Carrie Bradshaw made it look so easy didn’t she? Running around New York City, twirling around in circles at traffic lights and smiling to the air. If I did that, someone would report me as ‘escaped’. Off she’d go, dating men of all ages and sizes. Sometimes good dates, sometimes bad, all washed down with a champers based lunch at a swanky restaurant, dressed head to toe in designer clobber, throwing puns left, right and centre with her gorgeous, perfect girlfriends. I’ve been there. We’ve all been there haven’t we? I think?
As a single guy, I watch things like SATC religiously. I can’t help it. It’s like crack for singletons. I watch it for many reasons. One of the things I like about it the most (apart from the fabulous handbags and shoes) is to see if I can try to identify in her dates, the ones that I’ve had in the past. Turns out I can. I’ve had my ‘Aiden’. I left my ‘Berger’, but I’ve still not found my ‘Big’. Whilst thinking about this recently, my mum told me about a book that she’d read called ‘the five people you meet in heaven’. A guy dies and goes to heaven and meets 5 people that he’d helped in life without knowing it, thus enabling him to go to heaven and remain at peace. Check out Wikipedia for a full synopsis. The reason I mention this book is that it got me thinking. I’ve been single for nearly a year now, after my colossal douche-bag of a boyfriend cheated on me repeatedly and dumped me after 5 years. I wouldn’t say that I’m in heaven right now. More purgatory if anything. I was thinking to myself last night, whilst in the bath, listening to London Grammar (which is awesome bath music by the way). I was trying to categorize the men that I have met since I have been single. Guess what? There have been 5 of them! So without further ado, I present to you my list of the five people you meet in purgatory:
- The Sob Story- You’ve been through your own stuff in the past, but this guy doesn’t really take that into consideration. Nothing can be as much of a drama as his past. Our first date was at an Italian café in Cambridge, England. We were sitting there, chatting about our lives and what we had done before, when all of a sudden came the question. It was my fault. I asked the question. I should have known that it is not to be asked on a first date! Regardless, I went ahead and asked: “What happened with you and your ex- boyfriend?” That was it. The waterworks were on. To be honest, his relationship did sound pretty bad, but he then brought back memories of me and my ex-boyfriend, which in turn made me start to cry. On a lovely sunny afternoon, there we were, two gay guys, sat in an Italian café in central Cambridge, crying our eyes out. The more time I spent with him, the more I would feel upset or down. He wasn’t good for me. Needless to say, it ended swiftly and I was added to his list of tyrants. NEXT!
- The Material Girl- Madonna once told us that we are living in a material world. She was god damn right about that! This guy took me on a date to a chocolate bar factory. He scored extra points for that one. Good choice! He swung by and picked me up from my house and stood outside, propped up against his brand new Audi. I rolled my eyes and got in the car. Getting into the car, he stopped me mid-conversation to show me the special button thing that made the seat heat up, move up, down, sideways before cooking you a steak dinner. I was outraged! Don’t cut someone up before they have finished what they’re saying. Especially when you’re telling them something that they could achieve just by farting on the seat. After giving him the benefit of the doubt, fast forward a few days later and I have just turned up at his house for the first time. Why do some men feel the need to show off everything that they have? Do they really think that it’s going to get me into bed any quicker?! It didn’t matter how many Ipads, cars, watches, laptops or French maids he had, he was lacking one thing that I really wanted. A personality. NEXT…again.
- The ‘Funny’ Guy- just, no! Do not take me for dinner to a Chinese restaurant and stick two chopsticks up your nostrils and call yourself a walrus. Especially if they get stuck and you start to cry due to the pain of practically impaling yourself on Chinese cutlery. This guy was probably the nicest guy that I met. Unfortunately for him, he couldn’t tie his shoelaces without making fart noises or walk down the street without cracking a joke that only Chandler from ‘Friends’ would be proud of. I gave it another chance. I thought that I was maybe being too uptight. There are just some things that you cannot deal with. The tampon with ketchup was the final straw for me. Especially as it was in a doctor’s surgery. It made me laugh, but made me crave somebody without the attention span of a jack Russell even more. NEXT! Please, next. Quickly. Before I kill it with fire!
- The Child- This guy was one of my most recent dates. I met him and fell for him as he had the face of an angel, skin as white as snow and smooth as a baby’s bottom and that student, alchopop loving, indie kind of style about him. He was also younger than me. I’m not talking decades here, but enough to show me that there is a very big difference between maturity levels in some people. Telling me that things were ‘rad’ and ‘safe’ were part of our daily conversations. I am by no means a word-snob, but I do expect to be able to have a conversation with someone over dinner rather than watch them turn into Zac Effron in ‘high School Musical’. I went to house parties with this guy and met all of his trendy friends who looked like they had walked off the set of ‘Skins’. Pill popping and saying things like “I liked Bowie’s stuff in the early days of U2” made me face-palm so much that I’m surprised my face didn’t fall off. I’m nearly 25 years old. Sleeping on the floor of your parent’s living room isn’t my idea of a sleepover these days. NEXT! It’s really starting to get old now!
- The diamond in the rough- I see this guy every day and I have known him for a very long time. He likes to read books that aren’t written with one syllable sentences. He likes to listen to music. He likes to go to the movies. He doesn’t try to sleep with someone on the first date. We go to meet friends all the time, we go shopping and we tell each other everything. We get on really well. He’s honest about what he’s thinking and doesn’t beat around the bush. He’s the kind of guy I would like to stick around for a while! This guy is really good and I have a lot of respect for him. He’s had a tough old life for his age, but he takes every bad thing that happened to him and turns into something magical. I’m sat with him right now. In fact, this guy is ME.
I wrote this article today to show you that before you even think about being happy with someone, you really have to be in love with yourself. Throughout all of these dates, I never gave myself a second thought. Why would I? I know myself, or so I thought. Regardless if you are single or in a relationship, you are the most important person in your life. Like I said before, I’m by no means in my heaven phase right now, but I do feel that I have come through the limbo stage of my life. I’ve done the dates, I’ve got the stories and if there was a t-shirt that said ‘experienced’ without making me look like a trollop, I’d wear it every day! There are many different kinds of guys that you will meet on your path in life. Not all of them will be the same guys that I have had. You will meet different ones. You may have already met the guys on my list and (hopefully) seen sense. We all have to go through our purgatory in order to get to our own Mr. Big, Mr. Heaven, Mr. Perfect, Mr. Sweet or whatever you want to call him. Nothing is certain as far as a time limit is concerned. All that I know is that I won’t be settling for Mr. Right now.
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