0.3 First date etiquette, so first round’s on me?

Recently I was set up with someone through mutual friends – so yes a date with a sort-of-stranger, blind date, call it what you will. Arrived there, recognised him from the 40DPI grainy photo I’d been shown said “Hi, lovely to meet you” to which he replied much the same followed up with. “Bar’s over there…” And even pointed towards it for geographically retarded me.

I stammered for a bit, stood a few seconds, realised he wasn’t coming with me then made my way over to the bar – which didn’t really need any direction considering it was four metres away.

The bar had a total of seven people scattered throughout and it’s not like he was saving us the most amazing table in the place. When I arrived back with my glass of I-don’t-like-him-already-Shiraz he promptly suggested we sit somewhere else anyway. Yes he’d already bought himself a drink before I’d arrived if some of you aren’t following or thinking he was a Morman – and no, I wasn’t late.

This kind of behaviour to me screams volumes about what sort of person they really are. Ok fine, lets play the nerves card, he was ‘nervous’ so what ? When I’m nervous, I’m not rude to people. When I’m drunk yes – because it’s hilarious. But when I’m nervous the last reaction would be inconsiderate or rude – and if I did I’d very quickly apologise, tell them I’m nervous, how rude of me, gosh I’m not that like ever – you get the idea. You don’t need a smooth recovery – you just need to make things right.

So of course I’m suddenly thinking of every scenario with myself, men and bars – and not just dates, to try and quickly work out if I’m being a Princess over this. Perfect example springs to mind of meeting a guy from my gym at the pub before we went to a gig – I knew none of his friends – yes they might be VB drinking Aussies in London – but I’ve never laid eyes on any of them. Of course he’s sitting in a curved type couch with four friends either side when I arrive – awkward wave from me and he gets the four friends to move out so he can hop out – come over and say “Hey! lets get you a drink” Now I wasn’t gushing with oh-my-god-he-must-like-me, because he didn’t. All I thought was that’s really nice – he must be a good guy.

Then I thought immediately of my brother, who’s more boganic than the rest of us – but if a girl from our group turns up to the table without a drink in her hand – he’s the first to jump up, offer or keep interrupting her chatter and ask “Drink?” till she has one. Unless he’s half cut – then he might just stare at her legs before finding her a drink.

There’s nothing more attractive than a man who can take charge – take a pretty accurate guess that most girls will drink a grape variety of beverage and casually say “Wine..?” as he heads over to the bar without a second thought or worrying glance back.

Which starts off the debate of who’s paying. I’ve got girlfriends who internally boil over with ‘Urgh-tight-ass’ the moment they offer to pay half and the guy says “Oh.. ok”.

I’ve got some different ideas on who should pay depending on the sort of date. If he’s point-blank cornered you like a deer and asked you out on a proper date then yes, he, the hunter, should be paying. If it’s online/ blind date/ set up type thing then it gets all hazy. You’re already both paying for the RSVP membership to meet ‘the one’ so does that mean halves for everything else?

But I’ll also say I’ll jump right in there and wave money or be quite stern about paying if I’m not keen on the guy – Don’t want him ‘expecting’ anything at the end of the night – and trust me yes, some guys really do. It’s like they have an excel spreadsheet for amount of drinks plus dinner equals how many bases plus brunch? Don’t get me started about Excel – I’ve seen my-management-consulting-male-housemates version with “Good in bed?”, “Does she know what a bluebird is?” to “Will she be a good Mum?” Appalled, speechless and a bit “Awww” all at once when I saw that. But I’m getting off topic. Mental note: don’t date management consultants.

So I’m saying guys should help get that first drink, at least GO to the bar with her, be a gentleman – it’s not hard to be decent, even if you don’t think she’s got potential – she’ll think you’re an awesome guy. First rounds and first actions, speak louder than words. Although in my case “Bar’s over there..!” was pretty loud and clear.


0.2 Bite your tongue if you want to keep that friend, she’s wasting his life.

So I’ve got a friend, a good friend, who’s been dating a fellow for about a year now. And it’s pretty clear to me – she’s just not that into him.

When phrases crop up like “Apparently we’d been dating a year last week – he took me out for dinner – it was a nice” my first response is “I’m sorry, repeat that again…? APPARENTLY?!” Maybe she’s not into adjectives and remembering dates – but I’ve heard enough of this sort of speak over the last 11 months to know, she’s wasting his life.

The last telling off I gave got out of sms-hand – screeching “You need butterflies!” – lacking in emoticons I was forced to send bees and bugs to get my point across. If you’re only after ‘nice’… why not date the ‘nice’ guy at Coles who double bags your pasta sauce, or that guy in the foodcourt who remembers what sandwich you get every day, he’s ’nice’. No-one wants NICE?! Or do they. Here’s where I’m not sure if my cheerleader-for-love-tinted-glasses gets in the way of things.

So another favourite “He’ll never treat you badly.. because he’s just so.. (oh you guessed it) nice.” – Fine, sure thing – tell me that when you’re 60+ and a bit lonely and want a ‘nice’ person around for some Today Tonight watching company. But not when you’re early 30’s, with a banging figure and a pretty face. It’s just got lazy written all over it.

So what’s the next step? Told her off once, then twice… there’s not much point again. Or is there? If I keep banging on that door it’s got to give eventually right? At what point do I become the friend she doesn’t want to talk to? I might be there already.

So this is what’s bothering me the most now – the victim in all this. Him. It’s his life, he’s making decisions, he’s spending money, he’s saying out loud he’s in love – to a girl who won’t even call him ‘boyfriend’ to her friends.

If any guy I was dating said or thought any of the above about me, I’d be devastated. Absolutely devastated and hoping a piano fell on his conscience and he broke it off with me immediately so I could stop imagining my name with his last and wondering what our recessive gene-d child would look like.

What’s that other excuse girls? We’re sick of being stuffed around by guys – but haven’t we all?! That’s no reason to throw your Barcardi Breezer out with the bathwater. Talk to anyone over 30 – they’ve got a damn good heart-break story to moan about. But I don’t see the entire 30-plus population just settling for less because they’ve had 1 or 14 bad breakups.

And come on now we’ve all been there – when you’ve started dating and one of you clearly isn’t into as much as the other. Whether it’s the tumbleweeds in lack of messages or they’re bringing you a single rose to brunch – Oh no he didn’t!. What do you do ? You so very adult-like ignore them. Or if you’re like karma-riffic  me – you sit them down and tell them as soon as possible. Ouch it hurts, and gosh-yes you feel like a horrible person – and have to look them in the you-don’t-like-me-as-much-as-I-like-you-puppy-eyes. But once the words are out. It’s over. All over. And you’ll feel so much better for not making that person think for a moment longer they have a chance in white-picket-fence-hell with you. And then of course you’re free to move on to find someone else.

And is not that what we’re all trying to do anyway? Find someone who likes us as much as we like them back? That IS the ultimate. That IS the whole point to dating.. isn’t it ? Or is it the free dinners and sex?


0.1 So you want to start a blog ? Sorry, who’s your agent.. WordPress ?

Everyone wants to start a blog, everyone. No I’m being serious, everyone. Ok, maybe not that homeless guy over there, but if you gave him a Mac air, it’s most likely. What do they think? They’ll be the next Tavi nine year old fashion blogging prodigy? The new Perez HiIton who’s become such a painful fence sitting, spirulina drinking hippie, that I haven’t been back since 2006. So yeah of course silly, I’m starting a blog.

I started out making a blog for my wild nights out in London, terrible dates with the opposite sex and just general drunken debauchery. But the more I write the increasingly I delete and well if anyone’s used a keyboard they’ll know that’s a terrible way to get your word count up.

To blog or not to blog – or more what to blog about… that is the question ? Back in your box Shakespeare, we’re only in WordPress.

Which brings me to think of blogs I’ve religiously read for 5 years plus now – my favourite being wwtdd.com (What Would Tyler Durdan Do) Fight Club anyone? And sure, I stumbled across it because it was about celebrities but still read it every week because I love the guys writing style of sarcastically bashing them whilst talking and comparing everything to his nether regions every 5 seconds. So clearly it’s not the content that gets me back there day after day.

I’m sure my parents weren’t angels growing up and Dad’s ‘oldest bachelor’ in the town’ tag – makes me think a whole lot of things, that I don’t want to think about much more. They’ll tell me their hilarious cat and mouse game of Dad snaring Mum and sometimes when I’m home Dad will point at a random lady and say “She used to be in my dance book” with a giggle. But what I’m saying is, there’s no Facebook back to their teenage years and no blog divulging every nook and cranny of their dating disaster life. So why the heck am I about to write all that down for you all read!?

So I’m anti the parents reading it and more than anything I’m anti a potential partner reading it. Damn straight it was the best night of my 29 year old life – but does someone who thinks you’re kind of cute really need to read or hear about pashing your way to Paros and making out with half of Mayfair? No they don’t. That’s like pulling out a bunch of ex love letters and dumping it on their lap for a looksie – err no thanks.

Another group being my friends – I’ve got friends I share the revolting of disgusting details over evvvverything – and then there’s all the other friends whom I don’t. The “TMI Lorenza!” friends, or the nice tea-and-biscuits friends, and of course the worst kind, the judgemental friends. We’ve got different sorts of friends for different sorts of things, not everyone wants to drink vodka till you throw-up-on-each-other and not everyone wants to sit in David Jones while you try on dress after dress and ask “Does my ass look huge in this?”. So am I worried what my friends would think? – Of course I am! I’d like to keep all the good ones please and that might mean the ‘London Lorenza Memoirs’ will have to be anonymous. Oh wait, that title.. damn it!

I hear you say why not just write it in another perspective or make it all about a friend being the one who the crazy things happen too – well that’s no fun is it?!

So this blog is officially turning into more just things I want to talk about – but don’t get too jaded – I’ll pop in a London night out, adventure date-a-thon, she-was-hanging-from-the-what?! story every now and then, otherwise my kids* might think I was really boring.

*I don’t have any kids.