Impeccable Table Manners

Russell and Jennifer


The Guardian must have been hard at it last night as I can’t find this week’s Blind Date online anywhere, so where I’d normally say “read what happened before I go to town on them” or whatever, I can’t. You’ll just have to trust me.

This week we appear to have two people who remembered they were going to be photographed for a magazine. Makeup! Hairstyles! Half-decent (if a bit boring and safe) clothes! At last.

Russell is 31 and an ad consultant, while Jennifer is 24 and a TV researcher. Who says all Guardian readers live in a media bubble, eh, viewers?

Here’s Russell to start us off:

russell–hoping for

Ooh, look at the pretty colours. I feel like I just got my nails did. Anyway. “Trying something new.” Perhaps Russell has never met a woman in a passable restaurant before. Or does he mean the “blind date” aspect? I suppose there is no such thing as an actual blind date in the modern age, is there? Before you’ve even agreed a venue, you’ve stalked them on Facebook, rolled your eyes at their tweets and run their LinkedIn job titles through Google Translate.

jennifer–hoping for

Jennifer is 24. “A raconteur.” You met many raconteurs, Jennifer? I’m guessing not. Here’s the thing: a raconteur is just another name for some dreary old man who talks about himself. Also: sharing “swipe left” stories about Tinder isn’t being a raconteur – unless you want to switch out that “o” for a “u”.

Russell again:

russell talk about

“Middle child syndrome.” You’re 31, Russell. It is time to move on. I look forward to seeing Jennifer’s interpretation of these “deep conversations”, don’t you? Spoiler: the water is barely up to the top of your toes.

jennifer talk about

HAHAHAHAHA. Oh. How’s that search for a raconteur going? Just how “deep” can you get about a 50-inch TV? “His travelling” – ugh I am 100% out here. And talking about carbs on a date? Why? We are about to find out. Table manners time!

jennifer table manners

A couple of things here: Why would you tell someone on a first date that you were on a “no-carb day”? What a delightful first impression – “Yeah I’m on some weird diet that’s a cross between Opus Dei self-flagellation and being slightly hungry in the middle of a McDonald’s”. Diets and eating plans are like dysentery or bank balances – the details should be kept to yourself.

But HANG ON: “I ate his chips”. Russell says Jennifer’s table manners were “very good”, but she ate his chips. She put her hand in his dinner. Did she wash her hands first? Maybe she used a fork. She leant over and waggled her fork all over his plate. Jennifer, unless you do something AMAZING by the end of this post, you have lost this one for me.

Let’s do awkward moments. Russell:

russell awkward

Really? Not even chip-gate? Jennifer:

jennifer awkward

Oh God. OK, Jennifer, you’re back in the lead. It is a long time since I had a romantic relationship with a woman (yes, it happened), but even as a gauche, closeted string bean in my early 20s, I instinctively knew that you shouldn’t really suggest a woman could easily take up prostitution. Call it intuition, or perhaps not being a massive dickhead, but I somehow knew that wouldn’t be the right thing to say. Russell, however… Well.

russell bes thing

“Accent.” I don’t get accent fetishists. “Uniqueness.” OK. Hair. This says absolutely nothing.

jennifer bes thing

Wow the sexual chemistry is fizzing off the page here. Also, she called it a pocket handkerchief, so didn’t get the memo from GQ magazine that it’s “pocket square” – you blow your nose on a handkerchief. I’m surprised Russell didn’t mansplain it to her; perhaps he thought he’d put his foot in it quite enough.

jennifer introduce

OUCH. Is there any way to make a man sound less and more dull than suggesting he is really “salesy”? Nobody really wants to have sex with people who work in sales. Except other people who work in sales. And that’s only because they devote so much of their time to working in sales and being “salesy” that nobody else will have them.

I’m dying here. When will this end?

russell made of you

I think Jennifer was staring at you fantasising about stoving your head in with an anvil, Russell, but it’s great/concerning you can read this as a come-on. And as for the high fives? What a pair of dicks.

jennifer made of you

Were these two even on the same date? I can’t work out whether they liked each other or not. By the way, Jennifer, you’ve got long hair with a short fringe – unless he’s been living in a cave since 1993, when this hairdo first came into fashion, it’s not your barnet putting the fear of God into him. It’s all that bloody staring.

*high fives for no reason whatsoever*

jennifer three words

Oh, this explains the staring. She was trying to read him. Sadly, Russell isn’t a Kindle and if he were, the backlight certainly wouldn’t be on.

russell change one thing

Russell does appear to have been on a completely different date from Jennifer  (or “Jenny” – I wonder if that is a dig) but he hasn’t particularly laid into her. Or, actually, said anything at all of note. However, that’s not what we’re after, so here’s Jennifer with a slam-down – it’s what we’re here for, don’t deny it.

jennifer change one thing

See? He’s “salesy”. Also: of course it is staged – you’re in a magazine. I’m not sure how vulnerable or honest you can be when you’re talking about your 50-inch TV. Didn’t his eyes mist up even a little when he talked about his “travelling”?

The scores are agonising. Russell goes for “8.9” for reasons best known to himself, but I think we can safely assume he fancies her. Jennifer marks Russell a “5” which is a serious, third-degree “doctor telling relatives there is a chance he may not make it” level of burn. But he did suggest she become a hooker, so… y’know, I’d say she’d marked him pretty highly.

The end is heartbreaking.

jennifer meet again

Oh, Russell. What did you do? Oh, we know what you did. It’s all here.

russell meet again

There really are two types of people in the world: those who should not apply to appear in a magazine, and those who really, really, really should not apply to appear in a magazine. Here we have both.

No Comment

Leave a Response

%d bloggers like this: