionally, I've bought a man a beer or food, but not in a dating situation (and it wasn't relevant in my context that they were men, but is relevant to the article's).

    As you might expect, I disapprove of people who do foodie calls. I'd probably cut some slack for someone doing it in straitened circumstances, probably.

    ETA: I've known women who I'm pretty sure have done this, and in our culture, I think it *is* more likely to be women, statistically, in hetero situations, simply because of the long cultural history of "man pays on dates". I understand that that's faded big time as a cultural factor, but I don't think it's fully dead yet. I don't know as much about same-sex dating dynamics.
  • MsCzar
    MsCzar Posts: 730 Member
    kshama2001 wrote: »

    I think anyone willing to endure a WEDDING to accompany someone for whom they have no romantic interest is a DARN GOOD FRIEND, not a mooch.

    lol Quite possibly!

  • janejellyroll
    janejellyroll Posts: 25,878 Member
    As someone who feels really awkward making small talk and getting to know people, it's hard for me to imagine doing this.

    I will note that today this is generally seen as unpleasant/unethical behavior, but as someone who likes to read old advice books for fun, I've seen the advice to never turn down a "free" meal from a man in several 50s/60s books of advice for women. The point was that men tend to make more and if they enjoy your company enough to buy you dinner, why shouldn't you do it? A couple of them attempted to put a nicer spin on it by saying you never know when a guy you aren't that into may turn out to be more interesting than you first assumed and the date may wind up being a good thing, but some of them didn't even go that far. I think Helen Gurley Brown went so far as to say that a woman who paid for ANYTHING when a man was willing to pick up the bill was stupid.

    I have seen many men posting about this type of behavior on reddit, although I suspect some of the posts are embellished or flat fabrications from people either seeking engagement or wanting to promote certain narratives about women's behavior. It's not that I doubt that some women do this, it's just some of the stories are just too good at baiting outrage.
  • JustaNoob
    JustaNoob Posts: 114 Member
    Searching deep to make a comment here. My first response was... NO WAY. Then, I thought... well, maybe in special cases. Then, maybe.

    So there are a few things that go through my mind. There have been times where I thought it would just be fun to go on a date without the pressure of wanting to impress someone or thinking deeply about where things are going. I tend to be a bit picky and very decisive. And by picky, I just mean I have standards and people call it picky lol. So dates always felt a little weighty and more like going on an interview, until I met my now BF.

    So I have dated guys I wasn't really interested in more for a fun, relaxed, night, with a free dinner. But it wasn't about just food. It was just the over all experience. I also went on "practice dates" to help myself relax when I finally did go out with someone who I was really interested in.
  • cmriverside
    cmriverside Posts: 32,180 Member
    Same as bootie calls...

    two words...

    Consenting adults.

    Just keep expectations in check regardless of your Y chromosome status.
  • ahoy_m8
    ahoy_m8 Posts: 2,777 Member
    edited February 2021
    I'm pretty old fashioned about dating, and I'd never do that. However, I have gone to lunch or coffee with a few guys that liked, but didn't want to date. I thought that they asked me as a friend because they didn't make it clear that they were attracted to me beforehand. I did offer to pay for my share in those situations, whereas I probably wouldn't on a date unless maybe the guy is really poor. (I've learned my lesson about assuming a guy wants to be platonic friends!) :blush:

    I learned this a different way. Having EE & physics majors in college, many of my classmates/friends were male. Shortly after graduating, on a boozy night with college friends in Georgetown, one looked me straight in the eye and said, "All your guy friends want to date you. No matter what they say." I'm probably misquoting but my sense was he meant it as a general truth, that any girl's guy friends will want to be more than just friends at some point. 30 years later, it still makes me kind of sad and there's always a part of me that's guarded about boundaries that might send unintended messages.

    ETA: I have nothing to add to the topic, except to thank kshama for posting here!
  • lemurcat2
    lemurcat2 Posts: 7,867 Member
    I'd never do it. There's no free meal that would be worth it to me, and plus if it was an expensive meal I'd feel super guilty afterwards. Beyond that, I hate doing the "sorry, I'm not interested" thing, and it's way less awkward before you go out than afterwards. Plus I have always felt better on a first date doing dutch anyway, and am sure I could find a friend to go with if I just wanted to try the place with someone.
  • chocolate_owl
    chocolate_owl Posts: 1,694 Member
    A family friend in med school stayed with me one summer because she had some special training in my city. I barely saw her. When she wasn't in class, she was finding matches on Tinder who would take her out to eat. In three months, she never used the kitchen to make a meal. She figured she was young, single, in debt, and these guys were happy to do it. I have no idea what she's up to now, I might need to go find out...
  • ahoy_m8
    ahoy_m8 Posts: 2,777 Member
    Gah! Such a good point! I forgot how tortuous the "Sorry not interested" thing was. No meal worth that.
  • minstrelofsarcasm
    minstrelofsarcasm Posts: 1,031 Member
    Oh boy, I knew quite a few people in college who went out with people they met through dating apps to go to restaurants and come home with enough leftovers to keep them fed for a few days. I don't think anything ever happened past the first date. One of the women I was closer with told me that she had been on 200+ dates over the course of a year just because she didn't want to have to spend money on food when she didn't have to. I can't imagine doing it unless I were truly that desperate. It's incredible what people will do out of a perceived necessity.
  • cwolfman13
    cwolfman13 Posts: 40,735 Member
    IDK...dating has probably changed quite a bit in the last 20 years which is how long it's been since I dated. I don't recall really having one on one out to dinner type of dates with anyone until we had kind of figured out interest on each others part going forward. Particularly in college, friends and friends of friends tended to hang out in the same circles...so you would see the same people at the favorite watering hole for Thursday night happy hour, or the same people at such and such's Saturday night party, etc...so that's usually how I met and got to know someone, and then we'd go on a date if there seemed to be mutual interest.

    I would find it personally very awkward sitting across from someone in a restaurant and barely knowing them, or only knowing them from a dating site or something...which I don't even think was a thing when I was dating. I really have no friggin clue how I'd go about dating these days.
  • RunsWithBees
    RunsWithBees Posts: 1,508 Member
    The saying “There ain’t no such thing as a free lunch” comes to mind :D:D:D
  • kshama2001
    kshama2001 Posts: 25,571 Member
    Same as bootie calls...

    two words...

    Consenting adults.

    Just keep expectations in check regardless of your Y chromosome status.

    Well, I think food dates are different from booty calls.
    • For booty calls presumably both parties know the nature of the thing.
    • I believe it is unethical for a woman to accept a free meal from a man who she knows is interested in pursuing a relationship with her if she knows she is uninterested in him.

    I'll add some definitions in case people aren't up on this slang:

    Merriam Webster
    Definition of booty call
    : a communication (such as a phone call or text message) by which a person arranges a sexual encounter with someone
    A booty call—where one partner is summoned for sex usually by text message by another …

    Urban Dictionary
    booty call
    A late night summons -- often made via telephone -- to arrange clandestine sexual liaisons on an ad hoc basis.
  • Speakeasy76
    Speakeasy76 Posts: 960 Member
    Well, I'm married so this doesn't currently apply to me, but I wouldn't do this. 1. I'm generally not the kind of person who likes to use someone, because I wouldn't want someone to do this to me. 2. It feels icky and wrong. 3. It could be dangerous if you did this to the wrong kind of person. I might make an exception if the person was a real jerk and/or had wronged me in some way, and kept insisting even after I declined. However, even in that scenario I probably wouldn't knowingly do it, because that's just the sort of person where something could go terribly wrong.

    This DOES remind me of a kind of funny story of when I did have this thought once back in my early 20's. I was fairly new in town, and the personal trainer at the gym I worked out started chatting me up one day. I could tell he was interested, but also that he wasn't really my type. It wasn't his attractiveness, but more so his attitude--he just seemed too cocky for my taste. Anyway, he asked if I wanted to go get something to eat, and feeling kind of on the spot I said yes. I WAS thinking "hey, at least I'd get a free meal."

    Well, that backfired. I ordered a meal and drink, he just ordered a beer. When the check came, I did get my purse out but expected him to offer to pay....nope, not a word. He DID offer to pay the tip, which if I remember correctly just barely covered his beer. I mean, maybe he was a struggling personal trainer, but I was a struggling grad student! Here's the really funny thing, though: we both drove separately since we were both at the gym at the time , plus I literally just met him. I followed him and on the way there, he just HAD to stop to get his car washed at one of those nice car wash places! Maybe that's where he spent his cash? Who knows?! Even though he asked me out again, I think my roommate told me to come up with a story like I got together with my ex, just so it wouldn't be AS awkward when I saw him at the gym. Anyway, after that I don't think I ever said yes to a date thinking at least I'd get a free meal out of it!