Friday, 10 September 2010

Diet Coke Boy: Third Date...

Woops. Bit of a break on the update front. Too many holidays and too much fun going on. Not enough attention being paid to the dating scene.

But! Last week was FINALLY third date night with Diet Coke Boy (we took ages to find a convenient date for us both!).

Also my decision was made that the date was to be on me, and planned by me. First ever third date, and first ever date I have had to plan. Nerve-wracking stuff.

So, I went on my first ever "third date" with Diet Coke Boy. Had serious doubts about it all to be honest following the episodes of him throwing pink girlie-weight bowling balls around and drinking strawberry milkshakes and coke floats etc. But - I did feel like I kind of owed him after he paid for the first two dates and sent me flowers (to the wrong office - doh).

I was absolutely determined to get some booze down myself at least this time round, so I set the location (5 minute bus ride from my home – so selfish), to do what he requested we do (play monopoly - this is because I claimed to be pretty much unbeatable at head to head monopoly on our 2nd date), and got there early to buy a bottle of delightful Malbec.

So, I sat there with monopoly set up and ready to go (so keen to win), a large glass of my Argentinean Malbec (half drunk) and a hopeful empty 2nd wine glass should he decide to indulge in the vino with me. The evening progressed thus:

• I despatched him at monopoly within 20 minutes. I almost felt sorry for the guy.
• I told him he had sent the flowers to the wrong place. He didn't seem to be embarrassed at his error at all. Slightly more red-faced when I suggested that the nicknames on the card after 2 dates was a bit strange and that my old receptionist had found them amusing.
• He didn't drink any wine. He clearly doesn't drink ever. I really quizzed him on it this time - we're talking quick-fire 20 questions. His dating profile is definitely misleading in stating he occasionally indulges. Unimpressed.
• Consequence of his non-drinking revelation though was that I drank the entire bottle to myself. Happy days.
• We both ate a good steak and peppercorn sauce - at least he likes red meat if not red wine.
• He sent me a text message whilst I was still sitting at the table with him - weirdo. It asked me if I would like a decider match as we were now 1-1 in terms of the fact he had won the bowling and I had won monopoly… Odd behaviour. Unsure of how to react in such a scenario, so smiled and politely said that would be nice. (Note: I didn't also reply by text).

So - towards end of the evening, I thought he might finally try to go for the lunge, especially bearing in mind his text message that indicated he wanted to see me again… I was well prepped after drinking my entire bottle so for once nerves were not an issue. We paid up, left and said goodbye outside… and nothing. Just another peck on the cheek goodbye.

Most odd. Not fussed by lack of lunge from him (as you may have guessed from reading the above), but did start to have concerns about the fact that everyone else I have spoken to seems to kiss on ALL of their dates, whereas I seem to never kiss on any at all!

So, I assumed that was probably it with my tee-totaller… until I got a text message this week asking if I fancied playing connect 4 at some point… I JEST NOT!!!! Connect 4 for heaven's sake!

Conclusion: non-drinking and a few indications of the lacking in brain cells, I think, means that Diet Coke Boy probably won't be losing a game of Connect 4 in the near future.

Further conclusion: I really need to kiss on a date soon or I am going to be get a complex about it!

Wednesday, 18 August 2010


This weekend I hosted a Safari Dinner Party. You may have read about them recently in various London papers as one of the events that London's Bright Young Things now do…

Suffice to say, my friends and I are actually way ahead of the game on Safaris and have been doing them for a couple of years now. In fact we all consider that we have fine-tuned the Safari DP to such an extent that we are indisputably THE hostesses you want to be invited by to such an event.

For those not quite in the know though, I will elaborate.

The Safari DP basic premise originates from armed forces days gone-by. The stories I have heard from my mother of my parents' time abroad are of dazzling affairs in the mess most of the time, but as well as cocktail parties and so forth in the evening, the wives would also often host dinner parties. And, in true armed forces mentality, team work goes a long way in these things. One wife would host the canapés and starter course for the group at the DP. The entire group would then move on the next (inevitably nearby) house where another wife would have prepared the main course. And after the main course, the entire group would again move on for coffees, dessert, cheese etc at another wife's house, again very nearby.

A few years ago, some of my friends adapted this into an amazingly successful formula, specifically aimed at the singles market in London. (I don't claim that similar DPs have never been done before, of course, but I do claim the superior nature of what my friends have fine-tuned over the last couple of years).

You have 3 houses, situated relatively close to each other, and 3 hostesses, 1 in each house.

Each hostess draws together a clutch of their most fabulous single friends, typically 4 or 5 males and 4 or 5 females. Each hostess also comes up with a sumptuous menu to impress, because let's face it, each hostess is going to be compared to each other and wants such comparisons to be favourable.

Each hostess essentially hosts an entire DP with the usual 3 or 4 courses at their own house. But. The key difference here is that the single boys rotate houses between each course.

You start with your own chaps. You ply them with plenty of wine, make sure they are looking dapper and talking splendid chat and then after starters are done you send them forth on to the next house (as pre-arranged) at the appointed time. You want your boys to be the ones that the other 2 houses of girls rave about. You hope that the other hostesses have sourced some fine young eligible men for your house, and as you have five minutes or so as the rotation occurs, the girls fluster around preparing for the next course, discuss the men that have just left and get excited about the impending arrivals. The men, no doubt, have some sort of locker room style talk en route to their next location.

Your second round of men arrive. You assess. You feed. You drink. You flirt. You probably play some dinner table games. You assess some more. You send them off on their way at the appointed time to their third and final house, and again, await your next and last round of chaps to arrive.

The same thing happens again. Post liqueur coffees or what-have-you, you all then descend en masse (again, pre-arranged) to a night-time haunt, where about 30 odd of you all congregate, consume more beverages, flirt more outrageously now that you have decided who are making a bee-line for out of the 12 to 15 chaps you might have met, and then dance the night away in some sort of debauched fashion.

And debauched is the word. I'm not talking Killing Kittens debauched (google it) but a more innocent and pure-booze related debauchery.

So. How did my Safari DP go?


My boys were adored by the other two houses of girls. My food was proclaimed outstanding by all 3 rounds of chaps (particularly my main course boys – I HAD cooked a 24 hour aromatic slow roast shoulder of pork – nicknamed Percival the Pig - it was heavenly). The single girls at my house were lauded by all the boys. By the time I was boogying in my normal, favourite cheesy-music-playing-South-West London nightclub I was ecstatic with the success of it all. And probably slightly tipsy.

In fact, the morning after, following some telephone calls to all and sundry to determine the precise level of success and glean all possible gossip from the evening, I drew together some vague statistics and commentary from the evening:

There was:
On average a 60-65% snoggage success rate from the evening;
On average an 8-10% sleepover success rate;
On average a 5% double-snog success rate (2 of my guests - well done chaps);
One too many bestiality stories involving marmite, dogs and willies (eugh);
One random chavtastic kiss of one Safari attendee with a hilarious looking white-tracksuit-bottomed and flip-flop wearing non-Safari attendee;
One girlfriend mysteriously turning up for one of the "single" Safari boys (naughty);
Many mind blanks (convenient);
One argument about the quality of MacDonalds chicken legend burgers;
Four late night venues across London visited in total by safari attendees;
2 after-parties;
4.5 kilos left of Percival the Pig;
AND there was a late night booty text sent (not successfully converted, but effort applauded).

Conclusion. Much fun had by all.

My only wish might be that I had contributed to some of the more-interesting sounding above statistics/commentary.

But, on this occasion, I quite enjoyed my role as match-maker extraordinaire. Just call me Emma Woodhouse or Flora Poste…

Friday, 13 August 2010

Mr Friday-Thursday Night

Soooo. The dating enthusiasm has taken a bit of a back seat this week. I am still in a quandary as to whether I genuinely fancy Diet Coke Boy enough to merit a third date with him, or whether I just feel obliged to go on a date with him because he has now treated me to two dates AND rather sweetly sent me flowers (albeit to the wrong place – muppet).

I think I have just about decided that the third date will happen though – but our diaries are taking a while to co-ordinate with summer activities clearing dominating a lot of time for both of us. I have also decided that I need to pay for this third date, and arrange it entirely on my own terms. So, preparations are afoot – Diet Coke Boy date 3 update will be forthcoming in a week or so..

Meanwhile, I may have misbehaved a little in the meantime…

If you recall a certain rather fun "What a Week!" I had a month or so ago, you may also recall a certain Mr Friday Night who featured – an old friend of mine from law school. In a rather surprising turn of events, Mr Friday Night has been rather eager and constant in his textual attentions since that evening, and I have, again, almost surprising myself, been replying relatively enthusiastically. Surprising mainly because he is not my usual type at all. Blonde hair, grey eyes, a little under 6 foot, a little on the cuddly side if that doesn't make me sound too cruel. Super intelligent though – he can almost - almost - out-spar me, which I rather like. And he is pretty confident and arrogant for a cuddly chap. And I don't normally like the cocky ones, I am far too sensible to fall for such chaps. All in all then, it is rather odd.

So, anyway, after a few weeks of furious flirty texting, last night Mr Friday Night came round for a chilled out take-away and vino evening. And promptly became Mr Friday-Thursday Night.

Tuesday, 3 August 2010

Mullet Boy

So. Whilst I am still deliberating about Diet Coke Boy, I thought it was worth sneaking in some more dating practice earlier this week…

Date no. 10 (yes, I am counting them) is henceforth to be called Mullet Boy. Seriously, he is a broker in the city, and he sports a mullet. Dear lord. A really frizzy one that tufted out so that even when he was looking straight at me, I could see wispy bits of his hair poking out behind his ears. Eeeew.

And, this must be a common theme for the chaps on the dating website I am, he had a seriously effeminate, slightly high pitched voice, much like Canoe Boy. This was not aided by the fact that he joked about how he always "accidentally" orders girlie cocktails and then sat back down at the table with a sweet, coffee coloured concoction in a martini glass with pretty decorations on it. My heart absolutely sank from when he first introduced himself and for the next 5 minutes.

It transpires he hails from Liverpool originally.. And he plays softball, which he joked as being like girlie rounders and not as hardcore as baseball – again, how manly.

All in all, I think it most obvious that Mullet Boy is NOT, repeat NOT, my type or for me for the following immediately obvious reasons:

• Mullet
• Girlie voice
• Girlie drinks
• Girlie sport obsession
• Liverpudlian origin (don't despise me, but I just really struggle with accents – simple fact)

Which is why it is MOST odd that I actually had a fun couple of hours with him, giggled a lot, ended up quite fancying him and would consider going on a 2nd date with him. Hmmm. He was tanned, not too short (5 foot 11), good-looking (bar the barnet), seemed quite sweet and intelligent, was genuinely interested in me, and we chatted a lot about golf (his nickname is Ballesteros), and also the ins and outs of the insurance world (I know, sounds dull, but I actually found it quite stimulating conversation). Do we think I have finally lost the plot and reached absolute heights of desperation, or that there is just no accounting for taste, or that you just never know what might end up floating your boat?! (To clarify though, Mullet Boy won't be a boat floater for me in any sort of long term sense).

Anyway, to shock myself, and no doubt all of you, there might be a date 10b with Mullet Boy.

Thursday, 29 July 2010

Dear Cougar...

Incredibly exciting news.

Yesterday morning I received a phone call from the firm I used to work at (over a year ago) saying some flowers had been delivered for me!

I was somewhat confused about who on earth would be sending me flowers that didn't know me well enough to send them to the right firm, but at the same time jumping around, silently whooping, with the telephone attached to my ear (much to the consternation of my colleagues walking past at that moment).

I asked my old receptionist if there was a note to say who they were from. Cheeky woman said that there was indeed an enclosed note and she would be happy to open it for me if I liked? I say cheeky because I could sense in her voice that she had jolly well opened it already and that something peculiar was going on…

"Dear Cougar, Love Mav xxx".

Oh. My. Word.

To the unknowing ear that could sound like I was a cradle snatcher (google puma, cougar etc – essentially old women who like toyboys) – which any of you lot reading this will actually be aware can very easily apply to me. To my old receptionist it was probably the most amazing gossip she could possibly start to spread around my former colleagues.

"Who might Mav be then Twenty-Single…?", she slyly asked.

To my knowing ear though, it was Diet Coke Boy. And he appears to given us nicknames already. Hmmm.

You may recall that after my first date with Diet Coke Boy I was on a mission to learn all the call signs from Top Gun before our second date. Which I duly did. And during supper he did indeed quiz me on them and was very impressed that I got all of them (including the call signs for the control towers and ship, not that it is of importance) – bar one… Cougar.

I have many thoughts on this at the moment:

1. Diet Coke Boy has sent me flowers! Hurrah! I have never had flowers sent to work before – how exciting!

2. He had, somehow, almost utterly miraculously in fact, sent them to the wrong firm – and indeed somewhere I worked a year ago. I have definitely mentioned that I used to work there but if the boy had been paying even scant attention, he should have realised it was a while ago. That old grey matter concern of mine is clearly now justified. He must be little dim-witted. Alternatively, he paid no attention to about 10 minutes of our dinner conversation. Neither option is ideal.

3. How cute of him. And I thought I might not hear from him again. Or is it distressingly keen…? I didn't even kiss him - could he be a bit of an oddball? He DID live with his ex for four and a half years… maybe he is looking for a quick step-in replacement for her?

4. Nicknames?! After two dates. Errrrr. And he gives me the one of the guy who utterly bottles it in Top Gun and himself the legend that is Tom Cruise as Maverick?!

Anyway. I went to collect them after work yesterday – it was immensely fun finally being one of those girls carrying a bouquet home from work that all of the other females around try not to look enviously at.

On balance I think I had better organise a 3rd date with him now he has treated me to two dinners and bought me flowers. There was talk of a monopoly head to head… I would probably prefer to get a little tipsy with the boy to see what he is like after a few drinks, but it doesn't look like that will happen anytime soon if he keeps ordering milkshakes and coke floats... So, if anyone knows of a cosy pub that has board games at the ready, that would be great…

Tuesday, 27 July 2010

Diet Coke Boy returns

Yes - that's right – blue-eyed, blond-haired, Diet Coke Boy got back from his holidays last week– and he was keen for a second date - hurrah.

So, Diet Coke Boy had appeared to be non-drinking and potentially not endowed with many brain cells from our first date. On the plus side though, he was good to look at, and we had a fun first date (which he paid for – what a gent).

Towards the end of last week Diet Coke Boy had been telling me that what we were going to do was top secret - which was all very exciting - I guess... For anyone who knows me though, I am not that easy to surprise. I also like to know what I am doing generally in life. Further, while surprises are not unwelcome per se, it actually seems that when people try to surprise me, they usually fail. I admired his attempting to do so though.

He tried to give me a supposedly cryptic clue for what we were doing: "it started in ancient Egypt and is 60 foot long". I couldn't figure this out and neither could my cryptic-crossword-genius brother, at which point I began to suspect that he doesn't know what a cryptic clue usually involves. So I presumed he had in fact just given me a normal clue. Possibly the lack of his grey matter shining through here… Oh dear. But then again, if my genius brother couldn't figure out the clue then perhaps Diet Coke Boy was actually incredibly clever?!

So, I thought he could be referring to Cleopatra's Needle – perhaps we were going to picnic around that Embankment area – not the exact measurement but near enough…But he had also hinted he was quite keen to see my competitive side so I also thought we might be doing something like quasar or bowling or urban golf. I decided to take jeans into work with me and change from work outfit in case we were doing anything active and I had got the picnic thing wrong.

Which I had.

Technically he should get massive brownie points for trying to surprise me – and slightly succeeding. Last night we DID go bowling at the All Star lanes in Brick Lane: bowling lanes are 60 foot long I was reliably informed, and apparently bowling may have originated in Egypt (so definitely NOT a cryptic clue then). And he was very sweet – he deliberately tried to meet me somewhere else to keep me off the scent until we got into a taxi and he had to give the destination. How cute of him.

We had a quick drink on arrival pre-bowling. He ordered a strawberry milkshake. I had a beer. Felt very feminine. When we then donned the cool bowling shoes, I thanked the heavens I had decided to change into jeans because my chunky legs do NOT look their best in a suit skirt and bowling shoes.

We bowled. I tried not to let my competitive side show too much. He bowled with a pink ball weighing 8 whatever-it-is-they-weigh that the prep-school-aged-girl in the next door lane to us was using. I used a standard 12 weight green-coloured ball. Again, felt most feminine.

I noticed he bowled in a really odd fashion and that he walks a little like a cowboy does - wide-legged type of swagger. Odd. I was winning until the 8th turn when he got a spare… then he won overall by 4 points (though I must point out that I was the only one to get a strike). I smiled in gracious loser fashion a lot. Secretly most hacked off that I lost to a boy that throws a pink lightweight ball. He suggested supper in the diner - I was instantly appeased. He must have the general measure of me already.

Had a comedy moment whilst we were waiting for a waiter or waitress wearing a little red bowling shirt to show us to our table. He decided to accost an 80 year old granny wearing a bright pink blouse who was on her way to the loo to see if she could seat us at a table, and started with "excuse me, could we have a table for…." then tailed off as she looked at him most oddly and as it dawned on him that she was NOT a waitress. I was crying with laughter in a really unhelpful fashion in the corner at this stage… Absolutely hilarious! Poor Diet Coke Boy was bright red and the granny's family (sat about 3 metres away) were giving him filthy looks.

Then, when an actual waitress finally did come up to seat us, he said, "do you work here?" to double check! He gets massive brownie points again for recovering from this relatively well and not being overly phased at all by the fact that I was unable to stop laughing at him for about 10 minutes.

We ordered food - I went for double cheese burger and chips with onion rings, he went for grilled steak and green beans and no carbs in sight. I have no doubt that any normal man at this stage would be feeling somewhat emasculated taking into account the milkshake, pink ball and healthy dinner option compared to the clearly starving, beer-swilling, shot putter he was treating to supper, but he seemed rather unaffected by it all.

I questioned him about the fact he clearly takes quite good care of himself. He used to be VERY into his rowing apparently. Temporary concern about his banter levels fluttered, but I quickly reminded myself that his banter has seemed fine so far and not to panic.

He also didn't mind at all when I mentioned that I do drink fairly regularly and not necessarily in small quantities (though please note, I joined him in having a Coke Float for the rest of the evening - sober me for rest of evening – and yes, he ordered a Coke Float –with diet coke of course – what on earth?!!!). He never actually confirmed if he is a fully-fledged tee-totaller or not though but dodged the question. Curious. I suspect he may be.

All continued pleasantly and well; he chivalrously treated me again in a most lovely way ("no, I insist" - swoon) and then offered me a lift home. Don't worry - I did ask him if he was a psycho before I got in his car. Think he thought I was a little odd.

He drove me home in some sort of uber plush, snazzy car (am useless with cars – maybe a Lexus?) and then when we were about 5 minutes from home I began to panic about whether he would try to kiss me or not. It suddenly dawned on me that I haven't kissed someone whilst sober for nearly 18 months!!! All my kisses in the last year and a half have been drunken lunges! Panic basically suddenly dawned and I began to wish I'd drunk more beers rather than damn coke and ice-cream concoctions!

He pulled over outside my home, I got flustered, thanked him profusely, then leant over and gave him a little peck on the cheek and turned my head away rather quickly. As I looked back after getting out of the car I thought he looked rather disappointed. I felt mean. So, I am now convinced I won't hear from him again – and I am still trying to decide if that bothers me or not.

Friday, 23 July 2010

What a Week! Part 2...

So, still suffering somewhat from enjoying myself too fun from the previous two evenings, I enthusiastically threw myself into Saturday afternoon at a friend's house drinking Pimms and enjoying a most delightful BBQ, despite the weather conditions not being quite ideal.

Around early evening, a couple of the boys in attendance decided to head Parsons Green way to meet up with some (more) army boys so I, naturally, joined them (especially when they mentioned one had sticky out ears – an odd weakness of mine – I know, so weird).

At one of the PG pubs I met the sticky out eared guy - a most amusing chap recently returned from being on a tour of duty. He looked like Paul Bettany, had me in stitches all night long, and as we all gaily swanned off to yet another different cheesy-music-playing-South-West London nightclub (one of the golden oldies and a solid favourite of mine for years now), I thought, "hurrah – I am soooo going to pull off three pulls in three nights!".


The evening however then took a slightly farcical turn.

The first person I saw on walking into the cheesy-music-playing-South-West London nightclub was the Irish boy from Thursday. Ah. I of course said hello, and noticed he was with an entire contingency of other boys I knew from Uni. So I merrily flitted around catching up briefly and drunkenly with everyone.

Then, mid-conversation, I noticed Mr Friday Night was there as well. What are the chances. And Paul Bettany Lookalike was standing just behind him. Hmmm.

I had an immediate flashback to when I last properly played the field aged 19 on my gap year (post my first ever heartbreak boyfriend of 2 and a half years and whilst I was out to get my revenge on the male race - let's call him Cheating Chump - his name transpires from the fact that I had, rather late in the day, discovered that he had pulled about 15 other girls behind my back during our time "together", including 2 so-called friends….I digress…).

I had sort-of started seeing 2 utterly gorgeous boys at the same time (one was a chap I had a crush on since the age of about 14 at the school Debating Society - don't judge - Debating Society involved joining up with the boys school one day a week after school so of course lots of us joined up - we were otherwise deprived of male company!) Debating Boy was about 3 years older than me and so incredibly sweet. He had taken me out for lunches, been most chivalrous and I felt like I had proven myself to some of the cruel older girls in the school who had found out at the time about my crush and then taken the mick out of me in front of the entire school during the annual sixth form entertainment. Anyway - 5 years later, score, I had my man.

I was though also seeing an utterly divine, fit and smooth talking charmer of a hockey boy - ex schoolboy international, 4 years older than me, and I was pretty proud of myself for getting in there I must say.

Reason for flashback: it had all gone VERY BADLY wrong one night in a local night club (seeing more than one person at the same time in a very small community was never going to work out overly well).

Soooo, my Saturday night didn't end quite as horrifically as that night 9 years ago thankfully… (me standing there with drink in hand, suddenly seeing both hotties at opposite ends of the club, slow motion replay of them both closing in on me from either side and both kissing me on the cheek literally at the same time, Debating Boy looking most put out and leaving, the smoothie finding it all most amusing and not deterred by it at all, me feeling guilty generally and vowing never to play the field again).

Some skilful manoeuvring by me – or rather just plain old luck - meant I was saved from such an ordeal this time round. Mr Friday Night was too tipsy and took himself home. Irish chap kind of hovered a bit but not enough to be a problem, and then disappeared, also in a drunken stupor. So, come 2am and final dance time I was home and dry to have a cheeky dance with Paul Bettany Lookalike and a bit of a smooch on the dancefloor (kind of home and dry… Irish boy and Mr Friday Night had friends observing it all unfortunately but oh well - not like I am really misbehaving is it?!).

The delightful Paul Bettany Lookalike then swept me off for some 3am Eggs Benedict – the perfect end to an evening - what a dreamboat.

And what a fun week! Confidence at all time high for first time in about 2 years. Definitely a strong "week of yes" in what is now definitely my "year of yes".

Perfect timing because Diet Coke Boy is back from his holiday and ready for a second date…

Thursday, 22 July 2010

What a Week! Part 1...

I almost don’t want to go into too much detail on this to be honest, for fear I will come across as somewhat slutty…

I realised something on Sunday morning: I have two sides to my single personality.

On the one hand I have the relatively sensible, mildly tipsy, dating Twenty-Single persona – that part of me can chatter away with strangers on dates picked up from dating websites and tends not to kiss on dates, on the basis that it is odd to kiss someone you barely know.

On the other side of the coin is my non-dating Twenty-Single persona – the one that lets loose a little bit too easily when out with friends for drinkies and needs no convincing to merrily kiss anything relatively attractive and male that comes my way, on the basis that most of them are somehow connected to a friend, or friend of a friend and have therefore passed some sort of verification test.

So, the week that just was saw the latter persona really rage to the surface. Clearly after the horrors of the Canoe Boy date, and my recovery from my cough, I needed a bit of a boost in my life so I morphed the week into a mass of enthusiasm!

So, Thursday evening.

I went to a most delightful army officers bash, having been invited by an old University friend of mine. It was tremendous - army officers dressed up all over the place, and lashings and lashings of free flowing booze, of which I chose to get fully stuck into the Moscow Mules.

Whilst circulating and admiring all elements of the surrounds, I bumped into another friend I knew from Uni who was there with one of his old Uni chaps now in the army as well. I instantly registered his friend as a bit of a hottie (though possibly only about 5 foot 10) and pursued him - in a relatively subtle fashion - for the rest of the evening, getting gradually more lured in by his soft Irish accent.

Suffice to say that being Moscow Mule-fuelled with confidence I lunged sometime after midnight on the dance-floor, and woke up the next morning with an Irish army officer in my bed (no naughty behaviour mind). It transpired that I actually couldn't understand much of what he said (really softly spoken accent - and I struggle with any accent at the best of times) – our conversation can’t have consisted of much in depth chat. I had to leave him languishing in my bed whilst I trotted off to work feeling utterly awful and no doubt reeking of stale booze.

Throughout my Friday at work I was inwardly groaning at the prospect of having to go home and entertain at a dinner party for lots of my girlie friends, but thankfully I fought through the hangover and was back on form by 7pm and my girls' arrival time. My recovery was no doubt aided by the fact that upon trotting home I found a sweet little note from the Irish boy on my bed, leaving me his mobile number. Fabulous.

So – Friday evening and I enjoyed a glorious girlie supper at mine – following which we all merrily trotted off to a cheesy-music-playing-South-West London nightclub (not my usual favourite one though – we branched out) where I continued to consume at a rate of knots many many whiskey and cokes and jager bombs in order to fully embrace the flashing dance-floor fun.

Afterwards, I somehow ended up going back home with a friend of mine from law school I had bumped into in said cheesy venue and slept in his bed (he lived much closer to the venue than me, it made infinite sense at the time). Again, no naughty behaviour but a little bit of a kiss and a cuddle took place. Unusual – he is NOT my normal type. I awoke feeling fairly sleepy having had just under 5 hours sleep over the last 2 days. Oof.

Saturday stretched out ahead of me as I did a bus route of shame (without much shame I must admit) – the agenda looming involved BBQ and pimms action. I proudly reflected on my two kisses from two nights, and wondered if I would be able to pull off three out of three. Which I did. But in pure comedy circumstances – to be updated to you imminently!

Monday, 12 July 2010

Canoe Boy

Oh lord…

Poor chap.

I had misgivings before we even met up if I am honest. Firstly he had suggested meeting up, on a Friday evening, in a trendy bar in the middle of Piccadilly. Even the thought of the heaving bustle of Central London and all its tourists on a hot evening was not appealing. Secondly, in the emails we had exchanged beforehand (yes, another dating website date) he had gone on about canoes quite a bit. I was glad to hear that he had some keen sporting interest, but the lengthy explanations I had received detailing the differences between Canadian Canoes, just plain old Canoes and Kayaks had set a few alarm bells gently ringing…

So, Canoe Boy. First impressions:

- He had unfortunate teeth that not only looked like the front two of them were shorn off halfway through growing, but also had the unusual effect of making certain words he said come out with a whistling sound.
- He was also rather balding – something which I had not been able to pick up on from the photos he had displayed of himself as (I noticed on reviewing them when home later on) he was wearing different hats in all of them – cheeky.
- He was clearly suffering from feeling the heat as there were beads of sweat glistening on his head, and on more than one occasion, they rolled down off his shiny head towards his eyes… Which he seemed oblivious too, and I politely tried not to stare at them and wonder if the salt was going to affect his eyes at some point.

So, like I said, poor chap.

Canoe Boy is 34 years old, has brown hair (what remains of it), works in marketing, lives near Wimbledon, his home town is Shropshire, his actual name is John (and his surname is Smith with a middle name of Andrew - parents lacking some imagination there I feel) and he is 5 foot 10. (NOTE TO SELF: I have now (again) absolutely decided against any further dates with men shorter than 5 foot 11, minimum. I really don't like feeling the same height as the chap next to me if I am in heels)

I can’t quite put my finger on his accent/tone, but it really reminded me of something or someone (other than a choo choo train whistling before going into tunnels)… I think whatever the tone was, it had a definite effeminacy to it. Suffice to say, it was unusual and not overly attractive as far as voices go.

And I really don’t know why he went for somewhere bang in the middle of busy Piccadilly. Apparently it isn't near either his home or work, and he was aware that it wasn't near my home or work either. He did very kindly foot the bill for the drinks though, despite my offering to split it as I knew I wouldn’t see him again – so can't fault him a jot on dating etiquette in that sense.

I lasted for 2 G&Ts and then just as I was reaching my tether with Canoe Boy's explanations of different materials used to build canoes with over the years, I used my atrocious cough as an excuse to leave whilst it was still light and gloriously sunny outside (which was a shock I must say on emerging from the dark cubby hole we had been sitting in).

There will not be a second date.

Tuesday, 6 July 2010

Diet Coke Boy

Woohoo! Enter a tall, blond, blue-eyed man from a dating website.

He was funny, attractive, AND he took me for supper as well as drinks (I am so easily bought). I actually fancied this one as well which is, clearly, a big step forward in the right direction. Yippee!

I am trying not to get too excited though, as there are, as ever, a few negatives:

1. He doesn't drink much (as in, whilst I quaffed a G&T at Underdog on Northcote Road, and then a couple of Tiger beers in Banana Leaf on Battersea Rise on Sunday evening, he drank Diet Coke the whole way through - and frankly the less said about the fact he drank Diet Coke the better - I recommended that he at least tried Coke Zero so as to appear more manly);

2. He has recently come out of a very long-term relationship where he had actually bought a house with the girl - didn't talk about her endlessly or anything horrific but she came up a couple of times – definitely something to be wary of;

3. Diet Coke Boy went to a poly for his university - a proper poly – so his grey matter issues need to be determined (I know, I know, I really am a terrible intellectual snob – but I just KNOW that I won't ultimately feel attracted to someone who is a bit slow); and

4. Finally, skiing never came up in our sports played/sporting interests/holidays coverage so I don't think that he skis – BIG concern – I need a skier.

All that aside though, Diet Coke Boy is the first one who has made me properly laugh out loud, and he ticks a fair few boxes, so all good. A second date is in the offing once he is back from his holiday. Woop.

Apparently in advance of the second date I need to learn the 13 call signs from Top Gun for him to test me. I, for some reason tried to impress him by saying that I would be able to do this– but now I am struggling as I can only recall 9 off the top of my head. Woops – but god bless Google.

Oh - and no, there was no snoggage at the end of date despite it going well. I have actually decided not to kiss on first dates with people I have only met for the first time that night, on the basis that with no mutual friend verifying them, you simply just don’t know where they might have been… (Caveat: this will clearly go out of the window if Mr Dreamboat rocks up one night and goes for the lunge).

Tuesday, 29 June 2010

A conservative date...

I introduce to you Peter the Dull.

Poor chap. Perfectly nice but never going to light up the world. Another date from the dating website I am on. Is in politics as a campaign manager and wants to be an MP as soon as he can climb up the ranks apparently - heavens. Clearly slightly puffed up post recent victories for his party as well.

First impressions: he was a bit portly, but at least he was over 6 foot as his profile had stated. Neither good-looking nor repulsive to the eye.

Further impressions: somewhat lacking in banter, doesn't ski, doesn't do much sport anymore (if he ever did really – I suspect he just put sporty into his online description to cover all bases), and – fundamentally – he ordered me a small glass of wine rather than a large. Unimpressed.

During the date I officially experienced my first sinking feeling of there being a pause during which I was thinking, "oh… no… I actually have nothing left to ask him about… what can I ask him about…. Anything Twenty-Single! Think! Think! Why can't I think of anything else? Why doesn't he say something? Anything?! Come on, ask me something you lump of uselessness!" etc. Not good. And quite unusual as I can normally chatter away quite easily really. The small glass of wine may have played a factor in my lack of usual animation perhaps.

I also experienced flashes forward of my being coupled with someone who might end up in the public eye, and all the skeletons in old closets that could emerge and ruin him - nothing terribly sordid of course, but there are a voluminous amount of odd fancy dress photos, long-arming pints of beers photos, being nicknamed after famous dictators in sports teams drinking circles etc – it just doesn't make for a good other half to an MP. That was just an aside I had whilst sitting in silence for one of our overly long pauses in conversation.

After I bought myself another drink – yes, a large glass of wine (I suspect he thought he would get away with buying the small glass - he was found out when I came back to the table with decidedly larger glasses than he had) - I then proceeded to chatter away about nothing to rapidly draw the evening to a close after just two drinks.

On the plus side (for him) he is clearly going to be a very nice other half for someone one day. Someone who likes to listen to him drone on about party policies and who doesn't object to being covertly ordered small glasses of wine.

He actually asked me on a second date in a post-date text (clearly the odd silence didn’t bother him) so I was able to get some practice in at how to say 'no thank you' in a kindly fashion. It worked - he even replied to the rejection saying thank you! Poor Peter...

Monday, 21 June 2010

Major minor incident

Oh dear, oh dear, oh dear. It seems I am turning into a younger, more modern version of Mrs Robinson. Either that or what is commonly known as a puma or cougar (google them) – except no name exists for a Twenty-Single year old version going for teenagers.

So, I HAD thought Pretty Young Boy would be the end to my tendencies towards younger men. But alas, no. I went to a good friend's annual summer bash this weekend and sunk yet lower. 18 years old.

My friend is the oldest of 4 brothers, and every year at their amazing summer bash they each invite a swarm of all of their friends. Each year without fail my friend warns his single male friends to take care due to the presence of a number of underage females amongst the throng. These days, there is (thankfully) less concern about actual minor incidents, but it seems that my good friend should have warned his female friends to take heed as well…

18 Year Old was a hottie. I will say that in my defence. Although apparently all he did was tell me his name at 2am in the morning (after a lot of wine and hog roast had been consumed I hasten to add) and I went at him. The horror. More so because I didn't remember his name and thereafter introduced him to my fellow aged friends as "this is my 18 Year Old".

He was most sweet though - he told me all about his gap year plans (ski season), how his A-levels are going, and how upset he was that he had just failed his driving test for the 4th time. Bless. (Although I confess I had immediate concerns about how dangerous the roads might become should he finally pass his test at the 5th attempt. Should there maybe be an upper limit introduced if people are clearly road liabilities the first few attempts?!) All this whilst putting up with my aged friends yelling inappropriate things across their drinks at us into the early hours and finding themselves immensely amusing…

Whilst I have since been suffering from the horrors of realising I kissed someone who is yet to get their A-Level results, I have also found out that the little fella got a fair bit of kudos from being able to kiss such an oldie merely on a one-line introduction, so I am now trying to think of the act as being highly philanthropic of me instead. Which is clearly far better for my own self-perception.

Wednesday, 16 June 2010

Minor Incident

I have always known that I have a weak spot for young, baby-faced Romeos. The posters from my childhood bedroom are testament to that (and yes, some of those posters are still possibly on display inside wardrobe doors).

What I didn't know was that I might start kissing some of these pretty young things. And certainly not ones considerably younger than me…

At an Old Boys and Girls annual alumni event at my former University last weekend, I kissed an incredibly pretty male student. And I mean really pretty. Blue eyes, long dark eyelashes, cute freckles, boyish smile and dark floppy wavy hair a la Hugh Grant in the good old days. He also has the most incredible name: his christian name is utterly manly, and his surname is double-barrelled - delightful.

Moreover, I actually knew him from last year's alumni event because the cheeky little chap tried to kiss me then - at the time I recoiled in horror due to him only being 19 years old. Obviously, one year on, there remains no change in the age gap, but with him technically not being a teenager anymore and me being clearly less of a prude than I used to be, I confess I offered zero resistance when he went for the lunge this year. I was in fact ridiculously excited by the fact that this, frankly delectable, young thing wanted to try and kiss me in my aged state.

And, even more gratifying, he was wonderfully enthusiastic as well - must be the age - he naughtily tried to seduce me further by suggesting a midnight cuddle back at his, but I drew the line there (and, possibly slightly cruelly, laughed at him for his absurd notion).

Why did I refuse the midnight cuddle offer…? Well, to be honest with you, I have a feeling I may once have babysat for him as we hail from the same home town. It would just be wrong.

All in all though, kissing Pretty Young Boy pretty much made my entire weekend – hurrah!

Thursday, 10 June 2010

Fruit Boy

I have heard of normal phobias that people have – you know, spiders, flying, outside space, cramped space – and I have heard of some of the more abnormal ones too – buttons, dogs, injections. But, I have never before heard of a fear of spherically shaped fruit and vegetables.

I have tried to google it to see if there is a name for such a phobia. There is not. There are various bizarre reports and articles about fears of pesticides on your fruit, and people who just don’t like eating fruit and veg, but nothing about how the sight of a spherical edible object can induce fear into a person.

It must exist though because I met a person with just such a phobia. There I was over May bank holiday weekend at a lovely BBQ on the Sunday evening with some friends, and friends of friends, and during dessert this chap suddenly asked if the blueberries could be moved further away from him, and looked distinctly uncomfortable with them being within arm's grasp from him. One of his friends apologised and quickly moved them away.

Interest immediately piqued by this unusual specimen I proceeded to ply him with questions about what was going on. Responses to my onslaught of questions only produced more and more bizarre responses from this guy. Our mutual friends were finding his oddities all relatively amusing, and in fact seemed to find Fruit Boy generally quite funny, but I was just getting more and more aghast as I went. Any round fruit he finds scary. Oranges, cherries, blueberries. He seemed unsure about the less perfectly spherically formed fruits such as nectarines and peaches and plums, but the thought of them still clearly bothered him. When I moved onto vegetables and mentioned peas, he became quite dejected.

He also has a multitude of other slightly less odd phobias (predictably flying is in there), and recently commit facebook suicide because members of his immediate family who he doesn't want to speak to "found him" on there. He is attracted to girls who wear white tracksuits, and look like the stereotypical Essex girls. And a multitude of other things. Most odd individual clearly. Intriguing though because everyone else seemed to find it all really funny. And it clearly bothered him a lot that I was not laughing along.

Anyway, Sunday evening progressed in a fun fashion -Pimms being merrily swigged down around the table etc. Then someone suggested hitting my favourite cheesy-music-playing-South-West London nightclub … Well, at that point, most people politely (and sensibly) made their excuses and tottered off and home to bed. About 5 of us though, including Fruit Boy, tripped our way along to the cheesy venue, me still steadfastly finding Fruit Boy something of an odd social being, and him still clearly becoming more and more put out by my not laughing at his jokes … Cheesy venue closed. Upsetting.

The other 3 people gave up. Fruit Boy and I were left alone on a pavement, slightly sozzled and wanting to have a couple more drinks. Fruit Boy lived close by and said he had wine back at his, so off we went. I was desperate to see if he lived in a weird way as well. I was not disappointed. His fridge contents were frankly astonishing, and he doesn't open his post as a general rule.

I have just finished reading the Millennium trilogy by Stieg Larsson, and was beginning to wonder if Fruit Boy suffered some sort of social disorder like Salander.

Anyway. You probably all know where this is going… we drank some wine, we put a film on that we didn't watch, we talked for about 4 hours, I gained more insight into his oddities, he showed me some fancy dress costumes of his, I noted that one of them was actually a vegetable outfit, he pointed out it was a carrot and therefore not spherical, I put the carrot outfit on, he laughed, I made half-hearted suggestions that I should leave, I wondered whether he would finally make a move, he didn't, he offered me a t-shirt to sleep in, I said I shouldn't really, he promised to get me a glass of water, I ummer and ahhed, he said I could lie on one side of the bed untouched, I relented, he gave me a t-shirt and water, I wondered again when he would make a move, he talked for another few hours in bed, I was near falling asleep – then finally, he kissed me.

Yep – I have now officially kissed someone who has a fear of spherically shaped fruit and vegetables. And I put on a carrot costume for no reason. All in all, quite a good evening.

Friday, 28 May 2010

Date 6: Shorter and shorter

Last night was a date with a James, another dating website date. Not much to report here. This one was damn well shorter than his vital stats said he was as well – only just 5 foot 9 for sure. Rage.

Having immediately established upon seeing him that I didn't fancy him remotely, (as well as being too midget-like for me, he was wearing a slightly funky hoodie - I think I need a man who wears a shirt on a first date really) we drank our way through a fair few Pimms on the Southbank, laughed a lot and had a perfectly pleasant evening before going our separate ways. To give him credit he was nice-looking - dark hair, friendly smile etc, and quite fun. Points for buying the first couple of rounds of drinks as well.

Would recommend him to a friend… a short friend. But ultimately, not for me. Onwards and, hopefully, upwards.

Wednesday, 26 May 2010

Date 5: the ginge

Bit of a lapse since the last update. The recent sunshine has caused me to be remiss since my last date a couple of weeks ago…

I really was so excited about this one. Another dating website date, I knew that he was a dashing cavalry officer, had excellent banter in his emails and texts, looked divine in his photos, loves skiing, sports, country walks, his dog… his ginger hair was the possible deal breaker but he looked so scrummy in his photos that I resolutely refused to let it bother me.

We had been texting back and forth a lot over the last couple of weeks as we couldn't find a date to meet up for a while – and had even had a few phone calls as well where we chatted away for about an hour each time – amazing! And the first time I have spoken to a date on the phone in advance of meeting them (someone has since told me that this was however possibly his way of checking that I sounded normal – good approach). I think the delayed gratification aspect of it all added to my excitement factor - suffice to say as I bounced off to meet him on Northcote Road, I was more than convinced that I might be about to meet the near-perfect man…

Instant problem. There was no way he was 5 foot 11 as his profile stated. Felt instant outrage as I had worn 2 inch heels feeling I would still be 2 inches shorter than him. As it was I was walking along with my umbrella easily able to cover him rather than poking him in the eye as he was jolly well practically the same height as me - hurumph.

I decided to let it go. Besides, he was very funny and easy to chat to. We got mildly tipsy over a few cocktails, and then I asked him where he had gone to uni. He had not. Oops. How had we not covered this in our hour long phone calls?!

I actually sensed his response halfway through asking the question as his brow furrowed a little, so I tried to mask the assumption contained in my question by asking if he had decided not to go to uni… Furrowed brow interpretation was correct - he spent 3 years working before joining the army but did live with student friends in a decent university city at the same time, so he felt he still enjoyed all the fun times of being a student. Still, it didn’t prevent the big question suddenly looming in front of my eyes - "oh dear, is he thick?"

He certainly didn't seem so, and it probably makes me a terrible intellectual snob to think like this, which I realised when it hit me that all I wanted to ask him was what his A-level results were to try and determine his brain capacity. But one can't really do that. Unfortunately.

Anyway, a fun evening, but ultimately his being vertically challenged with a potential lack of grey cells sadly dampened any pre-meeting enthusiasm I had for my cavalry officer. And, most sadly, it seems that his pre-meeting enthusiasm for me was somewhat of a damp squib as well as the multitude of texts had been receiving have since ceased. (I have tried to analyse why this might be the case, and as I vaguely recall gabbling away about my father bringing me up like a boy and him looking slightly startled, I think that could be the problem. Note to self: leave the parental emotional scarring stories out of first date conversations).

Tuesday, 11 May 2010

Interlude and Research Time

Hmmm. Just in case any of you were feeling sorry for the rejected Stag Do boy from the pre-Date 4 anecdote, I randomly bumped into him again this weekend as well (in the same cheesy-music-playing-South-West London nightclub – the shame). I of course apologised profusely for absconding on him after he had bought me a drink – and gave him a kiss better to make up for it. I think he is fine now.

Stag Do Boy, it transpires, also happens to work at a certain Big Four accountancy firm where several friends of mine work. Preliminary investigations undertaken on finding this out have resulted in the following: Stag Do Boy plays hockey and various other sports for that firm from time to time, but is 2 years younger than me, and doesn't look overly remarkable in his "stalkernet" internal photo (I know – naughty of one of my buddies to have emailed this out). The sporty factor, combined with the fact that he was in my favourite cheesy-music-playing-South-West London nightclub two weekends on the trot should count in his favour, but, sadly I think the age factor combined with the fact that on the stag do there were approximately 6 other attendees over the age of 55 has rendered me less than keen…

An amusing little interlude though, and am amazed by how easy it is to stalk people who should be utterly unknown to you. Useful.

Thursday, 6 May 2010

Date 4: the dark side

Well, unfortunately there is nothing that amusing to tell from my next date. However, the lead up to the date certainly provides some amusement value…

It was another dating website date. The email exchanges had given me lots of background info, so I had discovered that he plays hockey at the same venue as me, but for a different club (phew) and that he was due to be going out dressed as a Darth Maul last Saturday night... (big tick – he likes fancy dress!). Let's call him Star Wars Boy.

So, last Saturday I also spent the day in fancy dress – a large group of about 30 of us descended on a sporting event utterly dominating the Neon 80s look. My particular outfit saw me dressed thus: sparkly black leggings, a pink netted tutu, neon green leg warmers, matching neon green headband and sweatbands, a green leotard (with a stylish hole in part of its back onto which one of my kindly friends had scrawled in neon facepaint "pull me" and lots of hearts and lips - classy) and a neon orange cardigan. After a day on the beers, we all ended up in one of my favourite cheesy-music-playing South London nightclubs, still in our Neon 80s outfits.

Here is a step-by-step replay of what happened:

1. I have told everyone in our Neon group that a guy I am going on a date with is out dressed as Darth Maul during a general 'fancy dress appreciation' discussion.
2. I drink a little too much in a short space of time in said cheesy-music-playing club.
3. I am standing at the bar about to purchase some more drinks when I get introduced to 2 Darth Mauls (complete with light sabres) by another friend of mine, both still wearing their Maul masks.
4. The masks are removed as the names are said.
5. I find myself looking at the face of the thumbnail picture of the guy I am due to be going on a date with. Star Wars boy.
6. Abject panic sets in.
7. I realise I am wearing the above-described outfit, and have "pull me" written on my back.
8. I squeal "oh my god!" in his face and then turn and scurry away (thereby giving him full view of the writing on my back).


Thankfully I calmed down with some whisky and cokes, and then the rest of the evening passed without incident (well, apart from me kissing (1) a chap on a stag do (not his own I hasten to add), who then went to buy me a drink and came back to find me kissing (2) a friend of mine's brother... woops. Stag Do boy still gave me the drink would you believe though?!

I woke up on Sunday utterly convinced that I would never hear from Star Wars boy again and that our proposed date would never happen. Instead though I got a hilarious email from him saying that he had found it all rather amusing and my reaction was priceless! Wonderful, a chap who can cope with utterly odd behaviour!

So, I met up with him last night and we had a bottle of wine between us (I did though turn up with 3 G&Ts on an empty stomach and was horribly aware of how giggly I was – I tried to tone it down and be serious but as I drank more wine, I just babbled more at him - poor chap). Anyway, he is nice looking, funny, a qualified accountant, plays golf as well (but only in good sunny weather - bit wet of him not to play in the rain though in my opinion - which I think I made clear when I started talking about my last golf outing being New Year's Day in frosty conditions), and I generally rather liked the way he ripped it out of me for my behaviour on Neon night. Downsides: he doesn't ski. And possibly a little short for me, although by no means a midget.

Anyway, a pleasant date. Currently attempting to line the next few up now – practice makes perfect!

Over and out.

Tuesday, 27 April 2010

Third Date...

So. Date number 3 has now taken place - and this is more like what I have been waiting for in terms of a good horror story! Be careful what you wish for…

In all fairness, I think I realised this one would NOT be a potential from the email exchanges (and yes, it was another dating website date) - but thought it would be good practice in how to leave politely after one drink. And that was, quite precisely, what it turned out to be.

Absolutely hilarious 40 minutes of my life though - I barely know where to start.

So, No. 3, aged 35, looks (unfortunately, poor chap) every bit of those 35 years, and possibly even nearer 40. Not totally horrific looking but sort of goggly-eyed which rendered him a little unattractive.

To be kind, I was a shocking 15 minutes late - which is appalling as I try never to be late (I blame it entirely on the fact I was enjoying some vino in the sunshine near St Pauls...) - and he was fairly pleasant about it (I let him know I was running late) - or so I thought initially...

So, he was waiting outside the bar he had suggested (a noisy, busy venue in Covent Garden - not enamoured with the suggestion to be honest but oh well) and was on the phone as I walked up. I realised it was him, and sort of gave a little wave and smile as I drew up, he then turned his back, finished his conversation (leisurely) whilst I stood there, slightly awkwardly, a polite distance away from him waiting.... He then hung up and turned around: I apologised profusely etc, he kissed me in an odd flamboyant fashion on each cheek whilst cocking one arm out to the side with a bent wrist, he said no problem (I may have told a white lie about not being able to get away from an emotional friend rather than the actual truth of 'I wanted to finish my 3rd large glass of pinot grigio') and then we headed to a different bar to his initial suggestion (thank goodness).

Ordered a glass of red wine each, settled down, I thought I would initiate conversation... "So, No. 3, you're in telecoms, but what exactly is it that you do?".
Cue: massive rolling of the eyes, an odd limp-wristed flap of the hand, and a reply of "ooooh, why does it matter what I do...?" said in a quite frankly unnecessarily over the top fashion and rather camp way. I thought it was a fairly standard starter question but hey ho. I said "you know - just curious!" in what I would like to think was a suitably light-hearted fashion to try and move on.

He then proceeded to drone on for 5 minutes about the dullest job in the world. He also didn't let my "obsession with what people do" die for the next 40 minutes, along the lines of "So, as you were so keen to know what I do, I suppose you expect me to ask the same of you". Slightly gobsmacked, I smiled politely and briefly explained what I do. When I asked him about his siblings he slipped in "well, I had better tell you what they do as you are interested in that sort of thing" (brother a cargo plane pilot, sister on benefits from what I could gather). Most odd behaviour.

He also didn't let my late arrival drop (which I can sympathise with to a certain extent - I despise late arrivals) - and I could DEFINITELY sense some latent anger issues as he tried to laugh in what I think he thought was a relaxed manner but definitely came across as psychotically restrained. Scary.

Another big issue was the fact that if I met the guy in any other situation other than through a dating website, I would assume he was gay. He was very effeminate, spoke in a rather flowery voice with lots of elongated vowels, flapped that limp wrist of his a fair bit (alot of the time touching me on the shoulder with it which I DID NOT appreciate), fundamentally altered my name with his vowel issues (imagine "Twonty-Seeeeeeeeeeeengle" and generally was just slightly camp.

We moved on to travel at one point and discussed China (which he seems to love) and then the Inca Trail (as he has also done that) but each time he would disagree with something I said... fair enough... but in a rather abrupt, "there is no room for discussion on this point" way. It also didn't help that as he gets more agitated/excited whilst talking about something he flings his arms and wrists around all over the place. The group of male students (fun, early 20s, rather attractive) getting drunk on the table next to us started pointing and laughing at him... They were playing fun-looking drinking games which I kept on longingly looking over at.

So, respective glasses of wine consumed, I wanted to get out of there (as by this stage my lip was rather sore - I had to keep biting it to stop myself laughing at him) so said I had an early start and should head off. Then there was that awkward moment where I didn't know what to say because I didn't want to say, "see you soon" or "speak soon" but thankfully he saved me from that by saying, "Well, Twonty-Seeeeeeeeengle, I am not convinced there is any spark here, but I would like to think I have made a new friend...". Spasms of giggles gripped my tummy, but I smiled politely and said, "ok then, good to meet you" (I couldn't bring myself to agree or disagree) - he gave me a flamboyant double kiss on each cheek and flounced off... hopefully forever.

So, all in all, not a keeper. And I vow to never ever again go on a date if I am thinking before I even get there that it is probably just going to be a good practice date.

Phew. And to those wondering, yes, in this instance I paid for my own drink.

Thursday, 22 April 2010

Second ever date!

I went on my SECOND ever date last night.

This was though another first for me in that it was my first date gleaned from the wonderful world that is dating websites... Was most intrigued to see if it would be a total weirdo or someone relatively normal...

So, in terms of basic credentials, he pretty much ticks alot of boxes. Before the date I knew that:

His name was a classic, good name that I approve of (although grrr – same as the ex - though I guess at least if things did happen to work out I would have none of the whole 'getting the wrong name' issue to worry about).
He was an army doctor (yes, yes - just like my father).
He played rugby.
He was rather good-looking in his photo, and looked like he was seriously stacked.
He was 32.
And, crucially, he had amusing email banter... (though some mentioned clipping his back and waxing his balls – hmmm).

We met for a drink on Northcote Road. In terms of comparison to the "first ever", this chap is not unemployed so I got stuck into the G&Ts (finished my first one embarrassingly quickly actually - he was a quarter of the way through his beer and had to go and get me my 2nd - oopsie - consciously slowed down for the second and third ones) feeling guilt free, and he didn't crack a gag about how I could pay for the drinks next time we hooked up... just graciously paid his tab at the end... big tick.

During the date I discovered that:

He is 6ft 2, and genuinely I think the most enormous person I have ever met in real life. Photo did not lie. Serious guns. As in could probably lift me up like I was a feather. Amazing.
He used to play ALOT of rugby but not any more because instead - wait for it, this is brilliant - he is a very serious bobsledder. He trains for it for half the week (guess that is why he is still so stacked) and he seemed to have a good sense of humour about it (as in took it rather well when I asked if it was just like Cool Runnings). He spends the other half of the week doing the army doctoring part of his job. I magnificently restrained my laughter at the bobsledding revelation - though confess I did smile in a way that probably showed I thought it slightly odd and amusing.
He doesn't mind musicals - phew.
He went to Oxbridge and got 3 blues for rugby.
He has 4 siblings, and they all used to fight over food when they were growing up (concerned that this implies a very impoverished background if there were starvation issues but I smiled through it).
He is definitely very good-looking - downside was not sure if I fancied him at all - I just don't go for the massive guns look really...

Points for consideration:

He seemed a little shy at the outset; unfortunately that meant I over-compensated and gibbered inanely a fair bit...may have put him off.
He is very softly spoken - Mummy Bear would NEVER be able to hear a word he says. He also used the word posh a few too many times for my liking - really don't like that (no idea why - I blame my mother - she always said it wasn't a correct word to use).
He has once drunk another rugby boy's urine, and probably vomitted on someone... Unattractive.
He isn't sure if he likes Wessex House and thinks the Grand is better - I spent 10 whole minutes persuading him to give the Wessex another go as he last went several years ago. I like to think my arguments hit home.
He fixated on the fact I was a younger sibling and I asked if I threw tantrums alot… curious. I said not for at least a week and then laughed jokingly... he did not.

So there you are - again, not a total disaster, a sliver of comedy value and all in all had a lovely evening with the chap. Not sure there will be a number 2 date with him, but you never know.
I still eagerly await the day I can update you all with a true disaster date update… fingers crossed it happens soon!

Wednesday, 21 April 2010

First Ever Date

So, on Sunday evening at approximately 19.51 I commenced my first EVER date – a momentous occasion. (Please note that this time was 21 minutes later than it was due to start - and this was NOT because I was trying to play it cool).

Firstly, let me all reassure you on two counts:
1. It was NOT a total disaster - almost upsetting really as it would have made for some quality banter.
2. I am not about to fall head over heels for this chap... he was just "very nice". Not the future Mr Twenty-Single I don't think...


Getting ready was stressful. My brother and his relatively new girlfriend - let's call her the Frau - (who is a little bit of a psycho, and who I thought was successfully out of the picture but is now back in it much to my horror!) were both trying to dress me... and disagreeing... So that was unhelpful. What I thought was a good smart casual look as option 1, Big Bad Bro thought looked too conservative, my next option the Frau wrinkled her nose at but Big Bad Bro gave the thumbs up to, and then she tried to dress me in one of her own tops that was all see-throughy and frilly and not me at all. I phoned a friend for some sane advice and went for the 2nd option. (On turning up, I was DELIGHTED I had not borrowed the Frau's top as would have looked waaaaay too dressed up- and I was a bit put out that I hadn't gone with my first instinct as the chap just turned up in jeans and a thin fleecy top (not overly impressed there was no shirt involved actually now I think about it...).

I also downed a vodka tonic as part of my preparation.


Anyway. The poor chap did not start off well. At c. 19.20 I received a text saying he was running 10 minutes late and he hoped it wasn't a problem... Of course I said not to worry, but was already horrified by his poor time management. Thankfully, I had not yet left home yet (the venue was just 2 minutes up the road).

Then, as I left home at 19.40 (so that I should still have turned up a couple of minutes later than him) I got a phone call from him having come out of the tube and saying he didn't know where to go as his memory was a little hazy on where the pub was, and basically asking for directions. Of course, I cheerfully gave them to him, walked VERY slowly up the road, detoured to get some cash, arrived at the venue and then still had to wait on my tod for another 5 minutes. Grrr.

Tardiness is not the way to impress me.

He eventually arrived at 19.51 and thus I entered the brave new world of dating...


Pleasant but not my type. Quite tall and skinny (which is my type I guess), but kind of lanky with it. REALLY tanned after 6 weeks away sailing in tropical climes - too much so actually - unattractive. So no instant attraction basically (lord knows what he thought of me though - I may have put too much eyeliner on during nervous preparations). On closer review over the next 2 hours though, I decided that he is, in essence, good looking. Blonde hair, tall, nice smile, think he had blue eyes.

I was expecting, I guess, a bit of a rah. An overly confident, player type from what I had heard from other people who know him - but actually he came across as an all round "nice guy". Could be very wrong on this of course, but don't think I am as I can usually assess and sum people up quite well on meeting them. He sounded a little bit west country, farmer type, and didn't seem to be the confident, braying type in any way. Anyway, in short, I think by the end of the evening it had made me realise that maybe my "I only want nice guys" official party line is too boring of me. Although maybe that is because I just didn't think his banter was quite up to scratch enough...

So - conversation!

We began with hockey: safe. Discussed the weekend's games, expressed dissatisfaction with the fact we both currently seem to be playing with a few people who don't know the rules or one end of their stick from the other etc. Through the course of the evening we covered a mutual love of our old University, pretty much ALL of the alumni folk we both know, recent alumni gossip, old boys teams, a bit too much about weddings, engagements and babies for my liking, and his current lack of employment situation (I feel for the guy, but didn't realise engineers were being made redundant I must say).

He has been unemployed since last September and now currently lives at home with his parents, just coming up for long weekends in London for hockey and catching up with people. His mother does his washing and ironing for him (totally fair enough, I would take advantage as well) but he complained about the fact that they ate too much "meat and two veg" type dinners. Fair enough but I would never sniff at lamb chops - odd chap.

Anyway – won't repeat all the chat- suffice to say there were no awkward pauses, all fine and dandy, I was pleasant and restrained in how I phrased things (took some effort!), at some points I took the mick out of him because it was begging for it but don't worry, I held back from my normal levels. He mentioned quite a few of his old pulls which I thought somewhat odd though. Maybe he was just trying to impress or something - but that is not the way to go about it!

Drinks: I felt sorry for him being unemployed so in 2 hours I made 2 gin and tonics REALLY last. Thank the lord I had a large vodka before I left home. I do hope that you are all impressed with my restraint.

Food: I was ravenous but again, felt bad that he would probably pay and is unemployed... At one point he asked for olives and then told me that he is always hungry and eating (temporary uplift in spirits as I realised we have something in common - fell flat shortly afterwards when I realised that all he was ordering was olives - no wonder he is rather skinny if that is what he means by always eating - all around me people were tucking into burgers!). Anyway, he did ask if I wanted food but I think by that time it was nearly 9pm on a Sunday evening so I pretended I wasn't hungry (lies! poor tummy...). Although again, probably just as well because if food had arrived, I would have lost all sense of composure (which I really did hold well throughout the evening) and just tucked straight into it.


One thing that did not impress was at the end when he (very kindly) got the bill (and yes - I got the timing of reaching for the bag just right with his "oh no, don't worry I'll get it" so phew! was nervous about that bit) and then said at that point, "don't worry, you can get the next ones". Now, I am not ungrateful that he bought me 2 drinks and 6 olives, but I did feel that was (a) a little presumptuous, (b) made me feel like I owed him and (c) makes me not want to suggest anything too extravagant if there is a next time in case I do end up getting it! Shouldn't the chaps pay til date 3...?! Unless of course, you do realise you aren't interested and then I don't think you should let them pay for you but split it... (correct me if wrong please - not up to scratch with all the etiquette?!).

Anyway, all in all it was a pleasant evening. I am almost sorry that I can't provide anything to really get you all squealing in horror actually (although there was one moment where he, I am sure to his credit and that he was being honest, gave me some line about getting rich not being at all important to him and that it means more to him to make his mark on the world through leaving behind an impressive engineering project he has designed- didn't really know how to respond to that other than to nod and try to look awed by his rejection of Mammon). Oh - and he also told me he had to do re-takes at uni, which again, is not the way to wow me. Harsh but true.