Staring into the bottom of my empty J2O bottle, my head begins to think up an excuse. Any excuse to get me out of there. ‘There’ being a pub up the road from my house. I am on a date. It’s been about 15 minutes and I am losing the will to live.
First dates are nerve-wracking, so I’m trying to give him the benefit of the doubt. But he isn’t talking. He also looks nothing like his picture, which has annoyed me. If he isn’t looking at me in a creepy way, he’s staring at the floor. I feel as though I could end up as a victim on the Crime Investigation network in a few months time.
I can talk for Britain, but even I have absolutely nothing to say to this guy. The life has been sucked out of me through the awkward silence that has enveloped the room. This room can often be quite warm and cosy - now it feels claustrophobic. I had to get out.
Growing up, I believed in fairy tales and happily ever afters; Prince Charming rescuing me from some peril on his mighty steed. Then I grew up. Then online dating further obliterated that daydream into oblivion.
Don’t get me wrong - online dating can work really well. I’ve met married couples who have met on these sites. But I don’t think it’s for everyone. I don’t think it’s for me, at least.
I’ve been on loads of dates. That’s not something many would admit to, but then I’m not ashamed of the fact that I have tried internet dating to excess. I went through a phase where I would date as many people as possible. My theory was that if I went for quantity, eventually I’d stumble upon quality.
I have had some relationships from online dating but none that lasted for long. So I don’t think my approach works very well but it has given me some great stories that I can laugh about. And now share with you.
Here are my 12 weird experiences of online dates:
1. The cheapskate
Some guys seem to be happy for me to pay for absolutely everything. I have my own business and have been the bread-winner before, however, I don't think this is very fair at all. Splitting the bill is best.
2. The over-sharer
These are the guys who think it’s OK to share their health issues with you. I don’t need to know about some weird growth, or your toilet habits. These are things I’ll be forced to deal with once I marry someone, but not a minute sooner.
3. The bizarre giggler
When someone has an odd laugh, it prevents you from focussing on anything other than just that. One guy I went on a date with had the highest pitch giggle I have ever heard. He was really lovely and his laughter was infectious. I had a nice time but I just couldn’t take him seriously.
4. The sex-deprived (I’m assuming)
Most of these ones ask for it on messenger before you even agree to meet them so you know not to. You know, the ones who tell you that they are only interested if you “put out” enough. Some oddball once asked me if my last boyfriend and I broke up because I wasn’t putting out enough. Seriously? What are you really achieving by asking me this? Idiot! Really boys, girls do want it too. But if you start demanding it, you can guarantee that we will instantly not want to give it up.
5. The dullard
I love that word. It’s not often I get to use it. These are the guys who have nothing to talk about. Absolutely nothing. Let’s face it, we want to be with someone we enjoy looking at but if the space between their ears is empty, then I can’t cope. We want mental stimulation as well. Talk to me! Please! Say any words that you can think of! Anything!
6. The one who bangs on
We’re at the other end of the spectrum now. By bang on, I mean won’t stop talking (which is normally me!). I like a good conversation. Conversation meaning when more than one person is talking. Generally when I have been on a date with a banger on, they bang on about themselves. It’s really great to hear how wonderful you are but actions speak louder than words. If I like you, I’ll decide you’re amazing anyway.
7. The clinger on
This is the guy who gets a bit too clingy, a bit too quickly. When I went on my 3rd date with someone he went to hug and kiss me and I knew it wasn’t right. It was the awkward moment where you move your head out of the line of fire and then do a quick hug before backing away. I felt bad but I cheated and said it was nice to have met him via text afterwards instead of there and then. All went silent for a few days and I thought it was over and done with. Great! Or not. I got a barrage of messages telling me I needed emotional help. (Glad he didn’t know where I lived.)
8. The really nice guy
Why don’t I ever like this guy? I know he’s the right choice if I’m logical. But I turn into a demon around nice guys. What’s wrong with me?
9. The one you want to be your friend
There will be guys who you meet who you’ll like a lot. Just not in that way. He may be good looking, confident, clever and interesting - everything you think you’re looking for. But there won’t be that thing - that spark - whatever it is.
10. The one you think your friend might like
I can’t bring myself to say to someone, “Well I’m not interested, but I have a friend who might be?” It could work out brilliantly well but it would be weird. I wouldn’t like it if some date I didn’t know tried to hook me up with their friend. I’d think it was a cult. I’m so cynical.
11. The psycho
I haven’t actually been on a date with one...I don’t think...but this is the one I fear the most. Apart from the obvious reasons, my sister fuels this worry. She’d call me up before the date to get details (sensible) about where I was going and what the guy looked like. Then she’d tell me how concerned she was for my safety! I’m lucky to have such a wonderful (albeit neurotic) sister, who would always wait for to confirm I was still alive.
12. The one that got away
I’ve yet to identify who this guy is. But based on the numbers, probability would suggest I have met the right one, but was oblivious.
I dread to think what category I fall into for the female equivalent. Before my friends jump in with their own suggestions, I’m going to call myself out. I’m the girl who knows what she doesn’t want, but has no clue about what she does want. Or the girl who won’t stop talking.
Oh well! For the time being, my dating life is on the back burner while I focus on my new company. Who knows if I’ll try online dating again? When I run out of stories perhaps ;).