I can’t get this stuff written down fast enough, I have drafts on drafts detailing my internal witterings, trying to unscramble the mumbo jumbo, which is great because I have content ideas and I did commit to writing 500 words twice a week. The problem is none of it makes sense. None. It isn’t funny (yet) and truthfully I’m not sure I even have the brain capacity to edit them in my usual brand of humour because alongside full-time work I am also home schooling. Maths for 8 year old children is hard yo and it’s depleting my cerebral energy. What I can normally edit in a couple of hours is taking me 3 days and it has absolutely nothing to do with being distracted by beautiful men. OK maybe.
Lets back up to the start of the national UK lockdown 2020. I found myself with a menu of potential boyfriends; see ‘Too Many Choices‘.
My cynical view on love was firmly implanted and my Mind, Body, Soul plan was well underway and I ain’t changing for no-one! I just assumed this was the Menz being bored needing to find something to keep them entertained. Whatever, I was nonchalant about the whole thing. Well not the pilot. I liked him. Still do, it’s just not an obsession like FD.
But as the weeks and months passed by they were still hanging about! Huh!? So a teeny tiny small part of me started feeling hopeful, perhaps if they are still here, they are actually interested! Obviously none of them turned into anything particularly noteworthy, as I still find myself ruminating on my love life decisions; they wanted casual and I wanted anything but casual. There may have also been some Cleopatra-esque fight to the death between two and I blew it. Well, that might be an exaggeration, I didn’t really blow anything, they were only interested, not invested so I let the cataclysm fall where it may.
By November however they had all come to an end, the pilot being the last of the 2020 group and I had a renewed male obsession. Despite my
best efforts, that has also not come to fruition. Its OK though, I have had my reality check. Moving on.
So, in present day 2021, I decide to start the year off with a renewed vigour against the war of love and download a dating app. Its been productive, I have found myself chatting to some very gorgeous and some very interesting men. I have ‘dated’ (ish) two so far, lets keep it brief.
Insane Rob. Last week we agreed to meet at Costa on my way home from work as we could grab a drink and chat side by side whilst sat in our cars. How very 90’s! Why insane? Just his personality type, he was fun, very funny, he was nice, I’d bang him at least but its not going anywhere given that his communications after Friday being only of the 10pm kind. See ya!
Two nights ago, I video chatted with Matthew the geeky gamer and it lasted for 2.5 hours. He was very easy going, had a lot to say, we share a lot of things in common. The instant attraction really isn’t there but I think there is potential for chemistry. He’s also quite weird, like me and I dig weird!
But what is strange is that I’ve suddenly been confronted by another list of ‘boyfriends’ outside of this dating app! OK, so not all male friends in my life as I alluded to in my blog of the same name (dramatic much?), but I am 100% back to having a menu of choices. Is this a side effect of lockdown? Or has the change in my mindset to go from ‘Love? Meh!’ to ‘Love? Hell yeah‘ been sensed. They say what you project into the world comes back to you. Is this voodoo? Some kind of love karma?
I have known a guy called Nathan for 4 years. We met on POF when I was newly single after a 13 year relationship. I had no idea what I was doing. We went on about 5 dates, but I didn’t pursue anything because he wasn’t very tactile. I think we went the whole time without a kiss. It was weird, but he was funny and I figured with a few dates he’d come out of his hostile shell. He didn’t. Plus, he lived a good 20 miles away and between working, being a mother, having a house to renovate etc, I really just couldn’t see myself having the time for him. I politely explained my decision to not want to take things further and he was really good about it. We have remained friends since, meeting up every so often to hike or eat (when it was allowed) and just generally catch up with each other. Not three days ago, he gets in touch and says ‘Fancy a snog?’
Umm, what?! I appreciate there is nothing romantic about this message, but knowing the guy as I do, this is extremely forward and is as romantic as he can get. Not in the mood for games though and just to check, I replied with ‘for one night orrrrr?’
‘For a bit…’ Oh heck, just see for yourselves….
We haven’t seen each other since September. The whole pandemic making travelling for either of us difficult. He works in a primary school teaching KS1 too so he has his hands full with work. But WHY NOW? I have asked him to explain. He has said the snog and cuddle is optional, so he actually wants to see me. Just me. For a walk. To have a laugh. He doesn’t need to explain really. I’m just trying to satisfy my curiosity.
Then a guy who I used to work with (lets call him Jeff) who I have zero interaction with whatsoever other than to follow him on social media suddenly strikes up a conversation with me in my DM’s. He was responding to a selfie I posted where I had captioned it with ‘Felt Cute, might delete later’. Oh, we know where this is going don’t we? Everybody knows what sliding into the DM’s means and I can see he has been watching my stories for a couple of months. But I was pleasantly surprised, I love when people suggest new places for me to walk and explore and he did just that, and then offered to take me there, we haven’t stopped chatting since. This is not the action of a man who just wants to be friends is it? Especially one who hasn’t spoken to me for 10 years. I guess he’s been plucking up the courage or waiting to see if I am actually single?
I am excited by none of them. Not one of these men set my world on fire. It may be because I am harbouring an obsession. It may be because I have actually learned something over the last 18 months about not getting too caught up in first impressions. What I have quickly figured out though and is now my top tip for dating after 2 whole dates so I’m obviously an expert: leave it a few days after any date before deciding to continue or not. I cannot stress this enough. Unless it was a very obviously bad date, you will most likely come away smiling to yourself purely based on the success of just getting through it, especially if you are new to dating. But this false sense of achievement will undoubtedly obscure any red flags that your brain hasn’t quite processed yet. So you can reflect and will also give you chance to identify his next intentions. Win Win. And this is especially important if you come away having laughed a lot!
Anyway, back to men being like buses.
Insane Rob wants a kind, honest, genuine person, but the fact he refers to his camper van as his ‘fuck truck’ and the fact he spends most of his time in Wiltshire (the fucking other end of the country) makes this a very easy decision. I’m gonna wait for the next bus.
Geeky Matt has zero charisma, but can hold a conversation. He didn’t make me laugh much on the date but has had a few quips whilst we have been chatting which has made me giggle. There was no flirting but he did invest 2.5 hours over a video call. Yes, I said a video call. So I’m happy to hop onto this new bus for at least another stop.
Nathan I do actually like. We have a platonic relationship right now but I could quite easily move out of that into the romantic arena. He’s funny, cute, fit, successful and engaging. They say that when you come away from a date you should consider if you would be friends with this person, attraction or none, and in this case, I have a proven friendship. I’m reluctant though because again, it seems like a casual set up can only be on the cards. I have made it very clear I do not want that. Nathan is a circular, if I hop on, I might discover some new sights but I know exactly where I’ll be going. I do wonder with Nathan if we both have the same idea of what a friendship is. Maybe I’m just one bus stop on his circular tour of town and he has a number of ladies at other stops.
Jeff has completely come out of the blue. He’s the bus I was least expecting. A big flashy tour bus with tinted windows. I have no idea whats on it, but I want to take a peek. Nothing colourful in my DM’s either, just a straight forward let me take you out. I’m gonna hop on board and see what happens at the next stop.
Even though I have been working on me, I am still second-guessing myself. I have a penchance for being friendly, is it possible my general character is being misconstrued? I keep asking myself whether my need to be friendly is toxic to me, my innate need as people-pleaser means I quite often just see the good in people and expect everybody to be as friendly as I am, but I don’t think it works that way. It’s dawned on me that Nathan might just be recycling girls he knows. Maybe I need to start blocking people? I read somewhere that the sign of a healthy woman is one who has the ability to walk away. The
train is leaving the station bus is leaving the stop. By staying friends with them, I’m always waiting for the bus and so they’ll never realise just what a loss I am? God that sounds a little big headed, but nobody else is going to put me on a pedestal, I may as well do it myself. And if I want to find the man of my dreams in real life, I need to sort out the dream haze. The haze in this case is underwhelming men!
I adapted Wendy Cope’s poem:
Bloody men travel on bloody buses.
We are talking about fucking buses…
…..find one with a car.
And just when I thought my reality check had firmly taken hold, my horoscope goes and gives me this worthy gem:
So do I continue with my obsession or not?!