So we find ourselves speed dating. Now this is something that I have always said would be really fun and a must to tick off when you are single, however the reality of choosing an outfit that says effort but not too overly available as well as not slutty and with an air of confidence but not arrogant is a feat within its self! Not to mention the heat in London this summer leading to many a sweaty upper lip! Typically, my favourite jeans split the weekend before so my go to outfit of jeans, cami and metallic mules is out the window! I go for a polka dot bardot dress that should probably be dressed down with trainers, but as I’m not really a trainer girl I chose a mule and then feel stupidly dressed up. Anyway, dressed and ready to go I meet my glamorous girl in Angel for a couple of pre drinks to calm the nerves.
We down our negronis (I don’t drink negroni but with Glam telling me it’s strong and with only 45 mins before we have to arrive what’s a girl to do!) both wanting to spend the evening catching up and gossiping about the latest love island departure instead of putting ourselves through an evening of strangers, but I think I’ve pitched the dating venue of choice well. A casual pub in Angel on a Thursday night bound to be full of illegible 30 something year olds looking for their TO to settle down with? And as cynical as I can be I’m still in love with love. Little did I know what I had let myself (and glam) in for!
From the outside of the pub you would think promising venue …. until we stepped inside! Greeted by the host who explains how it works, girls choose a seat and boys move around. Then the first red warning signal appears in the form of another girl who at first we thought was the co host but actually was ramming her advice down our throats as a ‘regular’ speed dater come local to this particular event.
At this point I’m eyes to the floor avoiding all eye contact with the potential men who are dotted around the pub and straight to the bar. 2 margaritas asap please. Already I’m thinking what have I done? Why am I putting myself through this? Luckily there’s not much time until the host is summoning us to our seats. Me and glam think it’s best we sit apart so not to distract each other but have direct eye contact across the room.
4 minutes per date, apparently just long enough to get to know eachother but not too short to find a connection …. the next 13 dates made me definitely disagree with the hosts comment!
So it begins …. date 1 Danny: Security guy at a shopping centre, came alone, says the choice tonight was speed dating or the gym … I was thinking maybe the latter would have been the better choice! Throughout the 13 dates I endured this evening (tried to leave at half time but Glam wouldn’t let me) I learnt the following:
- When English isn’t their first language it’s easier to nod and smile than keep asking them to repeat over and over
- The most ordinary person almost becomes your hero when he’s the only normal man there – Christened normal Dave
- Speed dating is something that needs to be endured more than once …. nearly all the men had been there at least twice
- If you are over 30 and not married you should lock yourself in a dark room (words of wisdom given to Glam on date number 4)
- Revealing your sexual status seems to be appropriate in the first 4 minutes of meeting someone – the Muslim virgin as he announced to me within the first 2 minutes of chatting
- 4 minutes is a lot longer than I had ever given time credit for when you are talking to a guy that gives one word answers, never will I view the 4 minute wait for a central line tube the same again
- You can be rejected on a date by someone that never stood a chance with you and still feel a bit hurt …. the words ‘I don’t think this is going to work out’ are not nice words to hear
- There isn’t opportunity to get more drinks during the speed date so shots are more than necessary in the break (unless you are able to run at this point)
- Beware of the man posing as a doctor …. but can hardly string a sentence together and when asked what type of doctor looks blankly
- Ensure you are at least in eye contact distance from whatever friend you have gone along with – those eyerolling moments are what get you through
Speed dating may be ticked off but the hunt for a potential TO continues ….