Five Reasons Why The Music Box is a Great Place For a First Dateby Jon from LA Snark on March 07, 2011
First dates are hard. There’s a chance you’ll hit it off great and the conversation will flow effortlessly, and there’s a chance there will be 3 hours of awkward silence. From my experience it’s generally a lot of the latter until the booze kicks in, and then it’s all the former. I’d like to suggest a date venue that lets you transition from awkward silence to a bump and grind in the course of a few hours:
How about we… go to a random show at The Music Box in Hollywood.
Photo: The Music Box on Yelp
The Music Box (also called The Henry Fonda Theater or “The Fonda” by people that have lived in L.A. a while) is a Spanish Colonial-style theater that was built in 1926. The theater features an amazing interior design and the rooftop lounge provides views of the Tower Records building and the new W Hotel.
Why would going to a random concert be a good idea for a first date? 5 reasons:
1. You can avoid some of that early awkward conversation:
Those first few minutes of a first date are the most awkward. Forced conversation will try to mask the fact that you’re checking out your date’s looks and body language. Eliminate some of the early awkwardness by heading straight to the bar. You can tell a lot about a person by the type of drink they order and how quickly they drink it. If you’ve arrived fashionably late (tip: try to arrive while there’s a band playing) there should be some loud music in the next room that you can retreat to if the conversation is stalling.
2. You can pick a room based on how the vibes are going:
After taking in some music and getting some of that first drink in you, you can retreat back to the lobby where you can share comments about the deer statues or the wall of lights. (You can use my “Hey it’s like a deer in wall lights” joke if you want to scare your date away.) If conversation is still awkward, head back to the bar and pretend you’re really into the band. If conversation is getting a little smoother you can say “Hey I heard there’s a cool rooftop lounge here, wanna check it out?” (If your date says “no” you should probably just answer a fake phone call and get out of there.) While you’re up there you can do some Hollywood rooftop sightseeing or you can check out a live feed of the concert that the Music Box projects onto the exterior of the theater.
3. The environment makes for an easy compatibility test:
What do you think of the performer? Are you into them or are they totally not your thing? Is your date into it? What’s your date into? See that club down the road? Has your date been there? Where are your date’s usual hangouts? (Don’t get too rapid fire on the questions or your date may be the one answering a fake phone call.) Snarky couples will have the opportunity to bond while making jabs at the band or someone’s unfortunate wardrobe choice while other more loving and considerate folks will bond by doing whatever loving and considerate folks do.
4. There’s an excuse to get a little closer:
If the conversation is great and the body language is starting to get a little flirty, it might be time to head downstairs to enjoy the music. Put yourself in a “it’s so loud we can barely talk but we can dance or sway to the music” type situation. Hint: If possible, do a little research beforehand to see if there are any “danceable” acts playing. The dance floor is like an on-ramp to the heavy petting super highway, and I’ve heard you can tell a lot about the way a person performs in bed by the way they dance. But people, this is a first date, let’s pump the brakes a little.
5. It’s easy to change plans:
If you’re digging your date but not the scene, you can say, “Wow this music is really awful, sorry about this.” and you can suggest heading across the street to Dillon’s Irish Pub for some $3 drafts or the Frolic Room for some great cocktails and even greater people watching. You can also tourist it up with a walk down Hollywood Boulevard where you can see who recognizes the most celebrity names or you can hang out with the paparazzi at Katsuya and try for some autographs.
Bottom line: First dates should always have an easy escape plan as well as an excuse to take things to the next level. There are plenty of places to do this in Los Angeles, but the Music Box would be my venue of choice. Bonus: If your date isn’t from L.A., their mom will be impressed that you took them out on the town in Hollywood. (My mom would be anyway.)