Friday, 6 October 2017

Let's just...don't

I am all about the embracing the millennial joie de vivre and operate from a place of confidence but sometimes the "you do you" existential MO pushes it.

The following is a list of things you should not do/say on a first date. All based on personal experiences going on dates with an array of awful, interesting, fun and plain just crazy guys.

1) Do NOT disclose your sexual escapades after just one beer. There is nothing sexy about listening to someone tell you they once got a blow job in an alleyway down the street from the bar you are currently having a drink at.

2) Do NOT go silent five minutes into a date, space out and then go on a ten minute diatribe to apologize by disclosing you a very anxious person that never sleeps and might need to take pills. That convo belongs to a pre-date conversation or a third date once you are comfortable with each other.

3a) Do NOT check your phone while on a date and get excited when you get a new match on Tinder.

3b) Do NOT swipe while your date goes to the bathroom and then try to hide it by saying you where checking some emails.

4) Do NOT be late for your date because you were at a Rupaul's Drag Race trivia night.

5) Do NOT start a half hour convo with the waiter and ask him about his career goals.

6) Do NOT add your date to all your social media until after you go on a fourth date. It makes for really awkward unfollows and blocking.

When in doubt just do not go on a date. Time is precious. If you are not feeling it sometimes is better to just do NOT do it




Saturday, 29 July 2017

Unforgettable

After a month and a half of dating in the real world, or lack thereof, I caved and I am back to the online world. Although trying to date offline was an interesting experiment, it seems that the only way to get a date is through my phone.

So, operation swipe, is on. Three days of a lot of left swiping and I got to the end of Tinder. After running out of swipes and suffering a mild carpal tunnel, I have only 14 matches. Quality over quantity... right?

A couple monosyllabic conversations later and I am having good case of deja vu.

So, in a moment of weakness I decide to download Grindr.

It seems that a month off the apps is like five years in the dating app world because I was approached by the exact same guys that had approached me before I deleted the app. The same guys whose conversation went nowhere and who I never met. Apparently Gay Amnesia is a thing because none of them remember talking to me before.

The thing is. I never forget a face. A name yes. A face? Never.

Five Deja Vus in. I start chatting with another guy who I had already chatted before and who's gAy-DD (Gay Attention Deficit Disorder) had left me in mid conversation a couple of months before.

Apparently, the grass was greener on my turf this time as he was really chatty and actually kind of charming. After texting for a couple of days about everything from politics to food to music, he decided to ask me for a drink. He was great and charming on text so I say yes.

I am all about good vibes and chemistry but I have never heard of dating fang shui. Apparently it is a thing, as my date decided to change our seats not once but three times because he was not feeling the fang shui . The first time the table was too small, the second time seats were not comfy and the third time it was the lighting and the ice machine at the bar.

We ended up sitting at the bar. Where I am told that the bartender at this bar is a genius. He was actually very run of the mill and super cranky.

My date then decides to have what seems like a ten minute conversation about his drink with the bartender. Followed by another five minutes of looking at the bartender making his drink. So far, we haven't gone beyond small talk so I seek refuge in the menu.

Reluctant to order any food and not inspired by both the menu or the conversation. I am told by my date to order something. "Order food" he says. "You should order an app" he insists. Order taken.

After a clunky conversation about our careers. He decides to tell me that I look like a drug lord. I guess that's the equivalent of telling me I am a masculine or butch. Given the circumstances I take the compliment.

The food arrives and I am again told to eat. This time off his plate. He insists that I must eat some of the shrimps in the dish he ordered.  Then a long debate ensues about what one of the ingredients in the dish was. It was an olive but my date insisted it was fish delicately cut into a small circle. I insist it is an olive. He insists it is fish. I say olive. He asks the bartender. The bartender says dryly "It is an olive".

This was the highlight of the night.

Once the debate is done, I got to know a little more about my date as he goes full charming and tells me he is a lone wolf with not a lot of friends. He was working hard selling himself and I was working hard trying to find a way to go home. The check comes and I decide that I want to walk home but so does he.

I wish I could say this is when I ran away to seek refuge but things became evern more bizarre as my date went apeshit and started blabbing like 2 year old the moment he saw a dog on the street. He then gave me the saddest tour of the city when he pointed out all the places that he goes to, alone, by choice.

We say goodbye and I am left with high hopes of hitting my head and getting good case of gay amnesia.

Tuesday, 11 July 2017

Rasing the Bar


Going off the dating apps means that you need to make a extra effort to put yourself in a social situation where you could possible meet someone. Well, what better place than a bar. A gay bar.

Now, it is important to clarify that I am not one to go to a club or a gay bar.  Not beyond the once in a while occasion when my friends have a birthday or the bestie wants to go dancing or I am in the mood.

Desperate times call for desperate measures.

First Attempt - Solo

One Saturday night I braved it up and went to the village's gay pub/club. But first I shower and re-iron one of my shirts. First impression are important, right?

Gussied up and ready to mingle I arrived. I make sure to first buy some Japanese liquid courage before I do my first walk through. What followed felt more like walking through my high school hallways and less me trying to find someone to connect with. Enter second beer.

After a couple of awkward glances and what seemed  like an almost conversation, I purchased my third beer. Less face it, liquid courage is a necessity for survival in these cases. Another walk through puts me in the awkward situation of seeing one of the guys I went on a date with months before. Yes, the guy next door who you want to stay behind that door. After an awkward mouthing of "how are yous?" I go to the bar to purchase my fourth and final beer.

Forty five minutes into my first attempt at going solo to a bar I decide to leave. Bloated, kinda drunk and dateless but proud that at least I tried.


Saturday, 1 July 2017

#socialmediacleanse


Last week I decided to erase all my dating apps and go on a social media cleanse. The days of swiping are over. The rush of getting a match has been replaced by the excitement to prove myself that I can still find a date the old fashioned way.

So hold on to your hipster toques and inside scarves cause I am ready to engage the world beyond my iPhone's screen.

The Gay Christmas 

Depends who you ask. Pride is basically the gay Christmas. (for others it is halloween, the Tony Awards or any red carpet)

Pride started as march to protest for respect, for rights and acceptance. The years have passed. People now can get "gay married" and Pride is now a celebration brought to you by all our favourite brands.
I am not going to delve into the politics of Pride and what it means, no worries.

This year I decided to attend Pride, first time as a single man. I mean, what better way to access others "like" me than a party that celebrates people "like" me.

Well. Not so much.

Glittered beards and rainbows aside. The block party I joined was basically a high school dance attended  by 200 versions of what seemed like the same guy: "The shirtless muscled meat head douche". Like good mammals, they all hung out within their pack of other shirtless muscled meat heads and didn't relate to any one beyond their group. Mix that with a DJ that played music that could only be dance with what I call " Instagram Boomerang" moves and you have a recipe for ...not love.

The only three people that seemed interested in engaging any other humans were:  the nicest but terrible at math drink ticket seller, the guy that sold me a delicious mini "pride sausage" pizza and a crazy European lady that looked like a real housewive on E.

Thank God for my two friends.

It seems I will have to wait to the real Christmas to get a present.


F is for Flirting 

Part of my new approach to dating is to try to engage people in any situation that could lead me to a smile, conversation or exchanging of phone numbers.

So, it is time to un-dust my good ol' gaydar and put it to work.

This week I tried public transportation.

Armed with a big smile, one spray of cologne and a flirty attitude I took on my work route crowd.

Monday
I tried the "I am shy but interesting as I am obviously listening to a hilarious podcast and laughing out loud approach". Epic fail. All I got was dirty looks.

Tueday
I tried the "I am super smart and reading the New York times Editorial section approach". Mild fail.
No dirty looks. Not looks at all.

Wednesday
I tried the "I am wearing sunglasses and drinking an iced americano so don't talk to me cause I am to cool for school approach". Too cool for school indeed.

Thursday
I was running late so I guess I tried the "fuck i am going to be late to work approach". I got a mild sneer.

Friday
I tried a simple "smile" approach. Small victory. I got two smiles back.

I guess we all have to begin somewhere.




Tuesday, 20 June 2017

No-Ass Ark

Let's face it. After two catfishings, three ghostings and a whole lot of smart-asses, I have no other option but to build an ark. An ark where I will also like to put the silent-Bobs, the monosyllabic Joes and the tinder scrapbookers.

I have always found dating fascinating, both as a painful process we all decide to put ourselves through but also as a sociological experiment that pretty much reminds you how eff'd up we all are. The royal we, that is.

The reality is that dating is not an easy feat and when you add a layer of technology things become even less personal. I have been single and ready to mingle for almost a year now, and although the majority of my dating experiences have ranged from bizarre to entertaining I have also been reminded of the superficiality and vacuousness that comes with being gay. Cue rant.

In the non-scientific experiment that has been my dating life for the past year I have learned that most people are incapable of expressing what they want beyond having a frantic tumble and asking what you are into. Mind you, if you are a fuck and chuck kind of guy then online dating is where it's at.
That is if you are willing to navigate an array of weird interactions, unsolicited nudity, fake profiles and a whole lot of conversations that go nowhere.

It seems that collecting matches and woofs is the new version of self-love for some and expressing our distaste for some groups is also a way people like to connect with others.

This is why I refuse to engage in monosyllabic conversations with people that are looking to "connect" but are not willing to put the time or effort.

I refuse to sign in for an abs adoration culture (and believe me there is nothing wrong with being in great shape and having a gym abiding healthy lifestyle) but there is plenty more to life than a six pack.

I refuse to be put in a box by a swipe or a woof. I refuse to be judged by the way I look or where I come from.

I refuse to feel good because I have certain amount of matches.

I refuse to be anyone but myself.

For a group of people that has been marginalized, mistreated and abused over the years we tend to do the same with each other. We treat each other in such a superficial and disposable way. We all seem to be looking for the same, a companion, someone to talk to, a friend, someone to have sex with;  but the reality is that no one is willing to put the time and respect that it actually requires.

So here is to less swiping and more trying to meet people in an old fashioned way. In person. By connecting with each other. By engaging. By talking. By not putting each other in a box.









Thursday, 16 March 2017

Charcuterie Bored

Sometimes if it's not meant to be, it's not meant to be.

Usually all the signals are right there in front of you but most of us choose to ignore them.

Signal #1: Not a texter. In the age of phone app dating you have to be okay with texting. A self professed caller might sound romantic but there is something about the early stages of dating awkwardness that texting takes away. Plus who talks to us on the phone beside our moms?

Signal #2: He cancels our first attempt to meet because it was Halloween. Apparently Halloween is still for some, the gay Christmas. Two months later he texts (this was a three text exchange by the way) to ask me if I am still single. We set another date. I cancel because I prefer to attend my work Christmas party instead. New year arrives. Third time is a charm, right?. We finally set a date. It is happening.

Signal #3: Your first date is just okay. First dates can range from scarring to awful to okay to pleasant to amazing. This one was just okay. The equivalent would be a Tim Horton's coffee. Not great but it does the job. Enough to have another one another time. Double double anyone?

Singal #4: On our second date the conversation although more fluid is slightly repetitious. He, although quite cute, is not what you would say a charmer. The goodbye kiss, well, let's just say that was enough for me to ask for a third date.

Signal #5: On the third date, at a bar, he decides to comment on the hockey game that was on one of the screens and stop talking. After an awkward "hey bud, do you want me to drink my beer at the bar so you can watch the game" convo he decides to join me back on our date. I decide to ask him for a fourth date, mostly in an attempt to Netflix and chill.

Signal #6: I make dinner (I am a good cook but this time I buy it and reheat it. This date is not worthy of my cooking skills). I buy fun snacks and a set up a charcuterie board. Yes, let's not forget I am gay and we kind of go all out on these things. He arrives empty handed. (insert sound effect here). Big no no. Like seriously.
 Then when I offer a nice chocolate for dessert he goes and eats it all without offering me any of it. He also eats a whole bowl of cashews. Who does that?

Signal #7: He gets more excited about Lady Gaga's super bowl half time show than anything we have talked about in the past three dates. When I attempt to kiss him. He stops after about 10 seconds. May I remind everyone this is THE FOURTH date.

In the last fifteen minutes of the date he finally comes out his shell. Playful and fun. Too little too late. A couple of texting attempts from him are met with a non-chalante not interested attitude from me.

I am bored.


Tuesday, 6 December 2016

Word of Mouth

6pm - After a couple of days of texting, the cute guy you've been chatting with finally asks you out. 

7:30pm - He makes a reservation for a nice restaurant near your condo for the next day at seven.

7:35pm - You feel a tiny pulsating pain in the corner of your lip.

7:37pm - You use your camera phone to see if you have anything on your lip. You find nothing. 

8:30pm - The pulsating pain comes back.You ignore it.

10:00pm- While brushing your teeth you discover what seems to be the beginning of a mouth pimple. You try to squeeze it in a moment of hysteria. You make it worse.

10:05pm  - You start thinking about cancelling your date. After all, a mouth pimple looks quite similar to a cold sore and who wants to see that on a first date.

10:07pm - After more squeezing. You decide to put some of your secret ointment that your mom brings from back home whenever she comes to visit.

10:30pm  - You put more ointment before bed, because, why not? The pimple is already there and it won't go anywhere. 

Next Day

7:00am - While working out you see your reflection in the mirror. There it is. A red spot in the corner of your mouth. You start practicing mouth movements to hide it. After realizing that you look stupid, you consider cancelling again.

8:00am In a desperate attempt to minimize the mouth pimple you do another squeeze. You make it worse. You put more ointment and reluctantly pick a nice outfit.You pack your lunch for work and also pack your ointment for further applications during the day.

9:30am You take a picture of your face. Send a text to your best friend. Ask how bad it is.
You best friend says "its not that terrible, stop touching it" You ask him if you should cancel. He says to just come clean to your date and  nonchalantly mention that your mouth pimple is not a cold sore.

10am You stare at yourself in the mirror at work until someone comes in the washroom.

10:30am You text another friend for a second opinion. She compliments your outfit. Disregards your pimple.

11:30am It takes everything in you to not squeeze that bugger when you go back to the bathroom.

1pm More ointment.

2pm You think of funny ways to mention a mouth pimple. They all sound awkward in your mind. 

3pm You consider wearing a turtleneck that covers half of your face. 

4pm More ointment.

5:30pm You make yourself a gin and tonic searching to forget about your pimple.

7:15pm You meet your date. Make a joke about how your mouth pimple is not a cold sore. Its very awkward.

7:16pm The date makes a joke about how after you have dessert you can both go together to the clinic and check your mouth herpes.

7:17pm You smile and realize that it is all going to be okay.

10:00pm You say goodbye to your date with a hug after two hours of chatting and laughing. 

10:05pm You walk home wondering if he will want a second date with you and your mouth pimple.

Next Day

3pm Your mouth pimple is gone and so is your date. He ghosted you.