Saturday, 26 October 2013


Hello again blogworld!  I hope you are all happy and well out there.  It's been over a year since my last post, but I just thought I would share a piece of news for anyone out there who remembers the story of my dates with another blogger: LB and I got married last month.

It was a very low-key and small-scale wedding (unfortunately no room for a blogger table despite some cheeky requests in comments on our early dating posts!) but it was a really nice day shared with a few close friends and family members.  We actually read out a few of our blog posts from early 2011 to give people the officially-recorded story of how we met!  It's cool in a way that it's immortalised on the internet like that.

Thanks again to everyone who was involved in those early dating posts - it's still a lovely how-we-met story to have!  And I apologise for destroying LB's wonderful blog by snatching her off the dating market, but I'm very glad that I did!  Except when she urges me to eat vegetables.

Saturday, 18 August 2012

Summary Of My Dating History

I've been reading some new blogs recently - it's the first time in a while that I've sought out new blogs to add to my Reader.  It's very cool having new posts arriving more frequently to read!  When I read an interesting recent post on a blog where I'm not familiar with the back-story, I find it tempting to try to read lots of previous posts so that I'll understand the context better.  Occasionally I've read entire blogs to catch up with the present, although of course this can be time-consuming!

It got me to thinking: if somebody chanced on my blog, how easy or difficult would it be to piece together my history?  As I've always thought of this as a dating blog, I thought it might be interesting to write a brief history of my dating life, so here goes:

1979:  Born.
1980-81:  Learning to talk, but not yet familiar with terms like Girl, Date or Emotional Co-Dependency.
1982-85:  Apparently I was a bit of a ladies' man at this age.  I had female friends and a cool haircut and I've even seen a photo where I'm wearing a red sleeveless top and look like I'm auditioning for Baywatch.
1986-89:  Girls are yuck.  Also, by this point I clearly do not resemble David Hasselhoff.
1990-91:  Most girls are yuck, but there's one who I like seeing and being around.  Not going to tell her though.
1992-93:  Maybe quite a few girls aren't yuck.  Especially another one in particular.  Also not going to tell her.  Some of my friends seem to be making progress ahead of me.
1994-95:  Whoops - I was very wrong about girls ever being yuck.  Girls are very interesting.  There are lots of cute ones at my school.  I have no idea how to interact with them.  Some guys do seem to know how.  Bastards.
1996:  Major crush.  Current plan: don't chase any girl apart from her.  Also: don't chase her.  Poor plan.
1997-98:  Start university.  Even more good-looking young women.  Even a few female friends.  But still not learning the art of the chase.  Increasing feeling that I'm becoming a grown-up in all areas other than this one.
1999-2000:  Manage to tell a few women that I think they're good-looking.  Not reciprocated so far, but still an important step to have made.
2001:  Progress somehow stalls, partly due to working night shifts in random post-uni job.
2002:  Push myself to try online dating.  Good idea.  Go on a few dates.  Mixed experiences, but experiences nonetheless.
2003:  More online dates either side of an on-again-off-again relationship - my first, and definitely another mixed but valuable experience.
2004:  New relationship with someone met offline.  Gets off to great start.
2005-09:  Initially great relationship unfortunately descends through good to mixed to difficult to daily struggle.
2010:  Relationship ends.  Stuck living together for six months afterwards until house sold. Thoroughly tough year.
2011-12:  Accept challenge of date with another dating blogger.   Good date leads to more good dates and relationship with said blogger - happily still ongoing.

Friday, 17 August 2012

Brief Update

Well, my "final post" was eight months ago, and really I'd just about stopped writing posts eight months before that, but so far I've never quite stopped reading blog posts.  After all, that was how my time in blogworld started, and I really liked the corner of it which I happened to land in.  So I thought I'd post a brief update of how things are going for me.

18 months on from our blogger-meets-blogger date, things are still going well with LB, which is great. She was stuck in the USA for a while in early 2012, which wasn't so great, but happily she's been back here in London for several months. I've been sharing a flat with her and her two cats, who are mostly nice and occasionally nuts. One of them used to hiss and swipe at me when I walked past, but now follows me around trying to get petted. The other one has recently taken to eating his own puke. Maybe his cat food tastes better second time around.

Other things in my life are going OK too, but this blog was rarely about those things anyway - it was always intended to be a dating blog, but does an eighteen-month relationship still count as dating? It certainly doesn't provide the same kind of blogging material as messy dating experiences like slow fades, sudden disappearances, wildly inaccurate dating photos and pregnancy hoaxes - but that's probably a good thing.

I've been doing a bit more blog reading recently and it's great to see that some of my old favourite blogs are still going strong, such as Simply Solo, Just Saying, thoughts simply arise, My Dating Hangovers and Something She Dated. Maybe I can find some new favourites out there too! But it's sad to see no more posts from others like how very lucky to be a girl, snafu and International Woman Of Mystery. And what ever happened to that other awesome blog I used to read avidly - something to do with life beginning at thirty?

Wednesday, 14 December 2011

Final post (probably)

I've been aware for a while that my previous blog post started with the following paragraph:
"Wow - three months since my last post? Time just goes faster and faster! I never wanted to be someone who stopped blogging completely without signing off somehow. With that in mind, I guess I'm saying that this isn't my last post either."
Well, now it's been another five months, and I've been wondering for a while whether to write an official "last post" but haven't managed to do it. In fact, I've been wondering "why did I write that paragraph? That means I have to write another post but I don't feel like it!" I am still reading some blogs, and very occasionally I even manage to write a comment, but I haven't felt any kind of urge to actually write any more blog material myself. I don't know whether that might happen at some point in the future, but let's call this my last post unless and until the urge returns.
I'd like to say a big thank you again to everyone who has read and commented on my blog. Looking back on it, I don't think I've had even one single negative experience with it (I even once tried to lock horns with an abusive commenter on a different blog and invited him to mine, to no avail.) I'm really glad that I stumbled into this corner of blogworld - not only did it introduce me to LB (it makes a great how-did-you-two-meet story in the real world!) but also I've read many very engaging and entertaining blogs for over a year now, and for the moment I plan to continue to check in. So it's not goodbye to blogworld as a whole - just to the post-writing part.
Wishing much peace, love and happiness to everyone!

Thursday, 14 July 2011

No News Is Good News

Wow - three months since my last post? Time just goes faster and faster! I never wanted to be someone who stopped blogging completely without signing off somehow. With that in mind, I guess I'm saying that this isn't my last post either.

I still think of my blog as a dating blog. More specifically, I think of it primarily as a wacky-dating-dramas blog. For a while now I've been short of blog posts because I haven't been having wacky dating dramas. It's now nearly six months since my first date with LB and I'm very happy be with her. Somehow we've managed to avoid the kinds of events which make for good drama-dating-blogging:

1) I haven't gradually stopped contacting her in the hope that she'll disappear;

2) She hasn't decided that texting her friends is more interesting than talking with me;

3) I haven't gone out and got drunk at a bar and kissed/slept with someone else (being very unlikely to do this is one useful side benefit of not drinking alcohol - and it comes for free!);

4) She hasn't pretended to be pregnant so I can Feel The Fear;

5) I haven't got someone else pregnant, agreed to quickly marry them and then left it to her to find out via Google (this may be the most outrageous break-up story I've seen in a blog - can anyone top it? I hope not!)

I was going to follow that list with five reasons why we may have avoided those dramas - things like honesty, integrity, thoughtfulness... but now that I think about it, I wonder if all of those components could be covered by one word: respect. Maybe by just setting out to treat someone with respect, a lot of other things fall into place. And maybe it's the common thing missing from the five dating-drama examples above.

Oh, but I still give some credit to luck too. I was just about to sign up for online dating when I asked out LB. I'd told some people at work including one woman who had been trying out online dating herself without much reward. A month or so later she asked me if I was online dating yet and I replied that I was "dating dating." Her (jovial) response: "How dare you?!" She had a point: I'd expected to go on some bad dates before graduating to a good one, but instead I lucked out first time.

P.S. My stats page had dropped to 3 or 4 hits per day, as befits a blog which is not being written, but last month suddenly shot up to 50-100 hits per day and has stayed there. If any of you are real people rather than botnets, you're welcome to say hi!

Thursday, 14 April 2011

Blogger Date: Untold Stories

It's been nearly three months now since my first date with Life Begins at 30ty (maybe it's time I started calling her LB for short!) and a lot of the time now it's easy to forget that before that point we were blogger friends who had never met. It's also interesting to look back at my posts about our first date and to see what I wrote but also what I didn't write. Here are a few things which I was self-conscious about sharing at the time:

1) I really did also have a date arranged with a speed dater - according to my stats page, my most popular post ever is Confession Time, which started with my pretending to have cut short my first date with LB to go on another date on the same evening. She had actually suggested the idea for starting the post in that way, but her suggestion initially gave me a shock because, unbeknownst to her, some of it was true! I hadn't double-booked the evening, but I really had been in contact with someone from my speed dating night and was due to go on a first date with her as well. That date was to be a few days after my blogger date with LB, but no exact time or place had been agreed and the speed-dater's emails had become more and more vague and infrequent. After having a great first date with LB and setting up a second one, I realised that I didn't feel like meeting the speed-dater any more, so I cancelled our provisional date and decided not to look for any other dates while seeing where things might go with LB.

2) I was nervous - I was feeling pretty bold when I wrote the comment on her blog asking her on a date, but somehow a couple of days later I started feeling really nervous about the idea. I was trying to rationalise myself through it, but I still had a knot in my stomach at times. This intensified when we agreed on the date of our date, partly as at that point it was only two days away. I then relaxed somewhat on the day before the date until something brought the nerves back:

3) My thoughts on seeing her photos - by coincidence, I'd already seen a photo of her before she invited volunteers for a blogger date - she kind of challenged me to find her online dating profile and I'd managed to do so. Her photo wasn't incredibly clear - it was more of an action shot and was in black-and-white - but she looked cute and friendly and approachable. Then in the run-up to our date she mentioned that she'd changed her profile and photo. At first I didn't look because I thought I'd probably internet-stalked her enough already by finding her profile in the first place! But on the day before our date I decided to look, in order to be more certain of recognising her. Her new photo was much clearer and my reaction - possibly out loud - was "Oh holy hell - she's smoking hot!" Not that I was complaining - but this did bring the nerves back!

Thankfully, while getting ready and making my way to our date, my mind managed to talk my stomach into co-operation. My internal monologue went something like this: "OK, so you're about to go on your first proper first-date in nearly seven years... she seems very cool and she happens to be very hot... funny how life works out sometimes, but let's just go with it and see how it turns out!" And so far how it's turned out is: I'm a lucky guy.

Monday, 14 March 2011

Ten Reasons Why Dating Lifebeginsat30ty Is Awesome

Over these past few weeks I've been mulling over what to write about on this blog at this point. You see, much of the blog so far has been dedicated to past dating stories which often ranged from awkward to disastrous. I never really had a plan for what I might do when I ran out of these stories.

In fact, I'd kind of assumed that I might be about to generate more of them. I was planning to rejoin the world of online dating, hoping to click with someone but accepting that the law of averages would probably result in some more mismatches and mishaps as part of that journey. I wasn't about to seek out unsuccessful dates for blogging purposes but I figured that they would be coming my way anyway.

Well, I've been on plenty of dates recently, but far from being disastrous they've all been really great. I attribute this to the fact that they've all been with Life Begins at 30ty and dating her is awesome, for these ten reasons and more:

1. She's smart and interesting to talk to;

2. She's funny and fun to be with;

3. Two other bloggers have already commented that she's beautiful - they're right;

4. ...and when I tell her this she gets embarrassed, and when she's embarrassed she looks sooo cute;

5. After I mentioned that one of my hobbies is eating, I think our first eight dates all involved going to a restaurant at some stage - and she's never complained about sitting and watching me eat for ages after she's finished!

6. She puts energy into being warm and friendly towards so many people, no matter whether they're a quirky waiter or the owner of a gigantic dog;

7. She's easygoing and unfazed by potential stumbling blocks like turning up to different bars for our first date or ending up on a certain midnight stroll;

8. (To the tune/beat of Milkshake by Kelis):
Her blog posts bring all the readers online
'Cause her blog... is better than mine
Damn right... it's better than mine
She could teach me... I can't make this rhyme...

9. The time just flies by when I'm with her and the end of each rendezvous feels like it has arrived too quickly;

10. When we had our first full-on kiss a thought flashed through my head: If I could be anywhere in the world doing anything at this moment, I'd want to be right here, right now. Happily that feeling has since revisited me often.