Disclaimer: There are zillions of terabytes of advice for women on this topic, but few for men. Why? Because most males who write on this topic limit their ideas of a fabulous woman to those who like either football, NASCAR or Yuengling. These are the same guys who think the terms "clean hoodie" and "well-dressed" are synonymous. I propose to delve further into this topic. For the gals: Yes, this focuses on men. Feel free to contact me with reams of disapproval.
Telltale signs to detect a Woman of Substance (WoS).
1. She doesn't stick you in Friend Prison. As you get to know her, she'll give you a chance. In her own small way, she'll let you know she'd like to get to know you. And, early on, this is all you can ask for. A WoS does not give away the store. She is too smart for that.
2. When you ask "What's wrong?", she responds. As opposed to ordinary women, who invariably answer, "Nothing." Just be ready for her words. You asked, dintcha?
3. She will never say, "That's not how my father does it." 'Nuff said.
4. You will know when you can ask her out. A WoS will advise you. As in #1, this will be in barely detectable ways.
5. "Drama" refers to an entertainment genre.
6. She will take pride. Especially in her appearance. Early on, when you're thinking of blowing some serious jingle on dinner at Le Château du Boeuf instead of TJ McChiliFries, take note of her. A WoS will take extra care with a coiffure, discreet jewelry, a dress. Perhaps footwear, to boot. She is not trying to look nice just for you but hopes you'll notice. And you had better notice, or else you're a douche.
7. She will adapt. While you're at the bar doing Jäger Bombs with Dirtbag and Sully, she will seek out Sully's girlfriend and say, "I like your sweater." Then she will tolerate you for a time. Make that time brief.
8. Her reports are brief. After a shopping trip, she will show you her purchases. And you will like them all. Then you will say, "You will look so hot in that skirt." But, she won't bore you with every detail of her trek. Instead, she will call her mother and give her a two-hour rundown of the day, including a trip to Cinnabon and why Suzie Fenster shouldn't wear such short skirts because her legs are like fenceposts. Addendum: A true WoS will NOT show you intimate underpinnings out of the box. Rather, she will model them for you. That's when you'll know it's time for some Sealy Calisthenics.
9. She will give you small touches. Especially in public. A brief handhold. A stealth-caress on the back of the neck. A squeeze above the knee to let you know she has to go make water. All of this means she cares about you and wants you to have a good time.
10. Her critiques are quick and to the point. When you mess up (and you will), she will let you know as soon as she can discreetly effect this. Nothing festers. She will not employ personal insults or bring up other, off-topic concerns. But she will let you have it. And you will apologize.
11. She knows the right words. She rarely curses coarsely, but can unleash a well-timed blue streak when appropriate. And she will rarely (to keep it special) say a few special words that also may lead to the aforementioned Sealy Calisthenics.
12. She will surprise you. This might be the biggest criterion that separates a WoS from the rest of her gender. It might be a gift. Or not. Or a special event. Or something else (see, special words in #11). Treasure these moments. And her.
... and, most importantly ...
13. She knows the three things you need. And they are simple: compassion, sincerity and tenderness. After decades of unscientific research, I have determined that this trio is all two people need to create a wondermous bond. And she will give them freely. Just make sure to give back, knucklehead.