Apps Walks Possibility Hope: the Covid months, pt. 6

Dating apps deactivated.

I mean, what is the actual point? Without even factoring in the tedium and predictability of 90% of the matches’ chat; with new Covid measures in place here, it’s impossible to simply meet for a coffee in the middle of the day, let alone go for tapas and drink wine into the night.

Two weeks ago an absolute unit of an older guy with a gorgeous smile and beautiful crows feet suggested flasks and a walk on the beach. As dates go, I’ll admit it seemed kind of inventive and spontaneous and something I know my 30-year old self would have absolutely dismissed out of hand. I said ‘let’s do it’ and took a moment to applaud myself for my impressive personal growth. If I were still in therapy, I’d totally blow that trumpet. Two days later, the unit called to explain he had actually only had an argument with his girlfriend and pissed-offedly opened an account. But you know, ‘if he definitively broke up with her, I should be in no doubt he’d be in touch’. Why, monsieur, you are really spoiling us. ^blushes coyly, grabs fistful of Ferrero Rocher^. I wished him all the best and took a moment to applaud his chutzpah; and myself, yet again, for my impressive personal growth in doing so.

I’d also got to a place where I was repeating over and over the same lines like a robot to the same uninventive questions, to the point where I actually copied them into notes so I could paste them later when I had to inevitably answer the interview style barrage of predictable enquiries of another ‘match’. I mean, what do you say to the tenth (twentieth) guy who asks, ‘so, what are you looking for here?’ (Read: I’m here for the sexual japes, don’t get too excited.) Eventually, something along these exasperated lines was my response:

‘I’m interested in possibilities. I’d like to go out for drinks, or whatever, with men without the pressure of that question looming over me. Like in the old days, remember? When, before you even arrived in the restaurant/bar/wherever, the person hadn’t asked to see your tits, if you are looking for a serious relationship or demanded a guarantee of sex otherwise “what’s the point of me meeting you”. I’d like to chat about art and movies and life and jazz and see what transpires. That’s what I’m looking for. Ok?’

I think actual speed records were achieved by some of the disconnections. What do you think it was? Probably the jazz.

God bless a charming man who doesn’t mention his penis/sex within ten words. With whom conversations flow and hours pass with no effort at all. Who makes me laugh. Those are the guys who excite me. Sadly they are few and very, very, very far between. As rare as rocking horse shit, some might say.

I thought I should fill the ‘dating’ void by sticking pins in my eyes. I mean fuck it, why not, it’s 2020. News. That’ll do it: a constant stream of news. I went to bed on Tuesday 3rd November grasping on to a tiny sliver of hope. I woke up on Wednesday 4th with a nagging sense of doom in the pit of my stomach but the sliver was also still in tact. I’m writing this on Wednesday night no closer to knowing the outcome of the US election, worrying along with the rest of the sane world. Yet still, somehow, I am feeling minutely hopeful. What? It’s a thing. *Minute Hope™ might be all we have left.

Let’s just see how that turned out by the time you read this.

The other thing I’m currently addicted to filling my spare time with, which is a much healthier way to spend it than dating, the attempt thereof or waiting for the tyrant wotsit to be ousted, is hiking (gently strolling). It’s taken me the promise of a permanent home from the Spanish government after the uncertainty of Brexit and the prospect of being in one place for a long time to get up at the crack of dawn to go up Collserola or Montjuic. Seeing the entire city, the mountains and the sea from such a peaceful perspective while the sun comes up is breathtaking. It’s almost as if, in all the time I didn’t do this, I was disallowing myself to fall any more in love with this place in order to prevent another broken heart when I had to leave it.

Not as if; that’s exactly what it was.

*watch Etsy et al. for future ‘Minute Hope™‘ merch.

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