It's truth time. I left a word out of the title on purpose. That word is "math". I know most of us would rather take a sharp stick to the eye and listen wolverines yodel Amish rap tunes than do math. Still it's that one chance you might be able to say to your former math teacher,"you were right, I did use math once as a grown-up"

Here's the formula as created by Martin Gardner who actually came up with this formula several decades ago. It's not Match.com or Tinder but it's several decades old and folks are still talking about it. It's kind of like the Betty White of romance strategies.

Step One: Pick a specific number of  people that you will go out with in the next few months. Let's say you're going to go on 12 dates in the next several months. We're using the number 12 just for our purposes.

Step Two: Go out with exactly 36.8% of them. Do not settle down or form a permanent bond with any of them. That means you'll be going out with 4.41 people. I don't know, maybe one of them is really short. Don't ask so many questions.

You now have a sample size that gives you an accurate reflection of what you like and don't like in a person.

Step Three: After you've been on your four or five dates keep this in mind. You still have seven or eight dates left on your original plan to date 12 people.  As soon as you date a person that beats all of your original dates, that's the keeper.

Mr. Gardiner's formula predicts that if you don't find someone better than the original four or five dates then you're not going to. That will lead us to this observation.

Step 4:Assuming you haven't met anyone who tops your original sample size go with the most recent new person.

Here's the honest truth of math. You can't go back to any of the original sample size. In mathematical terms they are gone. You've rejected them already so they no longer exist just like the career of Tony Danza.

By the way you can use this formula to make any decision on any query. Maybe you're looking to buy a house, a car, hire a new employee, or maybe choose a movie. It works because you've given yourself enough information to make an informed decisions. If only voting for President had a formula.