I thought it couldn’t get worse than Speed Dating. Turns out, it can!
Last week, a friend invited me to a Single and Mingle night in Brighton. She was going with her housemate and we all agreed it could be crap, but we wouldn’t know unless we went (and we’d never find a boyfriend sat at home).
Walking in, it was evident we were the youngest there by around 20 years, but there is strength in numbers and we all sat together. What followed was a whirlwind of bottles of wine, strange men and raised eyebrows across the table:
Guy Number 1: The Running Man.
He came alone. He met his ex at one of these nights, he beamed. Have [we] ever been to one of these nights? We’re Single and Mingle virgins. When I told him I’d been on Tinder (etc) and speed dating he made the judgement that ‘[I’ve] been single for a long time, clearly’. And then I got sassy…and he didn’t like that.
‘Tell me something interesting about yourself’, he said to my friend, ‘there must be something interesting about you.’
He told us he’s recently started running.
Guy Number 2: The Misogynist.
As he sat down, he made a comment about a threesome. What an impression..!
He came alone. He had unresolved issues with his ex. Me, Me, Me, Me, Me. He had so much anger towards his ex-girlfriend and he berated her closeness to her family. Ever the advocate for a strong, family network, I gave the case for a loving family and why his ex’s mum might have taken her side. He didn’t like that my opinion challenged his. He put his hand up to my face as a ‘stop’ sign, then turned to my friend.
Girls, The Younger Man has left. Now our evening is doomed.
Phew, the Younger Man has returned.
Guy Number 3: The Van Man.
The Van Man came with, let’s call her, Lara. What a laugh The Van Man was (or was it that the two previous men were so horrendous?) Lara was sweet, she’s in the same career as us and we had a good chat. Probably too much career chat for what was meant to be a dating night. The Van Man left us to it.
Guy Number 4: The Younger Man.
Evidently, you can’t judge a man by his back. He worked in a chocolate shop. He was nice. But he was boring.
Guys Number 5, 6 and 7: God Knows Who.
All we can remember about these guys is a series of nouns: luggage, heelies, a hood, holidays, a copywriter and a teacher. Not much to go on. Not a memorable bunch.
We left by 11pm. None of us had a new number in our phones, or any hope for a date. Turns out, none of us had paid the bill.
We took it as compensation for a shit night.