Today is Valentine's Day, supposedly the most romantic day of the year. I have spent it indoors, full of the cold and trying to avoid the sheer abundance of Valentine's related media and merchandise that seems to be around this year. I don't know if the desperate attempt to sell stuff in a recession or the ever increasing commercialisation of society, but it seems relentless this year.
I am lucky that I don't really care about being single any day of the year and that nobody else seems too bothered about it either. I have escaped the single girl cliches of having a mother desperate to dress up in pastels and wear a big hat or friends who feel sorry for me being on the shelf in my 30s. But for some reason this year, my single status is causing momentarily malaise today.
It might be because being cold-ridden I have missed out of the chance to stuff myself with dim sum in honour of Chinese New Year which also falls today, but I think it's because this is the first year in a while that I have actually been in the market for a date thanks to an online dating profile. And it turns out the men I might be dating look like a much less appealing prospect than ever being alone.
While my date back in November turned out to be a most enjoyable evening of laughter, chat and Belgian beers, it also happened to be with the Least Dynamic Man on Earth™. I suggested the date, organised the date, re-organized the date when he couldn't make it, had to send him directions to the date while sitting waiting for him and had to order the drinks all night and ask for the bill at the end. Putting this down to him being easy going, I was quite keen to see him again. He asked me out again in the last week of November. I told him that would be great and to let me know when was good for him...
He replied in January to say that he wasn't drinking for the next few weeks after Christmas, but that he would be free in a fortnight from then if I fancied a drink. I realised he wasn't just being laid back or polite when he was allowing me to set the pace for the date, he was simply born without a dynamic gland. Barely able to contain my apathy at such a tempting offer, I sent him a message saying I was seeing someone else and left it at that, relieved yet terrified to have decoded why he was single after one date.
The only thing I have been seeing since then is the blur as my head repeatedly hits the desk upon reading another message in my inbox. There was the 28 line text speak 'poem' that read like a stalker's manifesto and several messages complaining that I don't like curry and therefore must be boring, uptight, a prude, not English or a mixture of the above. Then there was the man who was wearing a different polo neck sweater in each of his photos and who wanted to take me to a small island on the Thames to drink coffee and never let me leave him. But I think my favourite was the man who IM'd me the other night to ask if men actually find me attractive despite being so pale? (Although maybe this explains why no one ever replies to my messages...)
I'm not sure how to rectify this situation...change dating site? Develop a selection of cheesy chat up lines? Take up a night class? Batten down the hatches and start adopting feral cats in droves? Drink gin in large quantities? Any and all suggestions gratefully received!
I started this blog as a way to talk to myself as I worked my way toward rebuilding my life after experiencing two rapes. Then other people started reading it too and I realised talking about myself wasn't enough and expanded it to having an opinion on everything, especially women and sexual violence. I want this to be a safe welcoming space so please assume all posts need a trigger warning for rape, PTSD, general trauma related crappiness and bad jokes. I'm thrilled anyone reads it and want everyone to feel welcome, including men who may have been victims. I talk about rape from a woman's perspective as that's my own experience, but don't want to exclude anyone who doesn't feel their experience is the same. Feel free to browse or make comments. These are moderated so any apologist crap hits the bin, but not to boost my ego. Anonymous comments or pseudonyms are fine by me since I only blog anonymously myself. Thanks for reading. I do reward you with the odd lighthearted post as well...