Adam and Bron – Adam wear a black T with braces, Bron is in a colourful jacket.
Composite: Jill Mead and Linda Nylind/The Guardian/The Guyliner
Impeccable Table Manners

Adam and Bron

Yes, it’s still January! The same year, 2023, that’s right! As we head toward the vinegar strokes of one of the year’s cruellest months, what better way to celebrate the incoming hero to that is, uh, February, than a date with two lovely lads like Adam and Bron.

Adam and Bron – Adam wear a black T with braces, Bron is in a colourful jacket.
Composite: Jill Mead and Linda Nylind/The Guardian

Strangely current in their look and yet also could also very easily be the back-up comedy duo on ’90s Saturday morning screamfest Live and Kicking. If you live long enough, you get to see everything come back into fashion. According to their rap sheet, Adam (green trousers) is a 26-year-old assistant museum curator, and Bron (jacket!) is 29 and a news reporter.

and then slink back here for the first incision.

Adam (left) on Bron | Bron on Adam

First impressions?
I liked his jacket a lot, and a big messy fringe is always fun.

‘A big messy fringe is always fun’ – Adam is three Claudia Winklemans under a raincoat.

First impressions?
Tall, cute, friendly.

Don’t blow your adjectival load so soon, Bron, you might need some later.

What did you talk about?
Living in other countries while at university. The strangeness of being queer when a lot of our straight friends are starting to reach those “settled” milestones like marriage, houses and kids. We didn’t talk about star signs, which I’m tempted to say is rare for London gays.
Living in the US and Japan. Gay socialising in London. Grindr and Hinge. The White Lotus.

Living in other countries/living in the US and Japan – ✅

The strangeness of being queer when a lot of our straight friends are starting to reach those “settled” milestones like marriage, houses and kids – Interesting two gay men in their twenties are saying this when, aside from houses which nobody can afford unless they have rich parents, this stuff is very much available to them now. I suppose it’s because straight people seem to drift into these milestones almost unknowingly, it feels like a natural progression, but for us, they still feel a little like activism. We know it’s not ‘the norm’. Whether these barriers are actual physical obstacles or emotional ones I couldn’t say, but as wonderful as these milestones are, historically they’ve not been accessible and perhaps we have a lot of unresolved feelings to unlearn. The kids stuff really does get weird when the straight friends start to peel off and procreate, especially if you live in a big city and they suddenly migrate back to their hometowns or to boring dormitory villages so they can afford somewhere with a garden. I’ve tried to explain this to friends and family who’ve implored me to move somewhere smaller or nearer them etc, that it’s only really here, in one of the biggest cities in the world, that I can feel safe, and be myself. Obviously there are LGBTQ+ people everywhere, living perfectly fulfilled and happy lives in smaller towns and villages, but on a personal level, I feel I’d have to compromise something, hide part of myself away. Being an individual is not just about standing out in a crowd, it’s the ability to be yourself and still, somehow, melt into one.

We didn’t talk about star signs, which I’m tempted to say is rare for London gays – I genuinely didn’t know astrology was back and such a gay thing; I don’t really bother with it. Mainly because my sign, Capricorn, is basically the miserable, penny-pinching uggo of the zodiac. Whoever came up with star signs had a personal vendetta against someone born late Dec/early Jan and we should be told the truth.

Most awkward moment?
At one point, my cocktail went down the wrong way so I was struggling to look attentive while low-key choking.

Quick preview of the gag reflex – no bad thing.

Most awkward moment?
As Adam arrived I was chatting with the restaurant host about what my preferred type of guy looked like – and I was not describing the man who walked into the conversation.

Madonna going WHAT

Oh. Well. Never mind. We really should get rid of the idea of ‘types’. I know it’s primal sometimes but, honestly, what if every guy who looks like your fantasy ideal is a massive knobhead? It happens. Anyway, Adam’s very handsome so I assume Bron was saying, ‘I like really ugly men’ or something – at least I hope so!

Good table manners?
Impeccable, considering we were sharing Mexican – hardly the easiest food to eat gracefully.
I went home with a gnarly stain on my T-shirt, so I’m ill-placed to judge.

One day I will leave a Mexican restaurant without pork pibil juice down my front.

Would you introduce Adam to your friends?
For sure. He’d be well received.

All Bron’s friends are bottoms?

Adam, later:

Villanelle in Killing Eve saying 'take me to the hole'

Describe Bron in three words.
Energetic, attentive, warm.

Energetic, like the lightbulb you can’t actually afford to switch on.
Attentive, like a waiter who saw all the fifties in your wallet when you put your cloakroom ticket away.
Warm, like a pool of sick is for about four minutes.

Describe Adam in three words.
Worldly, interested, smiley.

Worldly, like, erm, an atlas?
Interested, like a baby who’s never seen a zit before but has just spotted one on the end of your nose.
Smiley, like Carol Smillie, obviously.

What do you think they made of you?
He was good at asking me questions, so I wonder if I talked about myself too much.
He laughed at most of my jokes, so I guess either funny or pitiable.

Oh boys. No. Come on. What I wouldn’t give to sprinkle a bit of fairy dust – hey, don’t say it, only *I* can say it – and give my fellow rainbow crew who need it a little more confidence. We can spend our lives self-editing, assuming we’re a burden, or boring, or too loud, or too bitchy or whatever – and sometimes we are, because everybody is – but we deserve our spotlight and even though I’m not exactly going to be able to boil an egg from the heat of the sexual chemistry on this date, you both seem like lovely boys who I’m sure are fascinating. So get out there and fascinate – and allow others to fascinate you.

Mind you, what did I say about chemistry, here’s a slight turn:

Did you go on somewhere?
Sadly not, which was my fault for making early next-morning plans.
Sadly not – he had a yoga class the next morning.

Oscar Isaac looking incredulous

Nooooo! Not cockblocked by a downward dog! It’s too sad. On a gay date, please remember: clear the decks the next morning. You never know.

And … did you kiss?
Very briefly.
Yep! Just a peck.

a woman using a shake weight which looks a bit like she is doing something rude to a phallus

If you could change one thing about the evening what would it be?
It would have definitely been nice to grab another drink.
I would have cancelled his yoga class.

Moriarty in Sherlock saying 'I did tell you'

Marks out of 10?

The correct score for a date that (apparently) went well but (allegedly) didn’t involve tongues. Plus a dare I say ‘cheeky’ extra point-five from Bron, maybe to atone for the whole awkward moment thing or maybe he slipped the tip in or something, who can say?

Would you meet again?
Yes definitely.
We exchanged numbers and we’re going on a queer night out.

Yay! Whatever happens, as your friends start to exit en masse to wherever the hell it is they’re all moving to, someone new to hit the bars with is always welcome. Have one for me, guys.

More of my writing

Liked this? Excellent. It just so happens I’m in , with a very tongue-in-cheek, snarky, funny look at what it takes to be the perfect partner.

Illustration: Ben Wiseman/The Guardian

Obviously, like every middle-aged white man, I have a newsletter too, except mine is good. It’s called The truth about everything* and you can subscribe for free and get some good stuff, or become a paid subscriber and get some extras. Recent editions have delved into the bizarre mind of Adrian Chiles, gone into granular detail about one of Madonna’s most iconic songs, and tried to work out whether The Last of Us is actually any good.

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Something to remember about the review and the daters that I put at the end of every review

The comments I make are based on answers given by participants. The Guardian chooses what to publish and usually edits answers to make the column work better on the page. Most things I say are riffing on the answers given and not judgements about the daters themselves, so please be kind to them in comments, replies, and generally on social media. Daters are under no obligation to get along for our benefit, or explain why they do, or don’t, want to see each other again, so please try not to speculate or fill our feeds with hate. If you’re one of the daters, get in touch if you want to give me your side of the story. Spill, what would’ve happened if that yoga class wasn’t booked in?

Adam and Bron ate at El Pastor, London W1. Fancy a blind date? Email

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