Friday, 9 December 2011

The over-sharer.

I think I have lately developed a rather unhealthy disposition to over share. A couple of weeks ago, after my date of the night before, I seemed to spend all day updating people on how things are going with Mr Blonde. I spent ages chatting to my hairdresser about it while getting my locks attended to, then bumped into my beautician also at the hairdresser and so filled her in, I met three friends at the library and told them, then first my mother and then my sister called so they got hear all about it (although admittedly my mother always gets a slightly different toned down version of my dates) and then I went out with friends in the evening, having of course spoken to my flatmate on the subject, to fill them in as well... But somehow Lancelot always wins and although I went out to regale my chums about Mr Blonde I ended up coming back to say goodnight to my flatmate and simultaniously announcing my love for Lancelot... She told me I had gone out besotted by Mr Blonde and arrived home having seemingly forgotten his existence.

We are still dating and things really are going well. Probably because I don't see him terribly often. It was his birthday a couple of weekends ago so I got him a very sweet present which he was incredibly touched by, and really that seems to have clinched it. I knew he liked me but now he seems to have been pushed over the cliff edge and really is very keen indeed. He has finally started telling his friends he is seeing someone and at long last he invited me back to his flat. I didn't go (was v late at night by then and I had an early start) but most promising that he asked me.

But then once again it has been another fortnight or so since I last saw him... this always seems to happen and means that no real connection can build up between us as it is always such a while since we were last together. It is definitely also the reason we still haven't slept together. The latter being rather peculiar when one works out that I have now been dating him on and off for four months!

University has kept me very busy of late but I am now free once more and it really would be lovely to either start going out with Mr Blonde properly or to find someone else. Lancelot I have pretty much given up hope of... alas sweet Lancelot my knight true and fair, would that you would love me...

Sunday, 30 October 2011

One wonders.

Worst of all is the thought of what might have been... Struggling with Mervyn Peake's 'Gormenghast Trilogy'. It showed such marvellous promise in the beginning: all gloomy castle, dark corners, strange aristocrats and that wonderful overarching feeling of darkness and strife about to descend. But it just didn't live up to the early pages and by a mere few chapters in I could feel my attention drifting and my thoughts already turning fondly to thoughts of other great dynasty books like 'I, Claudius' and 'The Forsyte Saga'. I feel Peake fails to capture the Middle Ages properly as well which if done really well is magical. I recently read 'The Left Hand of God' and thought the way it captured the Medieval setting was incredibly powerful. 

Mr Blonde and I are still dating. I worked out recently that it has been coming up to 3 months since our first date. We are pretty much exactly where we were when we started seeing each other, just more familiar with each other now. We talk about the same sort of things each time, we only ever kiss goodnight, there has been no talk about any more significant type of relationship developing, we still only meet up about once every 10 days to 2 weeks and he still pays for everything when we go out. But I have to say that the more time I spend with him and the more used to his company I become the fonder I become of him as well. I would love to know what he thinks about it all though and why one earth he only kisses me goodnight.

Bumped into Phd Boy this afternoon which caused him to become very flustered and awkward. I was about to get on a bus and he was walking past. I saw him, smiled and we said hello then he somehow tripped over a dog and it barked at him as he said something about it being nice to see me. All over very quickly and I thought he was looking jolly attractive. Unfortunately this of course gave him a golden opportunity to get in touch and so I have just received a text message from him implying he would like to meet up. Some people are hard to shake off.

Wednesday, 19 October 2011

Haunted by the past.

I had dreadful nightmares last night, one after the other on what felt like a permanent cycle of fear and unhappiness. My ex featured prominently. I had been thinking about him before I went to sleep and it must have seeped into my dreamworld. This morning I was drawn to his facebook page yet again (I perhaps foolishly unblocked him recently to have a look at his new girlfriend's page) and then spent an age going through our old email correspondence and our old photographs. Gosh we looked happy and every email spoke of how much he loved me. I hadn't realised quite how much I missed being frequently told how special I was to someone and how very much they cared about me. Having a loving boyfriend is like a wonderful thick warm blanket that is always wrapped round you in this cold world of ours, making everything nicer, happier and so much easier. I was debating with myself whether or not to add him as a friend on facebook... I think I am probably only debating it as I know it is a bad idea and that I shouldn't do it. I am already being distracted and upset by thinking about him again, surely being back in touch with him would just make it all much worse? Or would it help me to see him for who he really is, a nice boy that wasn't right for me and that I should stop looking at with rose-tinted glasses? Tricky. I think best not to do anything. I must just stop thinking about him and let it all go, after all it has been almost exactly a whole year since I last saw him, so why on earth do I still care so much? Besides if we met up and began some sort of uneasy friends relationship all it would take is for me to be suddenly left dating no-one again for me to start thinking of him with nostalgia and get upset and unhappy once more. Can't risk it. I must just have more self control and stop dwelling on the past. I must get over it and stop being so soppy.

Monday, 17 October 2011

To date or not to date.

The one big advantage to online dating is that everyone is there for the same thing: we are all looking for people to go on dates with and hopefully find one among them to form a relationship with. There is no beating about the bush, no need for those awkward moments when you are wondering if you are indeed on a date with them or if they just want to hang out with you as a friend, and best of all no need to discuss if you are on a date or not as you are both well aware that you are. In real life dating things are less clear and although personally I have no problems with assuming I am on a date, remaining calm and waiting to see if they will get in touch with me or not to take me out again. Simple!

Not so simple for other people as it turns out... After the shock of hearing about Germanicus' new relationship I took lots of deep breaths and decided to just get on with things and not dwell on it. The best way to keep my mind off it would of course be to get a boyfriend of my own, or at least have some jolly fun dating instead, so I texted the blast from the past boy and we arranged to do lunch yesterday. Now I assumed this was a date. Totally easy: nice meal, lots of wine, he very sweetly insisted on paying: it was clearly a date. Why he felt the need to question this simple logic is beyond me!

We had a very nice time, he is so easy and fun to chat to. Really very clever, well informed and interesting. I even found that although I still didn't find him hugely attractive, the more I got to know him the more I liked him. It turned into one of those very long lunches that go on until the early evening until you are both pretty sozzled after all the wine. I then left to get my bus and he gave me the briefest of kisses goodbye. All jolly good and we left it that we would do dinner again soon.

Then today I get the cringyest, most spine churningly awful text message from him trying to ascertain if we are now dating... It was dreadful and so horribly off putting! He did try a couple of times yesterday to ask me if we were on a date and from some throwaway remarks certainly implied we were. Well I was happy to go along with the latter and simply changed the subject when the former came up: hate that sort of embarrassing discussion and really I thought it most premature. What is wrong with just going on a couple of dates without having to have a relationship talk? I felt there was absolutely no need for it and wished to avoid it at all costs.

I like men to be confident and assertive, there is nothing more attractive than confidence. If he wanted to date me he should just have asked me out again, a cosy romantic dinner or something along those lines, and kissed me. Easy! Instead I get a message asking if I would like to on another date unless he has scared me away (which I don't understand actually... he hadn't done anything to put me off until his text message), then asked if these were indeed dates... Ghastly. Though I think I am biased anyway as he uses text language with lots of 2 instead of to and so on... I think I just find it all so awkward, fumbly and clumsy which makes me feel so uncomfortable and vaguely embarrassed about it all. Why why why did he feel the need to make things all awkward and uncomfortable by making things all serious and locked in?

Oh I know I am being much too harsh on him: he is a nice boy and is only asking me if I would like to date him... But a certain slickness and confidence would have been so much appreciated. Plus in a text message, really? Is that the right forum for such a question?! But it is my own fault for I suspect I am only so displeased about it all because it means I actually have to commit myself to dating him or plain out say no, rather than being left with a very pleasing get out clause because I hadn't ever actually confirmed we were going on dates... and I don't think I like him enough to commit, even to dating. Also he is nice and I don't want to hurt his feelings by going on a couple more dates before I chuck him... which I almost certainly would. Interesting and intelligent but just not attractive.

I recently realised I still have some old videos I once took of Germanicus on my ipod and seem to be unable to work out how to delete them... they are now taunting me. I should also stop facebook stalking his new girlfriend and being freaked out by how similar we look...

Friday, 14 October 2011

The sadness of love.

Germanicus has a new girlfriend.What is more they have been together for quite some time, so back when I was still a mess about us being apart he had launched into a full on proper relationship again. My friend recently met them together and says that the new girl looks crazily like me in terms of face and hair (though she is bigger and taller). I cried when I found out. I feel weird. I was right to split up with him and don't regret it. But I loved him so much, and for a long time was so happy with him, shared so much with him and truly thought we would always be together. When I split up with him I still loved him, and it feels as though he moved on so easily and it has been so difficult and challenging for me. I am not even ready for a real relationship now, so strongly did I feel for him and so lasting an impact has it had. He obviously didn't feel it all as strongly as I did. I feel so sad about it and dread the thought of bumping into him with her when I am out somewhere. I hate the thought of him being like he was with me with someone else.

I think it is that sense of being part of a team, of sharing your life with one other person. A person who knows you in a way no one else does. For no matter how close you are to your parents, siblings or friends they don't know you in the way that your partner does. The two of you become joined on this special level and share aspects of yourself that are a closed book to anyone else, and can become closer than you are to any other person. He has found himself on another team, and has already found that special connection and relationship with someone else. I am happy to be dating again but until very recently have not felt ready to share that kind of huge commitment with anyone but him. To me a proper relationship is a huge deal and I take that level of commitment very seriously indeed. For him to have been ready to just forget about me and commit so soon to someone else feels horrible. He has not done anything wrong, I just feel hugely sad about it. It hurts so much.

But life goes on and I will hopefully meet someone who is the right match for me one day soon.

Things are going very well with Mr Blonde. We had dinner and drinks again earlier this week and I really do like him more and more. He is not terribly intellectual and doesn't read the sort of books I do (he likes good old thrillers) and isn't awfully into culture in general, but he doesn't mind the least bit that I am (unlike my horrid experience with Phd Boy who clearly found ti intimidating). I find we actually have lots to talk about even though, or perhaps because, we like different things and I do think him jolly cute.

Still find it odd that someone can reach 30 without ever having had an actual relationship (nothing over a few months apparently) or been in love, but I expect he has just been busy doing other things and is probably picky. Though the way he is treating me; all the wining and dining and taking things jolly slowly yet quite obviously liking me a lot, makes me wonder if he is preparing me as his first real girlfriend... After all if not then surely he would have invited me to stay over before now if he liked me, or even just chucked me if he didn't like me? Interesting and most promising!

The friend who got in touch after years and years of not seeing him I met up with last weekend. We had a brilliant lunch and I found him just as clever and interesting as I remembered. We have lots of books and so on in common and I had such a great time with him. He then messages a couple of days later saying he had very much enjoyed seeing me again and sort of asking me out... the implication was actual relationship ask out which I must admit to finding a bit full on. I also found it hard to reply to, but in the end sent a sweet message telling him it had been lovely seeing him too. Hoping to see him again soon, but although I really love chatting to him I don't find him attractive at all... But then as I have found with Mr Blonde feelings can develop the more one gets to know someone, so perhaps I will find him more attractive in time?

Friday, 30 September 2011

Slime and sea-monsters.

Things with Mr Blonde are going rather well, he is a jolly nice chap and am seeing him again sometime next week. Date numero 3 was a great success and he claims that he hadn't been in touch since out second date due to being really busy at work and so on which I do believe. It had of course occurred to me that he had just been busy dating other girls but he actually said he has gone completely off the whole online thing and that I was the only one he has met up with... I do find that a little odd, but then I myself am hugely bored of the whole thing and have stopped logging into my account so it does rather sound as if he is telling the truth. Anyway he was most amused by my tale of the bad date which only lasted 40 minutes and didn't chip in with any experiences of his own so I think he is telling the truth. I was also reminded of just how good looking he is and after date 3 found myself looking forward very much to seeing him again. The only issue with Mr Blonde, however, was that if our first kiss was anything to go by then he is not at all skilled...

But I was more than prepared to put the bad kiss down to chance, error, circumstance etc though when a chap shoves his tongue down your throat straight away on your very first kiss... oh so slimy! Well it just isn't quite what one would want or expect to happen! But kudos to him for enthusiasm and after all perhaps he just miscalculated as it was late and he maybe rushed into the kiss goodnight. Date number 4, however, revealed that sadly this is indeed what he thinks the perfect kiss entails... Oh gosh so much tongue, so slimy and wet and without really doing anything with it... I do wonder now if good kissing equates to being good in bed... but then Phd Boy really was a very nice kisser and he proved incredibly lacking in bed... But perhaps he will get better? One can at least hope and we really did have a lovely time. 

Mr Blonde improves upon acquaintance and it is so nice to be going out with someone with no irritating claustrophobic clingyness such as insisting you text them when you get home safely or wanting to see you 2 or 3 times a week or texting you like clockwork the morning after every date just to say they enjoyed it etc. Phd Boy did all of these things and they ended up really annoying me. I like that Mr Blonde is clearly viewing this whole thing as nice simple dating without imagining that we are quickly becoming a couple. Amusingly he also seems to be one of those boys that if in passing you comment on any other woman being pretty they seem to think you are a closet lesbian! In my case I made some innocent little remark about Marilyn Monroe being beautiful and you should have seen the eye-brows shoot up! I later tested this being commenting on a female friend of mine and something about incriminating drunken pictures from a night out and I could see from his smile he jumped to the conclusion we had hooked up in some way. I wonder if he will ever ask me?!

What I do not mind but find rather odd, however, is that he seems quite content to have our physical contact limited to one quite brief kiss goodnight... We have been out four times now, and two of them recently, and so far that is all that has happened or been attempted and I can't help wondering if he is happy with that or, frankly, what he gets out of it all. He pays for dinner and drinks (I do offer but he very sweetly always refuses) then because he has an early start every morning we say goodnight about 11pmish, he kisses me goodnight and that is it. There has been no move on his part to kiss me earlier on in the dates, no hand holding, no anything. I have in no way tried to evade such intimacy, in fact I would rather like to have some yummy make-out sessions with him (I still do hope his kissing will improve, though he does also have a little stubble which is clearly going to give me a rash if we kiss for long) and last night took us to a very dark and snug little bar where we could easily have made-out out of public view, and yet he hasn't. Totally possible he is just tired by the end of the night due to long days at work, but he doesn't seem to be the sort of chap who thinks gentlemanly conduct behoves him to wait until more dates have passed before attempting more bases. Most odd... but I expect that rather like dear Lancelot he probably does very little before suddenly inviting one back to his apartment and sleeping with you all in one move.

But really it does seem like the ideal set-up: no commitment, no hassle, lovely restaurants and wine bars, good looking chap and the promise of something more in the near future. The Blue Peter Chap on the other hand I have phased out. We had vague plans to meet last weekend and he said to get in touch nearer the time, I didn't and the wet drip never got in touch with me either. I liked him and found him quite good looking (though really very thin. I much prefer rugby player types to football player bodies and he was jolly bean-pole like) but although confident and articulate he seemed jolly shy about kissing me and I strongly suspect him to be a virgin. Not keen on sleeping with a virgin; all that boring fumbling around and having to be ever so patient and kind. If I liked him enough of course I would still be interested, but I am not.

Following date number 4 with Mr Blonde I then had a ghastly nightmare about Germanicus... I was in his flat, which was freaky, and we seemed to be giving our relationship another shot until we started bickering and I told him I was leaving. So at least I left...

Thankfully I have not run into the hot lecturer around campus but I do seem to be making more effort in terms of forcing myself out of bed to wash my hair before my early morning lectures, which I suspect shows that my sub-conscious is trying to prepare me for the surely inevitable run-in with him.

Poor old books (of the fictional sort anyway) are not getting much of a look in now I am back at Uni. But I am amusing myself with 'Sense and Sensibility and Sea monsters', my fourth (oh god my fourth!) Jilly Cooper novel and Shakespeare's Sonnets. Jolly cross that they have just released a new all singing all dancing kindle in the states which will be coming here soon and does everything, also that the UK has just released a new kindle which is cheaper than the one I got and does just as much... So typical! S and S and S is not nearly as good as 'Pride and Prejudice and Zombies'... it feels much more pulled about and jarring. I only got it because it was cheaper than getting S and S proper and as I already have a book version of it it seemed to make sense at the time... That is the problem with the kindle; it is so very easy to buy books that you get lots you would never bother to purchase in real life. But I also found lots of Shakespeare's plays for free so that was a good save.

Tuesday, 20 September 2011

Blast from the past.

Decided that I needed to do some research into the whole friends with benefits idea in regards to Lancelot and so spent yesterday watching 'When Harry Met Sally', 'Friends with Benefits' and 'No Strings Attached' thanks to the wonders of megavideo. The former I rather enjoyed but although I did like that they got together at the end I found it all strangely passionless... oh for sure they loved each other and had great fun and chemistry in that sense together, but there never felt like there was a physical attraction between them. There never felt any overwhelming lust and need between them to hook up and so I was left a little off put by that. Where as I thought the friends who get together thanks to a cringy double date were wonderful and I did much more believe in their chemistry. 'Friends with Benefits' had its moments, particularly thanks to a wonderful performance by Patricia Clarkson as the mother of the female lead, but I found it pretty tedious. It wasn't all funny and sexy but instead both characters though very attractive were really very dull. And the plot was nonexistent. It all felt much more like a couple who just have a rocky start to their relationship rather than any interesting and potentially challenging material about f**k buddies. However, it was head and shoulders above 'No Strings Attached' which despite the ever watchable Natalie Portman I found so dreary I couldn't be bothered to finish it. Which there is absolutely no need to do anyway as from the beginning we are all convinced (and quite right I might add) that the two characters will eventually get together and admit that they are in love.

I wonder if my research is slightly off... Books and Hollywood have already convinced me of the might and power of love, and how I will one day find the perfect man for me etc etc etc, could it be possible that Hollywood has also given me the wrong message about being special friends with a boy? Could it possibly be that Lancelot and I having gone down that path won't one day turn to each other and admit out love? But then if that does happen surely we will slip immediately into the plot of the ghastly 'One Day' (both book and film so it must be accurate) and over the years be friends of varying sorts before at long last getting married?

Well a girl can hope! The problem of course being (which is horribly obvious and equally horribly true) that I already adore him and he almost certainly (books have taught me that one is never sure what the man really feels, just look at Mr Darcy for dear old Lizzie Bennett had no idea he wanted to marry her until he proposed) doesn't feel the same way about me. I do wish I could convince myself he doesn't care for me... but sadly it is always possible to delude oneself and hold tightly onto little gestures or comments and give them a value and impetus they were not meant to contain.

But now that another uni term has begun I have lots to keep me occupied, not least that yesterday I made the alarming discovery that the hot lecturer I asked out last term has not moved on to another university as I was previously informed was the plan, but is in fact still here! I am horrified! Oh dear god the thought of having him as a lecturer again is so embarrassing... in fact I don't have him as a lecturer I am pretty sure but that still leaves the infinitely worse problem that I might get him as a tutor... that would be a nightmare as tutorial groups are very small and there would be so many opportunities for eye-contact and him thinking I had turned up earlier in order to try and speak to him alone.

I still feel that life is short and that one should grab any opportunities to go out with someone you like but really this is why one doesn't ask out a lecturer! I feel very cross and betrayed, he was supposed to be teaching somewhere else by now, I had it on good authority he wouldn't be teaching here still! Oh well with any luck I won't get taught by him, but that does still leave the dreaded possibility that I will bump into him, and in fact could bump into him at any time... But though I am now fearing such an encounter, just like in the case of Lancelot it does still occur to me at the back of mind that something might still happen between us... gosh I need to get a grip and stop daydreaming but it would be so lovely...

But I am keeping busy with men who are actually available and do actually fancy me and tomorrow is date number 3 with Mr Blonde while a chap who asked me out years ago (I was with Germanicus at the time and had to say no) has been back in touch and we are going to meet for drinks soon. Oh it is nice to feel one has options!

Saturday, 17 September 2011

Friends with benefits.

Mr Blonde has been back in touch and we are meeting later in the week, the Blue Peter Chap is rather boring me now after three dates and still no kiss goodnight... but I think I will give him another shot as well. While Lancelot and I have been involved in witty and amusing texting amid further pleas for me to go and visit him again in the near future. I adore him and even though I consider him quite unsuitable as a boyfriend my imagination has rather been running away with me and I keep having visions of us in five years time suddenly realising we are made for each other and getting married... Probably should stop myself from that kind of thinking before it gets out of hand. But as I consider him not to be boyfriend material (not only because I think he would cheat but also because he lives too far away) I have been wondering about the friends with benefits idea. Lots of dirty weekends could be very good fun and surely if I knew that was all it was from the outset I wouldn't get hurt? Thinking along those lines I stumbled across the following, however, and am now convinced that this has been his plan from the beginning.

The article sets out all the ways a man can lead a girl into such a relationship and I have to admit Lancelot as pretty much done them all to perfection!

Don't go on dates: He was very clear we were not on a date and indeed told me so at least twice in case I mistakenly thought we were.

Treat her like a friend: Lancelot certainly did this. There was lots of teasing and general banter back and forth, he didn't compliment me (well he did give in once or twice but this was not the general theme) and was generally chummy rather than in any way romantic.

Be sexual from the start: Yup he certainly was and we probably (he claimed he wanted to get to know me properly before we did but would clearly have given in if I had) only didn't have sex that night because I declined.

Make her see you are not 'serious': Well he definitely succeeded on this one as filled with so many hints and stories about one-night stands and ex-girlfriends I am sure he wouldn't be able to commit to a relationship with me.

No emphasis on kissing: And again yes! Lancelot's kisses were sparing, in fact incredibly so compared to other men I have dated and starkly lacking considering how close we came to having sex.

Sleep alone: Must admit he declined to share a bed with me and went off to the spare room...

He is grooming me to be his fuck buddy I am sure of it! Not unhappy at the prospect but really he is following all but one of the list of requirements and the only one he isn't following is the don't see her too often rule which he has going for him anyway as I live so far away!

Amused and rather unsure what my reaction is... Really I think I am quite flattered that he likes and is interested in me in any way whatsoever. I know I am great and have many fine attributes and also look jolly nice, but Lancelot I find so charming and utterly handsome that he makes me (this and the lack of compliments which I must admit I am rather used to receiving from men I am even sort of dating) feel unworthy of him and so to be of any interest to him at all... very pathetic of me but sadly true. And I know I would much rather be his friend with benefits than the girlfriend of either Mr Blonde or the Blue Peter Chap. Or perhaps I have just been reading too much Cooper and have become convinced that Lancelot is in fact my Rupert Campbell-Black?!

Oh wonderful RCB! I have late in life discovered the naughty delights of Jilly Cooper books. It is my great new shame as far as low-brow literature goes but thanks to my darling new Kindle no-one need ever know about it. I was most amused to discover on Amazon that of the top 100 free kindle downloads at least 20% are for erotica. People are obviously thrilled that at long last they can read whatever type of book they like without being judged in ay way for no longer do they have to brave the smirks of the cashier or the dread thought of their neighbour getting their parcel by mistake, oh no all they have to do is download it onto their kindle and they can then perfectly happily read their guilty pleasure on the bus to work without anyone being any the wiser! Gosh I do love Jilly Cooper... the books (yes although it has taken me a long time to stumble upon them I am making up for lost time and am already devouring my second) are in fact surprisingly intelligently and well written, the characters cleverly drawn and the plots are naughty without being actually smutty and all in all the books are best summed up as being jolly good fun and frightfully enjoyable.

Thursday, 8 September 2011

The curse is come upon me.

I mused in an earlier post if my search for love would end like life did for the Lady of Shalott and call me stupid but having just very much enjoyed re-reading the poem I have spotted that the darling knight in it who causes the Lady's downfall is of course called Lancelot... Why did I not spot this before, or perhaps I sub-conciously did and that was why I called my arrogant boy in London Lancelot? Perhaps he is destined to break my heart and so I will float away down the river to Camelot

I discussed the matter with my two closest friends yesterday at great length and from my honest description of him (arrogant, confident, clever, hard work but so much fun and jolly good looking - although it has to be said that after looking at photographic evidence of this they didn't agree) they both warned me and said it sounded as though he would mess me about and end up hurting me, especially as I seem to like him so much already. They also promised to be very kind to me when it all ends in tears and only to use their 'Told you so' expressions until I am strong enough to hear it in actual words.

I know that they are right because if our positions were reversed I would say exactly the same to either of them. But the truth is that it is rare to find someone you feel overwhelmingly physically attracted to, as they both had the grace to admit, and when that is combined with mental compatibility as well... So I had decided to go for it. Not to shilly shally along and try and wait for him to make all the running, but to properly dive in and see if what will happen between us. I know he is a jerk in many ways and that he almost certainly won't treat me properly or with the respect I deserve, but the truth is I am already rather besotted and life is short, I have only met one other man who attracts me so strongly (the yummy lecturer who turned me down) and so I am determined to enjoy whatever aspects of this I can and to have Lancelot in my life as much as possible.

I rarely meet people I find so interesting that I want to spend endless amounts of time with them, but he is one such. He is such a challenge in conversation let alone in any other way, we battle back and forth, constantly needing to be on our toes. We swap insults, squabble over literature and history, fight over politics and occasionally agree which always feels rather blissful and as though we are suddenly united and on the same side.

I am a hopeless monogomous romantic and so secretly would like him to simply be my boyfriend, but since he does live so far away and is so promiscuous I doubt that will happen any time soon. I am, however, quite prepared to settle for some sort of less conventional arrangement but lets face it I will only really see that as a means to an end.

He was rather keen on me too, especially shown as someone like him is not usually prepared to wait to get to know a girl better before sleeping with her, and from other things he said and did I do know he likes me. The question is simply how much he likes me? Added to which he is around my age and men like him are rather like the ghastly Dexter in the dreadfully boring and hugely over-rated book 'One Day', Maxim de Winter in 'Rebecca' or Mr Rochester in 'Jane Eyre'; they sleep around and are total cads while young and if they are prepared to settle down and commit to a girl properly then it doesn't tend to happen until they are older or have suffered big set backs like losing their career or eye-sight and so at last worked out the value of a committed relationship. After all there is no other way that plain women like Emma, the unnamed heroine or Jane Eyre would end up with such devilishly handsome chaps.

Meanwhile I am going on my third date with the Blue Peter Chap tomorrow night: dinner and drinks. He is jolly nice and will at the very least behave like a gentleman and treat me nicely... Why does that suddenly seem so dull in comparison to the wild and gloriously fun and naughty Lancelot...

Tuesday, 6 September 2011

Mr Alf to the life.

I am now safely installed in my friend's house in the South of England having spent a couple of days in the company of Lancelot... And sadly yet inevitably I utterly adore him and can think of nothing else. He is even more arrogant and even more of a tosser than I remembered but I find it dreadfully appealing. He  is just the sort of man I have always found irrisistable, the hard ruthless and utterly appalling man who makes a great success of his life and becomes incredibly powerful through their own skill, intensive self-promotion and through bloody fighting and under-hand manoveres. The sort of bastard that Rupert Murdoch or Augustus Melmott in Anthony Trollope's 'The Way We Live Now' are; smooth, successful, harsh and devastating but so tremendously successful that I respect their ambition and drive as they conquer  all before them. Of course poor old Melmott didn't succeed in the end so in that book Mr Alf might be a better comparison, he was determined, very clever and fought hard and beat all before him. I love that sort of man... I used to fantasise about marrying someone like that who would be so hard and ruthless to the world yet would be able to show their soft side to me alone... Lancelot, from what I could remember about him (we had only met once before several years ago after all) and from facebook, I knew to be physically appealing to me as well: well built and fair haired (though he isn't as tall as I tend to like). But in person I found him devastatingly attractive. I have rarely felt so physically attracted to someone... gosh he was hard to resist!

But in the end I did resist and I declined to sleep with him.

He has slept with a lot of girls and I soon realised that if we had sex I would soon be less interesting to him and I am determined that should not be case. If nothing else it is simply wonderful to have someone to go and stay with when I want to visit London for an exhibition or the theatre (I used to go down rather a lot with Germanicus but that option has obviously gone).

I was horribly nervous for the last hour or so on the train before meeting but was much comforted by frequently looking into my hand mirror to see that all my work with the make-up brushes had paid off (really it takes a hell of a long time to look as natural as I do) and I was very pleased with my pretty summer dress and beautifully painted nails, not to mention the carefully chosen pieces of jewellery which complimented and finished the whole look splendidly. Within one minute of meeting again I knew I liked him very much indeed and within ten I knew I was going to have to be very careful indeed if my heart was not going to become involved.

He is charming and so sharp, teases one greatly and always plays to win. He goes to great effort to seem detached himself and rather than just being nice and complimentary and easy to muddle along with like most men he makes things harder and is casually insulting and hard work to keep up with. However, I can give as good as I get and I really did on this occasion. He batted hard balls to me: all sorts of different and challenging subjects, the whole how good is your background thing, exes and what sort of attributes they have and how that makes you look better for having gone out with them, education, current affairs, insults and sticking up for yourself and your views... but I fought hard and am very proud to say in the end there was a distinct (well of course he would argue he won, he just being that sort of chap) draw. I love to be challenged and he certainly does, but I find that there are so few people out there who do present a proper challenge, and on so many levels as well that I had a terrific time battling it out with him.

We did drinks and dinner and went back to his abode to watch Game of Thrones (only the first episode which was intriguing and I expect will warm up as the series goes on so will likely stick with it). We then almost had sex but by this point I had heard about various girls (I am sure this was intentional to keep me on my toes, and I managed to slip in lots of bits about past dates of mine) and knew that to retain his interest long enough before he had the chance to get to know me properly I needed to not sleep with him so soon. Sweetly he actually admitted this himself and we left it that he liked me a lot and wanted to see me again, and that we would hold off. But gosh it was hard not to, he really is jolly devastating!

He had a four year relationship which ended in some ghastly way too young engagement and they split two months after that. That was about a year ago and he has just been doing lots of sleeping around since but apparently recently decided to try and wait three dates before doing so as it was about time he started to date properly. The only bad thing is that Lancelot is clearly still hung up over his ex... I do dislike that as of course one then feels there might be no room in his heart for a new proper relationship and sadly I have been totally thrown by the wonderful combination of looks, attitude, brains and ambition that he presents so that I would love nothing more than to be his girlfriend. Of course being the type of man he is I tried very hard not to hint at this at all but I am a little afraid I let him see I liked him.

Alas he lives so far away and unless he takes me up on my suggestion that I break my journey back home by staying over this Thursday night then I won't see him again for months. All for the best I expect as uni is starting again very soon and I do want to dedicate myself to my academic pursuits during term time. But he does want to see me again in general (really he seemed to like me rather a lot in the end... perhaps he doesn't meet many girls who present as much of a challenge as he himself presents?) so if nothing else I have found a charming friend in London who can put me up when I want to visit the glorious capital.

The Blue Peter Chap has been in touch since our second date and wants to see me again. We had a very nice meal together before I hit London, but although I like him he is not a patch on Lancelot and is clearly much shyer with girls. I love Lancelot's take chargeness, he just goes for it and doesn't do all the dreadful waiting around for ages before even kissing a girl or waiting for ages after that before sleeping with her. Blue Peter didn't even kiss me goodnight... but did sweetly compliment me afterwards about how lovely I looked and he is interesting to converse with so another date when I get back sounds like a plan.

In fact interestingly on the subject of kissing Lancelot went straight from kissing into trying to sleep with me, there was no long making out period by any stretch of the imagination, and in fact kissing to him just seemed like the starting move and pleasant accompaniment rather than any sort of stage in its own right which is how most men seem to treat it. Along with other telling little gestures this showed that although he has been used to sleeping with lots of girls he is not used to other types of intimacy which tend to belong in relationships.

Oh darling arrogant tosser I do so like you, I even get that butterflies in the tummy feeling when I think of you!

Sunday, 28 August 2011

Caitlan Moran and the dream of young love.

I feel sick. Totally and utterly sick. Today I had my very first shift at my new part-time job (for those that are interested it is a second part-time job to compliment my first part-time job while being a care-free student) and seeing the married couple I work for interact with each other... Oh yuk! They were so very happy and loving in each others company after being married for over twenty whole years... I know my own parents are very happy together after thirty years but one can at least overlook it when it is one's own parents as one wants them to be happy but seeing another couple not all disgustingly over each other but merely interacting beautifully and complimenting each other so well... I left feeling happy in my new job but so lacking and empty. This feeling was not at all helped by downloading and starting to read Caitlin Moran's book 'How to be a Woman' for although she used to be wonderfully gauche and ugly (while but a mere teenager just as one used to be while a teenager) she founded love frightfully early and so married and copulated jolly early too and actually had her first child in her mid twenties... and so although enjoying her book very much I must agree with the dreadfully bad reviews in one point so far: she does sound so horribly smug.

I hate to say to say it for I adore her and her penmanship. But she does come across as smug. I put most of this down to finding Mr Right when she was so very young. And frankly who can deny her that? But by being pure chance the sort of women who identify with Caitlin, women like me who feel like we are different in whatever way, we lose her at that very point because we are incapable of appreciating or understanding her choices after meeting the right chap. Of course this is not her fault and yes she does make lots of wonderful points about why meeting the right one is not the end and about how there are many more mountains to conquer, but all the same to we women that are waiting it is neither heartening nor enlightening for it misses out such an interesting (and lets face it engrossing and all-consuming) period of womanhood, the search for the Right Man.

So through no fault of her own (indeed arguably to her great good fortune) she has happened to miss the courtship period of a woman's life. Now although I may be placed by some in the category of modern feminist I hesitate to grant myself such a title as I don't believe the term has been properly agreed upon. However, I do think that to call this book By Moran a modern feminist book in any sense it should not skip over and therefore null such a significant period of the modern woman's life. So for that, quite apart from all the frankly easily skimmed ranting portions of the book, I would much rather class it as an autobiography than any sort of feminist text as they are selling it.

The truth is that she has simply been very lucky in finding her true love at the tender age of nineteen and although wonderful for her it is not great for anyone else to read, even those who earlier empathised about being an outside with her. Oh that we all were so lucky. I wish I had also found the man I would adore and marry aged but nineteen... Yet poor old Moran for many like me, fans of her column, are criticising her for simply having that good fortune... But in at least one point we are right and her wrong... this does not make a book.

Saturday, 27 August 2011

Clean living.

Had a totally lovely time with my new online chap. Both in looks and actions he reminds me very strongly of a children's television presenter on Blue Peter from a few years ago, Matt Baker. He is very tall and thin, has very dark short hair and is good looking in a clean cut sort of a way. He is a terribly nice chap, hard working and sensible and probably rather straight-laced. I do rather wonder if he wouldn't become just a tad boring with all his clean living and what I suspect to be a very strict moral code... but it would make a jolly enjoyable change I must admit. I like him very much indeed and am really hoping to see him again soon. We strolled in the sun to a cocktail bar after meeting then had a super chat over drinks before I headed off to work. Unfortunately because we were late in meeting up we didn't have over long to chat, but it was awfully pleasant and we left it that we might do dinner later this week. Oh I do hope so, my Blue Peter Chap is so frightfully decent and would I think treat me very well indeed!

Mr Blonde surprisingly got back in touch. I really didn't think I would ever hear from him again but he messaged to ask about my weekend and I replied... I don't see the point in random messaging like that, there was no hint whatsoever about asking me out again, he just did vague 'How is your weekending'. If he had any guts he would either stop messaging me or ask me out again properly like a real man.

However, it is all rather pointless as I have found my one true love: my Kindle! It is totally smashing and I am having such a fantastic time filling it up with books. Off to bed for an early night to read more of 'The American Senator'.

The Lady of Shalott?

I really must start getting used to dealing with my re-date nerves as with my luck I have years and years of first dates ahead of me over the years as I search valiantly for 'the one'. Today I have my first date with a chap found online. He is slightly younger than me which I am not keen on, but at least has finished uni and does something financial. Strangely almost all the men searching for love online seem to work with computers or in finance... perhaps there is a dearth of women in those fields? Anyway he seems jolly nice, looks cute in his pictures and reads books so we shall see how it goes. Meeting in a rather cool little cafe which also serves wine so depending on how nervous I turn out to be I might go for the yummy grape option rather than the coffee.

Lancelot has accepted my invitation to stay with him and I am going to visit a week tomorrow and spend the night at his flat. I do rather wonder what he intends to happen and perhaps should have found out if he actually does have a spare room? He is so handsome I feel jolly intimidated and so have started a punishing gym and healthy eating regime... or rather I was doing awfully well with it all this week until I woke up this morning sleepy and with a hangover so am relaxing it again until Monday! I feel so in awe of his beauty that I even considered doing that strange Beyonce diet whereby you eat nothing for a week except this strange concoction of lemon, cayenne pepper and something else all mixed together... Well let us see how I feel on Monday about my figure. I hate the idea of fasting and the health aspects of it but I do want to feel thin and pretty for Lancelot (I am quite aware of how pathetic that sounds!).

Mr Blonde claimed to be under the misapprehension that I was busy this week when I asked him out, he also claimed to be very busy himself and so unable to fit me in. I think he is not terribly interested and just didn't want to say he didn't want to see me again. I would have liked to see him again but feel no great loss.

Had a ghastly nightmare last night that Germanicus and I got back together and then got married... it was so vivid that I have been unable to shake off the horrible feelings it roused and feel most disturbed about it all. I have recently been feeling very sad about things with him, and I did unblock him on facebook (though have not added him as a friend). I know I should be very careful and not let myself get into contact with him again because I would only end up getting hurt and back where I was a year ago... But gosh I did love him and I do miss him still. Whenever I am walking about the city I do regularly wonder if I will bump into him or see him with another girl, but I never have.

I do hope my date goes well this afternoon but I am not overly fussed I must say. Plus I have another first date lined up for next week and three other men still on the go with the whole messaging thing so things are pretty rosy. Plus in huge news I have just bought a Kindle! I am ridiculously excited about it and have spent all morning stuffing it full of wonderful books. Older books are free to download so I m amassing quite a wonderful collection. The first book I intend to read on my darling new companion is Anthony Trollope's 'The American Senator'. I heard some of the first episode when it was serialised recently on Radio 4 and adored it. Very much looking forward to starting it later, the heroine reminded me very much of Becky Sharp from my favourite 'Vanity Fair.

Perhaps I will spend my whole life searching for love only to discover that it was right under my nose the whole time: my books. Or it could be that my life is the search for love and that once found the curse will come upon me like the lady of Shalott?

Tuesday, 23 August 2011

Gentlemen of differing sorts.

Well I am on a roll this evening - not only have I asked out Mr Blonde but I have also at long last accepted my handsome London friend Lancelot (he has always so some unknown reason reminded me of that brave knight) invitation to go and stay with him... Though calling Lancelot a friend is something of a stretch as we have only actually met once and that was years ago at a ball. He is very arrogant, jolly good looking and we have flirted in texts and on facebook a few times a year since then which would always end in his asking me to go and visit him in the great capital. And at long last I have accepted and practically invited myself...

Very scared of the whole thing for no apparent reason and that is why I have made myself say yes. I seem to be irrationally scared about disappointing him as he hasn't seen me for so very long and that he will meet me at the train station, take one look at me and groan inwardly as he realises he has no wish to sleep with me after all... Which now we are friends on facebook does seem unlikely even I must admit. Oh gosh he is so dishy (and nowadays not many men fit that delicious description, it being mostly reserved for old black and white movie stars).

Mr Blonde has not replied and so it does not look promising on that front, however, I have sent all my online admirers replies (well not all, only the ones I like the look of) and have accepted both offers of meetings involving beverages. Phd Boy has yet again been in touch and this time wants to meet up and have 'a hot beverage'... Jolly silly of him as I only agreed to be friends in order to be nice, and really what else could one say? Also had a spiffy and long chat on the phone to my darling friend who reminds me so strongly of Adrian Mole so on the whole it has been rather an active night on the gentleman front!

 Oh Mr Blonde, you don't realise how easily you are going to be supplanted!

Monday, 22 August 2011

Brave New World.

I am continuing to be proactive and have asked out Mr Blonde rather than waiting for him to ask me. Why on earth not, and I expect he will enjoy and hopefully be encouraged by the fact that I am indicating I like him. I suspect not appearing to be encouraging enough has been one of my problems. But like with my easy ability to apologise and say sorry to people I think if I cultivate an ease of asking men out on dates then it will benefit me. For I have always found that because most others refuse or find it hard to apologise because I am willing to do it (often without meaning it) that it impresses and has a very good reactions, and surely being prepared to look like I am taking the bullet by asking men out will be much the same?

Still waiting for him to reply... He texted me this morning just asking if I had had a good weekend etc, I replied and then nothing... hence the eventual ask out by me... Wish he would hurry up, but then if he is not interested then I will probably never hear from him again so it may well be a long wait.

One of the problems of dating someone you met on a dating website is that they are actively looking to date women and so while seeing you are probably still messaging and seeing other women they have also met online. But then I am still doing that myself so all is fair.

Out of the other five men I have been messaging I have now been asked on dates by two and the other three are imminent. Jolly nice, though must admit am not much excited by most of them... But one must try and after all I have nothing to lose so am just going to say yes to both. They have at least made it through my rigorous initial screening process!

Friday, 19 August 2011

Love is a losing game.

Watching Gavin Henson haplessly trying to flirt with a bunch of women on The Bachelor this evening was like watching a cattle market in full swing. It was rather sickening as the girls all vied for the affections of such a non-catch simply because he is good looking and famous and they are all single and seeking an eligible man... Reminded me of myself man hunting via the internet and so it has also occurred to me that I really should put more effort into the messages I am replying to. So far I must admit to have found them incredibly annoying to reply to as although it can be interesting to read what they have to say, for the most part they are pretty generic and I really do think it is so much easier and more effective to simply meet up after a couple of messages for it soon descends into a back and forth of short messages that don't really help one much in finding out about them.

I currently have about four on the go messaging back and forth and the favourite is a teacher in his early thirties. He is quite good looking, claims to be Oxbridge educated and reads books. He has also travelled and does seem interesting. One of my other front runners is a chap who does a lot of hill walking but he doesn't read as much. And a new find is one who loves Howl's Moving Castle. I found the latter myself by searching, where as usually I have been lazy on that front and rather waited for them to find me... Which is really stupid and of course this sort of course of action is exactly why I have not found men in real life either as I have always waited for them to find/approach/ask me out.

So new resolutions: spend more time and put more effort into my messages and do more searching of my own. But I do think that being very clear about loving books in my profile and messages is excellent as a way of whittling out the ones I am not going to find interesting in real life and also a good way to put off the ones who might not be interested in me. I value brains and education very highly and so there is really no point in pretending otherwise as I don't believe we would have enough in common, no matter how nice or good looking they turned out to be as if possible I would like to find a boyfriend rather than someone to go on three dates with.

The more time I spend looking for love and going on dates with disappointing me the more I realise how lovely Germanicus was and what a special chap he is. I am clearly hard to please and very picky, the pool of men out there is limited and there are so few who I find myself interested enough in to date, while finding those special men is horribly hard as well. Germanicus is very intelligent, interesting, kind, beautifully mannered, very traditional and properly courts a girl, we had a lot in common and he truly loved and cared about me. No he didn't prove to be the love of my love, but he was a splendid first boyfriend and the more time passes and the more my heart heals I am able to look back and see him as the wonderful person he is. I hope he feels the same way about me.

Now what of Mr Blonde? I have discussed what happened on our second date with several friends and they all agreed that the poor soul simply had to get up for work in the morning really early and so it was entirely acceptable that he said he had to leave, and that it didn't indicate any lack of attraction. He did actually text me the next day as well to say what a lovely time he had had with me the night before (and praised my choice of restaurant and bar – yet another boy who leaves me to chose where we go each time). I forced myself (I must admit to a mild cross feeling left from the totally lacklustre end to the night before) to send him a sweet little response in which I said how nice it would be to see him next week as I was going away until then. Not heard from him yet... so hoping that I do but I couldn't tell if he really liked me or not, and I spill some of my cocktail on him when I was trying to rearrange my dress while sitting on a high couch... he didn't seem to mind and was awfully nice about it... But really I think I am just clutching at straws now and trying to second guess what he thought. Besides do I even like him all that much? I think I would just like the ego boost of being asked for a third date, and since I have yet to find anyone else who is better I would be happy to stick with him while looking... But then being absolutely honest I say that sort of thing as a defence in case he turns out not to like me, so that I can turn around afterwards and claim I wasn't much fussed about him either. But really it would be so lovely to feel I had someone interested in me properly once again, it gives one such a jolly safe feeling to have a fond love interest and he does seem nice (oh lukewarm boring word - perhaps I am not so very keen on Mr Blonde and do just want the ego boost after all!).

Wednesday, 17 August 2011

Bloody men.

What is it that I want exactly? I go on about wanting to find a nice chap who I quite enjoy spending time with and who will treat me to dinner and then when that is what I find I am still disatisfied... Mr Blonde and I had a yummy meal and wine, he paid then I suggested an excellent cocktail bar, we had delicious cocktails, eventually cuddling up in a little private nook at my suggestion then come 11.20pm he said he had to go due to work and having to get up at 6.30am...

Okay I knew he got up early but sometimes isn't it worth staying up late?! We hadn't even kissed and I thought it was imminent. We didn't meet up until 8pm and after all the finding him online, waiting all week for a second date and then all the date prep I was not a little put off by his wanting to end the date so very early. I hadn't thought much about when we would say goodnight but I guess probably 1pm or 2pm was the hour I had in mind. 11.20pm seemed bloody early to me.

I was obviously surprised but tried to keep upbeat although only allowed him to kiss goodnight to my cheek. Remaining cheerful does have its limits.

But surely this is ideal? I do want to be taken out and have dinner and drinks paid for by a jolly nice chap and not feel any obligation to sleep with him... and yet perhaps because of Germanicus and his general lack of interest in sex and because of Phd Boy and his lack of capability I now rather want some sort of physical interest in me... Oh Mr Blonde what a sap you are and this sort of treatment of girls is clearly why you have ended up dating online for although you are quite prepared to pay for dinner et al you then show no real interest in the girl although you probably feel it...

Tuesday, 16 August 2011

Rather too lilac.

Bridget Jones used to spend all day, or even several days, doing the all important pre-date prep. I must admit admit to following a similar pattern. Today will be filled with a gym visit, nail painting, exfoliating, hair treatments, leg shaving, hair styling, powdering my face and applying my lucky lipstick. All that effort to achieve a look that seems natural yet styled and belies all the hours of effort.

While the rain pours down outside I sit here at my computer waiting for my nails to dry (brand new nail varnish not a great success... it looks a very exciting shade of pale lilac in the bottle but is rather too pale and thick in real life, in future will reserve it for painting stripes or dots onto other colour bases I think, or perhaps for using with 60s themes outfits for parties) watching endless episodes of things on iplayer (very much enjoying Celebrity Apprentice and have rather a crush on the ghastly and cheating Piers Morgan). I am actually rather nervous about tonight... waiting a whole week for a second date is not a winning plan as one forgets all the things they told you on the first date and so I always confuse the things they have said to me with those of other people, particularly since I am messaging about seven different men on, and then the men seem hurt I have forgotten what they told me previously. Gosh what do I remember about Mr Blonde? He likes skiing... and that is about the sum total...

Not meeting him until 8pm tonight which I do find ever so slightly trying. I am not a late eater, I like to eat at the proper hour of 7pm or half past at a push but having to be nervous all day and then not eat until 8pm at night... Oh well can't be helped, but on the plus side it is because of his working hours so if we do end up in a relationship then at least I won't have to spend long evenings with him but can do my own thing until 8pm every night! Still convinced that boyfriends take up rather an excessive amount of one's time and am planning to be jolly strict and limit access when I get on, or perhaps just enjoy them and them split up as soon as my uni exams start to loom to give myself amply procrastination/revision time.

Immersed in the wonderful world of P.G. Wodehouse once more. One of the things I am most thankful for is that he wrote so very many books as I am still discovering more I need to read after many years as a fan. 'Hot Water' is my current and I am having a tremendous time with it. Such jolly happy books, they always leave a smile on my face and often make my snigger while reading them. I would rather like to be a heroine in  Wodehouse book, the men are always so honest about their love for and admiration of the women they fall for that I think it would be blissful. Added to which most of the heros are lovely Lords so that would be awfully nice as well.

Out last night with a good friend and discussing dating as one does she revealed that when dating her ex she was never the least but nervous before dates, even the first one, and didn't go to great lengths about date prep or thinking of outfits etc. But we ended up agreeing that this was because she had not been terribly fussed about him in general, and it seems only really went out with him from a sense of why not since he has asked me. Sad but there we have it and not unlike the way I felt about Phd Boy. We now both have a similar problem which stems from this in that both her ex and Phd Boy are still getting in touch with us and wanting to meet up... We neither of us were much interested in them but it was nice to date someone and so we went along for the ride, were sweet and nice and pretended to share their interests etc, and then when we both ended things the boys seem to have been left thinking that all was going so well until suddenly it wasn't. In Phd Boy's case he obviously thinks his big screw up ended what was a very promising relationship and so keeps getting in touch and trying to patch things over. But really if I had liked him more what occured would not have mattered and wouldn't have led to a split. Alas the perils of putting on a dating face and only presenting one's best side for they are actually left not truly knowing one and so think one is so much nicer and better than one really is. But then does one truly get to know them as surely we all put on our best outward appearance? But this at least means my nerves are good as if like my friend I wasn't then it would show I wasn't terribly interested in Mr Blonde where as my nerves are shouting out that I am!

But the nerves are also there because meeting in this way means that both of you are actively looking to date and for a relationship, and are so desperate for one that you have gone through the normal ways of doing it and ended up online and paid for the priviledge. So it follows that if your date then doesn't want to see you again there can be no excuse along the lines of they are not ready for a relationship or are too busy etc, but that they just didn't like you... This certainly adds to the pressure, sadly deep down though a self-assured and confident girl I do want to be liked.

Meanwhile the boring chap never did get back in touch and I have several chaps messaging, winking etc online at me. It really is a very long process... I was jolly surprised at just how long it takes before one of them asks to meet you in person but the average seems to be at least eight messages. A wink or at least some profile viewing goes before this and all the while you are weeding out the ones you don't like the sound/look of... It does get tedious, especially as one can usually tell within the first message and profile view whether one is interested... Which does seem to imply it is mostly based on looks which is slightly sad...

Monday, 15 August 2011

Cute but Stupid.

Even though it is the summer holidays I haven't been reading nearly as much as I usually do. This morning I discovered why I have been so apathetic in my pursuit of literature... I had mixed up my contact lenses and for the past two months or so have been wearing the wrong prescription in each eye... My god for an intelligent girl I can be very stupid at times! In fact this trait of mine has been rather unhelpful where boys are concerned. When they first meet me they find a blonde and ditzy girl and they think brilliant, she is cute but stupid and get all eager. But the longer they spend talking to me the more they find out about my interests, opinions and passions and that first burst of excitement soon dies as they get all disappointed as they make the discovery that I have brains. A whole lot of men do not want or seek brains in a girlfriend, especially if they suspect she has more of them than they themselves do. As in the case of Phd Boy they find it intimidating and off-putting. Oh well we all have our burdens and being clever is rather a jolly one to possess!

Mr Blonde waited the usual two days then got in touch and we have our second date tomorrow night. We are going our for dinner and he asked me to pick the restaurant. A very tricky thing to decide as one never knows if the date is intending to pay or if the meal has to be at somewhere that is within the good old student budget. After some deliberation I plumped for a very nice but informal kind of place with an organic and cool vibe. The food and in particular the wine are frightfully good and so if we end up splitting it I won't be impressed but won't mind too much. Our second date is a whole week after our first which id really not ideal as one forgets all the things they have told you and feels nervous all over again. Also a nightmare trying to decide what to wear, and of course the only thing I really feel like wearing is the dress I wore on our first date which is the only outfit I can't wear... Why am I so nervous?! Actually nerves are probably a good thing as they show I like him.

On the other hand if it doesn't work out I have the consoling thought that I am proving rather a hit at the online dating lark and have had messages and winks galore in the last couple of days (I have found one gets most interest over the weekends as all the poor lonely hearts suddenly feel lonely as all their friends are cuddled up with their girlfriends).

So roll on tomorrow night and before then all I have to do is fit in a big gym session and paint my nails... Oh I do hope it goes well, I remember Mr Blonde as being awfully nice.

Wednesday, 10 August 2011

Introducing Mr Blonde?

So two dates in two days, not a bad start to the week! Monday night was date number one:

Was jolly nervous and surprisingly anxious about it, mostly I think simply due to the bad experience of the aborted date the day before. I had arranged to meet him in a rather nice (but not off-puttingly so or too expensive) cocktail bar. It was a beautiful summer evening as I strolled over, compulsively checking that my skirt was not in some way tucked into my tights or that I had managed to get lipstick on my teeth. I turned up on time to find him inside waiting for me. I was struck by how good looking he was at once. Sandy blonde hair and really very attractive, also clean shaven which I much prefer but which was new since his profile pictures were taken. We shook hands and he went to get me a glass of wine.

Things went well and I felt relaxed and at ease from the start. We chatted about books to begin with but soon moved on to discuss him... Sadly he turned out to be one of those boys who love to talk about themselves, and even worse who talked quite slowly. The worst possible combination! I would try and seem interested and so ask him a question and he would then consider it for a few moments before launching into a long winded answer that would take many minutes to be over. A pause would then fall as I would wait to see if he was going to ask me anything, but no of course he wouldn't so to fill in the conversation I would ask him something else and so on and on and on and on. Additionally he managed to make just one pint last two long hours and when he originally bought me a glass of wine I was rather amused to see that his cheapskint instinct had kicked in and he had only got me a small! Telling little detail!

After almost two hours I thought him perfectly nice but oh so very dull. He went to the loo and I decided that when he came back if instead of sitting down he asked me if I would like another drink then I would agree and stay, but that if he just came and sat back down I would make my excuses and leave. He returned and sat down. I left. Unimpressed. Interestingly he had been nothing like I imagined from both his profile and from his messages. He had come across as cocky and charming in his messaging and a bit ruffled and not so hot in his pictures. Where as in person he was well groomed and much more attractive but ponderously boring.

Date number two was last night and really I couldn't be bothered. I was so unexcited that I almost called it off several times. This was not helped by the fact that his profile was almost empty and he had only uploaded one picture so I knew very little about him apart from the fact that he has blonde hair. But in the end I thought it would be good for me and so I put on a pretty little dress and headed out. He was waiting for me by the door and I was immediately struck by how attractive and blonde he was, as well as how smartly he was dressed (which I always appreciate). His profile picture really hadn't done him justice.

He got us drinks (buying me a large glass of wine as all proper boys do!) and we sat down and chatted. He was lively, clever and articulate and I enjoyed talking to him very much indeed. He impressed me with his interests, had a lovely smile and was jolly to be with. He bought us a second round of drinks (I did offer but he insisted which I thought splendid) and I got the third. We had a splendid evening and he eventually dropped me off at my front door in a taxi on his way back. The only awkward moment was when he went to kiss me goodnight in the back of the taxi - I was not expecting this, it was very dark and it turned into a kind of peck on the cheek vaguely near the mouth, then when I leant over to kiss him back on the cheek that didn't quite work either... but at least it showed interest on both sides.

I am definitely the type of girl who likes to be wined and dined and rather expects men to do the whole mannerly thing of holding doors open, but also I must admit I expect them to pay for the majority of dates, certainly at the beginning of a relationship. I did not take to date number one anyway but I really didn't like his cheapskate attitude where as lovely date number two seemed to get the balance just right. He is older than me and has a good strong career while I am but a poor student, so he is of course well placed to be able to do this but I still appreciate the fact that he did. It was also jolly good as a sign that it was a proper date and that he was interested in me and perhaps trying to impress me.

There was vague but promising mention of meeting in the future and I have rather been watching my phone all day but so far nothing... Must play it cool though and will of course wait to see if Mr Blonde gets in touch. Oh gosh I do like him a lot and am very pleased indeed by how last night went. Still working away at the online dating, and it really is work. It takes so much effort and time it is unreal! You need to find men you like the look of and sound, then 'wink' at them or message them and then wait for replies. Then all the messaging back and forth takes a long time and that first message to them is a nightmare to write... got several chaps on the go and there are two in particular that I like the look of and I am hoping will ask to meet me soon. Then of course one finds that no-one is exactly how they seem online. Take me two recent dates: the first was slightly better looking but character wise totally different to the impression I had developed, while date two Mr Blonde had given away very little online and definitely hadn't done himself justice where as in real life he is splendid both to look at and to talk to (and such lovely arm muscles though he is a tad on the short side...).

Monday, 8 August 2011

Updike's men in skirts.

So another attempt to find a compatible, intelligent, attractive and above all well read man is tonight. To be honest I keep wavering between nerves and sickening indifference at the idea. I rather think the aborted attempt to meet the smoking loser for coffee yesterday has put me off. But I am not going to let my nerves and bad luck stop me, I am going to do all the usual pre-date prep and then saunter out bravely and hope for the best. At least this one claims to have read a lot of books so really how bad can it be?

I am going through a John Updike phase and have purchased not only 'The Witches of Eastwick' but also 'The Maples Stories' and 'Marry Me'. I am avoiding his Rabbit series as a long time ago I borrowed the first one from my ex but was unable to finish it as I had to return it when we split and rather soured to the poor book as a result. Besides it really wasn't anywhere near as good as some of his others. So far am a little disappointed by the witches... it just doesn't pack the punch I thought it would, and I don't feel he has properly written the three female leads. He is entirely capable of writing women well, but to my mind they never come across as real women and always remain, no matter how interestingly conceived, as women as seen through the eyes of a man. I don't think this is because he has written the women as the sort of strong and hard drinking, promiscuous characters he also writes his men as, for Richard Yates did the same with his women and yet they always seemed very female, as did the women in 'Who's afraid of Virginia Woolf' who of course were also penned by a man. But somehow Updike's women always come across as men posing as women or worse they are just a shade too shrill and nagging to be quite accurate.

Sunday, 7 August 2011

Missed connections.

I should be sitting in a lovely cafe having an interesting and enjoyable date with a new chap I met online, but instead I am sitting in my flat drinking a rather good Merlot and with a delectable slice of chocolate cake sitting most temptingly beside me. Things never do seem to go to plan but I am becoming adept at turning them into positives. In this I am strongly reminded of a very well written children's book I loved when younger called 'Back Home' by Michelle Magorian in which the main character Rusty, when faced with a sea of unfriendly girls at her new boarding school (I always did adore boarding school books), faces them with great strength and for every one that ignores or snubs her she declares in her jolly American twang that that simply brought the next friendly person nearer for one must wade through no's to yet a yes.

I rather think she was right and today for me was another in what will no doubt turn into a whole series of no answers.

I arranged to meet a chap discovered online for coffee but though I sat there for a good twenty minutes (reading a wonderful new P.G. Wodehouse the time actually flew by) he didn't show. I was rather miffed but then suddenly got a text from him declaring that he was now leaving having waited outside for half an hour... When I entered I do vaguely remember seeing a sandy haired chap smoking outside and checking his phone, but really he didn't seem to resemble the profile picture of my date and so I carried on into the coffee shop. I don't think he noticed me and he obviously didn't bother going inside and looking for me or he would have spotted me. For unlike him I carefully decided to go for a profile picture in which I look jolly nice but also like I do in real life, rather than selecting one of those wonderful shots where I look incredible but really only through some magic combination of the lighting and the angle of the picture.

Of course I did reply to his text and tell him that actually I had been inside the whole time, but frankly by that point I wasn't all that interested in him and he had left anyway. So I had a very nice time with my book and am now home to partake of the Sunday Times. I wasn't much taken by what I remember about the boy outside the coffee shop and with meeting people this way the pool is so very large that I have decided that as soon as one red warning light or any difficulty arrises then it is much easier just to chuck them and move onto the next one... And I have another date lined up for tomorrow which is rather comfort making.

The Phd Boy after sending me that ghastly long bitter message last weekend actually messaged me again hat evening. He obviously regretted sending it and was trying to claw back some lost ground. Once again I didn't respond and then a few days ago he texted asking to meet up and apologise in person. I agreed solely so that I could get a book I loaned him back and we had a very awkward (or at least he seemed very awkward and I was quite indifferent and amused by turns) coffee yesterday. I got my book back, he stiltedly apologised and I am afraid I couldn't help myself and laughed an awful lot as he did so, he just looked so discomfited about it all. For some reason I can't work out he wants to remain friends, I just said yes to make it easier but really I have no inclination to be in contact with him again. The poor sod said several times that he had messed everything with us up and bitch that I am and indifferent as I had become I didn't say anything to comfort or contradict him.

But tomorrow is another day and another date (or lets hope it is actually a date this time) beckons!

Sunday, 31 July 2011

The rather bitter end.

Some people just don't take rejection well! Phd Boy got rather unpleasant when I ended things with him. Admittedly I did end it via a facebook message but due to him yet again reacting badly I think that was just as well. He did text me yesterday after the dreadful date and offer some half-hearted apologies but I ignored it as I really didn't know what to say since I had already decided not to see him again. I thought he might take the hint and was planning to wait a couple of days before properly ending things but I got another message from him last night and so this morning I sent him a short message saying I didn't want to see him anymore not because of what happened but because of his reaction to it which I had found both unpleasant and upsetting. I wasn't really expecting a reply but did think he might just message and say he had been expecting it or to offer and give me back a book I had lent him, but instead what I got was a ghastly long message filled with anger and bile.

He clearly feels dreadfully embarrassed about it all which wasn't helped by my unceremoniously chucking him straight afterwards and seems to be trying to redress the balance somewhat. He goes on a lot about our different opinions, but as I mentioned previously they really were not apparent when we spoke as he would always just agree with whatever I said. Poor sod he did try hard to make it sound as though we parted ways because he is very liberal in his views... He also complained that I had made him feel "decidedly stupid in the face of a mountain of classical authors" which I rather like as a turn of phrase. My talking about books really seems to have bothered him and in general I seem to have made him feel a bit dim and uncultured for he also moaned that he hadn't had the opportunity to talk about subjects he is well versed in. But that is plain silly as of course he could have done at any time, he simply didn't. He tried to claim that as we went to some good restaurants and to excellent old films that we both had good taste but that was just a lie: I chose everything that we did and all the places we ate, his contribution to the whole things was pretty lack-lustre and unconfident.

He was unintentionally very amusing when describing what happened the other night as he criticised me for kicking him out of bed in the end and only allowing him to kiss my cheek when he said goodnight. By the end of the message he seems to have convinced himself that we split up because we are rather different which really is quite funny considering how very keen he was and how well he seemed to think it was all going until the other night. At least he does finish by saying he thought me very sweet and jolly attractive and for again apologising for his behaviour so that was nice but considering the tone of the whole thing I would much rather he hadn't bothered to send it at all, some of it was borderline insulting as he tried to claw back some dignity and he did insult the wonderful classics.

It just goes to show that if you get a red warning flash in a relationship then it is best just to bail out and not wait for another one to happen. The bad date was warning one and just in case I needed another then that message is certainly a second. Goodbye Phd Boy and I have already set up at least one new date from my online questing!

Friday, 29 July 2011

Oh Cassandra why didn't I listen?

I really should have paid more attention when a friend of mine recently commented on the male lack of performance after alcohol... in a way she was quite the Cassandra about it all.

Last night we had what seemed to be a very promising time: full of yummy thai take-away, making out on the couch watching films and lots of good wine. I was a little nervous as I have been single for over a year but had decided wine was the best way to go as far as lowering my inhibitions and helping things to flow along. As the evening progressed I felt terrific and very positive about sleeping with Phd Boy and so when we ended up in bed I was happy and expecting a lot of fun. However, when the crucial moment arrived he had to shame-facedly tell me that it was a no go as a result of his wine consumption.

I was very disappointed but tried not to let it show and just told him it didn't matter etc etc. I didn't see why we shouldn't stay in bed and hope that in short he might feel more like it. Unfortunately this was not to be the case, try as I might, and he ended up rather cross with himself and in general. I was not impressed and ended up asking him as nicely as I could not to spend the night, I really saw no point in him staying as things did not look as though they change and I am not keen on morning sex with new boyfriends.

I can't give this away! I am attractive, slim, pretty, work out and take care over my appearance generally but I don't get asked out, then when I do eventually start to date someone after over a year being single he can't perform! I also have been left with not so much love bites as a neck so purple and red it looks as though I have been attacked... and will need to leave for work shortly having coated it in as much concealer as I can stand.

I do not want to see him again. Had he reacted better last night I would still have been disappointed but would have been more than happy to see him again as these things do sometimes happen. But not only did he get jolly cross at the situation and at one point actually jump out of bed in a temper and storm off saying he was leaving but he did nothing to make it not a totally wasted trip to bed for me... which frankly is just bad manners, particularly in these more enlightened times!

On the positive side I suppose I can now return to the murky waters of internet dating once again... and still have 5 months of my subscription left and won't ever have to persuade Phd Boy to have his back waxes. Oh god... what new hell will I discover next?

Tuesday, 26 July 2011

Set fair.

Well I have been dating Phd Boy for 3 weeks now and have been on 6 or so dates in that time and so far all is going rather well. He is a very nice boy and we really do have a good time together. He is intelligent and interested in things, has a good social life and is definitely attractive. Clearly likes me a lot and is eager to see me and is interested in going to museums as well as going out to bars. Then comes the big but...

Why on earth is there a but one might ask, when he sounds utterly lovely?

But there sadly is one. I am not entirely sure what it is but it certainly has something to do with the following: my over-thinking everything, our not yet having slept together, his being so keen on me that I can get him to agree with me on pretty much every subject, his exceptionally hairy back, my constantly comparing him in my head to my ex Germanicus and the fact he doesn't read fiction.

To be fair most of these are fixable by me: I must just relax and stop over-thinking the whole thing, we will soon sleep together I am sure so I should stop obsessing as to when that will happen and comparing him to my ex is not entirely a bad thing but I should try and stop doing it so often.

Of the other three: I would dearly love him to get his back waxed... but I do realise I really can't ask him to do that yet, I will just hope that I can tempt him with the idea in the not too distant future. It really is terribly hairy though and I must admit I do find it very off putting... But he offered (and was immediately accepted I might add) to shave his beard off after only two dates when I mentioned something about preferring the clean shaven look so he might well be prepared to do this at some point. His ready agreement and willingness to fit in with whatever I want is actually in many ways a good thing, though long-term I see it could be jolly annoying. But right now it means that we see the films I want to watch, go to the places I like and generally do lots of me type things. In telling my mother about some of our dates she noticed this immediately and accused me of forcing my tastes on him, but truly I suggest and he always just agrees. It also amuses me to bring up particular opinions to test whether he will very quickly change his own and agree with me though which I must be careful about. I recently championed fox-hunting just to gauge his reaction and although he started off not agreeing with me he very soon changed sides! I would actually love it if he could come up with opinions, likes and places to go that are different from mine, however, as I believe that one of the lovely things about new relationships or even friendships is being exposed to new experiences. Currently it is only he who is having his horizons expanded.

As for the last big but: his failure to read fiction. Well he started to read fiction what sounded like as soon as our first date had finished! I had of course mentioned authors and books and he seemed to go straight to Waterstones. I must admit to being rather pleased about this, and at the very least I have encouraged someone to read more.

Since our first date I have actually given up the world of internet dating... I really do like him and don't like to date more than one person at the same time. I must admit I have also lied to absolutely everyone about how I met Phd Boy, I tell everyone we met in a coffee shop... Also got him to agree to stick to the party line over this! Very silly to mind but I while I am prepared to internet date I greatly prefer for people not to know.

So he is a lovely boy who I like to spend time with and who really doesn't have any actual flaws... perhaps it is simply that I don't feel a spark? Whatever the flaws of the ex, and he had many indeed, I was nuts about him right from the beginning. But maybe sparks can develop as people spend time together? I really do like him and if I can just stop myself from thinking the whole thing to death I think we could have a very nice time together indeed.

Thursday, 7 July 2011

Date No.1.

The date with Phd boy last night went incredibly well! He was jolly handsome, much better looking than his pictures online, and rather nicely dressed. It amy sound silly to be so pleased that he dressed well but my ex was a dreadful dresser who was incapable of dressing for different situations but would wear the same brightly coloured chinos for a casual lunch and also for a formal opera or party... where as lovely phd boy looked smashing and just right for the occasion in his preppy but casual jeans and pale blue shirt. He really is good looking, yummy tanned skin with dark short hair and a lean but strong looking body.

We met for drinks and although I had arranged to meet my flatmate for dinner afterwards I ended up calling her from the loo and buying an extra hour to spend with him. We had lots to talk about, there were no horrid awkward pauses and he is jolly interesting. He can be a little long winded in some of his explanations but it is entirely possible that he was nervous and that caused this.

I was a little nervous before seeing him but he was waiting outside the wine bar for me which I thought very nice indeed, and was instantly recognisable from his photos. I had such a good time that I have been talking about him to various friends since! My flatmate of course heard all about him last night then my friends at work this afternoon. While I was having lunch with a friend we were discussing whither or not I should text him or if I should wait for him to do so, I was starting to wonder and wait for him to be in touch. Mostly because I am going away for a a few days on Saturday and rather wanted to see him tomorrow night before leaving.

I had no sooner finished lunch when he got in touch. Such a sweet message and we are now meeting up tomorrow night for date 2! Thrilled! Is it possible to meet the right boy on attempt number one?

Wednesday, 6 July 2011

The rocky road to love.

I have now been officially single for one whole year. After celebrating with lots of yummy faux champagne (I am but a poor student and unable to afford the good stuff) I thought back over the last year. I realised that I have successfully become a singleton like Bridget Jones and am now very content to spend time by myself reading books and eating chocolate with a trusty glass of red wine by by side, I am even perfectly happy to go to the theatre and on trips by myself when no friends are available. This is all excellent stuff but I would now definitely like to start dating again.

In the last year I have only been on a handful of dates, something had to change and I realised that I could make resolution after resolution about being ready to date again and about seeking dates, but really that nothing whatsoever was happening. In the end I decided to dip my toe into the murky waters of internet dating.

Although feeling much too young and normal to consider such an alarming idea and being horrified about the thought of having to put a picture of myself on my profile last weekend I just went for it. So far in a mere matter of days I have had more interest than in the whole of the past year and tonight I have my first date through the medium of internet dating. Strangely enough I am not the least bit nervous... perhaps because I am so aware that if it doesn't go well then there seem to be lots of other men on the website all eager to take me out for drinks and so really I can just relax and be myself. It also probably helps that he doesn't know my real name, it just makes me feel more in control of the situation.

I am meeting him for drinks this evening and have organised to meet my flatmate a couple of hours later for dinner so that if it is dreadful I can leave easily and have someone to talk it over with (though needless to say I have not admitted to her or anyone else how I met the man in the first place) and if it goes well I can always see him again.

He sounds rather nice: he is doing a phd and seems to appreciate literature. Sounds perfectly nice in his messages and looks pretty good in his photographs.

The online dating thing is actually rather good fun and it takes up a surprising amount of one's time. You need to send a great many messages back and forth to lots of men until you work out which ones you favour, some start off well on their profile but then descend into dullness or you find out they didn't go to university (my major turn off).

So date number one... I do wonder what it will be like...