Enitan Bereola, author of "Bereolaesque: The Contemporary Gentleman & Etiquette Book for the Urban Sophisticate" shares pointers from his best-selling book on what single women in D.C. should do on Valentine's day and what it takes to be a true gentleman.
You give great advice to men and women about dating and relationships. What made you want to get into being a relationship expert?
Being a gentleman has always been second nature to me because of the way I was raised. Growing up, I never saw being a gentleman as something special; it was something you were supposed to do.
However, when I got to undergrad, I made a lot of friends who didn't know what chivalry was, and it made me realize even people who might have had similar lives to mine growing up didn't exactly know what it was to treat a woman right. I wanted to change that; my mentor encouraged me to write the book and it took off from there. It was all very organic.
What exactly does Bereloaesque mean?
It stems from my last name, of course, and it actually originated as a joke amongst my friends. If I was invited to an event, I'd say it was "Bereloaesque"-worthy. The name kind of took on a life of its own.
There are a lot of how-to guides for both men and women; what makes yours stand out?
My book comes with a lot of common sense. It really shows that you don't have a degree in relationships to get them. I'm very objective also; it's not just what about a man can do to better themselves, but ladies as well. The book is combination of clarity and general wisdom.
Valentine's Day is coming up. What would does your ideal date entail?
My ideal date includes a lot of spontaneity -- there's nothing like the element of surprise. Whether it's telling her to just pack a bag or simply showing up on her doorstep when she didn't expect me to. There's nothing like surprising a woman.
There are plenty of single women in D.C. What would you suggest they if they're single on Valentine's Day?
A lot of women end up hating the holiday, but I think they should do the opposite. Hating on love is an oxymoron. I suggest they celebrate self-love, and the love of friends and family. You can always celebrate love.
What are a few of your top tips for men and women?
For women: When you love you, we love you. Also, remember ladies, that when you seek after bad boys, don't complain when they do bad boy things to you. You get what you go after.
For men: Don't take a woman on an emotional journey if you're not prepared to accompany her. Also, fellas, the only thing you should change about a good woman is her last name.
What do you hope people walk away with after reading your book?
I hope they walk away with a natural desire to be good.
Is there a special woman in your life?
You know, they say [that] alongside every good man is a great woman. If you assume me to be a good man, perhaps there's a great woman there too!