It’s Been A While…

It’s been a while since I’ve been on a date but as always, all dating apps/sites are very busy in the new year as everyone seems to have made a resolution that this will be the year that they find someone so everybody seems to make a big effort, well for 5 minutes at least so it’s been no surprise to find loads of messages from guys all wanting to get to know me better. So after sifting through them and not even replying to the 80% of “Hi” I got into conversation with a few guys and decided to meet up with “P” for coffee at Media City. For some reason some dating experts sneer at coffee dates but for me it’s a really good way of finding out if we might want to go on an actual date and an hour is long enough (too long sometimes) for both of us if the conversation has dried up but to be fair that has never ever happened as most of my dates don’t know when to shut up.

I’d spoken to P on the phone a couple of times and I had noticed that he did talk a lot but I put it down to maybe nerves and also maybe he liked the sound of his own voice but here we were at the coffee place where I was about to find out.

He liked to talk.

It’s been a while since I’ve had my ears battered with the sound of whinging bitter middle aged men and I had almost forgotten how much they can go on about themselves, but especially about an ex. Guaranteed that when a guy makes a reference to an ex but then says “I don’t want to talk about it” I’m being told things I don’t want to know within 10 minutes. P was no exception but by the end of his tirade I was feeling sorry for his ex. He called her stupid, a bitch, and the reason they split up was because “She said NO to EVERYTHING!” I’m guessing that wasn’t the reason, she probably called it quits when she found out he’d been buying properties but not putting her name on them (which he was bragging about) but all he could focus on was how many times he had to tell her how to use the washing machine properly as she had a habit of shrinking clothes when washing them. I didn’t even give P an hour, my excuse (which was the truth) was that I had to get into Manchester to an open mic comedy might where I was praying that the acts would be funny after such a depressing date because this is what these guys don’t seem to realise, we’ve met up because we could be interested in each other so what better way to impress than express your hate for an ex. The last date I had before this one didn’t shut up about his holiday in Havana so if anyone is planning a trip there then get in touch because I can tell you all you need to know. He was still talking when I put my coat on, picked my bag up and walked off, maybe women are also guilty of this, who knows?

It’s not been all bad though, any older women on dating sites will tell you that they get messages from young guys in their early twenties and I’m no exception but usually after saying thanks but no thanks they go away but for some reason I have a particular 23 yr old who seems very persistent, we all know his reasons for wanting an older woman but it does make me smile and yes it does give you a confidence boost. But how ironic when a lot of older guys my age want younger women but I’ll put money on that they aren’t getting messages from them asking for sex.

Now could somebody please pass me the earplugs.

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Clowns To The Left Of Me, Jokers To The Right.

It’s been a strange week with some of the guys on my dating sites, no dates (not been on one for ages) but had to block someone, another guy seems to have memory loss and I’ve been told things by more than one guy (that a lady shouldn’t hear) but that was actually my own fault.

Early in the week I had a brief chat with “J” who claimed he was getting extremely bored with what was on offer as no one seemed to have a sense of humour, so he responded to my profile as it seemed we could be on the same page. I wasn’t actually convinced as I know from experience that what some older guys call humour, I just don’t find funny. They’re either too wild and wacky for me (such as posting pics of himself in summer clothes rolling around in the snow, what am I like look at meeeee) or telling old corny jokes from Christmas crackers circa 1979, either way it never ends well, so I was hoping that J wouldn’t fall into either of these two camps.

He certainly didn’t.

The chat went on to WhatsApp where instead of conversation I was sent gifs that didn’t really merit a response but  after a few of these I was sent “funny” videos that of course weren’t at all funny. By this time I’d long stopped replying but the videos and gifs kept coming. Then one evening I answered my phone to a guy shouting at me about using his wi-fi and I should be paying for my own, after a bit of a heated conversation he hung up and I had a notification that I’d been pranked. The penny didn’t drop until J messaged a couple of days later asking did I pay for my own wi-fi, oh J, you’ve just signed your  own death warrant there, good luck with your search.

Remember the guy who ditched me on the day of our second date, to go and have ice cream with a “friend”? We had a really good first date last summer but when it came to day of the second date he kept changing his mind about meeting up and then said we should leave it until the week after, only to send me a photo on WhatsApp later that day of two ice creams saying he was with a friend.  He actually messaged a few days ago on a dating site asking how I was etc, I gave him a brief reply and that was that until today when he’s sent a message saying he’d like to meet. It clearly didn’t work out with whoever he ditched me for but he’s either suffering from memory loss or he thinks I am because as far as I’m concerned he had his chance and blew it. It’s a NO from me.

Meanwhile, I’ve made a new profile and trying to keep it light I’ve sort of said I’m good at keeping secrets if anybody has any, and do you know what some guys are telling me their secrets, not actually ones I want to be told as some are about their sexual fantasies (you wouldn’t believe some of them) but it seems to be the younger guys who are doing this. Any older woman who is dating will tell you that they get loads of messages from younger guys, absolutely loads, so it looks like I’ll have to go back to the drawing board with a new profile.

Nothing surprises me any more.

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Close, But No Cigar

There was me getting all giddy about a second date, purely because I haven’t met many men that I would like to go on a second date with, and the ones that I have wanted to see again haven’t wanted to see me so this was exciting to say the least. Within a few days of chatting with “B” we arranged to meet up on Sunday for a couple of hours, both of us agreed there was absolutely no point in endless messages only to meet up and find that actually, we have nothing in common so I met him close to Piccadilly station, on the day that the EDL decided to have a march through Manchester and as it was kicking off we ended up in a lovely hotel bar.

There I learned that B had been married twice, and had spent the last few years in France with his second wife before she left to come back to England after one of her children had had a baby. “Do you have grandkids?” he asked. “No not yet, do you?” He answered that no he didn’t but he was glad that I didn’t have any as apparently he believes that if you’re with someone then that person should be their number one. This works perfectly well when you meet when you are young, no kids, no distractions, but life changes as we all know. ” Yes but surely you know that you’ll slip down the number one spot at some time if kids and grandchildren are involved? There will be times when you are needed to give your attention elsewhere.”  “Maybe, doesn’t mean I like it.”  So I let that one go, for now. It was nice to hear that he liked going to watch live music and he said that he’d been to watch a Pink Floyd tribute band the night before.  “Not for me I’m afraid, never liked  prog rock could never get into it.” I told him. Two hours flew by and it was one of the best dates I’d had in a long time so I was more than happy to meet up again.

The next day I had a text asking did I want to go and watch the Pink Floyd tribute band with him on Friday as he was going again? “Not really, going to pass on that, pretty sure I told you I didn’t like them.” “You did but thought you might appreciate some musical education.” I declined and sat back waiting for an alternative that didn’t arrive. In the meantime I had noticed that in nearly all of our conversations he turned it around to sex which was really beginning to annoy me and make me feel a bit uncomfortable, I don’t mind a bit of banter but this was something else. So, we managed to arrange a second date and both of us agreed we were really looking forward to it.

Which should have been today.

Having arranged to meet at around 4 this afternoon I had a couple of texts this morning. ” Will have to drive but not sure I can see you without having a drink, maybe we should meet next week around 12 and then we have all day.” All day for what? To drink?  I don’t think so. This is in between getting texts saying ” Really looking forward to seeing you but not sure you are feeling the same as me.” Oh come on now B let’s not start sounding needy, then I remembered that this guy likes to feel special, to know he’s number one but this was only a second date after all. So, around 1-30 I had another message saying that he wasn’t seeing me today after all he’d rather wait until next week when instead of a few hours we could have all day. Talk about being indecisive.

I didn’t reply.

He then found me on WhatsApp and an hour later sent me a photo of himself with two ice creams saying ” Not had a mega ice cream for ages.” “Mega as in two?” I replied. “Oh the other is for a mate lol.” I don’t know if it was or maybe he’d double booked himself today I really don’t know, all I know is that we’d arranged a date and as far as I’m concerned I was given not very good excuses as to why he didn’t turn up. But here’s a tip, don’t be the idiot who sends a photo through social media saying what a good time you’re having after you’ve  cancelled a date.

Bye Felicia.

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I Don’t Need No Bad Advice

If you’re a regular on any form of social media then you know that sometimes not everyone will agree with some of your opinions, which is not really a problem if everyone agrees to disagree but sometimes I have had unwanted, unasked for advice from so called “dating experts”. Looking at my profile you will see that I’m an older dater, a little bit past my prime, but trust me I would have given any of you younger ladies a run for your money back in the day. Anyone who’s out there dating and trying to find someone will know how hard it is no matter what age you are, and some of the problems are ones we can all relate to, but I seriously didn’t know how hard older dating is until I tried it myself.

Not so long ago I tweeted about keeping the conversation going in the time between arranging a date and actually meeting up as I’ve been let down a few times (usually the day before or on my way to meet up) when there’s not been much contact. Imagine my surprise when a so called “dating expert” tweeted back to say that there should be no contact once the date is confirmed. I beg to differ, that leaves the way open for Sexy Sally who’s profile pics are of her sprawled across her bed/car bonnet/sofa in her Primarni underwear promising all sorts of things. At least if you’re keeping up the banter with your date he might decide to at least meet up with you before he goes off into the night with S.S. This expert also advised to maybe try to meet up as soon as soon as possible (maybe the next day) if  there was a chance the guys were going to get cold feet. Listen love, you’ve probably advised all us singletons to have busy social lives so which one is it? If I and all the rest of the dating world have arranged to meet a date in a few days it’s because of work commitments/social commitments and I for one am not prepared to cancel a “stripping for beginners” class and to be fair I would hope that my date wouldn’t cancel his “how to assemble flat packed furniture” class either.

Another gem was being told not to be on any dating sites/apps on Friday and Saturday evenings so that it looks like I’m too busy being out and about. Let’s face it, older daters are very likely to be home Friday or Saturday nights baby sitting the grandkids and if single, would probably appreciate a couple of chats with other singles on dating sites. I for one enjoy being out Sundays to be honest, late afternoon until around 10/11 pm because on Sundays there seems to be more of a mixed age group around. But it all sounds too much like game playing, to be told not to be available at weekends, by someone who’s probably not going to be in my position for at least 30 years if ever. Stick to what you know love because  older dating is certainly not one of them. I’m always interested in what someone who supposedly does this for a living,  has to say to someone like me as I’m all for getting some tips and good advice, and from a couple of more well known dating experts I actually have which I’ve appreciated.

But I don’t need no bad advice.

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Dating Is Exhausting

So Valentine’s Day has been and gone and I’m still single, just like I am the rest of the year. In a way I feel sorry for all the couples who feel under pressure to declare their love for each other on a particular day of the year, I would like to think I’d get flowers, chocolates and taken out for a romantic meal any old day of the week instead of being in a restaurant on February 14th with all the other couples trying to prove to the world how happy they are. But hey, I’m single, what the hell do I know?

What I do know is that a couple of weeks ago I was getting a couple of dates lined up with a couple of guys who seemed to be just what I was looking for. One of the guys was a bit younger than me (bonus) and he seemed really keen, a lot of texting, couple of phone calls and because all us single people like to make sure we have busy lives we arranged to meet a few days later. The day arrived when we were due to meet and as I hadn’t heard from him I didn’t get ready. Later that evening I had a text saying “Sorry, been really busy with my daughter, can’t make tonight.”  No I wasn’t impressed to say the least, because since the day we’d last spoken to arrange the date there had been no contact at all. I’d text him a couple of times and he’d replied but nothing like it had been so I was a bit confused.

Confused but bloody fuming.

The same thing happened with guy number 2, really keen and once we’d arranged a date all contact ceased, radio silence, nothing but apparently he’d been “too busy”.  I for one like to keep the communication going because I’ve been here too many times when just before I’m about to meet a guy he’s text (too scared to phone) to say he’s met someone else. Let’s be realistic here, we all keep our options open and I still chat to other guys when I’ve arranged a date with someone so it doesn’t surprise me if they do the same but I do think it doesn’t help if all communication/banter stops before you meet as guys are easily distracted by bright shiny things half undressed so I say keep talking.  Having said that, guy number 1 had the audacity to text me on the morning of February 14th to ask was I free that evening? Not for you love, no.

Dating is exhausting no matter what age you are, but it really is different when you’re older as everyone is bitter and cynical. I’ve heard too many stories of an ex wife/partner who took all the money/cheated and now these guys are really wary and I’m sure some women must have the same story. They tell you that they can have their ex back any time they want, even though that ex has been married to someone else for 20 years.  They tell you that their kids prefer them (as though it’s a competition) and they tell you that no, they don’t really want to find someone but they’re under pressure from the kids but they wouldn’t mind someone to go on holiday with. They tell you that they’d prefer you to be thinner, taller/shorter and with a different colour of hair. I could say the same as I’m sat across some bald fat misogynist who still doesn’t realise we’ve entered the 21st century. Dating is exhausting, time consuming and soul destroying, You have to keep hoping that you’re going to meet someone who you just click with, someone who you want to spend more and more time with, and who feels the same about you.

And don’t even get me started on the guys who slide into your DM’s on twitter asking for “fun and cheeky stories.”

Maybe I’ve reached the limit of stones unturned.

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And Then The House Burned Down.

Last Thursday I had a date, but not with the man I had originally made plans with. The original date had messaged me and after a brief conversation had asked me out on a date, and even though we’d hardly had a conversation I loved his profile, he seemed funny, switched on and so I agreed. Sometimes this is the best way to meet someone, none of this relentless chatting which can go on for ages, then meeting up and they either have the personality of a cobweb or the sex appeal of a teabag. Or both as is sometimes the case in my ever decreasing dating puddle. Anyway, we arranged to meet and then a couple of days before the date I got a message saying could we postpone it as he had to go away on business? “Of course” I said.

Anybody online dating knows that once someone has postponed you don’t usually get the chance to meet up again because of various reasons. It could be a genuine excuse or, it could be that someone prettier, shinier, funnier has caught their eye, either way the longer you’re messaging after that it’s highly unlikely you’ll meet up, and after arranging to meet up on Sunday evening I’ve never heard from “M” again. I had a feeling this might happen so when I was having a decent conversation with “D” I agreed to meet him on Thursday, especially after he said we could meet up in the Northern Quarter as he knew his way around. At last! A guy who’s going to take charge for once, who’s not going to rely on me to sort the date out, or ask me to check the tram/train times, ask to make sure it’s a quiet bar, and even check the bloody weather.

I broke my golden rule for this one by agreeing to meet in the evening for drinks, usually it’s coffee but sometimes you have to break the rules so when we met at 7-30 I was looking forward to it. ” So where do you fancy? ” I asked. “Thought I’d leave that to you as I’ve only a vague idea of where the Northern Quarter is.”

You have got to be joking.

As we headed to a popular bar this guy didn’t shut up. At first I put it down to nerves but once inside the bar I realised that this wasn’t the case. It was all about himself, when he lived in the Caribbean for 9 years, all the celebs he’s met, the friend he’s got who’s on the Forbes 100 rich list, the yachts these “friends” have, the money and the lifestyle which tells me one thing. This guy has no money. Then there was his daughter. I know where she went to Uni, which was Bath, a city I know very well as I lived there for a while but he wasn’t interested in that. I know all about her first love, her various boyfriends, and obviously know all about her wedding which was in July earlier this year. This wedding also gave him the opportunity to talk about his ex wife and what a spiteful bitch she is even though they’ve been split up for 20 years, (not that he was the one who left the country for 9 years and didn’t see his kids in all that time). I know I’m not the only one who doesn’t like to hear stories about how awful an ex was, don’t people realise that you shouldn’t be saying this on a first date?

I tried, I really did. I mentioned living in Oz for a while but he wasn’t interested. And while he was telling me all about his mate who’s a band promoter and the bands he promotes at festivals I told him about the guy I’d met in Ibiza who’s two sons are in a band that have just been signed to Warner Brothers, he wasn’t interested. I mentioned living in Gibraltar back in the early 80’s for a while but he wasn’t interested. And all the while he was non stop talking I had an over whelming desire to just blurt out.

“And then the house burned down.”

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When You’re Just Not Fluffy Enough.

I love men who say they like strong women. As long as it’s not just lip service that is, because it’s one thing saying it and another actually dating one and one thing I’ve found in dating dinosaurs is that not a lot of older guys actually like strong women. They say they do but it’s not usually someone they can see themselves with, usually because we have an opinion and are not afraid to be vocal about it which starts as a discussion but leads into an arguement which usually ends with “What the hell do you know? ”

I know quite a lot actually, which is another thing that winds men up. Older men usually (not all by any means ) like their women to be a bit, shall we say, fluffy. They like their women to be a bit subservient, no way can their women be cleverer than them, funnier than them or earn more money than them. They want them to have to rely on a man to get things done, things like booking tickets for holidays, anything to do with the car, house, complaints, they like to feel as though they’re in charge. Which was fine back in the day when women weren’t encouraged to do much apart from staying at home and looking after the kids, but times have changed thank god and although the guys know this, they’re actually having a hard time accepting it.

So, although a man is quite happy to let me organise our date (only because he hasn’t been in Manchester for the past 15 years) after that he’s likely to expect his date to be a bit fluffy which is sometimes where it can go a bit pear shaped unless he’s a guy who sees strong women as a replacement mother. Either way it won’t end well for me even though I do try. I try to be a good date and laugh in all the right places, ask questions even though most of the time I won’t get asked any, turn up all sparkly, well dressed even though it’s usually coffee, but unfortunately most of the time I know my date will be disappointed because I’m just not fluffy enough. I’m not someone who’s going to accept certain things that older men think is acceptable.

A fluffy woman will accept spending every Saturday night at his local social club where the only wine on offer is a disgusting chardonnay served warm from a keg, but then you might be asked did you want half a lager and lime?

A fluffy woman will listen while her date tells her about kicking off in the local supermarket because the price of baked beans has risen by two pence.

A fluffy woman will sit quietly while her date tells the old old jokes that comedians told back in the 70’s, and will dismiss watching programmes like Live at the Apollo and Comedy Central  as “new alternative comedy” which he hates.

A fluffy woman will also usually have to listen while he goes on about his ex and even though she’s now married to someone else he knows he can get her back tomorrow.

A fluffy woman knows that her man likes to be listened to, fussed over and feel that he is all she needs.

A fluffy woman knows her place. She dresses for her man and not for herself, so she’ll hardly ever be seen in trousers. She works part time, has no career aspirations and would be quite happy staying at home waiting for her King to come home after a hard day at the office. But fluffy women aren’t stupid. Some have probably dumbed themselves down as they realise that’s the only way of dealing with these dinosaurs  in order to get what she wants.

I’m not fluffy, I’m strong, opinionated and vocal and to be honest I’m probably getting worse as I get older and let’s face it, as we get older everyone just wants an easier life so I can’t really blame the guys for running a mile. I want an equal partnership without feeling as though I have to stroke someone’s ego when some woman has upset them by becoming Prime Minister/President. I don’t apologise for being who I am, what you see is what you get but there must be someone somewhere who can appreciate a full time goddess.

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Don’t listen to the rumours I’m not that bad, honest.

 

 

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You’ve got to be Kidding.

A strange thing happened today. While on a break at work I received a text from an unknown number.”Hello?” So I replied back with the same question and waited patiently for a reply, while wondering who would have my number. “Are you Jacqui?” was the next question.By now I’d realised that this was probably a guy that I’ve been on a date with sometime but the question was who? I had to try and narrow it down without giving too much away but this guy was playing a game of his own. ” I take it you’re going through your phone and deleting people. I am Jacqui and we’ve probably been on a date.” He was quick to reply. ” I have an old message from you only just showing up on my phone!” When he sent me the message I remembered who he was.

Back in June I was having a decent conversation with this guy over a few evenings, and after deciding we were going to meet up, he sent me his number and asked me to text him the next day with the details of where and when we were meeting. But he did warn me. ” I’m in Anglesey and the signal might be really bad but try it anyway.” So the next day I sent a message with details he needed to know and I didn’t hear back but I did notice he was on the dating site we’d been chatting on later that evening, so I sent a message on that too. Nothing. So I left it, but I did wonder what he was playing at as every night he seemed to be online but it was always later on, after 11 pm. “Oh I remember sending you that message, no way have you just got that now! I think I sent you one on the dating site too, but obviously the week or so in Anglesey totally stuffed up your phone as you don’t seem to have received that one either.”  But this guy was having fun. ” Sorry about this but I still don’t know who you are can you remind me? ” So I reminded him of a couple of conversations and lo and behold he remembered me. After asking was I still single, maybe we could chat again and the most recent message about an hour ago mentioned that maybe we could meet up? Enough was enough.”It’s ok. You can delete my number.”

As excuses go this is probably the best/worst I’ve ever had. He was probably playing a couple of us and it’s not worked out with whoever, but you’re going to have to do better than that “D”. Don’t insult my intelligence by assuming that I’m going to believe that outrageous lie, but worse than that, you’ve thought I would be flattered about being Plan B. As if.

Always be the star, never the understudy.

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