Perils of dating online


I went to a documentary theatre show where I witnessed an actress going on an actual date with a man I had previously been on a date with (far too for my liking).

In terms of modern dating parlance, I’ve been stashed (hidden away), roached (one of a long string of datees, all foolishly assuming exclusivity) and Gatsby-d (paraded online as part of someone’s exciting social calendar on social media, knowing their “Daisy” will see it).

Some bring out the velvet rope to ward off the Great Unwashed.

Case in point: The Inner Circle, which promises to showcase only the “most attractive, ambitious and inspiring singles” or Elite Singles which requires you to input your annual salary because “with Love, you have every right to be demanding”.

Against every fibre of my being, I took the advice of my Mam who said I should date “outside of my type”. Until I mentioned that an ex’s dog was a chiweenie. Aside: This wasn’t totally out of the blue – we were talking about soup at the time.

Inevitably, it failed when he ghosted me after implying that I stole his drugs money (he eventually concluded that it was “probably the cleaner”). Flame-haired and freckle-faced, I liked the cut of his jib. And then Facebook intervened, suggesting fresh-faced filmmaker Feidhlim as a friend. Our relationship blossomed via carefully curated texts and edited selfies and sometimes even phone calls where I thought my heart would explode with joy.

My first Tinder date was with “Rory” (I’m changing all names), a 40-something business owner and father of two.

Being an indefatigable pogonophile (from a young age, my mother tells me I would only kiss men with beards and things haven’t progressed much since then), I must have swiped right by accident because Rory was blindingly beardless. Small dogs belong to small men, according to Graham and if he caught hold of that fellow, “he’d boil his head in fifty degree soup”.

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Photograph: Sean Moore ; a coquettish nymph so annoyingly endearing that a man travels to her house in the bleak of winter with a ghettoblaster and cue cards reading “to me you are perfect and my wasted heart will love you until you look like this” (a corpse).

People saw it as being a waste of time or something only truly desperate people did.

However, as time has gone by, that stigma no longer stands up.

On our first date, I pretended that there was a stain on his top just so I could touch him and it felt like electricity. You know the one explaining how you’re “just not meant to be? As I write, I’m currently embroiled in some serious “deep liking” of a former flame’s Instagram back catalogue (think dimly lit pictures of Superquinn sausages circa 2012) and a submarining debacle wherein a swarthy Californian stunt man (he’s met Jackie Chan) who doubles as a spiritual guru has recently emerged from the ether after several months of radio silence.

I can’t help but think of a particular story in Dolly Alderton’s memoir .

Today, though, with the internet, the possibilities are almost endless. You can connect with like-minded individuals based on your preferences, religion, hobbies, or a number of other factors.

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