Category Archives: Thoughts

Retro-introspective

A two year-old girl hobbles earnestly across a stony courtyard. The scratching at her feet she ignores, such is her intent. Her faithful plush penguin she drags along the ground, his face besmirched. Arriving at an open doorway she sees a man huddled over a keyboard, his fingers pressing angrily on the plastic before him. He doesn’t notice her.

“Daddy! Mummy is owie!” she exclaims.

The man snaps out of his state and rejoins the world. He stands up as the toddler deftly steps aside from the door and she leads him. A few strides later and the frowning man is in his troubled home. The love of his life is slumped at the bottom of the stairs; she’s clutching her ankle.

That is how The Artist and I resumed communication.

A few months on from that incident and a bonfire of our collective histories is ablaze in our back yard. We’ve decided to gamble our futures on a move to her native alpine homeland. It is not without its risks and drawbacks, but we believe it to be the best of our options. I consider it an eminently better environment to raise our daughter. During this time of Brexit neither of us has had any luck on the job front. I can’t see either of us foreigners being first choice for anybody in the job market in the current climate of fear and hate. When people see our surnames or hear our accents mental doors close to us; that’s how it seems. In the twenty-two years I’ve lived on this island every day people have asked me where I am from. Several times a year I’ve been told to “F*ck off back to where I come from”. This happened again a few weeks ago and was the final straw for me. Since the Brexit vote xenophobia has become socially acceptable. I don’t want to raise my daughter in such a bigoted environment.

In two weeks’ time we cram what we can into our little car and set off on a short, one-way road-trip across Europe. Our unsold, needed possessions are going into long-term storage until we have a new home. In the meantime we’re toughing it out in a thirty square metre apartment that The Artist inherited. It has no central heating, but we hope to move on before Winter. It’s in a country town where the mayor gets drunk at the harvest festival and nobody cares. The greatest danger is from fruit falling from the trees that line the few streets as Winter approaches.

Our focus will be on getting jobs and legalizing my status in our new country. If we find a bargain property we’ll buy it, but we’re not counting on that. Her heart isn’t into this move, but her head is. Our collective motivation is not as good as it needs to be to see us through the inevitable tough times that come with emigration.

This is just a continuation of what has been an unending period of constant change in my life. Things just don’t show signs of slowing down, never mind settling down. I feel totally worn out by it all. Getting through each day feels like an achievement.

It’s usually when I have my child on my lap and I’m feeding her that my thoughts wander over to what is right for her. The crap that has filled my head all my life has culminated in a fruitless dead-end. I’m concerned about what I’m going to fill her head with. I just don’t know what is right any more. I’m tasked with building this beautiful little person up while at the same time I’m in a state of deconstruction. I feel like such a hypocrite for telling her things that I don’t believe in any more. For example, I don’t believe that always doing the right thing, the good thing, will be rewarded. Karma is a deceitful bitch. I don’t believe that sharing is caring. I don’t believe that bad people will eventually be punished. Where is the evidence that supports those notions?

Through now being a father and seeing the goodness inherent in my delightful child, I see how far I have fallen. This incessantly happy, laughing little girl shows me daily just how much of a miserable old bastard I have become.

How did this sorry state of affairs come into being?

I flip through my memory bank yearning to make sense of all that has happened to me. My days of dating and dumping loom large in my psyche. It has been pivotal in me arriving at where I am. It is also a microcosm of what has ailed me all my life. I look back on it all now with very mixed feelings.

I started out dating because I wanted to feel loved. I wanted to be in love. I wanted that giddy feeling when I thought of The One. I liked my heart skipping a beat when a new message arrived. The whole mechanism of online dating slowly sucked me into a world of easy sex and careless, disrespectful treatment of and by others. The pursuit of perfection was enabled by merely clicking away or swiping on a device. We’ve all become disposable commodities. How banal.

Yet I went along with it all. I was complicit and I’m ashamed of this. My morals eroded and my perception of women worsened. I don’t think I’m a better person for it all, just a different one. “You can stay as you are or you could go online dating” might work as edgy slogan for a dating site, especially a naughty one.

Through my online escapades I came to learn of my Avoidant Personality Disorder. Working on it is proving a lengthy process. I consider its discovery as one of the greatest benefits of my dating days. It takes time to change lifelong malformed ideas. We all act out our beliefs, often disappointed that the world didn’t play along. “What’s wrong with the world?” we lament. We are our world. Instead we should be asking, “What’s wrong with us?”.

Delving deeper within myself I now know that this unsatisfying chain of events kicked off long ago when I wore a younger man’s clothes. I told myself that the woman before me was the best I could hope for, so we married. I compromised. When we inevitably divorced I was stunned to my core. In a rookie mistake I sought to fill the agonizing void in my existence and went online dating while divorce papers were still pending. Yes, I was on the rebound. I didn’t take time out to get my shit together. I met my now ex-girlfriend and she was the polar opposite of my ex-wife. It was an exciting time…initially. It wasn’t long before every day felt like a roller coaster with her; immense high and low at least once a day. After a humdrum marriage this didn’t seem so bad.

When I gained a clearer perspective and saw just how badly I had been played, I eventually moved on, albeit with an abortive initial attempt. What I did was a repeat of before. I had barely finished collecting the last of my stuff when my first online dating profile went live. I was homeless and unemployed. I needed some feel-good factor to boost my self-confidence. Again, I was on the rebound.

The slew of women I met began well enough, but I now know that this was because they were off paid-for sites. As the pool of suitable candidates on these websites dried up I moved onto the free dating sites. That is when things took a turn for the worse. My negative time on the dating scene I attribute to restricting myself to what then was the novelty of Tinder. My nadir was The MILF of Xmas, another Tinderella. Only once I switched back to using paid-for sites – which tend to enjoy a fillip in January – did I find The Artist.

But wait, there’s more. Yes, there’s a whole other layer below all of this and I consider it the crux of my existence, my malaise. It’s my working life. It’s always been a disaster. I left high school and entered a vortex of good ideas and necessary choices. Never in my working life have I taken a job I wanted; it’s was always what I needed. My love-life has always been the gauze that soothed this festering sore. My marriage had at it core a mutual desire to travel, but that was supplanted by her desire to be a mother. This was one compromise too many for me. I worked for many years as a freelancer, enjoying the higher pay and freedom to travel; that compromise seemed worthwhile.

All that has consumed time and resources that should have been better spent on following a career more to my liking. Alas, few people earn a sustainable living as a writer, so I’ve always put off going for it. Instead I whiled my time away on the next best thing. For three years it was dating all the women I did. I kept telling myself that only once I had found “The One” would things be on the right track.

Along the way I had some wild sexual encounters and chose to pass others up. The Russian Model and Lusty Lass could have been the easiest sex I ever had, but I chose to walk away and am glad for those decisions. The only date I’m disappointed to not have got intimate with was The Model. Perhaps that’s a good thing because my journey might have stopped there. Krazy Girl was the best sex I’ve ever had and still find myself remembering some of the things we did.

My knowledge about womankind is much better but still incomplete. It is good enough to appreciate The Artist for who she is. I don’t think I could do better than her. Sadly I have also learned that the person you desire does not necessarily make for the kind of relationship you need or want. My education about relationships continues apace.

I follow several female bloggers whose writing and experiences I enjoy reading. Something they have in common is that they are afflicted by one special man whose words and actions (or inactions) reduces them to quivering lumps of jelly. I understand their feelings because Baltic Babe had a similar effect on me. I was always comparing the women I met to the feelings I felt when I was with her. Doing this wasn’t fair to everyone involved.

The women bloggers have their own motivations and in a few cases I suspect that their “daddy issues” evokes a similar feeling. They know this feeling, have learned to cope with it and they might like it in a twisted kind of way. Perhaps if they realized that the man they are fixated on would only deliver a horrible relationship once living together, then they might expunge him from their systems and move on to a better proposition?

I may have been a few women’s “special man” whom they couldn’t get out of their head. Sweet Thing and Busty Blonde come to mind. It still pains me to think of the two of them. It’s a stain on my conscience.

The greatest lesson I have learned in life (courtesy of my dating days) is that there are many types of love, but the strongest, unchanging one is that of a parent for their child. All other types of love are subject to change. Perhaps Baltic Babe was right by saying “love is for fools”?

I found “The One” but today my life is a nightmare from which I can’t wake up. Most nights falling asleep I secretly hope not to wake up. It’s the thought of my not being there for my daughter that keeps me continuing this not-so-good fight.

Do you know this person?

I’m toying with the idea of getting my story to the mass-market of readers who don’t follow blogs. My first choice outlet is conventional book format, but failing that I’m prepared to pursue the ebook format, self-publishing if I can’t find someone who shares my vision and can help make it happen. I’m looking for that one person who might be a literary agent or perhaps even a publisher who might be interested in what I have written.

Do you know such a person?

Apart from that I’d welcome any ideas, tips or criticism of what I have written that you care to share with me. The more brutally honest the better.

I think my story archetypical of the modern dating scene and others might benefit from my experience. Many of you have written to me privately voicing your thoughts about finding love via online dating and how my blog has helped them. I’d like to keep this positive momentum going and maybe even get back some of the money I’ve spent on bad dates.

Feel free to drop me a message on: greyknight [at] meanddating [dot] com

Thank you, I’ve appreciated every single comment I’ve ever received. Yours will be no different.

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Date #56 – The Artist – Final part

It’s a bitterly cold Wednesday noon at the end of February 2015. I get to Tower Hill almost an hour earlier than our date, so I scout out the area and find a coffee shop near the Dickens Inn that I’ve never been to. I don’t want to spoil The Artist on the first date despite my wanting to make a good first impression. With time to kill I go to another coffee shop close to where we are to meet and I sit thinking about her and how this date could turn out. I’m really nervous and I don’t know why, but I suspect because I sense real potential with her despite the odds being against me. I know that in her country of origin – somewhere in central Europe – people are incredibly class and status conscious and if she’s of that mindset then we’re both wasting our time. Nothing ventured, nothing gained; it’s time to go find out.

As I sit nursing my over-priced coffee, I realize that this is the best I have felt about myself in several months. Something I’ve been wondering about is did my state of depression come about because I come off a high induced by copious amounts of exciting sex with glorified strangers? There was certainly a pervasive adrenaline rush that I was operating under for several years; I think of it as a prolonged sexualized state. I stopped the sex and the cold turkey stage was my depression?

I can’t think about that now, it’s finally time to meet The Artist. I make my way over to the exit to Tower Hill Tube station where I find a good spot to see and be seen. Thumbing my phone, I’m standing sending her a text message saying that “your knight in dented and tarnished armour is at his spot” when a crowd of people come through the turnstiles. I send my message and look up, wondering if she’s a new arrival. Out of the corner of my eye I fleetingly spot someone who might be her, but I don’t stare. It is her and she comes up to me.

The first impression of The Artist is not a good one. I had been wondering if she might be overweight, but the size of her shocks me. Then I realize that she’s wearing a poncho and her arms are by her side and that makes her look bigger than what she is. Her face is pleasant enough but not nearly as pretty as in all the photos I’d seen on the internet.

I kiss her hello on both cheeks out of habit, despite reading up the previous night that in her culture that that is not the done thing, but she seems happy enough about it. I’m wearing my regular first date outfit of blue jeans, white shirt and smart blazer. Without saying a word she slips a lapel of my jacket between her fingers and I think that she tries to say that I look very smart but I suggest that we get out of the way of the crowds.

“Are we going to St Katharine Docks?” she asks.

Fuck it. I was so hoping that it would be a wonderful surprise for her. So few Londoners even know it exists because it’s right next to Tower Bridge, an area heaving in tourists all year round so locals avoid it.

“Yes,” I say, with a scowl on my face.

“I’m sorry, have I ruined your surprise?” she asks.

“You’re no fun,” I retort and we laugh.

Her laugh is nothing special, but at least she has a sense of humour. People from her country are not famous for their sense of humour. I really can’t be bothered to conjure up an alternative plan on the spot so I decide to soldier ahead with my plan. I really want to see her in surroundings familiar to me, that will make it easier to see her in context.

“How do you know about St Katharine Docks?” I ask.

“My parents brought me here on holiday when I was a teenager and we stayed in the hotel there,” she replies.

“Oh, by the way, how do you pronounce your name?” I ask, not sure if it’s the French or German pronunciation. She tells me and it’s the German version.

“Do you know how to pronounce my name,” I ask, curious as to whether she knows how because native English-speakers struggle to get it right. She says it correctly and I’m impressed. She probably asked someone at work.

As we walk to St Katharine Docks the banter between us is relaxed with a healthy tinge of nervousness at times on both our parts. She’s very smiley and chatty, but I’m still nagged by a feeling of disappointment because it looks as if she made no effort to get dressed up for this date at all. I find that a little disrespectful. In the moment I realize that it’s perhaps not an entirely bad thing because if she was drop-dead stunning I would be so intimidated that my dating behaviour might be thrown off kilter.

We settle into our seats at a table in the coffee shop that I had scouted out earlier. Banter is incessant and comfortable, consisting largely of me asking questions and her doing the talking. She does like to talk. We order coffee and a tiramisu each. Most women on a date are very reluctant to eat anything, preferring usually something neutral to drink that they can nurse for a while. As they become more comfortable in my company they relent and order something, usually because hunger has caught up with them. Not so with The Artist, oh no, she keeps talking and still manages to finish her tiramisu before me. I don’t think anybody has managed to do that before.

As we talk it becomes evident to me that we are an intellectual match for each other. We both have an interest and ability to observe people’s behaviour. We both love history and travel, both have lived in several countries and speak several languages to varying degrees of fluency.

We have many other significant things in common in that we both come from unhappy childhood homes. Her mother died when she was 22 and my father died when I was thirteen. She is also an only child; I think we might be able to understand each other in a way few others can.

I find myself talking about the same old things that I have with the dozens of other dates that I’ve been on in recent years, but today it feels different; today it feels like it really matters. Swapping our life histories feels like the natural thing to do and I find hers mildly interesting. I’m paying attention because I know already that I want to see her again. From my side I feel some chemistry, but of course I have no way of knowing what she’s feeling.

As she speaks I become more taken with her appearance. I can see the good pictures of her on her profile, so if she makes the effort she can scrub up nicely. She has pleasant green eyes that seem soft and loving. Her skin is on the milky-white side but still touched by the sun, yet there are few blemishes. I don’t think that she’s the 38 years old that she states on her profile, she looks younger, but I’m not going to say anything, but will instead see how long it takes for her to come clean with me. Her golden-blonde hair up tight in a confused bun probably adds a few years. I bet she’s beautiful with her hair hanging down, just like in her profile photo that I’ve stared at so much.

So far I’ve come across with active interest and remember to go passive disinterested on her, so I deliberately turn sideways and lean back against the window behind me. She almost instantly leans forward, keeping the distance between us the same, which tells me that she’s very comfortable with me and wants to maintain the vibe.

I can feel the sun on my back and she gets some sun on the front of her, nevertheless I realize that is on the chilly side in this coffee shop, probably from the refrigeration equipment. It surprises me then to see The Artist every few minutes taking another layer of clothing off until she is only wearing a thin vest-like top. I make a concerted effort to not let her catch me checking out her breasts; I know it comes across as lame and immature to a woman notices a man doing that. I also know from female friends and Busty Blonde that their breasts are something they are particularly cautious about.

So it surprises me further when The Artist sits back in her seat, puts her arms around the back of her seat and essentially sticks her breasts out at me. I deliberately don’t look, struggling manfully to fight Nature and keep looking her in the eye. Only when she looks away a few times do I stare at what I consider an amazing rack; I would love to fondle and kiss them. How does she not fall over when she walks? Patience; she’s either subconsciously trying to attract me or is deliberately doing this for whatever reason. I would prefer it if it was the former because that makes it more sincere and powerful.

Conversation between us twists and turns easily and naturally. It becomes evident to me that we have a very similar way of looking at matters and interpreting them. I sense that she has a gentle nature, but more importantly I come to the conclusion that she is a Good Girl and a Giver. I can trust her and I already know from her life story that I can respect her. I’m starting to sense serious relationship material here.

Its been a couple of hours now and I don’t want this quick coffee date to end any time soon, but it’s getting cold in here and these seats are uncomfortable. I didn’t want to do this on our first date for fear of spoiling her if I thought that there would be a second date, but walking over to the Dickens Inn is the obvious thing to do. Will she want to do this? It’s a big assumption to think that she’s as interested in me as I am in her, but ‘he who fears rejection never knows love’.

“I’m getting hungry. How about we go share a pizza and a drink over there?” I suggest, nodding toward the Inn, holding my breath as I await her answer.

“Yes, I am too. Sounds like a good idea,” she says without any hesitation.

Oh yes, I think she’s feeling what I’m feeling too. Her smile and eyes hint at this. I also get the feeling that she wants to touch me; I don’t know why I think this, but I do. She goes off to the ladies and I guard her belongings that she has left at the table. I sit there in a mild stupor, contemplating the hereto unimaginable in that I might have finally found The One. Stop it, I’m being stupid, it’s only been a few hours…but I can’t help feeling this way.

Upon her return I say “My turn,” but I don’t go to the ablutions and instead go settle the bill for our coffees and cakes. I steal a glance her way and she’s sitting staring out at the marina, smiling to herself. She looks happy.

I return to our table and help her get her layers back on. She seems quite at ease with me doing so, unlike some of the other women I’ve dated who didn’t have a clue what was going on or didn’t like it. The Artist is as classy as I was expecting. Good, she might appreciate some of my old-fashioned touches and in the next few hours together I’ll know for sure, not just about that, but a host of other things too.

“We need to pay,” she says.

“I’ve already taken care of it,” I respond with a wry smile.

“Oh, well then thank you,” she retorts.

“You’re welcome,” is all I say. Hmm, she has manners too; that’s good. So many of my dates haven’t had the common decency to say ‘thank you’ for anything.

We get seated in the Dickens Inn at a quiet table away from the hubbub and my regular waiter gives me a knowing wink. He’s not done that before. Does he know something I don’t?

Pizza and wine is ordered quickly, something I pay attention to wondering if she’s a ditherer. To my delight she’s decisive and orders the spiciest pizza on the menu and asks the waiter for a bottle of tabasco sauce. She likes her food spicy, which pleases me because I know it’s a sign of her being an enthusiastic lover.

We make pleasant small-talk about our travels and I ask where she wants to go to next. It’s a ploy I’ve used in the past with other dates, getting them to project forward about something positive as this makes for a pleasant date. Today my question isn’t about mind games, it’s genuine interest. The Artist rattles off a series of places that I’ve already been to, but I say nothing, pleased again that she shares an interest in similar places. I can see myself going back to these places with her, especially China, Japan and Turkey.

We lose ourselves in conversation and an idea comes to me as we finish dessert. I do my old dating trick of presenting her my spoon laden with dessert to see if she’ll play along. She has the same dessert on her plate but to my delight leans forward and with a naughty tinkle in her eye takes my spoon in her mouth.

My heart thunders as I smile.

Another idea comes to me, all my moves are coming out tonight.

“What colour are your eyes?” I ask.

“Light green,” she says.

“I can’t see. Come closer,” I respond.

She leans forward again, leaning her breasts on the table.

“I still can’t see. Closer,” I say.

The Artist smiles, I think she’s rumbled my plan, but nevertheless leans over as far as she can.

I lean forward, my lips stopping just short of hers. I look her in the eye.

She almost stands up out of her seat, her elbows on the table propping her up and our lips meet.

Her lips feel like fine strands of silk.

She has no hesitation in kissing me, that’s good. As first kisses go it’s not bad, but not as good as I would like. Maybe I’ve been spoiled in the past?

The Artist smiles and sits back in her seat, there’s a hint of a blush.

“Did you write to me hoping that I would answer?” I ask.

“Yes,” she says, with a coy smile.

The restaurant staff noisily start closing for the night and we realize that we’re the last patrons. I settle the bill while The Artist goes to the ladies. She makes a point of thanking me for paying when she returns to the table and realizes what I’ve done.

Walking back to the Tube station I stop her twice and under a clear moon above we embrace in increasingly passionate kisses. I don’t want this night to end. I want to talk more, get to know more about her, make plans for the future and walk around holding her hand. I resist the urge to extend the evening and risk spoiling it somehow. I’ve learned it’s best to end a date on a good note, leaving the woman wanting more. We say our goodbye at the Tube station, agreeing to be in touch again.

She is one of the prettiest women I have met for a date. I struggle to think of a woman I’ve met with bigger breasts than her. She is definitely my intellectual equal and we both love history. I think that she’s very sweet and has made her fair share of mistakes in relationships.

I’m disappointed by her poor dress sense for a first date; a shawl, a gilet and a poncho is not very elegant. In the grand scheme of things that’s trivial.

Can I live with her imperfections? Yes, at the moment they seem petty. Do I realistically think that I can do better than her? Possibly, but it will take a long time. Do I think I can fall in love with her? I’m inclined to say ‘yes’, but it’s only been one date.

I consider it quite an achievement to have gone on a date with her. I’ve felt a bit on the defensive the whole time since I first saw her profile because she seems a social class above me, now having met her I still feel that way. However, I want to see where things lead with her. There are two milestones in the future, the first is getting her to sleep with me and the second is to have a relationship with her. I’m pretty confident that I can bed her, but it’s too soon to say if we can have a relationship.

I am so taken with The Artist that on my train home I send a text message to someone whom I’m supposed to meet on the weekend saying that I’ve met someone else and that her and I won’t be meeting any time soon.

The Artist feels good and right, perfect even, but I’ve been here before.

Jeff Buckley – Hallelujah

Psychopath love

I’ve been seeing someone I haven’t told you about, someone I used to know. Over the course of just over a year my ex-girlfriend (Exgf) and I have met for coffee and a chat; that’s all. It has always occurred at her request and I’ve always gone along with it because I still have a lot of money tied up in the house we used to call home. I’ve given of my time because it has been in my interest to do so, in a vain, almost desperate hope that one day that money will be returned to me. I’d rather have nothing to do with her, but our catch-ups (as I think of them) has turned out to serve the purpose of furthering my education about women, relationships and myself.

Ever since the date with the English Shrink and the resulting epiphany that my ex-girlfriend is the archetypical psychopath I have seen her as something of an experiment, an opportunity to learn more about the inner workings of a psychopath by being able to go behind the scenes. I have been careful to not let her unpredictable appearances influence me in any way. My seeing her as a stone-cold manipulator makes it easier to feel nothing for her and believe very little that she says. I’ve been pleased by how little sway she has had with me, especially when I was having serious doubts about Busty Blonde or absolutely single.

I was seeing Busty Blonde until June 2014, then a plethora of short-term flings that you have read about in detail afterwards. Not once did I initiate contact with Exgf.

Here’s what transpired in that year.

17th February 2014
Just had my Exgf on phone telling me that a boyfriend from when she was 21 has made a reappearance and wants to see where things lead. I offered to check him out online for her, but I find very little. I feel she deserves happiness like anyone else. I happen to know what happened when they were a young couple; it all unravelled because of her. My concern is that the leopard has not changed its spots. She tells me that he has just come out of a long-term marriage. To my mind he’s on the rebound and regressing emotionally, hence seeking her out. Nothing can come of it in the long run because both their motivations are bad and not the same.

20th March
My Exgf called me up at lunchtime, just like she did the day before. The previous day’s call had no real point to it other than to chat it seemed. Today’s call was to suggest meeting up in my town for a quick coffee. Out of curiosity I oblige and we meet outside my apartment and go to the local Costa. She is chatty about her new job and the training she has just started. I’m paying close attention to what questions she asks, and unsurprisingly, it is about Busty Blonde. I can’t believe my bad luck when my nosey ex-neighbour walks into the coffee-shop. The neighbour’s face when she sees with my Exgf is priceless.

The discussion turns at my Exgf’s insistence towards women and their sexuality. She asks me how I reconcile myself to the fact that I want to do nasty things, like have a woman use a bottle as a dildo on herself, but am disapproving of a woman who has done such things with another guy. It’s a fair question and one that I do not answer because I am more curious about why she is asking this. I don’t ask about her motivations nor did I give the answer to her question. The unspoken answer to her question is thus: I feel no desire for a defiled woman, but I do feel attraction for a woman that I can defile and defiling her is an exquisite sensation. Why? Simple, just like so many sexual encounters, there is a transfer of power, from the one allowing herself to be defiled to the one in control of what is happening. It’s a glorious ego-trip, plain and simple. That good ol’ male ego is alive and well within me still.

My Exgf told me that she had two platonic male friends, both of whom have recently tried their luck with her, but she swatted them off. She tells me that she is still holding out for an encounter with her ex-boyfriend from over 20 years ago. I feel nothing emotionally upon hearing that, whereas I think she was checking me for a reaction. My Exgf and I went for a walk around the high street and then go our separate ways, neither of us making noises about meeting again.

14th May
My Exgf phones me, telling me that she started her new job as a flight attendant and then drops by innuendo the fact she has started seeing a guy – an Irish hotelier – and it involves sex. I feel absolutely nothing. I think all the negative feelings that I harboured for her are gone. She is truly nobody to me now. If she was hoping to hear a jealous or shocked response from me she must have been bitterly disappointed.

1st June 2014
My Exgf phones me out of the blue; her usual work situation had come about. After only two weeks as an air stewardess she was at odds with everybody and going to senior management about it. She’s a very slow learner; this happens wherever she works. It’s all part of her psychopathic being in that everything is always someone else’s fault.

She tells me that she hadn’t seen her new boyfriend in over a week. They had been on five dates and slept together on one of them. The most recent date was a breakfast meeting only because she was summoned to work at short notice after having invited him over. Less than an hour after arriving at her place she had to go to work. She hasn’t heard from him since and can’t figure out why.

He mentioned to her that he was going to a jazz club in London that week, but that he only had one ticket which he was grateful to have got. Exgf didn’t believe him and phoned the club, asking about the ticket sales for the event that he was attending. The club confirmed that ticket sales had been brisk and sold out quickly. She’ll never change, her own tricky nature causes her to see the same in other people.

17th June 2014
Just had Exgf sitting on my sofa telling me about her new shitty job and how good her new boyfriend is in bed but how ugly he is. Listening to this shit I wondered to myself, “What the hell did I ever see in you? What was the massive attraction? Why did I feel the things that I did for you?”

If I were to come across her profile today I wouldn’t even read it. I really can’t remember why I felt that she was The One; the person I would spend the rest of my life with. Tonight I couldn’t wait for her to leave, so much has my disdain for her grown.

I think that with time we all move on emotionally, imperceptibly, but we do. I now seriously doubt that it is normal for a couple to have a permanent relationship that lasts all their lives. It’s just not natural.

11th August 2014
Whenever I interact with Exgf via my phone, to me it feels like I’m dealing with a prostitute. I was curious to hear what she had been up to, a form of cheap thrills for me and more lessons in my never-ending education about women, love and relationships.

2nd September 2014
I get a call at ten in the morning from my Exgf as she woke up. She has a hair appointment in my town and wants to catch up. I’m suspicious about her motives but wonder if she is bringing me a birthday present. She comes to my place and uses the toilet, making mention of all the long blonde hairs that are on the bathroom wall. I made a mental note to wash those walls down before another woman comes to visit me.

We go to a Costa Coffee and I’m happy to let her buy me the biggest coffee I can order. It is nice to get some money back off her. Exgf sat and ate while I regale her with my shenanigans with the Busty Czech and The Saffa. I do this to tease her, toy with her, like she used to with me, except I was too blind to see it when we were a couple. Then it was her turn to tell me of her dating exploits. The Irish hotelier was still on the scene, but she knows it’s never going to amount to anything. After a bit of badgering by me she agreed that, in effect, he was just a friend with benefits.

When Exgf arrived, it was obvious to me from how she was dressed that she was on her way to a date. So I chide her about it. She tells me it was indeed a date, happening in a few hour’s time. It’s with a guy she has seen twice before. She likes him as a person but wouldn’t have sex with him. I pointed out that her boobs were noticeably on display, to which she responded, “Well, that’s just to show him what he won’t be getting”.

Even now I find her breasts very attractive. I’ve forgotten how they felt in my hands; it’s been almost a year. When I’m feeling horny, instead of watching porn, I watch the two videos I made with her. I still find them incredibly arousing.

Exgf tells me more about her date, speaking glowingly about their common interests, how loaded he was, how he had rich family in my town, how we was a prize catch for someone who fancied him. It was interesting to see her speaking of this guy in terms of being a material prize. She was more about the money than I had realized. Exgf claimed that her issue with him was that he was somewhat low-class and not very intelligent, but she enjoyed his company nevertheless. She says that, but I could see her letting him fuck her anyway; a pity-fuck. Perhaps she’d let him finger her; she always liked that. In a reciprocal gesture she’d probably suck him off because she wouldn’t think twice about doing that. I know her better now.

We parted ways and to my surprise she hugs and kisses me. A couple of times earlier, walking from my place and in the shop, she had made unnecessary physical contact. My hours in the gym are having an effect; she likes my muscles, but they’re not meant for her.

Back home I later started baiting her with suggestive text messages. I suggested that she was very welcome to come back to avail herself of the champagne bottle that she had used as a dildo the previous year. Her responses were one of indignation, but I know that they had an effect, not that she liked them, but that she would be thinking about it for days to come. After our years together I know how to turn her on and it involves days of planting naughty ideas in her head that she eventually had to fulfil. Turn a woman’s mind on and her body will follow.

I asked her what show she would be giving me this year for my birthday. Would I want to watch her doing something sexual with an object or another man – and film it? Yes, such is my disregard for her and showing just how much I see her as merely a sexual object in my world.

21st September
Exgf and her Irish boyfriend had met the Queen at Windsor castle at a soiree there. Exgf told me a few months earlier that once this event was over that she would dump him. I reminded her of this and she replied that things were getting interesting and that “he knew many, many people”. I chided her with, “So you’re using him for contacts and he’s using you for sex?” She replied with “what makes you think I’m not using him for sex too?” So, she doesn’t fancy him and knows that there is no long-term future, but she’s still shagging him and looking to exploit his contacts. Charming.

After that conversation I sat thinking of my experience with The Brazilian and how disappointed I was with that outcome. I wondered if she was just using me for a quick roll in the hay; probably. Is The Saffa doing the same with me?

2nd October
As usual she comes to my town for a plausible reason which I suspect is one of her endless lies. She can not get through a day without telling a lie, whereas I go years without lying. We go to a local pub where I buy us pizzas and beers. We sit on a sofa and chat like a normal couple would. She tells me about her money troubles and problems with colleagues at work; some things will never change with her. She has always chewed the skin on her thumbs to pieces when stressed so I try to take a thumb in my hand. I was expecting her to pull away or look shocked, but instead she turns and looks at me with tenderness in her eyes and grips my hand affectionately with hers. She quickly lets go when she realizes what she had done. “I just want to look at the state of your thumb,” I said. She still wants me, but I don’t feel the same way. She’s just a source of amusement to me now.

Later in the encounter she proudly tells me that she is seeing four guys, but only sleeping with the Irishman. One guy she fancies, one she likes as a person and the other gets no mention. She asks me if she still gives the best blowjob in my opinion. I find that question strange.

23rd October
She phones me to say that she’s down in the dumps and can do with some cheering up. We meet outside my block and walk to a nearby coffee shop. She’s tense, but I know she’s stressed, as usual, so I decide to be polite and civil. I have no agenda for the encounter. We talk about nothing in particular, I think she badly wanted to be distracted; she gets bored very easily. I think it’s a contributing factor to her promiscuous past. She tells me that she finally dumped the Irishman.

We end up back at my place where I make us lunch because she had mentioned not having any food in her house. I feel sorry for her, for a variety of reasons. She wolfs the curry down and I can see that she’s intent on just wasting time with me, while I have work that I’d rather be getting on with. I orchestrate movements such that she feels compelled to leave. If she wanted to suck me off, I would have let her, but she’s made it very plain that that’s “never going to happen again”. The way I know her, the fact she keeps saying it, means she’s thinking about it.

Later in the day she sends me two text messages, “Thank you for cheering me up. I do appreciate it,” followed by, “But you’re still not getting in my knickers”. I respond with, “You need to get yourself tested and ask me for it before you get that privilege,” which I know will focus her mind. I know it also gives me the upper hand.

The next night, a Friday night, she phones to ask if I’d like to go away to Sharm el Sheikh with her. She can get very cheap flights and knows how to get cheap hotels there. If I wasn’t keen on The Cockaholic or seeing anyone else, I’d be tempted. I know we’d end up fucking but that would complicate life between us. So I decline her offer, citing a lack of money, but I can hear that she’s disappointed. She retorts by saying that she’ll ask the guy she dumped a few days ago if he’d like to go.

4th January 2015
The past few months have seen little interaction with the Exgf, which has suited me. I’m finding each encounter with her increasingly pointless other than to remind me of how wrong about someone I can be. She comes around randomly when she has time off and probably bored. She kept seeing the Irishman with connections, using him, not ever feeling anything for him. They were just friends with benefits. She valued the fact that he used a condom when fucking her, but moaned about the fact that he refused to manscape and would often just lie there and she had to do the work.

She stayed on several dating sites, notably Plenty of Fish (PoF), which she claimed just kept options open and gave her something of a social life. I can see the similarities with her early adult years in that she loved the attention. She kept dating a guy who was a keen gardener, something that she appreciated, but wasn’t attracted to him. She dated several other guys at the same time, but was just being fucked by the Irishman and enjoyed the company of the gardener.

Eventually she tired of both of them, citing incompatible work schedules with the Irishman and lack of desire with the other. She said that she did get off with the gardener a few times and would feel his cock, but it was too small for her liking. She claimed only to have felt it, never more than that. I don’t believe her; she’ll have sucked it, especially if he fingered her. Apparently he was quite upset when she ended it as it came as a total surprise to him. What drove matters to a head was him suggesting that they go away together.

Then she came across a guy on PoF who seemed to tick all her boxes. Let’s call him ‘Dick’. She was quite taken with him and told me that he was the first guy that she ever felt anything for since me. It occurred to me that it is in my interest to see her happy and matched, perhaps her new beau will buy me out of the house. I encouraged her to see where things led with her new flame.

They had been on only a couple of dates before Dick suggested that they go away together. She was coming up to the busy time of the year doing demo work in shops now that her air stewardess days were over. She wanted to know if they were sexually compatible; time was a factor in whether or not she wanted to keep seeing him. So a few weeks later they went to a hotel in Stratford-upon-avon where they shagged the night away. Apparently as first times go it was good.

A few weeks later she starts telling me of her reservations about Dick. He doesn’t like holding hands, something that she expects to do and it really bothers her. He is quite selfish in that he always expects her to fall in line with whatever suits him. The thing that bothers her most is that Dick doesn’t lavish her with attention. She likes and wants a man to pursue her, to send her text messages and emails every day. She tells me that she doesn’t want this because its romantic, it’s because it tells her that he wants her more than she wants him, a feeling that gives her a sense of power. I find her honesty refreshing and I also pause to remember that that was exactly how our early days together were.

She says that she’ll give it time, something I encourage her to do because it’s in my interest that she finds someone as foolish as me. Apparently Dick’s a fitness fanatic and fucks her for hours on end. He can cum once an hour, which I find impressive as does she. He must be enjoying fucking her and sucking on her big fat tits; I would if I were him.

Monday 5th January 2015
At 9pm she phones me; her car’s has broken down. She’s sitting in the car park of a pub waiting for a tow-truck. She starts telling me as usual how shit her life is and the topic wonders over to Xmas and New Year’s. She tells me that she’s “met somebody”. A Spaniard off Tinder who, on the third date, came to her place and cooked Xmas lunch. I ask if Dick is history and she says ‘no’. She’s keeping him around because the sex is great. I ask if she’s slept with the Spaniard and she says not. I ask why and she says it’s because he hasn’t made a move on her and she’s on her period. She doesn’t find him physically attractive either and says that he’s a little pudgy. She did spend a night in bed with him on New Year’s, but nothing happened. She’s concerned that he has sexual hangups and won’t be any good in that department. So, just like the MILF of Xmas, she wants it both ways.

Tuesday 11th January 2015
She phones me during the day, just before noon, asking for advice about a software problem. Then she gets choked up and starts crying on the phone, telling me she’s struggling with life before ending the call. She calls back later at 3pm asking if I could come around and help her move her desk and computer to another room of the house. Out of kindness, feeling sorry for her and with no agenda whatsoever, I go around after 6pm. As I go about moving everything and fixing her myriad of problems she tells me that after she rang off she sent a booty call to her stud. He came around, they fucked and she swallowed his load. After he left is when she phoned me. Charming.

She tells me that she has felt so guilty about stringing along the Spaniard that she is avoiding interacting with him. I find that rather prescient because that’s probably what has happened with me and the MILF of Xmas. She’s hoping that this Spaniard will stop sending her flowers and messaging her. I remember her saying that that is what she wants, but seemingly only from a guy that she wants. I ask if the turn-off is that he is too keen, to which she agrees. She’s hoping that he just gets the message and goes away.

Exgf is still intent on keeping Dick around, but only for the sexual benefits as he can shag for hours she says. She knows that they have no long-term future together because she finds him totally selfish.

The conversation gets heavily sentimental and we reminisce about us. She tells me that she has come to realize that I’m the only man she has ever loved, but has resolved that she’ll never allow herself to feel that way again because the pain afterwards is just too much for her. A back-handed compliment that I find tinged with sadness.

More than anything else, what I got from this interaction, is a stark demonstration of how she uses men. It also shows that a man can be too nice to a woman and can get kicked in the teeth for it. I include myself still in that category; I won’t be helping her with anything again.

End of January 2015
Exgf tells me that she has no trust or respect for the guy she thought could be her One. She does enjoy sex with him because it’s raw. He also does as she asks and uses a condom every time. Then she tells me that she’s seeing the Spaniard on the weekend.

After the weekend she phones me up to pick my brain about something to do with psychometric tests for a job application. Then she tells me that she saw the Spaniard on the weekend, but didn’t sleep with him and has no desire to do so. He seems unwilling, unable or too inept to make that happen. She says that she’s happy to keep seeing him as a social outlet. The user keeps on using.

I loved her intensely. Every day my heart pounded from my feelings for her. It was an illusion and the illusion was all mine, but carefully crafted and delivered by her. The reality, a hard, cold reality of what was really going on was all hers. The person I loved became, when the illusion was shattered, somebody that I used to know. Of course that person didn’t really exist.

If I were to meet my Exgf today, not that I would ever even approach her on a dating site, I would not think her anything special, nor would I find her that unique.

My Exgf is living proof of my now-lost naivety.

Gotye – Somebody That I Used To Know

Beautiful stranger on a train

It’s been more than a week since I switched off my dating profiles, but this morning I switched them on, thinking they’re like drift-nets out at sea; maybe one day someone interesting will swim into them. Well tonight something interesting did indeed happen, but not anything like what I was expecting.

The Wanderer was visiting London and I went to meet her. We had a fun, friendly evening catching up and I went back to a major train station to get a train home.

As I walk along the platform I spot a pretty blonde sitting on a scarce seat along the wall and we make eye-contact. I like the look of her but I keep walking to the far end of the platform.

A minute later she walks over and stands next to me. We’re the only two people standing so far from the growing crowd.

Gulp.

We make eye contact a few times, then smile suggestively to each other.

I can’t help but conclude that she deliberately came to stand next to me. There was no reason for her to do so.

People start to shuffle forward to claim a spot where they think a door will be on the train as it stops.

She moves forward and I think, sod it, I shall too.

I stand next to her.

She feels my presence and turns to me. Our eyes meet and she smiles coyly before quickly looking away.

The train arrives and we all pile on. It’s a fast train, so the next stop is half an hour away. She gets the aisle seat of a two-seater while I decide to stand near the doors as I normally do.

Everyone has their seat and the train is about to depart. She looks around, our eyes meet again…and she moves over to the window seat, cramming herself into the two-seater unnecessarily.

No, fuck it, I’m going to go sit next to her and I’ll wait for an excuse to talk to her.

I go sit next to her.

We don’t look at each other.

I keep peering out the corner of my eye for an excuse to talk to her. Nothing presents itself.

After a while she sneezes.

Here’s my chance to say, “bless you” as an ice-breaker.

After that I’ll launch into my prepared cheesy, “I know this is totally random and you’re going to laugh, but I don’t suppose you’re single?”

I can’t say it.

I can’t say a word.

Something inside me has locked up tight.

I chicken out.

I’m angry and ashamed at my cowardice.

Then I realize that that is my problem.

I’m ashamed.

I’m ashamed of everything.

I’m ashamed of me. Ashamed of my life. Ashamed of my possessions. Ashamed of being unemployed.

My brain starts racing and projecting what could happen if I strike up a conversation with this cutie that might lead to a date.

I wouldn’t want her asking what I do because I have got to the point where I now fear that question.

I wouldn’t want to invite her to my home, because I’m ashamed of it.

The idea of taking her out on dates fills me with a sense of dread because I just can’t afford it.

This realization is an epiphany to me.

Not only am I not ready for love, I am also not even capable of dating at the moment.

The train gets to the first station and she stands up. God, she’s nice. Perfect-looking, in fact.

I turn my legs aside to the aisle so that she can get past. She takes her time passing me and I look up.

She’s looking down at me and she gives me a lovely smile. I watch through the misty window as she disappears into the oblivion outside.

An earlier version of me would never have let this play out like it has.

I feel like dying.

I’ve switched off all my dating profiles again.

I’m continuing to give dating a break.

This experience just reinforces my belief that the man in the mirror needs to make some changes.

Michael Jackson – Man in the mirror