Tag Archives: flirtation

The Parent Trap

Five minutes ago, my date called me a DILF. I heard it quite clearly.

It was supposed to be a compliment.

I know this because my date purred the acronym at me and ran his finger across his mouth, like a negligee brushing against a closing bedroom door.

A DILF. I am 35 years old. I’m not really sure what kind of D I would have to be to have accrued enough years to F somebody young enough to be my son without being arrested, but it is clear my date’s strength lies in buzzwords he has read in listicles, not mathematics.

“Maybe I’ve got daddy issues,” he laughs, each of his 27 years peeling away like the skin of an onion – before my very eyes he is regressing to A-level student.

He thinks this is sexy. He thinks I have a fetish for younger men. He doesn’t realise that he’s not really young enough to be a kink.

He laughs, gurgling like a waste disposal trying to make sense of a baked potato. I should speak before he does it again.

“I’ve heard about the daddy thing,” I say, smiling like a cat who has just spotted the cage to the family hamster’s cage is open. “But I thought it was more about older men and other guys much younger than them. People in their 50s and 60s carousing with twinks.”

“Caroooooousing,” he mimics. He thinks he’s Kaa from the Jungle Book, charming me into submission. He is one half of King Louie’s coconut-shell bra at best. “Twinks!” he mocks again. Continue reading The Parent Trap

The Steal

In 2001 I was 25, living in Scotland and still ‘finding my way’.

I was painfully inexperienced, restricted to directionless fumbling, falling in lust with the man who washed hair in my barber’s salon or avoiding hopeless one night stands. Saturday nights (and Sunday mornings) were usually spent at parties, having the same dazzling conversations with less than dazzling company.

I had met bubbly Scouser Cally at one of these parties and we had struck up an incredibly superficial friendship that relied on darkness and close proximity to vodka. Despite our repeated assertions that we would meet up for coffee “sooooon”, there was an understanding between us that needed no words. This was just a party thing.

I was at one such party and had a text from Cally that she was on her way with some friends. Her friends weren’t really my kind of people – and I was certainly not top of their “most influential” lists either. These were weathered gay men, slightly older, and suspicious of the English boy who they never seemed to be able to work out or, crucially, fuck.

I was trading jibes good-naturedly with a guy in the kitchen when suddenly a door slammed and there was a whirlwind – Cally and her entourage. I greeted her warmly, but couldn’t help notice she’d brought a bottle of Grant’s vodka with her – I was willing to lay money on the fact she’d not touch a drop of it herself, not when there was so much Smirnoff around.

I greeted her warmly, but couldn’t help notice she’d brought a bottle of Grant’s vodka with her – I was willing to lay money on the fact she wouldn’t touch a drop of it herself.

As I queued for the toilet, one of Cally’s friends, Nick, queued behind me and started to play a one-man good cop, bad cop routine.

First he complimented me on my hair and then slated me for being too big for my boots. He then followed me into the bathroom and looked at me like a bulldog gazing at a link of sausages. Then: a bang on the door. Continue reading The Steal

12 things you do that scream “thirsty”

Not sure whether you look like a desperate, cloying nightmare on social media?

Wondering if perhaps you may be going a little over the top when it comes to trying to impress someone on Twitter? We’ve all done it.

Fear not! Here’s the most common things we all do that leave us open to being exposed as massive attention-seekers, along with a thirst mark out of 10, so you can work out just how absolutely tragic you (we) are.

First, the thirst scale:
1. I could really do with a sip of water.
2. I’d probably lick a tomato for moisture.
3. That plastic cup from the vending machine looks like it might have a bit of water in the bottom of it.
4. Throat getting quite scratchy.
5. No, I’m just going to sit next to the watercooler if that’s OK.
6. It’s quite hot in here, isn’t it? Can we open a window?
7. If the air were any drier, it would be Joan Rivers’ diary.
8. I’d be able to sniff out a raindrop from 10 miles away.
9. Make it 100 miles.
10. All I can see, hear, smell and feel is sand and I would kill everyone I love for a dribble of stagnant water out of a verruca sock.

And now, the ‘actions’:

1. Tweeting how ugly you feel

If you’re actually ugly: 3
If you’re mildly unattractive: 4
If you’re quite good looking really, in the right light: 6
If you’re what Grandma would call handsome: 7.5
If you’re incredibly hot: 9.5
Horse-frightener, but with accommodating mates you know will big you up: 10
Jake Gyllenhaal: 11

ugly
Here, please, sip this – it will save us all.

Continue reading 12 things you do that scream “thirsty”

7 things to ask yourself before you contact the person you kissed at midnight at New Year

What is it about those magic bells as December turns into January that make us desperate to lock lips with someone?

Despite having a perfectly acceptable time all night flying solo, the impending “clanging chimes of doom” (thanks Band Aid) of New Year suddenly make us feel more alone than ever. And most years, if your significant other isn’t already a) a thing that exists and b) somewhere nearby trying to pee into a beer can to save having to go to the loo, you end up reaching out to someone for a New Year snog.

But is this the start of something beautiful or merely a germ-swapping exercise to make sure you get most of January off work thanks to snog-flu?

Before you start tapping out your “So…? How’s it going?” text, run through this very quick checklist. Continue reading 7 things to ask yourself before you contact the person you kissed at midnight at New Year

The 25 stages of Twitter courtship

Twitter isn’t just for cat GIFs, cod politics, think-pieces and bitching about reality TV, it’s also a place to find love!

Spotting someone getting it on over Twitter is easy to do once you know how. Here are 25 signs those two faves you follow might be about to move on to being more than serial retweeters.

1. Regular liking of tweets – especially really boring attention-seeking ones.

2. Increased retweets.

3. Starting an @ conversation in response to nothing, not even a blogpost or a thirst-trap selfie.

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4. Meeting up and tweeting about being in same place but not mentioning being together.

5. Meeting up and tweeting about being in same place but not mentioning being together until they have an @ conversation about it two hours later.

6. Meeting up and tweeting about being in same place and tagging each other. There’ll probably be a photo around now.

7. Retweets start to decline so nobody notices how obsessed they are with each other. Everybody notices.

lucille dismissive

8. @ references slow down somewhat. Mentions of “the boy” increase. Frequent DMing.

9. Pictures from a club night start to appear. It all looks quite handsy. There is facial hair assimilation. 

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10. Flathunting is mentioned in passing. “The boy” references gather pace.

11. There is a request for a bacon sandwich from “the boy”.

12. Using @mentions to request a bacon sandwich.

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13. Matching lattes photographed. December variation: Santa hats.

14. Using @ mentions to bemoan the other is away and can therefore not make them a bacon sandwich.

15. Using @ mentions to bemoan the other is in the next room and will not make them a bacon sandwich.

16. Requests to strangers to make them a bacon sandwich.

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17. Bacon sandwich is made grudgingly and tweeted about. No photo.

18. One’s retweets are modified by the other to include sarcastic commentary or contradictions.

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19. One of them shaves their beard off. Subtweets reach nuclear stage.

20. Flirty messages to a third party about possibility of what will follow a fulfilled bacon sandwich delivery. Casual mentions that “the boy” is away. 

21. Pictures of moving boxes and/or a stark bedroom with Blu-Tack marks on the wall.

22. A Marilyn Monroe-style quote about moving on but remaining friends.

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23. Night after night of pornstar martinis with friends who haven’t been in pictures or @ mentioned before.

24. Increased regular liking of somebody else’s goodnight selfies. One unfollows the other.

25. Go to 2 and repeat until you get the fail whale.

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Note: If you found love on Twitter, I am very happy for you. I know I did. And I am.

Image: Flickr

Where not to meet your next lover: The gym

I have never dressed sexily for the gym – I have never seen the point. Either I have been partnered during my stack of memberships or, more usually, I have had no interest in romance among the kettle bells. In the dank, municipal hellholes where I like to work out, I have somehow known instinctively that Mr Right was not lurking by the lockers.

While my latest gym is clean and modern, it is most certainly not a place where I will ever feel lustful and attractive. It is so basic, so stripped back, that there is not even a swimming pool – thus it is devoid of the comforting pong of chlorine to mask all the toxic BO of my fellow gymgoers. You don’t just feel the burn; you breathe everyone else’s.

Any attempt I would ever have made to dress sexily – my running shorts are cut pretty high, I guess – is instantly negated by the inability of the staff to really grasp how air conditioning works. Unless you climb up inside one of the three or four pathetic air con units protruding from the wall like tin-covered beer guts, you’re unlikely to experience anything more than a light breeze that feels like it’s coming from several planets away.

A spandex-clad set of cockerels strutting round a farmyard of metal, grunting and always the most unfortunate choices of sock you can imagine.

Thus it takes no more than three half-hearted tugs on a machine that likes to call itself “Lat Pulldown” (very Star Wars cantina) before I am tomato-red, gasping and dripping in vodka-infused perspiration.

While most people are only there because the vending machine is the place to get the coldest Coke Zero in the western hemisphere, for some the gym is a total cruising experience. Cruisier even than being winked at in a public toilet or coughing suggestively in a sauna. I have watched these men (and women, of course, but it is the gay guys who fascinate me) strutting around – a spandex-clad set of cockerels surveying a farmyard of metal, grunting and always the most unfortunate choices of sock you can imagine.

It seems no part of the gym is off limits when it comes to being chatted up or flirted with or, in the most extreme of cases and depending on your proximity to Vauxhall, a spot of shagging. The sunbed room at my gym – 12 tubes, an Ikea chair and a bin filled with discarded wet wipes – is almost always occupied and I have never seen any ultra violet light beaming from under that door.

The locker room is where things begin, of course. I have lost count how many times I have shot down clumsy attempts at flirting as I stuff my bag in a locker only to find it’s broken. (About six or seven, in reality.)

The reality is I find the situation even more awkward than them, gradually going redder and redder and looking anywhere, at anything, other than their eyes, arms, pecs or, on one most unfortunate and unwelcome occasion, their depressingly low-hanging balls.

A range of subjects from where I got my padlock to the colour of my socks, via the incredible “Where did you get your hair cut?” have been among the awkward opener for potential suitors.

Of course, in my head, my tongue is an anti-aircraft gun and these hapless blokes are the Luftwaffe circling. Bang! Bang! Bang!

The reality, however, is that I find the situation even more awkward than them, gradually going redder and redder and looking anywhere, at anything, other than their eyes, arms, pecs or, on one most unfortunate and unwelcome occasion, their depressingly low-hanging balls. As soon as politeness will allow I give a friendly, yet curt, nod and head out of there.

I have seen it work on others. The chat will begin super-innocently in the changing rooms, and then once they’re out in the exercise area, chat will turn to protein drinks, running times and before long they’re ‘spotting’ each other’s ‘reps’ in that sweat-glazed palace of meat that is the free-weights area.

This part of the gym is full of mirrors, and our boys spend as long as possible glaring into them, but actually at each other, trying desperately to gurn as sexily as possible. The success rate is below sea level.

Not that it deters them – like attracts like, after all. Before you know it, they’ve got their towels over their shoulders and a mortifying time in the locker room for everyone but them is all but guaranteed.

But how to avoid all this eye-fucking and unrequited lust across the yoga mats? Well, why would you?

Just watch your eye contact; participation is automatic and there’s only one way to get yourself an early shower…

Nobody ever said all football fans had to be able to score goals at Wembley. Strap yourself in for the ultimate spectator sport – you still get the fitness benefits but don’t have to compete. Just watch your eye contact; participation is automatic and there’s only one way to get yourself an early shower…

Once you’re muscle-buddies and getting regularly up close and physical, though, what next? What about the times you can’t always make a training session? Is he there without you, making those same locker-room eyes at the cute guy on the treadmill? What if he says “great pecs” to all the boys? Is his spandex hanging out with other lycras?

Maybe look further for your next partner than the end of your dumbbell – save your communal sweating for the bedroom.

Image: Flickr

An additional 25 men you should never date

The dating arena is an unforgiving place. There’s no time to waste on that search for lasting love.

As ever, I only want to help, so if you want to separate the men from the boys and the woulds from the would-nots, here I have 25 more men you should, if at all possible, avoid when dating. Everything I do, I do it for you.

You should never date a man who…

1. Has a ‘hilarious’ answer-phone message.
Wacky outgoing voicemail messages are up there with novelty underpants, Homer Simpson ties, “Take me to your dealer” T-shirts and socks with the day of the week written on them when it comes to turn-offs.

2. Types “hehe” when he means “haha”.

3. Goes on about how Alanis Morissette’s Ironic isn’t actually ironic.
Yeah, I love to have someone explain to me in spine-tingling detail the official dictionary entry for ironic. May 10,000 spoons rain down on your head.

4. Says “Grauniad” or “Torygraph”.
Or the Daily Fail, or the Daily Diana, or the Scum, or any other annoying, smug nickname for a national newspaper. Apart from News of the Screws – but that doesn’t apply any more. (Interesting fact: my local paper growing up was called the T&A and NOBODY ever made a joke about it. Imagine.)

5. Tweets this picture and claims it’s his local Tesco.
It’s from Canada. And is really old. Piss off.

You should never date a man who posts this picture and claims it's his local Tesco.

6. Says “thanks for the birthday messages” on Facebook before his birthday is actually over.

7. Calls holiday ‘annual leave’, especially in his out-of-office.
He’ll probably end up begging you for ‘sexual relations’, after you’ve had a few ‘beverages’ down the local ‘hostelry’.

8. Has commented “YAAAAAASSS SLAY” on a YouTube video.
Or indeed comments on YouTube videos full stop.

9. Still has a Yahoo! email address.

10. Thinks he’s less lame on social media than everyone else.
He’s wrong – we are all terrible.

11. Claims someone is pretending to be him on Grindr.
It’s him. 101 times out of 100.

12. Says #sorrynotsorry
He should be sorry.

13. Uses the word ‘funky’ about anything other than James Brown.

14. Thinks texting you the entire lyrics to Dress You Up counts as flirting.

15. Talks about ‘payday’.
Or goes on about being ‘skint’ at the end of the month. Ooh, minor, surmountable money problems? Now that’s what I call talking dirty. Let’s have sex immediately, maybe on a bed of bounced cheques and Starbucks receipts.

16. Has a strong opinion either way on the great, sexless Apple vs Android ‘debate’.

17. Has a birthday party in a bar and expects you to pay to get in.

18. Uses the word ‘shenanigans’.
It usually describes the tamest night of sipping weak cocktails in an All Bar One just off the ring road, gazing out at a car park while a lightbulb gently buzzes somewhere just out of your eye line. And that’s what the sex will be like. And every day for the rest of your lives. Always a buzzing lightbulb somewhere.

19. Won’t ask for extra gravy.
There should always be more gravy. The man who will get it for you should be proposed to immediately. Marry. This. Man.

20. Accepts the first table a waiter offers him.
It’s always the worst one.

21. Sets all his Facebook profile pictures to public.
He’s a slut.

22. Wants you to write about him.
What if there’s really nothing to say?

23. Doesn’t have a favourite Victoria Wood quote.
“You’ve a look of Eva Braun – did you know?”

24. Doesn’t think this is the best X Factor duet ever.

25. Thinks admitting his selfies are “shameless” means he can take five times as many.

And one more for luck…

26. Is James Franco.
I mean, I love him, but God he’d be exhausting. And you’d need a nailbrush before you even got going.

I could go on. And I will, soon…

In the meantime, check these ‘pearls of wisdom’ out:

25 men you should never date

Another 25 men you should never date

A further 25 men you should never date

Yet another 25 men you should never date

I write a monthly column for the wonderful Gay Times magazine on all the men you should never, ever date. Get it now at gtdigi.co.uk