So as per my last log I took the theory to the practice. I managed to drag my colleague all the way to a speed dating event with me. One night, 20 men! Or so was the promise.
It turned out only 14 of them bothered turning up. The girls were pretty much all there.
I had put on one of my cute little dress and high heels boots. The dress was perfect to hide those few extra pounds picked up over Christmas and the heels would take care of the shorties, if they can't cope with it they're not worth having. Don't get me wrong, I have nothing against short men, only against short men who make me feel guilty for wearing high heels.
My friend had come in her trendy casual look (she is younger than me and can get away with it).
When we got to the venue, one of London popular central club, we were shown up some stairs, then some more and, yes, some more. I felt like we were the new generation of lepers... We don't mind taking your money but we are a bit embarrassed to have you here....
Our hostess for the night sat us down and went through the proceedings for the night with us. First we each received a badge with our first name on it and a score card, we were to write each of our dates name and number (not telephone, badge number) on the card and then tick the appropriate box: Yes (we would like to date him), No or Friend. I was almost expecting: Marry, Shag, Over the Cliff. The last box was for comments, I quickly realised that you had to put something distinctive about him. Mine went along the lines of Oz, S.A., Policeman, spoke French, got there late. We were to make the notes between dates, not in front of the men and then the following day we would be able to upload our “votes” on the website and see our matches.
Then she explained how it would work. Each woman seats at a table, the one matching her number, the first date is the man with the matching number, then after 3 minutes the bell ring and each man moves up to the next date. So I would only need to control my chatting for 3 minutes at a time, surely even I could manage that!
Before the dates started we grab a quick drink with my colleague, a bit of Dutch courage. As pre The Rules, I kept my eyes to my glass, my table and my friend, I refrain from my usual visual radar search for Mr Right around the room. My colleague had a few look around. For what I had seen whilst ordering the drinks at the bar the mix of men seemed a good mix, now I just had to wait for the dates to start.
The girls were all dressed to impress and were not only checking out the men but also, and more importantly, the competition.
Time for the first date finally arrived. I went to seat at my table and wait, looking down at my glass for someone to arrive (Rule #3 Don't stare at a man or talk to much). An as per Rule #2 (Don't talk to a man first) I waited for him to say hi before looking up, thus saving me looking desperate. So I let him lead the conversation (Rule#17, yes I did managed to read quite a few of them before I went) and before we know it, it's time for date number 2. I grabbed my card to try to right down the name of #1 before #2 came along but moving from one chair to the next one down the line doesn't take quite long enough to allow me enough time to do that, so I just right #1.
I repeated the same step for my second micro date, only this time the guy was really shy, and wasn't taking the lead, I tried to encourage him a bit but finally gave up remembering that now I was a Rule Girl. This made for a rather long 3 minutes date...
#3 was very geeky but bless him he tried, and as a good Rule Girl I kept to my rules, I was polite, pleasant and reserved.
The next few dates were all quite interesting and I found myself rather enjoying it. The Rules were easy enough to follow on 3 minutes dates, even if from time to time I felt myself blabbering on and had to stop myself for a bit. I even had a gentlemen who fluently spoke French to me, a rather nice change from the usual "bonjour, Ca va?" followed by " Is that hello, how are you?"
Then came the psychologist, there is always one to spoil the fun and that was him. At least # 2 had the excuse of being shy, this one was just nasty. He sat as far back as he could in his chair, I couldn't hear a word when he spoke because he was simply too far. When I told him so he just made himself even more comfortable and carried on. At this stage I did break The Rules, but I didn't swear! When he said he was a psychologist I became sarcastic "That would explain why you are seating back like that", deep down I wanted to add "you arrogant twat". But like a true lady I kept it to myself. As it turned out, neither my friend nor the girl seating next to me had anything nice to say about him either. So, it wasn't me then...
By the end of evening I had dated 14 men, none had ticked my "Yes" box, although a couple would have made the maybe list, I had ticked 3 "No" (#2 and #3 where amongst them, I let you guess the last one) and I had put the rest down as "Friend".
My friend and I stayed for a last drink at the end of the event. Again following the rules I didn't look out for any of the men and quietly waited to see if one of them might come back for a longer chat, my last date had stayed a bit longer and his friend #1 had come back, but I wasn't really interested in either of them.
I started chatting with the girl seating at the table next to me. Like me she had dragged her friend along. She was going to another Singles night the following night, on her own. We exchange details and agree to meet up for a girls night out soon.
Now, I had to wait until the following day, at least, to find out how well I did and how those gentlemen had rated me. But this is for another time...