Date #25 Cocktails in the Mount, with a country boy and his beard.

 

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Would you hold it against me?

 

Sorry for my absence, I have been really busy. By that I mean I got Netflix, Neon and Lightbox, ate a lot of food and have all of these extra curricular activities like ‘dog agility’, ‘pilates’ and ‘belly dancing. I’m so sorry  that it’s been six months since I’ve posted. I…just…struggle with the concept of asking people to read what I write, when I get around to writing it. This draft has just been loitering for the last six months like a frequent flier on Tinder (like Geoff – ladies in Wellington, if ya feel me).

The options were very limited, but I was determined/slightly desperate with five final dates to go before I put it to bed (with every single Tinder date in it  – boom). Before I rustled up my date with the Paraplegic Philosophical Sailor, I also hustled this country boy in Mount Maunganui for a back to back date, something I had not undertaken since  Date #12 and #13. Unless I planned to make various stops in Putararu, Levin or Foxton the following day, I would be unable to date on the drive back down to Wellington.

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Date #25 had a big bushy ginger beard and he seemed like a genuinely nice guy. On Tinder, he wrote in perfect English, was pleasant and didn’t ask me to have sex with him within two minutes. Naturally he surpassed all expectations. He also reminded me of Lionel off Shortland Street, or Sparky off Outrageous Fortune, with his impressive ginger beard that covered almost half his face.

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I haven’t dated since I vanished in 1999

During my date with the philosophical sailor, I was desperately not trying to be rude and text another guy during our time together – an all-time low. I made an excuse that I was off to meet some friends (given I know no one in the area who isn’t a blood relation) before driving to my next date. It was impossible to be organised so I drip-fed short messages to him during the date with the sailor before inundating him afterwards insisting that I’ll pick him up in 15 minutes and drop him off later. In hindsight, I must have seemed like a massive creep and he should never have agreed to meet me.

He was at his house with his flatmates, having drinks on a Saturday night when I picked him up. This was the second time I had arranged for a guy to meet me whilst I was sitting in the driver’s seat of my Holden Barina.

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Please don’t kill me, please don’t kill me

I am really uneducated when it comes to dating in Mount Maunganui so was unsure how I felt about Date #25’s choice of attire to go to a cocktail bar: a brown Grandpa jersey that was well-loved and pants that weren’t from Area 51. He had the hipster beard to go with his authentic hipster outfit but as opposed to hipsters in Wellington with their beard-oil and Ralph Lauren Polo to mask the smell of their damp flat in Aro Valley, this guy smelt like cooking and homeliness (not to be confused with homelessness).

A Wellington Hipster

 

A Hipster from Tauranga. But I think the actual picture above is a mug shot.

Date #25 was genuine, seemed a little introverted and suspicious of my intermittent Tindering. I talked incredibly fast,  explained my challenge and zoomed to get to the ‘town’ area of the Mount from his residence (which took like 3 and half minutes going 50km an hour… provinces!). I parallel parked the Barina like a boss before my Date suggested we go to the only date-like place in the Mount that didn’t have a Hamilton bar vibe.

Hamilton bar vibes.

We ended up at this place called Vaudeville. If you’re ever in the area – I would recommend it. I had a great drink and they had some swagger Jazz music. This is where the non-existent hipsters of Tauranga would go, if they had any in the first place. On that note, I hope they haven’t gone out of business…

Because I am a strong independent woman, I paid for the drinks. It was clear this date was a one-time thing and I’m not one to lead any one on*. Date #25 nice to a fault, which led to very little material for this blog. My favourite thing he said about himself, was that he was ugly underneath the beard. I wanted to reassure him that I’m sure he looked great underneath all that stubble, but all I could do was remember Lionel from Shortland Street.

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It’s hard to see, Shortland Street

After about 20 minutes of conversation I found out what people in provincial areas (read: not a city) do for a living (he works for a Greenhouse company doing technical stuff that my basic bitch mind could not comprehend) and what people in provincial areas do on weekends – they go to one pub and spend all night there. Date #25 was super nice and invited me to meet his entire Facebook friend list at said one pub and I hung around for an extra five minutes with them to be polite but ultimately felt like it wasn’t a good use of my time given I had to drive down to Wellington the next day.

Date #25 gave me a bushy peck on the cheek and a hug with his grandpa jersey before I went home to google whether Tauranga was an actual city.

 

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I don’t know google, you should check your facts.

* lies

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Date #20 Sunday Night Stroll with a Poetic Canadian

Don’t tell my most recent ex-boyfriend this, but I met a better version of him with Date #20.  After the horrific experience of Date #19 (Don’t lie Melissa, you loved it!) I decided I needed to cut weirdos if they said anything offensive, stupid or creepy and not to meet anyone who looked suspiciously tiny. My Tinder prospects immediately dwindled.

Enter Date #20. I have zero recollection of actually swiping on him but since I was notified at some point on Sunday that I had a match, I guess we had done so during one of my mindless swipe sessions.

Date #20 went for the bold first move and said “Hi Melissa, how’s life going?”. His Tinder profile made me think that he looked like my most recent ex (which wasn’t disastrous, just a solid meh of 10,) with the exception that he was Canadian.

AND REMEMBER HOW MUCH I LOVE CANADIANS?!

Seriously.

Since I love Canadians and hate chatting on Tinder, my first reply was: “Good. Would you like to go for a coffee or a drink now?”. He seemed a little taken aback by me coming on to him at 5.30pm on a Sunday evening and said “Just please don’t be an axe murderer, that would be the fastest request to meet on Tinder.. so yes”.

S u c k e r.

I assured him that I would leave my axe at home before proposing we grab a hot drink and walk along Oriental Parade (so that I could take my dog for a walk… I was becoming really resourceful with these Tinder dates!).

I insisted that I pick him up in the Barina in 20 minutes, before asking what sort of drink he would like. He said he wanted something good for recovery, so I chose some sort of fruit juice to ease his hangover.

After I initially messaged him at 5.26pm, he was sitting in my car by 6.43pm. Now that’s what I call efficient! (And potentially desperate).

Date #20 was quite similar to my ex on quite a few fronts. He was a little shy, rather lovely and seemed like the kind of sensitive soul who would find love at the end of a movie but whose scenes would end up on the cutting room floor, so no one ever found out.

I learnt that he worked in I.T and was here on a working holiday, just like my previous lover. It was nice that he had travelled, it meant we had a little more to talk about than basic bitch topics. We tried to find our common interests, and at this point there wasn’t a lot to go off.

Things got interesting when I found out he wrote poetry. I take back what I said about finding love at the end of the movie which no one cared about, this guy was smooth. He was real. I like the idea of a man who can express his feelings in more ways than the post-coital chat.

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Have I ever told you how amazing your eyes look in this dim light, late at night?

He was sweet and genuine, I’ll give him that. I don’t think our spark went off because I was talking too much about myself to make the time go by. After our moonlit walk along Oriental Parade which was a cute setting for any first date – until Richie went for a wee poo – we walked back to the Barina and I must have driven him home. I was busting to pee by this stage and could barely string sentences together.

He messaged me at 7.47pm to thank me for the spontaneous weekend. I said that it was so lovely meeting him as well and then never met up with him again. Although he did suggest it four more times after that.

… Of course he did.

Date #18 Breakfast Coffee with a Bodybuilder

When you decide to go on 30 Tinder Dates in 30 Days, you figure out really quickly what your type is because you’re swiping through the entire single population of Wellington.

“Oooh, older, light hair with a Dad-bod? Yes please!”. 

Having such a type limits potential Future Boyfriends, and you may find yourself with slightly younger versions of your Dad, whose ‘Dad-bod’s might correlate to health problems later in life. Throw in a few inappropriate jokes and a German accent and I may as well just date my Dad.

Hallo, nice to meet you. You look just like my daughter.

With that a very real fear in the back of my mind (I’m pretty sure that most girls fear they’ll end up with a guy exactly like her Dad) I decided to broaden my horizons.

This wasn’t a token effort, despite my relatively relaxed attitude and low standards for Tinder prospects. I had to at least find them attractive and my rule was that I found them appealing enough to go on a date with them regardless of whether I had a 30 day quota or not.

Enter Date #18 who was the oldest Tinder date I’ve dated to date.

Get it?

Yet it still felt as though the age gap wasn’t a deal-breaking barrier. He had a kid, was from the Hutt and according to his photos, was a body builder. So basically, he was still similar to my Dad, with the exception of the whole six-pack thing.

I’m not sure whether I was attracted to the idea of going out with a body builder, but I definitely had a crush on Johnny Bravo growing up and I was open minded to someone having a rock-hard version of a Dad-Bod. Who’s to stand in the way of potential true love with someone who is guaranteed to spend at least two hours a day leaving you alone honing his hot bod?

You look pretty…I look pretty…why don’t we go home and stare at each other?

Initial contact pleasantly surprised me, as Date #18 didn’t succumb to this horrible stereotype that I unfortunately was beginning to create in my head that built guys would have personalities like Johnny Bravo. Date #18 seemed sweet, was employed and loved dogs and kids. His kid looked cute in photos too, so at least I knew in advance that he would bring some cute genes to mix with my womb.

That was so weird. I’m sorry.

Every time I go to the gym (so, twice in my entire life), I see these guys at the gym who have conversations with each other about their massive traps and I’m like:

What’s a trap?

With all of these factors in the back of my mind, Date#18 and I agreed to meet for coffee. He suggested Memphis Belle as it was his local and we confirmed a Saturday morning time of 11am. It wasn’t until the morning that we met that I realized I needed to wear something that hid my fat six/overweight eight frame that was growing rapidly with all of the free beverages and free food I was going through.. Date #18 was also a personal trainer, just to add a slight amount of pressure. I went for tight jeans and a puffer jacket to pretend like it was made to look as though I had a cute face, chubby waist, thick legs, in shape. I’m not usually one to get insecure but for someone who puts a lot of effort into their figure made me realize why I’m in preference of the Dad-bod.

Fun fact: Missy Elliot is 44 now.

I was running slightly late because of my slight outfit insecurity and ended up being at Memphis Belle before Date #18. One of my favourite things about having a dog is pretending like you’re never alone in public. I ordered a Trim Flat White and sat down on a wriggly chair, at a chipped wriggly table outside Shot Shack whilst I mourned my 17 year old self.

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I’d rather see you up there shaking dat thang.

When Date #18 finally showed up around seven to eight minutes after me, he sort of gestured to the Barista to demonstrate that he wanted his usual, before asking me if I wanted anything. He used some sort of G-Unit hand gesture to signal this, which I wouldn’t usually relate to ordering a coffee.

We decided to move to the dirty hipster couches right outside the door and I started to realise we hadn’t engaged in much conversation other than the basic facts. It’s hard communicating with so many fucking Tinder potentials and talking to at least 80 out of 500. Getting past the basic greeting with me was anyone’s success story since I refused to communicate with anyone who said anything douchey, boring or weird.

Job check, Hot bod check, anything else?

I won’t lie, Date #18 was slightly fresh, but a lot more eloquent than I expected. For one, he didn’t seem to have a comb on him to manicure his cartoon quiff and he didn’t really seem to be overly indulged in himself. Great sign. He had grey bits in his beard and I joked that it looked like Richie’s. We talked about Tinder, life in the Hutt, and my dog. He was also a big fan of dogs and had a pitbull that is currently with his ex. He didn’t really bag her in front of me, though it seemed like it was an incredibly messy breakup that I respected him for ( not bagging her out I mean, not for a messy breakup!) He loved his son, his friends and his job, it seemed. I was getting to the point where I would start saying douchey things to see if he would succumb but he didn’t seem to take the bait.

Me: “OMG do you train girls that you find are hot????”

Date #18 “Haha, sometimes”

Urgh, Come on.

Although I wasn’t overly into it, I felt like he wasn’t either. I imagine this guy usually gets with teenage bottle-blondes who wear a lot of tight dresses despite being in his thirties. That, or my puffer jacket hid my chest and he was disappointed that my cleverly angled Tinder photos were clearly a ploy. Sorry babes!

I wasn’t completely off the mark with my assumptions, Date #18 must have only planned an hour for our encounter as at 12pm his friends rocked up to pick him up for some sort of sport in the afternoon and parked next to Dreamgirls yelling at him. These guys all seemed like they were 10 years too old to be driving crappy cars and living for the weekend but I guess that’s what YOLO was invented for.

Without being too critical, I was pleasantly surprised that he wasn’t actually Johnny Bravo, but I don’t trust a guy who spells his name wrong for whatever reason. I can’t deal!

Why is there more vowels in your name to prove a point?

I ended up running into him a few days later when I was meeting up with a girl where he suggested we needed to catch up again, then the next weekend too whilst I was in da clubs with another guy from Tinder. Turns out, he’s a bouncer on the weekend but let me in anyway despite holding hands with another guy. Thanks for the coffee and for letting me skip the queue!

Date #16 Drinks…and then Dinner with a guy from the Hutt

I had planned on a quiet one for this particular Wednesday. This dating game was tiresome. Do you all even know how hard it is to find casual slutty work attire (slasual dress) to then have to socialise after work and attempt to flirt?

Nice to meet you

I’m definitely not an expert at guys or dating. All I seem to know in life is how to talk too much and drink too much, too quickly.  I seem to open up the second I meet a guy, refuse to put out and then wonder why they think I’m crazy.

Date #16 was a friend of a friend who’s friend I had already pashed when he came over once to watch Fight Club. I was 17 and if it wasn’t already obvious with me writing this blog in the first place, it didn’t work out. I remember meeting Date #16 at a pre-drinks for the races, with my fake I.D, white blonde hair and Dove overly-summer glowed skin.

We had talked a few times over Tinder having previously matched a few times. He was a couple of years older than me and went to a catholic boys school. From memory, he always seemed to be one of those guys who had a girlfriend, but judging by his current Tinder status, he was available, and I was on the lookout for new prey.

The conversation was quick, fast and to the point. We must have had some banter during a previous Tinder life.

Date #16: “Hello again… so what are your motives? Trying to catch out a boyfriend or a friend’s boyfriend? Haha

Me: “Take me out and I might tell you. In saying that I don’t put out on the first date”

Date #16: “Sounds like a deal. After work something? Or the weekend?

Me: “After work sounds good. Where are you based?

We agreed to meet at Matterhorn, which is a relatively chilled out establishment where you can dine or drink. I’ve only ever had consumed their gin and tonics. I had been there a few times on dates with guys who were usually way older than me, so it could be widely used as a stomping ground for older guys to pass the time with younger girls and then after a few weeks or months, wonder why they’re on different levels.

Hmm.

P.S You had good reason to be mad at me that night. I wasn’t just flirting with the bartender, I pashed him outside the bathroom at Matterhorn. You know you love me xoxo Gossip Girl

We agreed to meet there at 5.30pm after work. I had every intention of arriving on time, since I had left work at quarter past five. Naturally, I got distracted by the huge sale sign outside Typo and ended up spending fifteen minutes looking at Coachella themed stationary for tweens at pocket-money prices. Whoops!

“Sorry I’m late, I was looking at pens with feathers on them”

When I finally got there, Date #16 had patiently waited for me and hadn’t even ordered a drink. Obviously my stationary perusing wasn’t keeping the guy from staying hydrated for too long, I was simply adding to the mystery that is me by being courteously late (10 minutes and under). I ordered a gin and tonic, he ordered a beer and we started off the conversation with our mutual love of the Hutt and other common grounds – not that there was lots of that.

I planned on having a relatively early night. Mainly because this dating game was becoming more tedious and I was having the best time ever by myself.

After two drinks and reasonably B grade chat (not enough to get him laid, only A’s get the A) he suggested the idea of dinner. I was hungry and had no real food plans outside the fantasy ofBurger King, so we settled on Mexico, since it was close and a classy first date location forclassier-than-usual Hutt people. I had to move my car from the parking lot so Date #16 got to witness my terrible parallel parking skills as a bonus.

Mexico, in my mind is a bit of a funny place. It’s an Auckland restaurant in a Wellington location with a Wellington crowd where the music is too loud on a Sunday night with a lot of darkness and red hues covering the place. I’ve been there on three dates with three different guys. Two out of three of the guys I went with ended up profusely sweating due to the spicy fried chicken. Gross. I think I slept with one of them after dinner there one night regardless… I don’t know, I can’t really remember.

The fried chicken was good though. That I do remember.

I’m somewhat hesitant to regurgitate what was said during this date. Some of it was so cringe-worthy. He was impressed that I ordered a beer and I got ‘points’ for that. We ended up playing a silly game where we got date points for things that we liked about each other… putting that into words makes me more embarrassed as I type this. What is my life? Why am I such a loser? Is this why no one loves me? Date #16 was lovely though. I felt like he was boyfriend material. Not necessarily my kind of boyfriend, but he gave off that kind of boyfriend vibe. I don’t know how to explain this in words, it was just a vibe.

We started to transition into the friend-zone towards the end of the night. I think because he was playing it cool and I was just on automatic flirt-mode where I transitioned from outrageously forward, to overly-forward-clearly-putting-them-in-the-friend-zone, to being that girl that your friend is currently sleeping with so you maintain cool conversation and stick to the basic facts. I was being really open with this guy since he was cool with the idea of 30 Days of Tinder and I kinda felt like he wasn’t fazed that this wouldn’t progress into anything more. I paid for dinner to win against the points system. It was a $50 or $60 something ploy that I paid for to get some feminist snaps.

Holla at me sister

He send me a text the following Monday asking how my weekend was.

He sent me a text the following Monday asking how I was and that my mutual friend mentioned something.

I must have forgotten to text back. My bad

Date #12 Brunch with Harry Potter

After three Tinder dates and one Silver Fox brief affair I was hung over on the Friday and sick of my own voice.

Date #12 and I talked back in early May before I deleted Tinder to be with da1 (Da1 who broke it off after 13 or so days. I was cut deep). His banter was so good that my flatmate Mon and I nicknamed him “Harry Potter” over drinks one night when this blog was in the ‘planning stages’. When we first started chatting I asked him to tell me something about himself and he said something along the lines like this:

“Umm… well. I grew up with my Aunt and Uncle since I was little. It was okay, except sometimes my cousin used to bully me and was kinda mean. Then when I was 11, a huge man came to my house on his motorbike and told me I was a wizard. Life’s been pretty good since then.”

Possibly it was because I read this over a few glasses of wine, but at the time and to this day I found this hilarious. On the banter scale, it was a 10.

When you’re dealing with guys on Tinder with shit banter, they’re either saying something too far out of left field as though they’re trying to be different, or something too basic that it doesn’t even warrant a reply. Date #12 was the Goldilocks of Tinder chat and it seemed like there was a lot of prospects especially if it was going to be slightly dry and referencing Harry Potter at any point. Which made me curious and determined to meet him…

Turns out Date #12 was the most hard to get, cynical guy I’ve ever talked to on Tinder. It was as though he joined Tinder, knowing instantly that he would regret it and scathing everytime he got a notification from someone on there. He seemed like the type that was nice, but overly picky and hesitant that he was going to get cat-fished every time. Later I found out, that he only felt that way about meeting me.

He was reading way too much into my initial bio on Tinder which I had something along the lines of “I have ulterior motives as to why I’m here”. (Edit: I’m such a wanker for writing that as my Tinder bio.) I also once posted a snap story asking who wanted to brunch with me, after organising with Harry Potter, to have brunch the following day. I could almost forgive him for giving me the hot and cold vibes since upon reflection, I was sounding suspicious by agreeing to brunch, then publicising that I needed another brunch date for a different day. Smooth.

Regardless of his hesitant attitude towards meeting me, part of my crazy bitch attribute is that I can play a long game if required (while maintaining 30 others). Since we had arranged to meet for brunch the week before and had I not bailed to brunch with my best friend, then Date #12 would have been Date #3. Over the following week plans were made then abandoned  probably due to a combination of his catfish fear and being busy with life until the following Saturday which is when we finally met. I was too exhausted to entertain on the Friday after four dates on the Thursday and could afford to skip a day since I had already done 11 dates in the last week. I also hate Friday night dates. It leads to drinking and then, if one isn’t careful, leads to something more.

Date #12 and I agreed to meet up at PreFab. In my brunch-obsessed mind PreFab is amazing. The creamy mushrooms are incredible, the portion sizes are good but not huge and the price reflects this. I like to use the bathroom every time I go there solely to use their Aesop hand wash and I genuinely like the easy layout of their café. The waitresses wear brightly coloured lipsticks and the food comes out quickly. Above all , it’s dog-friendly and Richie loves to socialise on a Saturday morning.

Richie and I arrived, strangely to time and we were slightly early so we found a spot outside before Date#12 arrived. I was wearing knee-high socks with a black skirt and a polka-dot top that showed far too much cleavage. It was kind of cold that day and my nipples did not appreciate my choice of outfit.

First impressions of Date #12 was that he was as tall as I expected (5ft 8ish) but more muscular than I expected. None of his photos showed him smiling and one was even blurry. He was wearing the whitest t-shirt I’ve ever seen (“Sorry I’m five minutes late, was picking up a new white t-shirt from AS Colour”) with a Nike jacket and a snapback cap. He dressed like a Caucasian Jay-Z, where he could afford to dress well but still wanted to look he had street-cred. His Country Road socks are testament to this.

High-quality socks are my jam!

The conversation was pretty light-hearted and not overly awkward. He wasn’t as open as I and seemed pretty guarded but was friendly and open-minded. He was clearly really curious about what I was doing on Tinder soliciting boys for brunch, so I was pretty quick to confess that although I was genuine, he was part of some social experiment. He took it pretty well, although he asked whether there was cameras around and I advised that this was just a low-budget blog.

One of the things about Date #12 was that his Tinder line was his occupation (Who does this?!) which I won’t reveal in this blog but he works for a film studio that takes its name from an ugly insect. He was really down to earth but it was clear that he worked hard and I assumed he was good at what he did. He moved to Wellington a year ago for work and was originally from Auckland.

Richie took a liking to Date #12 and was rather happy to sit on his lap. I cannot fathom how forward Richie is sometimes with strangers, I haven’t taught him the importance of stranger danger. It took a weird turn when out of the blue, near the end of the conversation, Date #12 asked me to look the other way since he had cramp so that he could pull a face and deal with it. So naturally I looked back. The situation then went as follows:

Ow!
me, silently horrified
la la la la

Despite this weird seven second moment, the date wasn’t a disaster. I asked if he could look after Richie whilst I went to the bathroom to wash my hands and then went and paid the bill,  even though this guy ordered twice the amount of eggs and that costs like $10 extra “How many eggs? Two? Okay, can I please have four?”  and because I’m a strong independent woman.

Ladies and Gentleman, I paid on the first date

When I got back to the table, he was like “Urgh, you paid” and part of the reason why I did was because this challenge wasn’t about getting free food or wined and dined and I cared enough to ensure that he didn’t leave with that impression. Also, I have an this unreasonable phobia of split payment on a date.

Date #12 walked me to my car after the date and refused my offer to drive him to his car afterwards. It was kinda mega awkward saying “Bye!” *awkward hug* to then watch him walk down the street afterwards back where we came from. Although the date went well, I got the most doubting text that night from him.

Date #12: “Thanks for brunch today, I actually had a nice time.

Me: “Should I be worried about that “actually” bit?”

Date #12: “Haha! The “actually” was incase it didn’t come across that way. If you’re interested though, I think we should “probably” do it again.”

Date #2 Brunch with a Londoner

On my Tinder profile, it says that I like “Brunch and Dogs”. I only really started to appreciate brunch in it’s full glory four years ago when my boyfriend at the time introduced me to Marsden Village Café in Karori. We went there every couple of weeks when we lived together and it had the perfect brunch menu for those who liked big breakfasts and rugby. We also loved that it was dog-friendly – I literally used to dream of going to brunch with my future dog ( big life goals, I know). Last year when I started using Tinder, I used to take Tinder potentials to MVC for a third date only if they were considered worthy of my favourite brunch establishment. Sadly, the ownership of the Café changed twice since I started going there four years ago, the creamy mushrooms became less creamy and more grilled and they changed the type of hash browns they used.  After the last time I went with … I can’t even remember who, I decided that it was time I closed that chapter of my brunch life. Fruitless dates there with lacklustre banter and grilled mushrooms proved inferior to those fond big breakfast memories once shared with the guy who went halves on a dog with me.

Date #2 and I chatted on the first night that I reinstated Tinder. He was a self-proclaimed fellow brunch lover from London and needed to find some good places to eat as he had only been back in Wellington for a few weeks.

Ah, fresh meat! Delightful. This means that it is highly likely I haven’t been near any of his friends. When I’m stalking future prey on Facebook, seeing mutual friends and recognising one from an intimate grinding moment on the dancefloor at The Establishment always somewhat dampens the mood. I responded to Date#2 with

Melissa: “If you like dogs, then you can take me out for brunch over the weekend. I’m Melissa. I’m employed and not too weird”.

Date 2#: “Then brunch over the weekend it most certainly is.

Melissa: “We can resume talking over here. Or you can ask me for my number. What do you do?”

I clearly lied about not being weird. Over text, Date #2 further questioned what my ulterior motive was with Tinder and I said that I was genuinely here to date which, was not a lie as it’s totally the truth. I knew that if I had mentioned that I was going on 30 dates in 30 days he may not have wanted to meet me. I couldn’t risk letting my game plan slip within 24 hours of starting the challenge.

On Friday at 2.34pm, Date#2 messaged to ask whether we were still doing brunch the following day. At 9.50pm, he messaged me again since I had not replied. I hadn’t saved his number at this point and had already forgotten his name!

On the Saturday morning after I finished some work early preparing campaigns, I realised I had to get a date sorted for the day and vaguely remembered Brunch boy from London. I finally messaged him back at 11.14am and asked if 12pm would suit, at Arthurs on Cuba Street. Date #2 replied exactly 10 minutes later saying that he was walking back from the gym but that he should be home in 10/15 minutes and that 12pm was good for him.

I ensured that I was running late to pay homage to all my former Tinder lovers and pushed the date time to 12.15pm since I wanted to kill time by going to Animates. After a good 45 minutes of browsing, Richie and I departed with $27.86 worth of dog treats and off we drove to Cuba Street.

I chose Arthurs as it was dog-friendly and had an English breakfast influence to it so that I could appease my date (Plus I didn’t want to spoil Pre-Fab for myself on Date #2 if it was utter shit). By the time I got there at an appropriate Melissa time, it was 12.30pm and my date was already sitting down outside waiting at a table.

First impression of Date#2 was that he probably wasn’t joking when he said he was tall as he was over 6ft 4 which made him taller than anyone I had ever been with. He had an English accent, obviously and was relatively easy to get along with. He had a good looking face, a kind smile and a full head of hair ( with what I could see!)  Not skinny and erred slightly on the Dad-Bod band wagon *wolf whistles*. He lived here four years ago to work in New Zealand and loved it hence why he came back for another year. He had just got a new flat to move into and our chat mostly revolved around that and living life in New Zealand. He said that he wanted some ‘stability’ for a little while and thought that the life here was good.

Richie was immediately a fan of Date#2 as he jumped on his lap within the first five minutes and curled up on his lap. The conversation was relatively free-flowing which naturally tipped in his favour when he admitted his Dad-bod and said that he loved dogs. I ordered the Big Breakfast, like the tiny small Blonde girl I am and 6ft 4 Date#2 ordered Eggs Benedict, which came out with Eggs, Bok Choy and Crumpets. When it came to the end of the meal and we walked towards the cashier, I got my wallet out intending to pay (because I’m Beyonce) to find that he already took care of it. Like a perfect English Gent.

Because everything was going well we ended up walking up to the Pukeahu War Memorial to check it out and walk Richie before it started raining. This is where the date started to take a turn…

We were heading up towards the inside part of the War Memorial when I saw a friend from school with her beautiful newborn and her entire extended family. Because I hadn’t seen her in a while, we stopped and had a chat where I cooed over her new baby. When it came to introductions, I introduced Date #2 as “My friend, *insert Date#1‘s real name*” without even realising. Date #2 took it really well and still shook the hands of everyone he had just met and didn’t correct me in front of them. As soon as they were out of ear shot however he said:

Date#2: “You so owe me!”

Melissa: [Assuming it was because I introduced him to people he didn’t know in the first place!] “Oh, I’m sorry!”

Date#2: “Who’s *insert Date#1‘s name*?”

After that, I came clean about my Tinder challenge and admitted that it was the name of the guy who I previously dated the night before. Date#2 took it pretty well, probably because I later found out that he assumed I was joking about the Tinder challenge at the time.

Still, surprisingly the date was going really well. As we walked back towards my car, Richie paused to do what dogs do and took a massive shit. Usually, when my dog poops it’s embarrassing in the sense that immediately afterwards I have to pick up warm poo during a hot date, but it’s part of owning a dog and I try not to resent it too much. This time however, little Richie happened to get diarrhea and I had no choice but to attempt to pick it up. It was sloppy, runny and by far the hardest thing I’ve ever had to pick up. Ridiculous, strongly scented and mildly unfortunate.

The weather started to pack it in after this particularly bleak moment and Date#2 had said during brunch that he needed to buy a new bed. I offered to drive him to Thorndon due to the weather and offered him advice since I had recently bought a new bed within the last month. Neither of us were really that keen to round of the date at that point and I felt obliged to recover from my memory lapse and Richie’s explosive diarrhea. So for the next two hours I ended up accompanying my Tinder date on his bed shopping afternoon. We walked around different bed shops and lay on different beds , finalising the four that we thought were good on the price and comfort.

Three hours and forty-five minutes late into the date and on the way back to the last furniture shop where he decided he wanted to buy his bed, he leaned in for the kiss in the Barina. Naturally I obliged since a) he wasn’t horrible b) he was really nice and c) because of my overwhelming commitment to this blog! His nose was cold and a little runny but overall the kiss was sweet. Clearly not as passionate at the night before, but a kiss that suggested he had enjoyed the time we had just spent together.

After he bought his bed, I offered to drive Date#2 home as my best friend was coming around later that evening and he had a night planned full of supporting ARSENAL and going to the rugby. He invited me around to his apartment as I dropped him off, to which I declined (because I’m a classy bitch) but made the arrangement to him again the following Saturday night, where the night ended in drunken tears and my spew. Consecutively and at the time.

I’m all class.