Category Archives: Love

How I Met Your Father: The Oversharer

oversharingKids, it’s both my curse and my blessing that I’m the type of person others find so trust-worthy and comfortable to be with, that they share their deepest, darkest secrets, and more often than not, the banalities of their lives with me.

And look, it’s one thing when it’s the sweet old man on the bus telling me all about the crazy things his grown daughters did as children and how he misses them because they no longer visit him but when it’s a potential date asking whether or not I mind if they don’t wash their hair before our date the next day … well, just quit with the oversharing already!

 May 2015…

Ray J 23 was a cute, aspiring chef completing a culinary degree and took a chance emailing me via the online dating site, because I was beautiful and even though I’d said I didn’t want to be contacted by anyone under 29, age is just a number, right?

I found Ray J’s approach really sweet and thought “well, why the heck not? Let’s give cradle robbing a try!” Cradle robbing is…uh… you know what, I’ll let your Dad explain that one to you.

Anyway, so there I was, having a cyber space flirtation with a delectable (or so I thought) chef-in-training, discussing dream dates, favourite meals, desirable partner traits etc for nearly a month when we agreed to a brunch date.

Since Ray J has exams, we’d have to wait until July but hey, what was a couple of months more when we already had so much to talk about and discover about each other, right?

July 2015…

Fast forward to the Monday before our date and Ray J suddenly started revealing all of these insecurities about our future – like what if the date went well and we started a relationship; would I be able to deal with his emotional issues and clearly I was looking to start a family, who’s to say he’d be able to provide that?

I took it all in my stride, even if I was a little freaked out by how much Ray J was end resulting and said it was just a f***ing date, no need to pick out a wedding venue yet or decide who your godparents would be, right? Just two people who might or might not like each other, meeting for coffee and Nutella banana croissants, so chill dude!

And that should have been the end of it until the date but the night before, Ray J texts me:

“Evening honey! So I really can’t wait to see you but I’ve had the flu for the past two days and due to all of the fever sweating, my hair isn’t right. Is it ok if I look crappy tomorrow?”

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Wait, what?!!! Are you kidding me? What part of that text in any way sounds like it would be ok? Who the hell sends messages like this to people they want to date and/or get intimate with?

I’m all for honesty and communication but there is something like too much information. Add in all of the emotional insecurities and I could just flash-forward to years of being the caregiver and enabler for a serious hot mess.

Oh hell no! You, my darlings, and I deserve someone who has their crap together.

I politely told Ray J that maybe now was not the best time to start something when we were so obviously at different points in our lives and wished him well.

But it got me to thinking that maybe I was trying too hard to find your father… maybe what I needed was a dating break, some me time… and boy, did that lead to a couple of crazy adventures!

Next time on How I Met Your Father: Run-ins with my favourite vampire (who may or may not be your Dad).

How I Met Your Father: The Stalker Effect

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Kids, the journey to meeting your Dad was a long, often humorous, sometimes scary and exciting one. Although the 28 Dates challenge kept me busy, I somehow managed to find the time to rack up a stalker or two too…

New Year’s Eve 2013 …

Mr Winchester, my not-so-reliable Opel Corsa GSI and I were cruising along Main Road in Observatory, on our way to your Nan’s so that your aunt S could have him while I rang in 2014 with friends, when this red Corsa  and his driver kept following us and blowing his horn at us.

Naturally, we didn’t even give them a second glance because a) we were far too busy rocking our signature drive tune, Eye of the Tiger, at full blast and b) after the Prince of Egypt, I no longer looked or smiled or encouraged strangers in ANY way.

But Red Corsa’s driver was persistent and followed us all the way to Iman Haron Road in Claremont, catching my attention while we were stationary at a traffic light. “What?!” I asked somewhat tersely. “Your back wheel is about to fall off. Pull over and let me help you,” he responded.

I thought this guy was taking a fat chance so I waved him off and said I’ll have it looked at, and drove off but he proceeded to follow me all of the way to Rosemead Avenue and insisted I let him help me.

By now, I was seriously worried that something indeed was wrong with my back wheel and because I was an inexperienced driver and car owner, I followed the Red Corsa Driver into a side road, to let him take a look at it. Yes, I know, “Stranger Danger!” – What the heck was I thinking?!!

Anyway, to cut a long story short, the driver turned out to be mechanic named Jeremy who just so happened to specialize in Opels, and considering the numerous issues Mr Winchester had been giving me in the nine months I’d had him, meeting this guy seemed like a gods-send, right?

After allowing Jeremy to fix my wheel, drive me to the closest Engen garage for brake-fluid, paying him for his efforts, making arrangements for a check-up the next week and giving him my number, I made the colossal mistake of revealing I didn’t have a boyfriend, fiancé or husband.

Look, I’ll be honest, I enjoyed having him tell me that a pretty girl like me shouldn’t have to take care of a sports car by herself but seriously it seemed like no more than an innocent ego boost on the last day of the year, and all I saw Jeremy as was a means to fix my car. If only that had been the end of it…

Later that evening, as I settled in for a Dr Who NYE marathon ( don’t judge me, as Cape Town’s resident socialite who attended way more parties than the average person, a night in on the couch with friends was the only way I wanted to spend December 31), Jeremy texted me to ask if the car was ok. I responded that it was but then he started asking about what I was up to (classic code for “booty call”). When I didn’t respond, he began calling me at random intervals, which I ignored too.

By now, I was a little freaked out… what had started as purely a means to an end was becoming decidedly weird and stalker-like.

This pattern continued in much of the same manner for the next week – he’d call and I’d ignore him until one morning, at 2 am, my phone rang again.

Kids, my small apartment in the City Bowl has always felt like a safe haven, from the minute I stepped into it, but that night, knowing someone was actively stalking me and as irrational as it sounds, possibly parked outside in my street (even though I hadn’t given him my address, who’s to say he hadn’t taken down my car registration number?), I was seriously frightened!

Eventually, I blocked Jeremy from calling me – so he could dial my number but his call would be stopped – and life settled back into normalcy…

Until one morning three months later, when I answered a call from a private number, thinking it was your Nan calling. When I answered with a casual “Hello”, Jeremy said: “Oh, so you do know how to answer your phone. Do you know who’s speaking?” I pretended not to know who he was and ended the call.

A few minutes later, I received a text from him saying: “Wow, if I had known how rude you were, I’d never have been interested. I get the message, I won’t contact you again.”

What the actual F***?! Are you serious, dude?! You stalked me for months, I avoided your calls so clearly I’m not interested and you want to lecture me on etiquette? Oh, hell no! This not 50 Shades of Grey –get a freaking life, pal!

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I thought I was rid of the creepy, I-want-to –tie-you-up-in-my-basement-type until …

June 2014…

Mr Fix It was your Great Gramps’ and Uncle D’s family mechanic, who did wonders on their fleet of vans and your Nan’s Yaris too so naturally, when Mr W was once again having a starter switch issue, I turned to him.

I had a sick week off work and was spending it at your Nan’s, to help her pack and host farewell parties before she jetted off to Melbourne for a two week work trip (yes, that’s your grandmother’s style, leaving for 14 days but hosting parties like she’s immigrating!) so Mr Fix It came by every day to tend to the car. Consequently, we spent a hell of a lot of time together, which sadly Mr Fix It misconstrued as us falling in love.

Here’s the thing: I have always been remarkably good at being a guy’s best girl (as in platonic) friend – I’m the chick you tell your deep, dark insecurities and secrets to, who will match you in eating the most junk food and discuss the intricacies of a fight between Batman and Superman.

I am also super friendly, so I will ask you about your mom, your dad, and your day, how you like your coffee and what your plans are for the weekend. BUT, and here is the important thing: I am NOT flirting with you – at ALL!

I’m serious, Kids, I wasn’t – in fact, on more than one occasion that week, Mr Fix It saw me in all of my un-combed hair, brunch- gobbling glory – it wasn’t pretty! So why the heck he thought this was the start of a beautiful relationship, I have no freaking clue.

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Besides making his intentions to marry me known to my grandfather (who, bless him, gave Mr Fix It one look and said “You’re no match for my granddaughter!”), religiously asking my aunt and uncle if they had seen me AND sending me random texts to ask what I’m up and why I wasn’t responding to his texts; Mr Fix It started hanging out with your Nan’s friends, in the hopes of running into me at a social event. Gods Almighty, man, get the picture: I’m just not that into you!

It’s been months and I haven’t received a text from the poor guy in a while – let’s hope it stays that way.

I have more than enough trouble keeping the Mr Eagers of the world in check, I don’t need Christian Grey wanna-bes dogging my every move too.

F*** it! Next!

How I Met Your Father: The Set-Up Man

blind date ctgirlwiththeredscarfKids, in the winter of 2015 I found myself at the center of yet another set-up/ blind date scheme by one of my well-meaning friends. While I admit I was intrigued by the prospect of meeting someone who’d been vetted and vouched for by someone who loves me, it got me to thinking about my previous, somewhat failed set-up attempt …

December 2013 …

Your Aunt E had been raving about Silver Fox Writer for the three weeks since she and the others had issued the 28 Dates challenge, insisting we’d be perfect for each other since we both had such a great love for the written word and travel. She’d given him my number so all I had to do was wait patiently for him to contact me and set up the date.

Which, thankfully, he didn’t dally about doing and so we were all set for a drinks date at Café Mojito in Long Street the following day.

Nervous as all hell, I arrived 10 minutes early, checking out every seemingly single male who walked through the door; anxiously wondering what he looked like ( E had said he’s hot), how old he was ( E pegged him for early 40s,which yes, was considerably older but hey, it was just a f***ing date, right?) and whether he would like me or not ( remember, I hadn’t dated anyone in a while, besides the Prince of Egypt and we all know how well that turned out!).

Silver Fox Writer arrived on time (bonus brownie points) and he was extremely charming. We ordered drinks, chatted about careers, why we’re still single, family life (he had a daughter), cities we loved visiting and more.

Yes, he was handsome, easy to talk to and I began to relax, thinking that dating an older man wasn’t going to be all that difficult until …

Ten minutes into the date, when we’d barely even touched our drinks, Silver Fox Writer leans over, grabs my arm and says: “Look, I really like you … so where is this going?”

Whoa, Cowboy, hold your horses there for a sec! Everyone always says girls go big on the end resulting {forecasting the future of the relationship with images of meeting the friends and family, moving in together , weddings and babies etc) but obviously they haven’t heard of guys, and older ones especially, doing it too.

I responded with a coy “ let’s see how well date number one goes, shall we?” and tried to get the date back on track but then he dropped the bombshell that he was 52 and had a 19-year-old daughter… gods almighty! This man was the same age as your Nan, Kids … not cool!

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Look, I am no ageist – in fact, at that point in time, I was harbouring a serious celebrity crush on 49-year-old Johnny Depp, but I had to be realistic about things. Silver Fox Writer was no Captain Jack Sparrow – I wanted babies, you guys, and this man was not in the baby-making business when he already had a grown daughter. Simply put, I was just not that into him.

As we parted ways with a fumbled goodbye kiss, I realized I wasn’t all that disappointed that things hadn’t worked out on this set-up.

If anything, the experience taught me that while your loved ones have your best interests at heart and are trying to do an amazing thing for you, what they see as a great choice for you and what you want for yourself are two completely different things.

Back in 2015…

Now I find myself in a similar situation and this time, I am going to be smarter about things.

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Impala Fanatic is  a single, older man and seems stable-looking, if his Facebook photos are anything to go by ( yes, I’ve stalked his page, this is what dating in the 21st century looks like – you get to know the basic details from the Internet).

My friend swears we’re made for each other with our similar interests and personalities. I’ll be the judge of that when we have this date but if we aren’t soul mates … well, it’s just a f***ing date, right?!

How I Met Your Father: The Speed Dating Wars

 speed_dating_london_event-840x550Kids, a huge part of the dating scene for the singles struggling to meet The One are speed dating events. Since I was on this quest to meet your father, naturally the 5 minute roundabout of talking to strangers formed part of my mission – with various degrees of success and failure.

February 2014…

Something I’ve instilled in you since before you could talk is to try crazy and new things because you never know where the next adventure might lead to. That’s the frame of mind I was in when I signed up for the Cosmopolitan Guinness World Record Speed Dating event back in 2014.

Sure, I had to fake being ill so I could get out of work to attend the event (and no, don’t even think about doing the same thing, my progeny!) and avoid the TV cameras filming the event so that my bosses wouldn’t catch me in the act, but for the chance to meet 200 plus other singles who might or might not be my soul mate, I risked it.

As you can well imagine, with so many love-seeking individuals, things got quite chaotic. I “dated” close to 20 people that day and by Bachelor number 10, I’d forgone all pleasantries and just opened with “So, what’s your favourite Marvel character?”.

Some guys found it funny, others did not …and one guy loved it so much, we went to Cafe Caprice for post-event drinks! Yay, success! RJ was a doctor, from Stellenbosch, who had been bullied into attending the event because his best friend refused to do it alone – thank the gods!

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As had been the case with our short date, we couldn’t stop talking about how much we had in common (series, chocolates, comic book characters, cities we’d love to visit etc) and I really thought he was amazing. RJ gave me his number and took mine, promised to tick me off on the score sheet as someone he’d definitely like to see again and that he’d call me…which he didn’t.

I was a little gun shy about speed dating for a while until …

February 2015…

You guys know how much I love Valentine’s Day… no, seriously, it’s one of my all-time favourite days and not just because I get to feast on chocolate like the world will never end.

It’s linked to some of my best childhood memories, helping your Nan decorate heart-shaped cookies for your granddad in years when they were struggling financially and it’s the only thing she could afford to give him … or it might also have been symbolic for what she’d give him later that night, but whatever, let’s stick to the “I’ll love you through richer and poorer” theory before I scar all of us for life!

The point is, I love this holiday but in 2015 I wasn’t about to spend the month of amore alone yet again so off I went to a Lock and Key Speed Dating event at the 80s Disco club in Claremont.

As the name suggests, everything about the club was retro, right down to the dark interior and leather couches, which apparently inspired couples to get up close and personal … a feature I tried the better part of the evening trying to avoid.

With more than 20 people arriving for the event, two things soon became apparent: 1.) There were far less men than women and 2) I was the youngest person at this event… crap!

The concept of the event was simple – guys were issued keys to see if they fit into the girls’ locks – and no, that’s not as dirty as it sounds. Every round would last 5 minutes before the bell would be rung and you’d swap partners. Simple, right? What could possibly go wrong?

Oh, my loves, so very, very much… Not only did I inadvertently ended up “”dating” a prominent Iger ( Instagram user) who was  a VIP on my company’s followers list but a handsy, 50-something-year -old Don Juan inappropriately propositioned me too.

I’m not kidding … he just straight up asked me if I wanted to get out of there and make the night interesting in his car. WTF?!!!

The experience left me with an out of body feeling, and I was conscious of thinking throughout the next several “dates”, “Lady, what the hell are you doing? Is this really what you’ve been reduced to? Making asinine small talk with the ones Cupid forgot? You deserve better!”

I dragged myself home to drown my sorrows in a tub of Nutella and a viewing of Alexander Skarsgard, my one true Swedish actor love, in The Giver, while vowing never to speed date again.

BUT…

It’s been four months and maybe I should give it a spin again… who knows? Your Dad might just be number 52 at the next roundabout, keen to chat Marvel characters, chocolate brands he can’t live without and your future names 😉

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How I Met Your Father: Mr Over Eager

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Kids, the 28 dates journey to meeting your Dad had its trying moments … over  the first 18+ months, I met all kinds of guys – the hot and jerk like; the mature and childish; the no –shows and … the over eager.

This particular type of male was a special breed, most notable for his zealous need to please you, his almost reverent need to include you in future plans and tie you down (and you could never be too sure that this wouldn’t include cable ties!) and his astounding capability to turn into a scarier version of Arnold Schwarzenegger’s Mr Freeze when you tried, very gently, to put the brakes on this not-so budding relationship.

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You guys remember Surfer Dude, the small town guy looking for Ms Right in the Mother City, right? Well, to explain how that went to hell at an alarming rate, let me tell you about all of the boys I didn’t love before…

November 2013…

A week after my friends and your godparents challenged me to the 28 Dates, I was walking across Greenmarket Square during my lunch hour, minding my own business when a kind-looking man smiled at me.

Usually, I ignore guys like this because they might be creeps, but I’d agreed to be more open to new possibilities with the 28 Dates thing, right, so I smiled back and thus began a 10 minute conversation with, let’s call him Prince of Egypt, about my gorgeous smile, how I’m the first friendly person he’d met in Cape Town and could he take me out for coffee?

Flattered, and surprised at how easy my dating challenge could be, I gave the Prince my number and we agreed to meet at Vida e the next afternoon after work.

On the designated day, Vida e had already closed for the day, and so I texted the Prince to meet me at the café next door. He arrived 10 minutes late but hey, since he’d been closing up to the general trading store he’s manages ,I couldn’t be mad at him.

The late issue I could move on from and even politely turning him down for dinner at Mesopotamia which he’d apparently booked for, when I had expressly said I could only meet for coffee as I had an event that night, is something I could overlook; but it’s what happened next that sent me running for the hills faster that you could say “Magic carpet ride!”

After idle chatter for 15 minutes about careers, him telling me that I was incredibly beautiful but too old to still be unmarried, him boasting about his home in Goodwood that he was renovating to bring his large extended family to live with him at, the car he drove, the amount of money he makes which is more than enough to support a (second!) wife with; I started to suspect that all was not well with his not-so-royal highness.

The Prince was slightly uncomfortable with my choice of venue, as it serving alcohol was against his religious beliefs and surely it should be against mine too, considering my name. I explained my agnostic views and he tried to understand, saying that he is sure his mother and sisters could help me find my way back to the path, when he took me home to meet them in Morocco…. Wait, what?!!!

How, in the name of all of the gods, did we go from a coffee date to Meet the Parents in the desert?!! And why would this man think I’d go all willy nilly with him, with no money, family or friends to a foreign country? Anyone else get a Sally Fields ‘Not without My Daughter vibes here?!

Thanks, but no thanks, Prince… I think I prefer the land of the free where I can be my awesome, non-religious, independent self, thank you very much! After a month of “Let me take you out and take care of you because it’s wrong for a woman of your age to be alone and husbandless” texts, the Prince finally got the message to go bride-hunting elsewhere.

Which made me wary of smiling at strange men or chatting to those professing the need to take me out because I am so utterly irresistible until…

December 2014…

Lonely Emo was a late 20s, young entrepreneur from Gordon’s Bay, who had travelled the world and was keen to try the Mother City dating pool once again. He loved my exotic look, my deep love for reading and travelling and was keen to take me out for ice cream if I was free.

We couldn’t quite agree on which beach to stroll along for this ice cream meet-up so we settled for Primi Piatti V&A.  Lonely Emo arrived before I did, had snagged a prime viewing spot and was a big huggy bear type with a great smile. I had hope that this would be a great date.

And it was, for the most part. We chatted about past travels, places he’d lived in, our families, our interests etc. It was around the “So, why are you on this dating site?”, that things took a turn for the weird.

As it turns out, Lonely Emo, though a year younger than me, had been married for four years to a gorgeous Lebanese woman ( hence his love for my “exotic look”), and they had lived happily in London and India for two years, when tragedy struck – she had ovarian cancer and had sadly passed away.

Now, Kids, I am no stranger to loss and in fact, just participating in the28 Dates challenge had taken a lot of courage in allowing myself to open up to other people but this was a little on the heavy side for me. Judging from your Nan’s numerous suitors following your granddad’s death, no one likes being the rebound guy or girl after the dearly departed spouse because you always feel like you can’t measure up to their memory.

But, I wasn’t ready to give up quite yet so when Lonely Emo suggested we have a follow-up date, I agreed. I was slightly freaked out but pleased when within half an hour of the date, he called me to say that he had a really, REALLY great time and he couldn’t wait to see me again.

Which would have been a great place to leave me wanting more, but then two hours later, he sent me a six part text telling me how beautiful I am, how incredibly lucky he is I agreed to date him, that he was so nervous about spending time with me and that he was looking forward to the next time.

A+ for enthusiasm, dude, but leave something for date 2, right? After responding that I had had a great time too, I didn’t hear from him for three days when suddenly I received a barrage of texts from 7am to enquire about whether I knew that manager at Primi Piatti, because they were taking money from his account without his permission.

When I said I didn’t, I received a curt “Fine, I’ll sort it out” message and the insinuation that I was helping the restaurant in robbing him. Talk about a mind-coitus! From “You’re the most beautiful girl in the world!” to “You stole my wallet and my heart!” in a mere three days? That’s an all new record for me being dumped, Kids!

Suffice it to say, I never heard from Lonely Emo again and I was done with falling for the super keen but then…

June 2015…

Surfer Dude had been my second most favourite candidate of the three I had set up dates with in late May even if I initially wanted nothing to do with him because unfortunately for him, he shared a name with the man who broke my heart.

At your godmother and Uncle T’s insistence that I couldn’t hold one man’s crimes against his namesake, I gave Surfer Dude my number and didn’t hear from him for a few weeks. When I finally worked up the courage to ask him if he was still interested, he immediately responded with a resounding yes and started texting me.

Now, Kids, because I work in social media and I am in contact with thousands of people all day, I prefer not to do much online chatting in my free time – I am all about being present with the person in the moment, face to face. I explained as much to Surfer Dude, who wasn’t that keen on not chatting but agreed since we would then have more to talk about on our date the following week.

When he asked for a photo of me in exchange for the one he’d sent, which I hadn’t asked for, I explained that I wasn’t comfortable sending them to him and asked him to please be content with the (fully-clothed) ones he could see on my profile. Trust me on this, my loves, the Internet is forever – you do not need any inappropriate images of yourself out there for the world to see.

We chatted on and off amicably for a week, about his move to Cape Town, work etc. until he started asking weird questions about whether I would still want to be intimate with other people if we had to start a relationship – great question for when you have the “exclusive talk” a month or two into seeing each other, not so much when you’ve only been chatting for a week.

He also had quite the ego – when I told him I’d been stood up by my date one Saturday, his flippant response was “Told you I am the man. That’s what happens when you date little boys.” A little bit funny, sure, but not what I needed to hear right then, and sensitivity would have gone a long way in his favour.

All the same, I was looking forward to our date. When he texted me to confirm the Monday before, I was ready to respond about how excited I was but then he asked for a photo again. I reiterated that I wasn’t comfortable doing so and asked him to please stop asking me as it was annoying.

Surfer Dude then went all Mr Freeze on me, accused me of being bossy and insisted we end things immediately. I politely told him that I wasn’t being bossy, I was explaining my boundaries to him and if he couldn’t respect them, then yes, by all means we should end things.

Like your godmother said: “Screw him! You do not have to lower yourself to his level by supplying him with masturbatory material! Freak!”

And she’s right, Kids… Finding your father is important, having you even more so but I do not have to degrade myself in the process.

To all my future suitors, take a leaf out of Aretha Franklin’s book:

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How I Met Your Father: The Stand You Up Guy

What a girl looks like when stood up

Kids, dating is a lot like playing the lottery – you don’t know what the next ticket might bring. Pots of cash or a total dud, it’s a total gamble.

As I discovered over the course of the 28 dates journey, more often than not, you’ll get a lot of duds – men who are utterly boring, totally chauvinistic or those who just don’t bother to show up at all.

And while smarting from my latest no-show date, who conveniently developed the flu two hours before our date, I pondered the genesis of this flaky male specimen:

Meet the Stand You Up Guy.

This is the one who generally messages you via the online dating site like a lovesick puppy, constantly wanting to know how you are, what you are doing, promising you the moon and the stars in romance and begging to meet you in person. Which you eventually agree to but he fails to show up for.

Over the past 18 months since my challenge started, I had quite a few of these Stand You Up Guys…

June 2014 …

There was Sporty Carter, who taught soccer to school learners, loved fast cars, enjoyed snuggling while watching romantic movies and was keen to get out of his comfort zone by dating a classy girl like me, he said.

Sounded great to me, since I was trying to get away from the tortured artist type I usually fall for, and we agreed to meet at Alexander Bar one winter evening. As I was dressing for this date an hour before our meeting time, Sporty Carter texted me to say he couldn’t make it because it was raining – which at the time it wasn’t!

Disappointed but not too mad, I agreed to reschedule the date to the following Saturday at Primi Piatti at the V&A Waterfront.

Now, Kids, Primi Piatti is one of my favourite restaurant chains, and I particularly love the V&A branch for its views and friendly waiters. I often dine there on my own during my me time but even I wasn’t prepared to sit there alone, during a busy rugby match day.

Which is what Sporty Carter, the ass, made me do for 40 minutes, without so much as a text or call to say he’d be late. When I eventually gave in to the urge to ask him where he was, I got a “Sorry, I got caught up at work. Can’t make it.”

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Are you freaking kidding me?!!! I’d given this jerk a second chance and he was standing me up AGAIN?!!!  Oh hell no!

To put it mildly, Sporty Carter was told to lose my number and jump off a bridge. When he kept texting me for months thereafter, I blocked him and you’d think I’d have learnt my lesson with losers like him until…

February 2015…

Eminem Wannabe was a Business Intelligence specialist with a dream of becoming a famous rapper someday. He was back in the dating game after his girlfriend of six years had left him for the guy she was cheating on him with.

 He enjoyed comedy as much as I did and we bonded over our shared favourite novel, The Night Circus. Brainy, cultured and a reader with a sense of humour – hell, I felt like I’d won the online dating jackpot!

Our first date at the Cavendish Square Primi Piatti (I told you, I have a thing for this chain!) in late January went really, really well. I hadn’t laughed that much in ages and he was easy to talk to.

So naturally, when he’d asked to see me again, I was keen to. Date number 2 was to be pizza and drinks in Long Street.

The only snag was, it was the same evening as a farewell party for one of my friends. I texted Eminem Wannabe to say I was excited about the date but I’d have to leave early to make the party and he was welcome to join me if he wanted. I stressed that he didn’t have to, because I knew meeting the friends could be stressful so no pressure.

The dude surprised me by saying of course he’d love to join me, a party sounded awesome and he was looking forward to meeting everyone. Right…

Fast forward to three hours before the date, after he’d confirmed the day before that we were definitely doing pizza and the party, and  he sends me this text:

“Sorry to drop you like this but I can’t make tonight. Enjoy the party with your friends.”

Wait, WTF just happened?! Did he really just cancel on me three hours before because he was freaked out about meeting my friends, which I’d told him explicitly he didn’t have to?! Gimme a f***ing break!

Three months went by before I heard from him again, asking how I was. When I told him to put himself out to pasture and die a slow horrible death, he seemed offended that I didn’t want to have some “fun” with him.

To quote the great Meatloaf:

i-would-do-anything-for-love-but-i-won-t-do-that

I respect myself way too much to be someone’s time filler and you guys deserved a father who was reliable, respectable and worthy of being your Dad.

As it turns out, the jerk face got back together with his cheating ex… F*** it, next!

 

How I Met Your Father – The Mother City Version Part 2

Kids, in May 2015, I kicked my dating game up a gear and booked a couple of dates in one week while simultaneously chatting to a variety of eligible bachelors online…which was not without some humorous challenges.

After Rodeo Star had let me down oh-so-gently and I had adopted my F*** IT! Next! attitude, I was all set to meet Brainy and Bored at Alexander Bar. Image courtesy of Huffington Post

While waiting for him to arrive, and trying to remember who exactly he was (don’t judge me – when you’ve been chatting to 4 to 8 guys at once, their likes, dislikes and occupations all tend to blur into one!), I prayed to all of the gods, old and new, that this date would not be as bad as my first dating site meet-up at Alexander Bar had been…

Flashback to December 2014

Bokkie’s profile had him painted as a distinguished, well-traveled older gentleman from the Northern Suburbs, with a love for children (he had a son), adventure and romancing the girl of his dreams.

Sure he was 44, and though I had vowed not to date anyone over the age of 40 thanks to a previous bad mature man dating experience,  I thought why the heck not try a silver fox once more? What harm could it do, right?

A lot, actually, as it turned out. Bokkie was the very personification of every bad older guy date montage you see in all romantic comedies, where the girl is looking for The One. I’m talking balding hair, pot-belly, greying chest hair peeking out from the three open buttons on a flannel shirt, complete with a big gold chain around his neck.

And just when I thought to myself: “Dude, looks aren’t everything –quit judging him and just enjoy his company! Bokkie reveals his true self. Meet Mr Sexist Ass who thinks he knows everything because he traveled in the 90 and cannot understand why the youth waste their time on social media (hello, did he even read my profile –it’s what I do for a living!).

He prattled on for 15 minutes about  how crazy and desperate the women on the dating site are; how he is disgusted with the fact that I am agnostic because you cannot be on the fence about religion and ordered my drinks for me because what do women know about alcohol. Kill. Me. Now.

Needless to say that date ended quickly and I never heard from him again which suited me just fine.  Just thinking about it gives me shudders!

Back to 2015

After a false start where neither one of us knew that the other was there, Brainy but Bored and I hit it off..

Conversation flowed easily as we bonded over shared interests like Game of Thrones (yay!), being raised in non-traditional homes; comic books, mutual acquaintances; travel and how much we love food. The fact that he was picking food off my plate didn’t even annoy me as it would normally, which is always a good sign.

Brainy but Bored was funny, a gentleman, honest about the fact he’d be immigrating in six months so wasn’t looking to settle down and interesting. Sure, this time I wasn’t the one who felt an “instinctual convergence” but I really enjoyed this date and because of my previous bad experiences, it reminded me of the Annie the Musical number… “The sun will come out tomorrow!”

There was hope, Kids, that this insane dating challenge would actually work. Your dad could be the next date, number 28 or someone I’d meet randomly but he was out there. I just had to believe in the next sunny date 😉

How I Met Your Father – The Mother City Version Part 1

Kids, in the autumn of 2015, I restarted my 28 Dates mission with renewed vigor, mostly to keep your Nan’s misguided enthusiasm for finding your father in check.

I kid you not – she was SO eager to see you guys being created , if I just happened to be in the vicinity of an eligible bachelor , I’d get a sideways glance, small smirk and “Who were you just chatting to?” from her …even if the guy in question was my recovering alcoholic, balding , single dad neighbour.

So, armed with a resolve to at the very least find you a dad with a great head of hair, I cleaned up my online dating site profile. Change my profile pic from the washed out rock star cosplay pic of 2008 to one of me rocking a little black dress at an awards evening? Check! Answer a few more asinine questions about the meaning of life, my stance on warfare, daily chores and love versus a good time? Check! Set my willingness to meet potential matches to keen? Check! Check! Check!

And so the wait began…

Within a few hours, I’d had not one, but three very promising candidates:

Surfer Small-town Boy was a tall, blonde and athletic type, moving to Cape Town within a week from, well, duh, a small town, keen to meet the lady he’d settle down with in the big city. Was this lady me, and would I be open to meeting him?

Brainy but Bored Guy was a seemingly cocky know-it-all who not only co-owns a renewable energy firm but studies cognitive brain therapy when he isn’t wooing his various international girlfriends with Star Wars short movie clips. Yes, the site had listed us as less than suitable matches but how about we discuss it over drinks?

Mother City Rodeo Star was a Texas immigrant with a passion for theatre, travel and giving back to Africa’s children and wanted to us to meet up and chat about our shared interests, if I was open to it?

Since Surfer Boy would still be unavailable to meet for at least a week, I agreed to see the other two first and set our meeting place at my favourite local bar and theatre, Alexander Upstairs – a place which is feeling more and more like home and so that I’d have the home ground advantage. Besides, they make one of the best Cosmopolitans in town – anything to calm my raging nerves!

As I waited for Rodeo Star to arrive on the Monday evening, I flashbacked to the night this crazy 28 Dates mission began …

November 2013

My birthday dinner at Primi Piatti V&A Waterfront with a group of my closest friends, where the drinks and declarations of love were flowing and we were celebrating the passing of a rather difficult year (I’d lost both your great-grandma and my first love, to a stomach ulcer and other men, respectively).

I was bemoaning the fact that that I hadn’t had any real love interests that year, as I had for so many before them when my friends, which included two of your godparents, decided enough was enough – something drastic had to be done! I would not go another year without being kissed (and other stuff not suitable for your young ears), if they had anything to do with it.

And so my 28 Dates mission was born – I was challenged to have 28 dates before my next birthday or until I’d completed all of them, whether by online dating, blind dates set up by the group, speed dating or meet-cutes (meeting guys the usual way). I could date the same person more than once, and it would be counted as one of the 28, but I wasn’t allowed to bail on any of them. Nothing to wear? Someone would come over with suitable sexy date outfits. Feeling fluish or tired? Someone would bring me a Med-Lemon or Red Bull. I would not and could not be allowed to find any excuse to fall back into my dateless rut.

Back to 2015:

Rodeo Star arrived at the bar, looking all ruggedly Southern boy sexy, with beguiling blue eyes, a beard that did not scream hipster and a big bear hug for me. Hello there, Cowboy!

Over the course of the evening, we chatted amicably about theatre, travels, family, work and I thought things were going well. Sure, we didn’t like the same movies or series, but couples don’t have to like all of the same things, right? Opposites attract and all that.

Ok, so there might have been a drawn out silence here and there, but gods, he was beautiful to look at and maybe he was quiet because he was as nervous as I was, right?

The sticky part of the evening came when he just couldn’t understand why I needed to leave to go to a mass Games of Thrones viewing and how he hates the show. Now, Kids, this wasn’t a deal breaker, but you know how much I love cosplay, and for this series in particular – you’ve seen the photos of your other godmother and I dressed as Khaleesi and Arya. I didn’t just love the show, I freaking lived it!

As we got the check (which we split, by the way – he may be Southern but apparently likes to go Dutch), I asked Rodeo Star what he was thinking of since he was especially quiet and after a while, he responded with: “I’m thinking about how much I hate Game of Thrones, actually. It’s such a silly show.” Cue the alarm bells going off in my head, thinking I’d finally messed things up for good.

Two days passed in which I fretted about why he wasn’t calling me but also hopeful that he would. After all, things had gone well until the unfortunate GOT comment. So why wasn’t he calling?!

The Wednesday morning, while I was finalizing the date with Brainy but Bored, I finally received a message from Rodeo Star and the cruelest thing about this dating mission happened – I began to have hope.

See, the thing is, when a date goes bad, you already know it won’t work out and you can move on from there. But having the guy you like finally email you after two days ignites the spark of hopefulness you try to ignore – your heart becomes buoyant, you can’t control the huge smile that streaks across your face at seeing his name in your mailbox or your imagination that runs away with images of second, third and fourth dates, introductions to the friends and family etc.

Too scared to open the email but too excited not to, I left it unopened for an hour, swinging on the pendulum between wishing he was asking me on a second date to despairing that he wouldn’t.

Finally, I pulled on my big girl panties and read the damn email – much to my regret:

“Thanks again for the evening on Monday – I hope you managed Game of Thrones, in spite of the power cut. Without putting much thought in it, as much as I enjoyed the conversation, I didn’t experience much chemistry. I’m looking for something with a little more of an instinctual convergence. I suspect we will run into each other often,seeing as we’re both into the theatre scene, and it will be nice to see you. Best, Rodeo Star”

What the f***?! What the heck does “instinctual convergence” even mean? And who the heck even says things like that?!!!

Guys who believe in love at first sight still exist? Are you kidding me?! Well now, colour me surprised!

I won’t lie, Kids, my ego was bruised and my heart ever so slightly crushed. My friends encouraged me to try to talk Rodeo Star into giving me a second chance with a second date… but surely that seemed a bit desperate,right?

I deliberated all through lunch and a Aero chocolate bar or three before deciding that screw it, if he didn’t want to get all up in my weirdly, awesome, GOT-loving business, I wasn’t going to beg him to and let him off the hook in my response. Life is too short to wonder why people don’t like you.

And as your godfather always says: “F** it… NEXT!”

To be continued …

How I Met Your Father: New Year’s Eve in the Mother City

Kids, there is a lot of expectation that New Year’s Eve is meant to be a mind-blowing,life changing experience, spent in the midst of thousands of gyrating individuals somewhere ridiculously expensive and easily forgotten.

Here’s what I know for sure: I rang in 2015 on the rooftop of what is arguably the most gorgeous apartment I’ve ever seen, surrounded by some of the most loving, inspiring and amazing souls I’m lucky enough to call my friends.

Stick to that formula, my loves, and you’re guaranteed to have the most EPIC year ever xxx