I'm Miss M. Here are some of my Online Dating tips, backed up by my sometimes hilarious, and often disconcerting stories…
It is so bloody nice to start one of these posts on a positive note! Looking back, it’s usually creepy recaps and tenuous reasons not to give up. But not today. Today I’ll start with: that last date was freaking awesome.
And it left me on such a high. Sure there wasn’t a kiss. Or a promise of marriage. Or a shortlist of what we’ll call our brown-skinned babies. But there was amazing food, great chat, genuine laughter and a fair few tingles. Not to mention the awesome drunk chicks who gave us their blessing because Mr Mate laughed WITH them not AT them. Honestly, you know when people say judge a date on how they treat the staff? I reckon judge them on how they treat the drunkards on the next table.
And I’m not just saying that because I like wine (a lot). I have proof. Because as I got to know Mr Mate I learnt he’s a volunteer worker. His work of choice was to take old people out on excursions! And no, he didn’t just find random oldies and drive them to the zoo. He worked at a nursing home and took small groups out to wherever their hearts desired (obviously not wherever). Also if they didn’t feel like hitting the town, he’d just hang out and play board games and stuff. How cool is that?! Kind, generous, patient. All the qualities. One man.
Unfortunately one very sick man. You see, a few days before our second date Mr Mate revealed he’d been suffering from severe migraines. He said it felt like a bommyknocker in his skull. Ouchies. I’d never experienced such a thing so my only advice was to drink lots of water. I can imagine that would’ve been very annoying. But he never told me so.
The day of our date had been particularly painful and Mr Mate had to go home early from work. As much as I wanted to be a selfish biatch and make him see me anyway, I suggested we postpone. I know what you’re thinking… What if the whole migraine thing was a bullshit way to get out of our second date?! Ah!
Or was it only me and my insecure mind that reached that conclusion? Either way, we were wrong. Because Mr Mate insisted he wanted to see me – through rain and migraine. Yikes. He was obviously deluded because he thought I’d be able to make him feel better. Me? The chick without an ‘inside voice’ and a cackle to battle the Wicked Witch of the West? Sure. It would be so peaceful for him.
So there we were.
Sitting side by side in the cinema. The Bollywood film started with a bang. Literally. A car exploded on a Bombay promenade. And then the people started dancing. It was hectic, loud and beautiful. Rhythm and beat entered some kind of ego war. There were pulses of bright colour, OTT movement, tight leather pants. All my fave things. And all the things that’d make you suicidal even if you had the slightest of headaches. But Mr Mate had the biggest grin on his face – almost bigger than mine.
In that moment I felt so close to him. But not close enough. Because we weren’t touching. And for some reason that made me fear we were just mates. Was this a real date? Or was I being friend-zoned? I don’t know what I expected. Perhaps I thought he’d pull the old ‘yawn and cuddle’ move? Or at least go for a boob grope?
But no, not Mr Mate. He’d never do anything like that. He was too much of a gentleman. Which is obviously a good thing, right? So then why does it sometimes feel like an obstacle? We always dream of being with someone who’ll treat us with respect. But then sometimes it’s the confident (cocky) dude that gets our attention.
Is it because the idea of subtle romance is dead – lost between all the horndogs and ‘DTFs’?! Or is it because we’ve become so uncertain of where we stand with people that we need constant affirmation? Or is it because one of my first ever suitors was a twenty-something apprentice mechanic who wooed me (when I was seventeen) on my tram to school? It was the 69 tram. Coincidence? Doubt it. Anyhoo he was pretty and manly all at once. So all he had to do was chat me up over a couple of morning commutes and eventually invite me to the park after school one day. Wow, I promise it wasn’t as creepy as it sounds. Or maybe it was.
I was in Year 12 – young and naive (stupid). So of course I said yes. Also, any excuse to avoid studying would’ve done. His confidence was so charming that it took less than five minutes to get me up the rocket. That’s not a double entendre by the way. There was literally a giant rocket in the park and we went straight up it for a pash sesh. Romantic, yes? No. Because within five minutes of pashing he had a little mishap on my leg. Ew. I freaked out and took off. And I was so paranoid (young and stupid) that I convinced myself I needed the morning after pill. Looking back, I’m sure the chemist would’ve had a great old laugh behind my back. All I have to say is – it happened to Virgin Mary. So that’s that.
Back to Mr Mate (thank goodness). He simply sat with me. And as the movie continued, I found myself feeling increasingly content in his presence.
And that’s when he finally made his move.
He leaned into me and whispered, My migraine’s gone. I smiled, genuinely happy for the poor chook. And then I slightly cocked my head in case he wanted to access my lips. But he didn’t. So I quickly straightened up and hoped he hadn’t noticed. I probably should’ve just grabbed his face and planted one on him. But something about his migraine situation made me feel like the first move had to come from him. Otherwise I’d be crossing some kind of doctor-patient line. (I did give him the advice about drinking water after all!)
I thought that was the end of it. But he continued looking into my eyes and said, No really. I feel better. Probably because I’m sitting next to you.
And the rest is history. Because those words made me so happy. Because that’s when I realised we weren’t just mates. That, my peeps, was romance right there. So what if the date didn’t end in a pash, or a rocket, or a mishap on my leg? I knew we’d be seeing each other soon.
And that this really could grow to be something lovely.