Tag Archives: chivalry

Rainy date

On the Wednesday night I see Busty Blonde again. This time I’m treating her to a West End show and a restaurant meal beforehand. I’m doing this not to impress her or because she deserves it in some way, but because Christmas is near, the vibe in London is festive and I want to do something nice to see the year out.

I wait for her in a coffee shop near her work and she meets me a few minutes early. It’s rare for a date to be early. I greet her with a kiss on each cheek, a la French style. Again I’m struck by how much older than me she looks. On our first date on Sunday she had mentioned that she had been a smoker, so I’m learning that ex-smokers look a few years older than their actual age. Sweet Thing, The Lost One, Teacher Gal, Deranged Dater, Wild Child, The Randy Russian and The English Shrink were all ex-smokers and, courtesy of extra wrinkles around the eyes, looked older than what they were.

It’s pouring with Winter rain and we make the best of it trying to huddle under my umbrella, but I give up on it and choose to cover her properly with it while I slowly get soaked. We walk over a pedestrian bridge that spans the Thames and at the bank there’s a steep set of stairs. Busty Blonde clings tight to my arm as we descend it. At the bottom of the stairs we encounter a mother with a pram, trying to make her way up the stairs, but struggling to do so. Without a word I force the umbrella into Busty Blonde’s hand and I carry the pram to the top of the stairs. The mother thanks me and I rejoin my date.

“You really are an old-fashioned gentleman. You’re very rare,” Busty Blonde says.

I just smile and move us along to Chinatown for our dinner. As we walk I muse to myself that the world has become a sad place if I am so rare in my consideration for others. To my mind kindness is like manners: it doesn’t cost anything, but it is valuable. I contend that if chivalry is indeed dead, then it was murdered by feminism. Many modern men are afraid of being chivalrous because they are afraid of being called sexist or patronising by a vocal, embittered feminist. I’ve been on the receiving end of such verbal attacks, but I just laugh them off because their behaviour is far uglier than mine. Besides, you can’t reason with an unreasonable person.

Busty Blonde and I arrive at the Chinese restaurant which is found via an unremarkable small door in a nondescript alley but then opens out into a courtyard that has a small footbridge over a water feature in the approach to the dining area.

“Gosh, you’d never think that this was here. You do know interesting places,” Busty Blonde says.

Gosh. Who in this day and age uses that word any more? Then again, who carries a stranger’s pram with a baby inside it up a flight of stairs in a downpour any more? I guess Busty Blonde and I are outliers on some curve somewhere.

We take turns to go to the restroom to dry ourselves off. For the first time in my life I stick my drenched head under the hand dryer. It was tricky but it worked.

We sit down to what I knew would be a remarkable extravaganza of Pekingnese and Szechuan cuisine. I tell Busty Blonde about my travels around China and she’s mesmerised. Her life has been dedicated to work and just the occasional short-haul flight to somewhere on the Mediterranean counted as travel for her. From her words and questions it seems that she is an unrequited traveller. I can’t help but think that we have much in common in terms of what we enjoy.

Dinner ends and we make our way to the theatre where The Commitments is being staged. I got us last minute seats so they’re not the best in the house but are easy to find. Busty Blonde enjoys the show and at intermission we get drinks from the bar. I remember something from our first date of a few days ago.

“So how was your tough day on Monday?” I ask, not expecting much in return.

“Oh, it was awful. I had to make my whole department redundant. I had to call each of them in and give them the news. I think having to sack people just before Christmas is despicable,” she answers.

“I’m sorry to hear that. I’ve never enjoyed sacking people either,” I reply, hoping my words ease her discomfort.

“Now guess what? Today I got retrenched. That’s why I came out early to meet you. I just don’t give a damn any more. I worked hard for them for twelve years, then they make me sack people with families, then once I’ve done that for them, I get sacked,” she says bitterly.

“Never mind. You’re a smart cookie with loads of experience. Something will come along. Perhaps even something better. You never know,” I say, trying to lift her spirits.

“I hope so. I’ve never been unemployed before,” she retorts.

A bell sounds and we retake our seats. I tell myself that I’m proving a pleasant distraction for her after a rough couple of days. When the show ends we rejoin the world outside where the rain has abated. Busty Blonde is starting to look tired and I suggest that we call it a night. I walk her to the nearest Tube station where I wait with her on the platform until her train arrives. We quickly kiss each other goodbye on the lips before she hops on the train, takes a seat facing me, smiles and gives me a brief wave. I smile and wave back just as the train speeds off.

If she hadn’t told me about her work situation I would never have guessed that something bad had happened to her today. Banter between us is lively, just as I had expected. She’s a naturally upbeat person and she always seems to look for the positive in anything. I like that. Do I fancy her? Not really. Do I enjoy being with her? Absolutely.

What do I do about Busty Blonde? I really don’t know.

Travis – Why Does It Always Rain On Me?

Lightning Strikes Thrice

I was expecting to hear from Pretty Teacher on Saturday night as it was her turn to call; she didn’t. On Sunday morning I get the feeling that we won’t be seeing each other. It was noon on Sunday when she called; I wasn’t sure what to expect. The call started out amicably enough but quickly grew serious.

“I’ve been thinking,” she starts out, takes a breath then follows with “and I’ve decided that you’re not right for me.”

It felt like I have been hit by a bolt of lightning.

I really didn’t see this coming. In my guessing about what was bugging her I hadn’t for a moment considered that she was about to dump me. I swallow hard, collect my thoughts, latch onto a notion and begin to speak.

“Do you mind telling me why?” I ask.

“Yes, you’re just too confident,” she replies.

“Sorry, what?!” I stammer.

“You’re the most naturally confident man I’ve ever met. You ooze self-assurance,” she says.

“I’m sorry, but I don’t understand why that’s a problem,” I counter. Is this some lame excuse for something else that she doesn’t want to tell me about, I wonder to myself.

“I’m very close to my family and I don’t think that they’d take to you. You’re just not as humble and quiet like English men,” she answers.

I’m stunned.

“Are you serious?” I blurt out.

“Yes, absolutely. I’m off to have lunch with them now and the thought of taking you with to meet them makes me uncomfortable,” she says.

I know that she thinks the world of her family and there’s nothing wrong with that. I think it’s great that she’s so close to her family because I’ve never known what that’s like. I think it a major factor in a long-term relationship if your other half’s parents like you. My ex-wife’s parents didn’t like me because I wasn’t religious enough for them and it weighed on our marriage.

“Okay, I understand your concern. So are you saying that we have no future together because of a cultural difference?” I ask.

“I suppose putting that it way, well, the answer’s a yes, I guess,” she says.

I’m stunned again. Then my fledgling sense of paranoia kicks in, spiced up with a sense of guilt that probably helped it to the surface of my psyche. I have been wondering about something.

“Tell me, why did you call me so late on Wednesday afternoon?” I ask, suspicious that she might have seen someone herself that day and that’s the real reason we’re having this chat. If that’s the case then I’d feel a whole better about things.

“Well if you must know, I spent the entire time with my friends discussing you and what I should do about you,” she answers with a cold bluntness that I don’t like.

So Pretty Teacher and her friends sat decorating that Christmas tree while discussing me. Not one of them have even seen me, let alone spoken to me. All they had to go on was what Pretty Teacher chose to tell them, that committee of overly-protective friends. What fun they must have had. They took turns stabbing my character with their flaming tongues, while my cock was stabbing Krazy Girl. Now I’m glad I was doing the latter, so very glad.

I’m not going to ask what she got up to last night, there’s no point and I now really don’t care. We politely end the call by wishing each other well for the future.

I feel disappointed that things with Pretty Teacher have turned out like this. Not seeing her final move tells me that I still have much to learn. I sit pontificating all that I’ve just heard. I appreciate her honesty, as uncomfortable as it feels, but the truth apparently sets us free. Free to do what exactly? I feel bewildered by Pretty Teacher, but now for different reasons.

Less than an hour later my phone rings again. This time it is my Exgf. Time for a booty call? I could do with a bit of physical pampering right now. She does give a good blowie. After initial polite chit-chat it turns out that my Exgf has other ideas.

“Well, I’ve been thinking…” she begins.

Hang on, I’ve heard that somewhere else today.

“Our little arrangement has now come to an end. No more fuckbuddies, you and I, mister,” she says emphatically, as if chastising a child.

Again I feel like I’ve been struck by lightning. I also didn’t see this coming, well, not so soon and not like this.

“Huh?” is the best I can say. Classy, I know.

“Yes, we can only be friends from now on,” she states.

“What’s brought this on?” I ask, curious about her reasoning.

“Sally says that I’ve been a fool for letting you date other women while shagging me. I agree with her,” she answers.

Humph. Women advising each other about me never ends well. Are there voodoo dolls of me in the stores?

I know my Exgf, once her mind’s made up there’s no changing it. In the early days of our relationship I thought that a commendable trait but in the latter years it became a pain in the backside. I have to accept her decision, which I’m fine with because I knew our fuckbuddy days would come to an end one day. I was struggling to think of a way to engineer a soft landing to end it without there being any negative fallout for either of us. This outcome suits us both. We make small-talk and end the call amicably, agreeing to keep in touch, but only as friends.

I can’t believe that I’ve had these two conversations less than an hour apart. I sometimes get the feeling that I’m living life according to someone else’s script. What’s the chances of these two calls happening in such short order and having the same negative result for me?

Life wasn’t done with me there though.

About an hour later my phone rings again and I’m reluctant to even look to see who it is. Ah, it’s my female friend who introduced me to her friend that I shall forever more think of as The Bitch. Yes, I’ll take her call, chatting to her will cheer me up.

I tell her about my conversation with Pretty Teacher but mention nothing about my Exgf. I was expecting some sympathy and disparaging remarks directed at Pretty Teacher, you know, snide comments questioning her sanity. Nope, not what I got.

“Well, it’s not just that. You can be too much of a gentleman and English women can find that controlling or overbearing,” she says.

Too much of a gentleman?! Is that possible?

It feels like I’ve been punched in the stomach by a lightning fast blow from Mike Tyson.

I pride myself in my old-fashioned gentlemanly ways. I think it’s charming and respectful. I don’t get upset with my friend because I value her being so frank with me. The truth is sometimes a difficult pill to swallow. My friend and I discuss the issue at length and it becomes clear to me what Pretty Teacher was saying about a cultural difference.

After that third call I sit there thinking things over, trying to see matters from a different perspective, struggling to grasp a reality that I was blind to. Some things from my recent dating experiences start to make sense.

The Model disappeared suddenly, as did Miss Indecisive. Local Lady and I just didn’t hit it off, which surprised me after good build-up we had, but that happened several times with other dates. Diving Dame had made a comment about “too much chivalry”. Wild Child was an odd experience; it felt like there was barrier between us at times. Country Girl was a big disappointment after a promising start, which is also true of Krazy Girl. Deranged Dater was a truly strange date. Lusty Lass was another weirdo. Musician Gal was an even bigger disappointment; that weekend together still rankles. The Wild Animal Tickler will one day win prizes for her cookiness. The Bitch was the worst date of them all by far.

What do all of these women have in common?

They’re all English.

My worst dating experiences were all with English women. Slightly more than half my dates have been with English women and in the main have been disappointing. Why did I not notice this earlier?! Hell, my Exgf is English. To be fair, some of my best dates and experiences were with English women. Tech Titan and Sweet Thing are English. However, seen on balance, almost all my bad dates and only a small number of my positive dating experiences were with English women.

The vast majority of my best dating experiences were with women from Eastern Europe. Baltic Babe stole my heart. Fitness Freak was great fun. The Hirsute Russian looked good until I spotted the caterpillar on her top lip. The Pretty Pole and the Randy Russian were good experiences. On the negative side of the balance sheet there was only the Picky Pole.

Seen statistically, I shouldn’t bother with English women any more and should direct my efforts at women from behind the former Iron Curtain. But why is this? I think about this and I realize that cultural affinity involves ideas of gender roles. We all are imbued with expectations about important topics that make-up this constantly evolving jigsaw puzzle called ‘Life’. Eastern European women expect a man to behave as I do, by way of treating them like a lady. English women wanted to be treated as an equal, like one of the guys. Feminism took root in the UK in the 1960s and it has had its social impact. I’m from a culture where feminism was only whispered of. My mindset about women and accompanying behaviour is at odds with English women’s expectations.

From my travels around our great planet, I have found myself better able to make friends with men from the former English-speaking British colonies. I include the USA in that. I also provide a proviso by way of especially getting along with men from rural areas and that also applies to non-English-speaking cultures too. Now that doesn’t make me a farmboy, but rather more of an old-fashioned man, never to mistaken for a metro-sexual. It seems to me that urban men have been emasculated and that feminism has overpowered chivalry.

I say what I mean and I mean what I say. People always know where they stand with me. I’m realizing that English people find that makes them uncomfortable. They have a preference for coating everything in layers of sugar that I find sickening. I’m not brash, but I am open. I’m as tactful and diplomatic as any English person, but I have drive. That also makes some people uncomfortable. I wasn’t brought up with a post-colonial sense of guilt that holds me back. I go for what I want, but I don’t hurt anyone in the process. My English peers seem overcome with self-doubt and riven with indecision by comparison. I don’t think of myself as an alpha-male, but I have often been called as such. I think of myself as more of a go-getter. It shouldn’t surprise you to learn that I have very few male friends who are English.

Please don’t misunderstand me; I’m not bashing England. My adoptive country has been very kind to me and I am grateful for what I have experienced here. There are many commendable features about life in the UK. It’s just that it is now clear to me that English women and I have an unlikely romantic future. I might be in the wrong country to find The One. Fortunately I have London on my doorstep and it’s the most cosmopolitan city in the world. She has to be in this seething, squirming anthill of humanity.

Until I find Her, I ride alone…so fucking alone.

LESSONS LEARNED: 1) By the end of the third date it’s going well, or it’s not going to go well after that. 2) English women are not for me. 3) Women are easily influenced by their female friends. 4) Eastern European women and I are a better match. 5) It’s apparently possible to be too much of a gentleman.

Lee Clayton – I ride alone