Tag Archives: relationships

All the men you should never date: The Know-it-all

“It’s exhausting to be right all the time,” the Know-it-all will tell you as he swirls his drink around his glass. “But I just can’t help myself. If I see an error, I have to correct it.”

You may find this charming at first. Knowledge can be quite sexy, after all.

“He’s so clever,” you’ll gush to your slack-jawed friends. You revel in your new role as Marilyn Monroe to his Olivier, drinking in his fun facts, grammatical corrections and recommendations like lattes.

But the trouble with a know-it-all is that sometimes they… don’t.

But the trouble with a know-it-all is that sometimes they… don’t. They make a mistake. And you might be the one to spot it.

Whether it’s the eternally arousing question of whether to use ‘less’ or ‘fewer’ or a seemingly irrelevant factlet about the Spice Girls, your little boffin likes to be the one doing the correcting. Continue reading All the men you should never date: The Know-it-all

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17 things single people do that make couples want to kill them

When you’re single, it is very easy to blame smug couples for all your ills. But, here’s a newsflash, you can be just as irritating.

And every once in a while, couples are dragged out of their loved-up reverie by their single friends who are, almost without exception, an absolute nightmare.

1. Arrive to every social engagement hungover.
Whether you’re making a beautiful lunch for all your friends, meeting for a few drinks for your birthday, or getting married, your single friend will arrive either drunk or woefully hungover. This is because they can.

They have no partner to tell them they’ll feel rough in the morning and nobody to give them the silent treatment if they ignore that advice. Before they’re even halfway through their starter, they will push their plate away and signal the waiter to bring them another martini and every couple around the table will dream of lacing it with arsenic.

2. Ask if you have any friends to hook them up with.
“Surely you must know some nice, single, hot men for me?”

3. Then get offended when you try to hook them up with somebody.
“God, I’m not that desperate. Don’t you think I can do a little better than that?!” Frankly, no.

4. Moan “I just want to meet someone” yet reject perfectly acceptable people for ridiculous reasons.
“I didn’t like his hair.”
“You should have seen the way he twisted the noodles round his fork.”
“She pronounces ‘bath’ like ‘hearth’ – it’d never last.”
Christ. Continue reading 17 things single people do that make couples want to kill them

17 things couples do that make single people want to kill them

Aside from the mindless shagging, off-the-peg hedonism and thrilling Uber rides to the clap clinic, being single can be something of a trial. Sure, you can do what the hell you like, when you like, but sometimes you long for the touch of another, for someone to care that you’ve left the fridge open, the thrill of orgasming with someone else in the room.

And as if all that wasn’t enough, you’ve got dickhead couples pulling this kind of crap all around you, reminding you how unloved, lonely and insignificant you are:

1. Share puddings.
“Two spoons, please” is a knife in the throat of any self-respecting singleton. And food-sharing is really unsexy. Especially if it’s a recently defrosted cheesecake in a Harvester.

2. Hold hands everywhere.
No, seriously, you’re in my way. I have to be somewhere. You may want to spend your days ambling dreamily hand-in-hand, but, guys, you’re in the middle of a really busy Tesco Express and I’m trying to reach the tenderstem.

3. Argue in Ikea.
The most boring, cliché, coupletastic thing any gruesome twosome can do. Even worse is boasting about getting round the entire store without arguing. Well done you. It’s a shop, not the north face of the Eiger. Continue reading 17 things couples do that make single people want to kill them

33 lies you will tell yourself on a first date

1. If I arrive first it will make me look responsible and also like I care and that I’m… not flighty. It will not make me seem overly keen and boring, with nothing else to do tonight, or indeed ever.

2. Arriving late will make me seem mysterious and sexy, and he’ll be panting at my arrival, staring eagerly at the door. He’ll be so pleased I haven’t stood him up that he’ll be overjoyed to see me and we will fall immediately in love.

3. Oh well, it’s better than being stuck in the house.

4. This is not too soon after my breakup. I’m ready.

5. I’m glad I didn’t eat before I came out.

6. I hope he doesn’t stare at my arse when I go to the bar.

7. I’m not going to get drunk.

8. I’m not drunk.

9. He is so wrong if he thinks I am getting another drink.

10. It’s definitely his round. Continue reading 33 lies you will tell yourself on a first date

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.

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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

Coming out isn’t a one-off event – you’ll do it day after day for ever

Did you come out on National Coming Out Day? And how was it for you?

What people never seem to tell you about coming out is that it’s not restricted to one day – it’s a never-ending event. See those closet doors? They’re revolving. Day after day, you will find yourself – directly and indirectly – coming out to a host of people, even total strangers. The coming out never stops.

Think you have everybody covered? Relatives, friends, key people at work – check. However, you’re not out of the woods yet. We live in a world where there may be equality in law, but socially, we’ve still a long way to go.

Even a simple trip to the doctor, or a casual chat with a colleague, and having to say that dreariest, laborious word “partner”, like you’re in love with a law firm, is an act of coming out. It still feels strange on the tongue, let alone in the head, having to explain yourself.

You never know whether the news you’re gay will get you a shrug, a hug or a punch in the mouth. You wonder whether sitting next to that straight guy on the bus will make him think you fancy him, because he can tell, right? He knows you’re gay.

Will that drunk woman who caught you steal a glance at her boyfriend laugh it off or get in your face and throw a drink over you, calling you a “poof” and warning you to keep your eyes to yourself.? Welcome to the worst lottery ever.

Perhaps one day it will be no big deal and there’ll be no need for a lurching stomach or a mild stutter as you get the words out, wondering what the reaction will be. Here’s hoping. But despite all that, coming out is worth it. It really is.

I have already documented how I broke the news to my parents 14 years ago, and while I thought my work was done, about a month ago I realised there were two other people who’d remained blissfully ignorant over the years – my siblings.

I have a 17-year-old brother who I don’t see very often. He’s never really asked me about relationships or anything like that – teenagers tend to have their own stuff going on – but it niggled at me that he was in the dark.

I never had to tell my 18-year-old sister, to whom I’m very close. I suggested to Mum I should reveal all, but she said there was no need. Looking back, she was right. While it took her a few years to work it out, the fact she had her very own gay best friend at school helped her realise that I wouldn’t one day be bringing home a blushing bride.

Despite it never being explicitly said, she never questioned it,  instead accepted it without so much as a shrug – how disappointing for my inner dramatist – and my sexuality has become just another drab fact of life.

She may have had her suspicions about where my ‘flatmate’ and I slept in our one-bedroom flat but she never voiced them. We have settled into our relationship as grown-ups brilliantly. In her own words: “I didn’t really notice.” Perfect.

My brother was a different proposition. How do you tell a sporty 17-year-old just discovering girls that his big brother, who for some bizarre reason he looks up to, can never really join in on the whole lady appreciation thing? How do you prepare yourself to be a disappointment?

Well, the way I did it is spend the entire weekend with him and not say anything about it, before going home and telling him in a language he would understand – on Facebook Messenger.

In the middle of a conversation about a gig I was going to – Kylie! Of course – I decided now was the time to drop the bombshell, or gayshell, if you like. I decided not to make it too emotive – the slightest hint of sentiment can send even the most sensitive of teenagers reeling and heading under the nearest Xbox. I kept it matter-of-fact:

“It’s just occurred to me that you may not be aware – my partner is a bloke. I’m gay. Hope you’re cool with that. I should’ve mentioned it before, I guess. It’s a difficult one to drop into conversation. If you need a bit of time to think that one over, I understand. I should’ve said at the weekend really. Anyway, now you know.”

So now he knew. I awaited his reply with the kind of feeling you get when you know your electricity bill is due – crippled by inevitability. I was also kind of excited. Something was about to change. Finally, some drama.

Hours dragged. Then: a tick appeared by his message. He’d seen it. I closed Facebook and went into another room and pretended to tidy up. Any distraction welcome. Finally, I scraped myself off the ceiling and opened Facebook again. And like a beam of light, his reply shone:

“I can imagine you would’ve found it very hard to put that into conversation!
But yeah.
As long as you’re happy bro I’m really happy for you!
I have the utmost respect for you, it must be really difficult sometimes.”

Whether it’s a blatant acceptance like my brother’s, or a  marvellously unspoken one like my sister’s, never underestimate its power. And even though I have come out a thousand times to a million faces, the feeling of being accepted, that good reaction, never, ever gets old.

If you have come out to friends or family this weekend, I hope they reacted as brilliantly as my most excellent siblings.

Things I have pretended to like in order to get sex

Football
I remember a very miserable afternoon – a rainy Saturday – spent in a pub that smelled of cauliflower and dog, staring with great concentration at a TV up on the wall. I didn’t really dare look away in case I looked like I was bored and I couldn’t have given two bronze fucks about what was happening on the screen so I fixed my gaze on a spider at the corner of the TV. The spider span a web and then fell onto a table and crawled into a crisp packet. Spider, 1. Man eating crisps, 0.

Opera
Luckily, he didn’t take me to the opera, just played me one on his speakers that were bigger than Kensington and made the floor throb. I recognised a bit in the middle from an advert. He told me what it was but I was too busy wondering when I was going to get to play a concerto of my very own all over his alabaster rack. It turned out to be a very staccato experience.

Radio comedies
When asked whether you’ve heard of something, you should be honest lest you embarrass yourself and get a fact wrong. When my date asked me if I had heard of a particular comedy on Radio 4, I lied through my shiny white teeth and said “Why, yeeeess, it’s brilliant”. He used to play it to me before and after sex – never during, because “that would be weird” apparently – and when we got to the end of the first series I decided I would not be recommissioning him for another go.

A terrible food blog
Never have I pretended to like Instagrammed croissants and love hearts drawn in lattes so fiercely in my entire life.

Aaron
Aaron had very, very pert nipples and I was absolutely dying to see what they were like in the ‘flesh’, so I ignored his boring politics chat, the way he looked at every waiter’s arse as they walked by our table and his penchant for telling me how tired I looked and, when it came down to it, bit those tiny pink beauties very, very hard.

What have you faked so you could get more bang for your buck? Tell me on Twitter.

Image: Flickr