"Focus on the journey, not the destination. Joy is found not in finishing an activity but in doing it." Greg Anderson
Easy for him to say! All he ever has to do is wash and shave. That's because he's a man.

My journey starts with the FIRST BLOG; you'll need coffee/tea and probably some chocolate digestives, or maybe some Cadbury's Fruit and Nut, or Green and Black's Organic if you've got more money than sense.

Sunday, 10 July 2011

Plus Ca Change, Plus C'est La Meme Bleedin' Chose.

So, yeah, merci beaucoup, fellow countryman Jean- Baptiste Alphonse Karr. When did I last post anything on here? Hmm. It seems an age. This is because I have been on 3,290 dates. Well, OK, not quite that many. But it feels like it. That’s why I haven’t updated – too busy being miserable!

Here’s my new rule, and if you really love me - family member, friend, follower - please, please, please don’t let me waiver from it. If it’s not absolutely firework-explodingly magnificent on the first date, it is for sure, for sure, not worth revisiting, no siree!  Where might be the most suitable place on my body to have this tattooed?    

So, most recent dates - Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, Friday and Saturday, of which two nonsensical repeats. Why do I do to myself?

Do you remember the person I went out with last week, let’s call him, Martin, well, we had an ‘activity’ date – more like mooching round places than activity - but it wasn't merely coffee and/or dinner.

How shallow am I? I feel like such a schmuck telling you any of this  He was a perfect gentleman in all respects: he held the car door open for me, walked on the outside of the pavement, open all doors, bought me a little present (a book about a subject he knows I’m interested in), but… but… No!

The age thing only got worse because I noticed he has this annoying habit. You know when elderly people are reminiscing about something, and they come to the end of a sentence, and then they sort of inhale and exhale with a little groan-sigh, as if ruefully contemplating the magnitude of what they've just said. Well, he did that. All the bloody time.This would invariably be followed by a little shake of the head. It nearly drove me nuts! I remember my Grandpapa doing exactly the same thing when he used to sit at the kitchen table talking portentously about the War. Plus, Martin's voice grates – sort of lugubrious. Combine Eeyore, Clement Freud and Amy Turtle. (Haha! How ironic we should be talking about age – who the hell remembers Amy Turtle except me!) Anyway, you get my drift?




To go on this activity date, I had to ditch my car and get into his. Another new rule: never get into a car with a strange bloke. Yes, I know it’s obvious – but he was harmless except in one respect: he sort of kept me hostage. This has happened to me before; it’s a little unconscious manipulative ruse employed by lonely people to stave off the inevitable moment of coming face to face with no-one but themselves. (Or, if you want me to be a halfway decent human being about it, they like you and want to spend time with you.) So they metaphorically grab you by the wrist in a vice-like grip and won’t let go. Martin’s version of this was to prolong the date till 2017; lunch got later and later, then the walk in the park, then something else, and something else, then when we finally arrived back at my car where yet another coffee was required in a local hostelry. 

Guys! Here’s the thing. I have lived alone for a while now and, on the whole, I like it. The kids (when they are around for long periods) thankfully bugger off to their rooms to do time-wasting, self-removing things with Xboxes, books and computers; good mates and family get told to haul their ass off the sofa and go home when I’ve had enough of them; even that shining beacon of wonderfulness, Stella, gets thrown out after three hours!  You can see the problem, can’t you? I get People-Overload Syndrome. So what am I doing internet dating, right?

But anyway. Oh my God, what did I do after that? When Martin asked me for my email address, I gave it to him because I just couldn’t dissemble quickly enough.  Grrr. Why do people put me on the spot!? So, that’s another one I’m going to have to extricate myself from… elegantly. Sheesh... come on, Bette, muster up a sense of humour, woman. 

Two of the other dates were pretty much the same as this root vegetable scenario. Once again I tried to give them opportunities, leads, inroads into the fascinating subject of moi, but did they take them? Did they hell! One of the men had a moment of clarity (for him) when he suddenly registered he had been talking non-stop for half an hour about everything he had done that week. Out of the blue he said ‘And what about you?’ I was so glazed over by this time that I actually replied ‘What? Oh sorry. Did you say something? I was miles away.’ No, I did! Really I did! Can you imagine?! And I got a distinct feeling of deja vu, possibly blushing after I realised what I’d done. And because he caught me unawares, all I could muster was ‘Oh, you know. Work, friends, stuff.’ I failed to mention all the other mind-numbing dates. ;) Anyway, it appears that ‘Work, friends, stuff’ was more than adequate for him because he then blithely launched into Part Two! I gave it my best polite shot – an hour in total. Sainte Bette.  

Finally, one of the repeat dates (and actually I’ve never mentioned him on here because he became a friend after a minor hiccup) turned into a really pleasant soiree. We had a fun time, gossiped about nothing in particular, caught up with news about work, the kids, summer plans. I had to leave early because in order to get there on time I’d foregone the opportunity to get some petrol, and my tank was left with about two drops. And this is the 21st century in the UK in the sticks - no guarantee of petrol anywhere after 10 pm. Ridiculous. Anyway, bless him – he followed me around until I found a petrol station so that I wouldn’t be stranded in the middle of nowhere. Quel gentilhomme! And you know what… he’s good fun, articulate, smells nice, solvent, my family and my kids would like him, but why, oh why, oh why can’t I ever see myself under a duvet with him? Drat!

Stella is gob-smacked that I'm having such a run of bad luck. (She, by the way, is currently all loved up, wandering round being… erm… disgustingly unnatural. Still, keeping my fingers crossed for her...) So, in the spirit of true friendship and wanting to see me serviced happy, she’s come up with a new plan. Since I am clearly crap at choosing people, she’s going to sign into the site as me and choose suitable candidates on my behalf. Let’s face it, nobody could do a worse job than I’m doing. Watch this space… 


Oh yeah - and then there's her story from a couple weeks ago which I haven't yet reported. That's next. You won't believe it; it's one of those 'It could only happen to Stella' jobs. You know what's she's like...

12 comments:

Anonymous said...

I know where the tatoo should go but I will not air it publicly - as to the rest --------- deja vu

Cousin Bette said...

Hi A! There are so many places where the tattoo could go, but I need it easily visible so I don't forget! But if I redeploy that saying 'practice makes perfect', assuming all practice is a matter of deja vu, then maybe unbeknownst to me I'm actually getting somewhere... :)

Anonymous said...

Ooooh, maybe you could rent Stella out! I could apparently use some help choosing as well!

My god you must be exhausted Bette; I only had 4 (shitty) dates last week. You beat me with 5! You win! Or lose. Whichever the case may be with internet dating. ;-)

Cousin Bette said...

MGTBID - I'm going to give myself a well-earned rest shortly. One more quick stab possibly [conveyor belt - all on the same day one after another - get it over and done with ;)- just not prepared for the day after day after day method], then prolonged Zen mode. They'll have to come and find me in my garden where I shall be sitting under a tree communing with Nature. Computerless.

Anonymous said...

breaks are absolutely key in this ongoing quest to find a non-idiot-cute-smart-funny-nice guy that you can actually picture yourself under a duvet with ;-)

It sure can get disheartening. I like the conveyor belt method of all in one day!

Danusia said...

The conveyor belt option sounds a little scary... do you at least keep a travel itinerary close at hand? If it's Tuesday, this must be Belgium-type of thing: If it's 2:30pm, this must be Frank with the 3 grandkids and Swiss bank account...
Really, Bette... you're going to get yourself into a tizzy... slow down, smell the roses (or the men's cologne - although that was a no-no for me, as I have allergies to colognes, etc).
A friend of mine gave me some good internet dating advice which I did stick to when I was single: first date, no more than one hour and make it clear that's all there is. Although that went out the window on my first date with Peter... and look what it got me! A husband! (ok, I'll stop crowing!)

Downith said...

You need to practice a few quick answers to have at the ready when someone unsuitable asks for email address, etc.

"I don't have one."

"I'm under the witness protection program, so it's classified."

"What is email?"
etc

And, yes give the job to Stella - all dirty jobs should be delegated.

Cousin Bette said...

When I get round to the conveyor belt method, which in the interest of science I feel compelled to explore, you will be the first to hear about it! All of you. ;) I always have a quick reread of profiles when I'm meeting someone, but going by my recent encounters I do wonder why I bother since my involvement is cleared not required.

Cousin Bette said...

Dani - Yip! I've got to get this one hour rule into my head. "And make it clear that's all there is" - that's the vital part methinks. Yes, I can do that. Of course I can. I'm sure I can.

Danusia said...

atta girl!!

basheeran said...

HANG ON!! Who is this 'repeat date who became a friend'? Bette - are you overlooking the bleedin' obvious here? Duvet schmoovet - you don't have to have the light on....

Cousin Bette said...

Bash - The repeat date who became a friend is a very nice guy, just not for me. I kind of wish he were, but I couldn't cope with the human equivalent of a teenage labrador as a partner. Love him though.