Tuesday, 20 October 2020

Date 189

"I need to cling to something." 

I sort of got the brush-off initially from this person and I wish in retrospect that I hadn't contacted her again, but these thing happen. I'd been chatting to her on PoF (yes, I know) and she'd asked if I wanted to continue the discussion over a beer. I said yes and made a couple of suggestions of bars, as she lived near me. Then silence for a couple of days. So, I messaged her again to see if she was up for it and she said we could do the Saturday but she'd let me know by lunchtime that day, but didn't. I wish I'd left it there but gave her a few more days and contacted her on the Saturday morning. At this point she inexplicably said that she hadn't replied because she thought that all bars and restaurants were closed in Brighton...this hasn't been the case for months and complete bullshit on her part. She then said that she was going to play bingo on the Saturday evening with a friend but we could meet in a pub at 9:30pm. I informed her that all pubs shut at 10pm, which she seemed not to know and tried to convince me that there'd be some around open until 11pm. So, she'd changed her tune from thinking that none were open to there being ones open until 11pm.

I was getting the impression that I was dealing with someone who wasn't the sharpest tool in the box as I'm aware that the Covid rules are confusing but they haven't changed in Brighton significantly for a while. Her grammar was appalling too e.g. not knowing the difference between your and you're, constantly saying things like 'where was you going' instead of 'where were you going.' I'm prepared to give people some slack but these are basic things.

The next day she changed her mind and didn't want to meet for drinks but instead wanted to go for a walk along the seafront. This was fine with me as I've not been going to many pubs either or inside places. This wasn't going to be for a few days and in the intervening period I was getting a bit worried about her. She constantly questioned me about my job, not believing me when I told her what I do. She belittled me as on my profile it states that I've not been in a relationship for longer than a year, rather than finding out why. And at night-time she'd send me suggestive pictures of her, saying she was hot and bothered, then go to sleep. 

The day came to meet and she was going to be 30 minutes late, although she gave me an hour or so's notice but she had a dentist's appointment so it decreased the date time. We met along the seafront and sat on the beach talking while she again questioned me about my job and relationship history. She also told me that her last couple of dates had involved going out with two 'chauvinists', with one buying her chips and taking her on the amusements on Brighton Pier and the other involving sunbathing on the beach for hours in a skimpy bikini. I thought these were odd things to do on first dates, but each to their own. 

Despite all this, I was quite intrigued by her but I was getting the impression that she had very low self-esteem as she kept asking what I thought of her. I said at the end of the date that we should go out for a drink next time and I genuinely meant it. The following day I was out in the evening and then she was out the next evening but she kept sending me texts asking if she thought we'd just be mates and whether I fancied her. I did fancy her and told her but thought it was odd that she kept asking. Then on the Sunday she said she'd been asked out on another date but didn't know whether to go on it or not as she didn't know if I was into her; bear in mind we'd met for the first time about 3 days earlier. I don't know if she went on the date but she started getting really passive aggressive. I'd texted her the previous evening with a question that she never answered, so I waited for her to message me and she got really angry, demanding to know why I hadn't texted her. If I didn't reply to her texts within a short amount of time she'd just send me question marks hurrying me up. During this time I'd mentioned about going for drinks and reminding her that I'd said that at the end of our first date but she kept changing the subject. 

On the final day of us texting, I was getting a bit scared of her and she reminded me of a couple of women I'd been out with before who'd behaved like this. So after some jokey texts she said; "arnt (sic) we going out again?" I said yes, so let's meet for drinks then. She replied by saying that I was only saying that because she'd brought it up. I said no, that wasn't the case and she said "oh, well that's a big coincidence." So, I blocked her. 

I've never had to do that before with women I've been out on a date with but I couldn't stand the passive aggression anymore. We'd only met 4 days earlier and she was so intense when these things are meant to be fun. I wanted to meet her again, even though there were loads of red flags but it just seemed that if I then said that we shouldn't then she'd go ballistic. I definitely fancied her but I thought that if she was making me feel uncomfortable after one date then what was the point in getting into an argument? It had also got to the stage that whatever I said was the wrong thing so I felt that I was treading on eggshells. I think that she may have had issues...

Friday, 2 October 2020

Date 188

"The Hand that Rocks the Cradle." 

Given that this person lived in Kent, I didn't think that there was much chance of us meeting up and I'd not left Brighton since pre-lockdown either. We'd been chatting for a week or so and she suggested that we meet in London the following evening. 

She then cancelled the next morning as her child's nanny possibly had Covid and to be honest I was actually relieved as the thought of getting on the train to London made me nervous. It turned out that the nanny just had some 24 hour bug so we arranged to meet the following week.

This gave me a bit of time to get used to the idea of venturing out of Sussex, although I was slightly suspicious of her being vehemently against meeting at my old favourite the BFI bar.

We were due to meet at 6:30pm on a Thursday but I got a text from her on the day saying we could meet earlier as she didn't have much on work-wise. So, I got ready early and worked out my trains and told her the one I'd get and that train came and went and I didn't hear from her. So, I texted her and she just said: "oh, sorry, got distracted." This pissed me off as we then just met at the original time...

We met at Gordon's Wine Bar and I realised why she was so adamant about this being our meeting place, as she only had to get a quick train to Charing Cross, whereas I had to get the tube as well. As it turned out there was a massive queue to get in so we went elsewhere. She admitted later on that she'd been completely "self-serving" in why we went there initially as it was much more convenient for her, whereas the place I suggested would have meant that neither of us would have had to have got on the tube. Anyway, I digress and to rewind things back a bit, when I caught sight of her; I just knew that I didn't fancy her.

We made our way along the Strand and went to a Tapas restaurant (which we'd both been to before), initially for drinks but we ended up eating there too. I actually had a really pleasant evening and the food and wine was excellent. I also killed 4 birds with one stone as it was the first time since March that I'd been to London, got on a train, used the tube and been to a restaurant. 

I think she really liked me and on the way back to the station she kept asking me if I'd had a good time. I genuinely had enjoyed myself, which I said to her as we were both about to part ways, but I also told her that I didn't see anything romantic between us but I'd be happy to stay in touch if she wanted. She looked disappointed but I said to her that I was just being honest. I didn't hear from her again, which was absolutely fair enough, and that's a situation I've been in many times so I understand that although any sort of rejection hurts, honesty really is the best policy and that if there isn't a spark then what's the point? It did feel good to get out and about again though and because places have to shut at 10pm now, I was home before midnight!!! Woohoo.

Monday, 7 September 2020

Date 187

"The sun shines out of our behinds."

After getting nowhere on other dating apps, I made the decision to go back to the dark side and join Plenty of Fish. It's a strange site and not one I've had much luck on in the past. The last couple of times I've ventured back, I've ended up deleting my profile after a couple of hours and vowing to never return.

This time around it's been the same as nobody replies to my messages but I think that's possibly because I'm not the man that women are looking for if the live feeds are anything to judge by; but more of that later.

This date was very quick. We met for coffee and she looked nothing like her pictures. I knew she was a few years older than me but the photos on her profile were quite possibly ten years out of date. When she approached me at our meeting place, I half thought that she was a stranger about to ask me for directions, such was the difference in likeness. Also, her profile said that she liked the occasional cigarette, however, her hacking smoker's cough told me otherwise. So, unusually for me, I made my excuses and left after a solitary mocha.

Getting back to PoF then. The site now has a live streaming section where potential dates get on cam and in theory communicate to potential dates, but it's not private and anyone can observe and even interact. Except, that doesn't appear to happen. In reality, it's mostly used for potential suitors to get high with other people whilst listening to grime music at full blast. I've never streamed on it myself, but I dip in and out for the novelty value, and I don't even think that people are on there to date. I've witnessed people taking drugs, film themselves driving, at work, at the pub, having arguments, have their family members join in. It's endless and I've even shown a couple of friends and they're shocked at the way people are willing to broadcast their car crash lives for all to see without being embarrassed. Has anyone else witnessed this? Is this just another medium to be attention-seeking with reality tv shows on hiatus? Are narcissists born or made?

Date 186

"It's so lonely on a limb."

This was my second date since the lockdown restrictions had been relaxed and we met after a short exchange of messages on Bumble. I think pubs had just opened again but we chose to meet at an outside bar area along the seafront in which some beach huts had been turned into serving areas. However, we took our own drinks and sat on some outside tables until she'd run out of beer and, with initial trepidation, bought a can from one of the serving huts.

It was a really nice evening and it was the first time I'd been out at night since March, so it felt completely alien walking home when it was dark. We laughed a lot and it was also good to have some company after months of solitude.

She messaged me a few days later and said that she'd had a good time with me but that she felt there wasn't a spark, however, she asked whether I was free the following week to go out for drinks as friends. And since then I've actually met up with her virtually every week. Weird, huh?

We've been to a few beer gardens and even attended an outdoor comedy event at Brighton Open Air Theatre, which, despite getting drenched, was the most wonderful experience after months of not being able to go anywhere.

We're actually sat together in this picture, but I'm obviously not going to say which ones are us. As an aside to this, she was running very late so only turned up just before it had started. She'd been so stressed that when we got to her car she couldn't find her keys anywhere and even tipped the contents of her handbag onto the ground. After searching everywhere, we were just about to retrace her steps when she tried her door and it opened...and her keys were still in the ignition!

So, although I didn't find romance, I have made a good friend and meeting her has definitely made my lockdown less lonely. She has acquired a boyfriend now though, so I imagine I'll be seeing less of her; if only I could find someone now...

Monday, 6 July 2020

Date 185

"They cannot touch you now."

My very first Lockdown date and it was pretty much business as usual.

I was genuinely really looking forward to this date, as we'd texted quite a lot beforehand, and she'd said that she was too. I was also a bit nervous about what happens on a date during a pandemic when you want to snog?

She drove from Eastbourne to meet me via seeing a friend nearby and parked down my street as I'm near the seafront and it was a ridiculously hot day and was close to 30 degrees. And what did she do upon greeting me? She ran up to me and said "I know we're meant to be social-distancing but it's rude not saying hello properly." Then she flung her arms around me and gave me a hug....

What the hell did she do that for? I'd only recently been allowed to hug my niece and sister days earlier as we'd formed a bubble. I was utterly shocked. Who else had she been doing that to? From our texts, I'd built up a clear understanding that she'd been obeying the guidelines. I'd witnessed people doing this as Brighton had largely ceased social-distancing when the first restrictions had been lifted after 6 weeks or so, but it really knocked me for 6 as I've not even been in a shop for 3 months. At least she didn't snog me though, I guess.

We'd pre-arranged to have a picnic of sorts and I provided the drinks and ordered an Indian takeaway from Deliveroo. As I was using my app, I paid for it and she said she'd go to a cashpoint and pay me back. She also had more food than me, so it wasn't cheap.

Besides the unsolicited hugging, she wasn't really quite what I expected either. Although we only had one alcoholic drink, as she was driving, I got the impression that she was a huge drinker. When we'd first messaged on Bumble, she'd asked if she could reply the next day as she was drunk and all her stories were about alcohol-related escapades. We've all got stories like that but she seemed to have more than most. It had also been her birthday a couple of days earlier and she sent me a photo of her presents, which were mainly all different varieties of bottles of Jack Daniels. There must have been about 25.

She did seem fun but I was still reeling from cuddlegate, so really wasn't sure about her.

After a few hours she had to get back and before she left she said instead of going to the cashpoint, she'd buy me a meal on our second date, which although presumptuous, was fair enough.

Over the next couple of days we texted as normal and on the Saturday night, she was having another birthday party at her house with friends from work. It started at 6pm and she was still drinking at 4am. This backed up my 'alcoholic' theory plus to pre-empt a recent statement by the Police Federation, I pondered the notion that "drunk people cannot socially-distance."

I know she was still drinking at that time as that was the last text that I received from her. I never heard from her again, which I thought might have been her suffering from Jack Daniels poisoning, but as she deleted me from Bumble, I believe she thought it was ok to ghost me. I did send another text which she didn't reply to either just to confirm my suspicions.

It's probably the case that I dodged a bullet due to various reasons but ghosting people after you've had food, drinks and even your parking paid for is just not acceptable. With unwanted physical human contact all I got in return.

Thursday, 12 March 2020

Date 184

"And so I drank one, it became four."

This date had taken ages to sort out as she only seemed to reply once a week on Tinder. She complained that it was because she wasn't receiving notifications when she got a message, but when I suggested that we could communicate via Whatsapp, she said the last person she gave her number to ghosted her so she refused.

Although I didn't notice until she mentioned it, she was a bit drunk when she turned up as she'd been to a friend's beforehand and had already downed a couple of vodkas. So, unfortunately after two gin and tonics she said she had to go home as she was feeling drunk...

I liked her as she was funny but I was put off a little bit when she said that she'd lived in Manchester and Liverpool for quite a while in her 'youth' but couldn't remember much about either city as she used to smoke a LOT of weed. I smoked a lot of weed in my 20's but I have no losses of memory during those times.

I never heard back from her though and I didn't want to make contact as her saying she was a bit drunk may have just been an exit strategy, which in hindsight it probably was as surely she couldn't have been that pissed after a couple of vodkas and G&T's?! I sort of did want to hear from her again but I've learnt my lesson from messaging people when they clearly weren't into me and Id rather not know than being rejected again.

Thursday, 27 February 2020

Date 183

"I wish I could laugh."

To describe the 6 weeks that we dated as intense would be an understatement but it also unfortunately ended as quickly as it had began. Maybe I should have expected this from someone who'd been divorced twice but was still in their mid-30's, however, I'm not one to be judgemental.

Things moved fast almost immediately as our first date involved meeting for drinks, a meal and a passionate snog on a train platform followed by the cinema and sleeping together the next night.

I was the first person she'd spoken to and met on a dating app so she must have thought that all the bad things she'd heard had been exaggerated. We then got into a routine of going to each other's homes for dinner, sex and incessant chat and laughter. We really did laugh a lot. I don't think I've done so before with anyone.

I sort of had my doubts about her though. Just small things initially such as her constant use of annoying phrases/words/expressions like 'smashed it,' everyone was a 'legend' and everything was 'awesome.' And her spelling was woeful. Despite having only been going out a few weeks she wanted to go on holiday together and she'd regularly text me saying she was concerned that I'd lose interest in her as she couldn't have more children (she had 3). Her children and 2 ex-husbands were constant sources of topics she'd talk to me about and I'm amazed that she actually married 2 of the biggest bell-ends I've ever heard been told about. Utter useless, immature bastards. One of them even let himself into her house one morning when we were still in bed, even though they'd been separated for a year and it wasn't his house.

She came from a family of high achievers and after hearing her talk on the phone to some of her staff, I got the impression that she could be brutal and normally got what she wanted. However, this was coupled with clear self-esteem issues as she had booked in for a boudoir photo shoot and had made up her mind to have a boob job this year.

I liked being with her though as she was funny, kind and an amazing cook. However, I still had my guard up until Valentine's day. I'm not one for celebrating this ridiculous day but I bought some chocolates for her and we went out for dinner, though this was more due to having a night out than getting lovey-dovey due to a commercial pr event. We spent the night together and I even started rebuilding one of her son's Lego Hogwarts models as she'd dropped it and he was upset.

We had the most incredible homemade roast the next day at hers and I finally felt that I could let my guard down. I always like to take things slowly and she was really growing on me.

We made plans for her to come to mine a few days later to spend the night. In the days that followed, for some reason, I had a funny feeling about her. I'm not one for paranoia or jealousy but by some of the things she'd said to me, I felt that she'd met someone else. Then she cancelled coming over to mine saying that she was ill and I received a text from her a day later dumping me:


I was surprised and I felt sad. And that was that...I think that we could have at least talked about things first and I feel that ending things by text isn't really the done thing by a straight down the line kinda girl. I've also got some expensive looking shampoo and conditioner that she left at mine if anyone wants them. First come, first served though.