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DATING DIARY: BE APPROACHABLE


“The very essence of romance is uncertainty.”
Oscar Wilde

I exit the bus and start walking up the road. A man is standing in the entrance of one of the more prestigious burger places.. we glance at each other. He looks slightly angry I think to myself. I look away and continue my slow walk up the busy high street. BEEP BEEP. A text. I stop to check my phone. I experience a tap on the shoulder.. I look round. It’s the angry looking man from the burger joint. “Er hi..” he starts nervously.. “I saw you looking at me.. soooo…”.

I have a flashback to my 14 year old self. I once got punched in the face for glancing at a group of boys outside my high school which was placed next to a pretty rough estate (that I actually ended up living on for a while). It was a place where I learnt pretty quickly that one look wrong could easily result (and did) in a “what the f*ck do you think your looking at.. blah blah blah”. That punch had taken me and everyone around me all completely off guard. The group of boys who were probably around 17 had crossed the street walked swiftly towards me, showed me who’s boss and walked off with no sense of compassion or guilt. I don’t think I even cried. I was just mortally embarrassed as everyone around me just stood in silent embarrassment. Oh god! I still am! I shouldn’t have written about this!

“Was I looking at you? OMG er sorry..”. He is a pretty solid looking guy. “Yeah and I thought well you know..” he grins “ Look I don’t usually do this but er let’s go for a drink?” he suggests.

Hmmm. Really? I think. It is daylight.. hot and the cafes and pubs around me are bustling. What harm can it do. “Do you do this a lot? Approach women on the street?” I ask out of interest.

“Erm no.. I am just in the area visiting my mother.. she’s in a care home” he replies.

Awwww. How sweet is my initial thought. Visiting his mother in a care home. My second thought comes up pretty swiftly behind the first… YEAAAAAAH RIGHTTTTT this guy is good! Visiting his mother in a care home my….

“Sure you can buy me a coke” I shrug. Inquisitive to see what else he has up his sleeve.

So five minutes later we are standing drinking a nice cold drink. And he hits me with the line “You’re a gorgeous girl.. why are you single?”

Why am I single. Hmmm. What kind of answer does he want. My cynical side steps in and I initially feel like messing with him. Tell him you are asexual my mind tells me, that your libido lives in a cardboard box in the corner of the room. And that its name is Harry and once a year Harry comes out of its box and I plug it in and that to be honest men find all that ‘plug your libido into the wall’ stuff kinda weird and off-putting. Pfffft.

Obviously I decide to keep it all breezy. “Why am I single.. gosh! Erm – I just don’t get approached!” I smile at him. He retaliates with the “But your so gorgeous I can’t believe that..”.

“Have you read The Game?” I make my eyes like slits and purposefully peer at him cautiously. He doesn’t falter and changes the subject continuing to quiz me about my life. I start rambling on about something I consider to be quite an interesting topic thank you.

He cuts me off mid sentence. “Wow”. He stares at me. “Just wow.. I can’t believe your single. Are those your real eyelashes?”.

I look at him. “Ok you’re laying it on a bit thick now” I reply.

A few weeks earlier I’d witnessed a talk by the Matthew Hussey team… ‘Be the easiest/most approachable in the first 30 seconds…’ they’d said.

Well. Personally I thought that went quite well.

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I don’t want a lot for Xmas. There is just one thing I need. I don’t care about the presents, Underneath the Xmas tree.

Oh fuck right off Mariah. I mean like how many times has she been married anyway? Not that I’m here to judge. Hell – marry as many times as you want. But please let’s give the guys a break. Christmas is  a very stressful time for relationships… and apparently many break down because they are ‘under pressure’.

I mean we’ve all been there. Haven’t we? You’re at the point where your boyfriend asks you want you want for Xmas. You blush.. smile sweetly and say ‘oh nothing you dont have to get me anything..’…peering at him and secretly hoping he can read your mind.

I believe it’s good to (occasionally) have low expectations. But I’ve never understood those relationships where the girl shrugs her shoulders and says ‘oh that’s just the way he is..’ when she gets another present of ‘sweet fuck all’ on Xmas Day. Like a good friend I’m consistently trying to advise my male friends …steering them haphazardly through the dating process.. ‘she did that but she meant this.. she said no but she meant yes..’.

So here’s some advice: it really is all very simple. She does want a lot for Xmas. There is more than one thing she needs. She does care about the presents, And she’d prefer it if it was eco-friendly.

Cos we are living in a material world. And she… is a material girl. Unfortunately.

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