Saturday 11 July 2009

auntiegwens guide of how not to date

I couldn't resist this one, and before anyone who's googled in gets humpty, I'm not an expert, so this should be read with a light sprinkling of tongue in cheek but you don't need a full dose of bitter irony for it.

I became single for the second time at the age of forty, which I also referred to as "feckin forty" quite a lot. The first period of singledom ended when I was nineteen. I can truly say that being single never bothered me for the first 19 years, they were a doddle, I am just wondering if the second period of singledom will be as long and as carefree. The dating world of the new millenium is a million miles away from the 20th century one I had experienced.

The first time I was single Michael Jackson was black, George Michael was straight and everyone had pubic hair. Advice in magazines was always about getting boys to call you or how to clean your oven or knit your own boyfriend. They never ever included such articles instructing you on how to give the perfect blowjob or an out of 10 rating for battery operated ladies toys.

I am the last of the generation of good girls. We were the ones who didn't sleep with anyone except our long term boyfriends and it took a serious amount of time before that happened. We were brought up to think that good girls don't. This was the generation before ladettes. Anal sex was only for gay men and a pearl necklace was what you wore on your wedding day.

There was no facebook, internet dating, speed dating, texting (clean, flirty or downright dirty), no mobile phones for phone sex or with cameras to send naked knob shots and no webcams for any kind of virtual and technological shenanigans. If I was going to facilitate someones sexual "happy ending" I was always present.

From November 1985 you can fast forward through a relationship of 21 years and 3 children and get to August 2006 when I technically became single for the 2nd time.

The second time I was single it became clear to me that a 40 year old mother of 3 may not be every one's dream date whereas a nubile 19 year old student could have her pick. There was also the issue of where to meet men, at 19 I would go to the pub after work wearing my student nurses uniform, job done. At 40 I no longer had my uniform and I fear I would have been more Hattie Jaques whereas at 19 year I would have been more Barbara Windsor.

At 19 I had a crowd of mates, all single and available to go out anytime and up for going anywhere. If there was a film I wanted to see or a holiday I wanted to go on, there was always someone to go with. I was never starved of adult company. At 40 all my friends were married and no one is available for nights out because they are too knackered with their kids, their job, the endless cleaning, ferrying offspring to activities etc etc etc. They do not want to go out, that means they have to get out off their jammies, put make up on, persuade husbands or arrange babysitters and then be depressed at how much things cost and how old they are, they want to sleep and who can blame them?

At 19 I was flirty and funny and I did not ever worry about what to say to boys because usually their tongue was in my mouth fairly quickly. At 40 I realised I didn't have a notion of how to talk to men and I always felt faintly ridiculous when someone tried to kiss me.

I don't enjoy dating at all. I accept that if I want the fringe benefits of being in a couple then I have to date. I often feel like I am on a job interview and if I have to explain what I get from blogging 1 more time I will scream.

So I have tried to clarify some points that I have gone a bit wrong on myself, sure there's no point in there being more than 1 of us getting the reputation of being a bad date.

What I have learned - How not to date

Do not talk to men like you talk to your female friends. Be very careful in your choice of conversational topics, they are unlikely to be impressed that you had 3 natural childbirths and that your son weighed 9 pounds 11 ounces, this will make them wonder what effect that had on the part of your anatomy that they may wish to explore at a later stage.

Do not feel free to rip apart their taste in music or the car they drive or what they wear. Even if it kills you to bite your tongue and there is a joke screaming to be made, resist at all costs. Your bitchy sarcastic sense of humour doesn't make you attractive to men at all.

Best not to mention that you read your horoscope every day and that you know what astrological signs are compatable with your Leo (Aries and Leo) and which are bad (Virgo and Cancer) This makes you sound weird.

Do not mention your ex or ex's. This is tricky as my ex is the reason I live where I live and the "Tell me why you left your own country?" chat always happens. This also rules out a lot of good conversational topics (point 1) such as places you've been on holiday, this is usually a good topic and if you can mention your trip to Paris or New York or Barcelona without mentioning who accompanied you, then do your best travelogue.

Do not mention your kids too much. They are not cute and sweet to anyone else except you and your immediate family. Mine are not cute and sweet to anyone, even me.

Some men think women who have cats are worth avoiding (sorry Lisa, maybe only British men think cat lovers are odd) If you love your cat and he sleeps on your bed, you have a photo of him as your screensaver and you speak to your cat in a ickle baby voice and refer to yourself as mummy, don't tell your date.

Don't be tempted to go for the 3rd glass of wine, in my case it's the 2nd. It may make you feel relaxed and you think you are having some flirty banter and witty repartee, the bon mots are tripping silkily and seductively off your tongue and you think you are being so funny that you wonder how much it would cost you to put on a one woman show at the fringe. This is your cue to stop drinking, have a diet coke or a water. You're not being entertaining, you're getting pissed and he either thinks he's getting lucky or he's getting scared.

When your date tells you that you are so sexy he means he is horny. Every man I have ever dated has told me I was the sexiest woman they had ever met. This is pish, I am not remotely sexy, even when I try, which to be fair isn't that often. Do not be fooled.

At the end of the evening do not be surprised if they wish to do more than kiss you on the cheek. They may wish to take the knickers off you. You don't even know each others surnames but some people are more than happy to have knowledge of you that would rival your gynaecologist.

I'm off to The Beautiful House for a week, see you when I get back.


TheOnlineStylist said...

Thats it! You HAVE to write a dating guide now... call it The Feckin' Rules! So true and completely on the button! Have a fab time at the BH x

Jo said...

brilliant! write a book and make lots of money! then you won't need a man!
Josie x

Mrs P said...

Chuckling away to your blog again! You're very entertaining :o)

Shirley said...

So basically you're saying that the only acceptable topics are the weather and the date himself. And if the weather can be related to himself, so much the better? Ah well, they're missing the very best parts of you, but so be it. The dumb heads.

A Mother's Place is in the Wrong said...

Dear auntiegwen, don't despair. You are gorgeous. You are also funny, talented and amazing. If the men you meet don't appreciate you, that's their loss! M xx

Anonymous said...

Very, very funny. And for the record, your bitchy sarcastic sense of humour is okay with me. Now, how are we getting on with those magazine articles...??? xxxx x

lisaq said...

Oh sweetie, it's the same with men and cats across the pond. I have 3. They all sleep with me. You can't sit on a chair without cat hair following you home. I'm thinking of putting out a basket of complimentary lint rollers for guests. Anyway, the last guy actually loved my cats. He said he wouldn't trust anyone who didn't love cats and HE ended up a liar and cheater. Wonder what that means?

Love your not to date guide...very nicely done! You should let me post it as a guest post on 20-forty.

menopausaloldbag (MOB) said...

Superbly written and entertaining post. Oh how I had forgotten the misery of dating. I met a few ugabugs in my time and jeeze how men love to talk about themselves. If you let them do that, then you need say nothing! Enjoy your week away.

Tim Atkinson said...

Virgo here. Bye!

Anonymous said...

Thank God I'm not still out there.

Wonderful and very perceptive post,


martine said...

thanks for this auntie gwen, best laugh I had today. thankfully I slipped neatly from being attached to one bloke to being attached to another without a significant gap in between, not sure I have ever been on a real date since my teenage years, and it seems I haven't missed much:-)
thanks for sharing

A Confused Take That Fan said...

Auntie, Another great post. Should be made into a leaflet and posted to every household in the country, forget that one about swine flu, the govt should send this out.
I fear I am one ofyour friends who can't be arsed to put make up on or get out their jammies. Also haven't dated in this world of nob shots. Ha how funny. You are funny and deserve a great man. Don't ever settle. He'll be out there somewhere - in fact who is this anonymous who keeps leaving comments? Me thinks he hearts you... Enjoy your BH. x

Anonymous said...

Oh God, I hate dating too. And the awkwardness. And the realisation that only alcohol is going to make the evening bearable. And the fact that he has a nervous twitch. Or is short. Or interminably boring.....

But there HAVE be be some decent guys out there??!

Madame DeFarge said...

Makes me glad that I'm married. But that has it's own dubious delights too.

Helena said...

I kind of miss the whole dating game malarky and probably only had 2 one night stands before marriage. Didn't regret them but didn't want to persue a future from either of them whereas they did! Mind you one was married , so I suppose I was a bit of a shameless hussy at one time!

These days, any man that couldn't accept my ginger hairy one, would have to bail. My cat may not share a bed with me but it's only HIS hairs that I occasionally pick from my bottom lip!

auntiegwen said...

That girl - The Feckin Rules, I like that !

Josie - I'd love to but have you've seen how bad my grammar and puctuation are !

Rachel - I say this all the time, my life is massively entertaining if you're not living it :)

Shirley - not sure I have any best bits !!!!

M - Oh I'm aprreciated, it's just finding someone I can appreciate back that's tricky !

Edge - do you only comment on posts that include my knickers or mentions of sex ? people will talk xxxx x

Lisa - I would love to be a guest poster, I'm really enjoying the moonlighting I'm doing at the moment.

Mobs - they say you have to kiss a lot of frogs before you find your prince, I'm just not willing to shag them

Tim - I'm sure you are a perfectly compatable sign for Sarah, who is undoubtedly much less weird about astrology than me

GG - sometimes it's great fun, I'm not really looking you see, if I want a man I should be much more pro active than I am, I am far too lazy and am waiting for the perfect man to find me, meanwhile I get great amusement from it

Martine - it's great fun, I have a nice wee gallery of naked knob shots now, it gives my friends and I great laughs !!!

ACTTF - oh that's the Edge who has been my mate for a gazillion years, we heart each other, he's very funny and the reason I began blogging

Mud - and when you find him, bring his mate for me please

Madame - ah yes I remember that state well, in fact this was the day I got married all the way back to 1988 ! we lasted for 18 years and had the 3 best children together so a lot to be thankful for

Lena - don't worry hen, no one has pubic hair any more, so 90's dahling !!! xxx

Anonymous said...

I've got the cats, the bitchy sense of humour and also need to check out the star sign - maybe why I'm single?! You think?
Actually, there are nice men who have liked me loving cats as it means (to them) that I am compassionate. You have to look far and wide for someone to get the humour - men can be very literal in their thinking. They may think the astro thing is a bit weird but secretely they are interested and ask lots of questions (despite it all being rubbish of course). I do tarot and read runes too - that I keep secret! Dating not a problem any more - I would rather be with those gorgeous cats than some of the oddities I have got involved with.