Top 10 Tips to Survive Dating in 2018

In my free time, I’ve become a dating tip connoisseur. In fact, it’s almost a hobby at this point. I’ve been soaking up everything I can from Youtube videos, dating coaches and podcasts to learn everything I can to successfully date in the social media/technological age that we’re in. I think it’s a fascinating world and there’s so much content to learn from. In conversation with Sam the other day, she suggested I pull together a shortlist of tips that I’ve found effective so far in my life. Although there are specific do’s and dont’s from what I’ve listed, it’s not so much about the exact wording or protocol about doing things. Instead, it’s more about your mental state and approach to conducting yourself to date in a positive, healthy and self-respectful way.

So here goes, in no particular order, what I’ve found works best for me:

  1. Don’t contact him after the first date. Unless you forgot something or he said to text you when you got home safely, let him make the move. Having him text first when he’s ready will show an indication of his interest level. Too often I’ve gone on dates and focused on gauging MY attraction to them when I realize that’s only half the battle.
  2. Let him take the initiative to make plans. I want a guy that takes initiative and isn’t afraid to setup the plan. If he puts the ball back in your court, just say you’re up for anything and to surprise you. Having him put the effort in is also an indication of his interest level.
  3. Keep the texts short and sweet. It doesn’t need to come across rude, keep it flirty but get to the point. The purpose of texting should be make plans, not to get to know each other via message. As long as you’ve found out the basics about him and there’s somewhat of a common interest, everything about him can be learned on the actual date.
  4. If you’re unsure about the guy, make it a coffee date. It’s short, quicker and not as expensive as dinner or drinks. And if you both find out you like each other, it’s easy to transition into a drinks date after.
  5. Take the time to evaluate your hard yes’s and maybe’s. You don’t need a must have list of 20 physical qualities and characteristics – it’s not realistic, but focus more on the values and morals that you’d want in a person. At the same time keep an open mind on the date, he may surprise you and you may discover certain things you didn’t realize you’d be attracted to.
  6. Do not ever feel like you owe a guy anything after a date, no matter how much he’s spent on you. You are in control of your own body.
  7. If you can and are able, date multiple people casually at the same time. Trust me, I haven’t figure out how to successfully do it yet myself but I am told it is the healthiest approach to dating. By not focusing all your energy (and therefore desperation) on one guy, you can feel more at ease knowing that you have options and can take your time when evaluating for a good partner before you get into anything serious.
  8. If he cancels or comes across flakey, give him the benefit of the doubt and allow him to reschedule. If he doesn’t, move on. You’re not a top priority in his mind and you shouldn’t waste your time on someone who sees you as an afterthought.
  9. Self-reflect on your dating goals. What are you looking for? Are your actions and behavior aligning with your goals? Alter as necessary. There have been times where I say I’m looking for a relationship, but in truth, my body seems to yearn for something more casual. Coming to that realization was eye-opening for me and allowed me to tailor my dating style based on what I was looking for at the time.
  10. Above all, respect yourself and those around you. You deserve to have someone treat you well, and you should treat them in kind. If it’s not the right fit, don’t force it just because you’re lonely, it may damage you more in the long run.

That was just a few of the things I’ve learned over the years. It might not be to everyone’s taste but I think there is a fundamental vein of truth that runs throughout them. Let me know your thoughts or if you have any tips to share with our readers as well.

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@Mr.New Year’s (but not really)

It’s only been two days into 2018, and I’ve already managed to break my New Year’s Resolution for a ~new year new me~. Realistically, I managed to break it an hour into 2018, at the New Year’s party that I was at.

A few weeks ago, after I had just turned 24, I decided that there was a lot I wanted to do before I reached 25 – sort of like my own quarter life crisis. One of the things high on my list was to be more open to dating , be less shy and go with the flow when it comes to boys (for anyone that knows me knows that this is not typical of my usual dating behaviour). After a slow 2017 year consisting of only a handful of dates, a fling with Mr. Fast Food, and one random make out in South America – I decided this year I was going to put myself out there and have some fun, before I missed my chance.

There I went – jumping right back on the horse (aka downloading an app), and was actually having fun chatting with some nice and cute guys. This won’t be so bad I thought, dating can maybe even be fun as I tried to embrace my new mindset. Flash forward to New Year’s Eve at a big concert party in the six that I was very excited about. There was a great band playing, I was going with some great friends and most importantly the venue had a food court (I even got my face printed on a macaroon – HOW FUN)! The thought of talking to any boys was not really on my radar, nor even a possibility in my mind.

The party was great – we were dancing and having so much fun! In the middle of dancing, Sam, looked at me, and pointed out a cute guy who was apparently staring at me. I caught a quick glimpse and he was cute but I didn’t think anything of it as he walked past, maybe just confusing me for someone else. Not even a minute later he 180’s and backtracks to my group, not breaking eye contact the entire time, where I was and pulls me aside asking if I wanted to dance – how romantic! He was so cute, clearly interested and I had the approval from my friends that he was not only legit, but a great guy- what the hell was I waiting for. I don’t know if it was my shock of this happening or the fact that I’m really awkward– but I panicked for some stupid reason I decided that the appropriate response to what I was hoping would happen to me one day was “no thanks, I’m not a very good dancer”, with what I thought was a flirtatious giggle. WHAT. Immediately regretting my decision, because it was dumb AF, I tried to explain that I did want to but that I was just bad at dancing, which in a crowded bar, was really just blabbering on. As I tried to  salvage what may be left of my screw up, I realized that I had just messed up, when I should have just said “yes” and Mr.New Years had already decided that I wasn’t interested . A few minutes later he walked away and when I turned around, I already knew I screwed up and had that confirmation from my friends, who told me to run and find him and give him my number (which I most obviously didn’t do).

So this little, not even a really big deal to most people encounter started my new years off with a crash (instead of a bang 😉 ). The year that I wanted to be #noregrets, started off with a BIG regret. How could I want to be so bold and fun and embrace the single wild and free, and when a boy is there, basically on a silver platter in front of me, I manage to turn it away. After debriefing when we got home from the party, and mustering up courage to add him on Facebook New Year’s Day (aggressive, I know, but he did accept)! Not dancing with this boy may seem like the silliest thing, and you may even be wondering why on earth I actually spent time and wrote a blog post about it. But I am using this as my explanation to re-start my resolution and keep this regret and reminder as the push I need when faced in that same situation again. I feel like writing this town solidifies the fact that I will need to be more bold and open to new experiences, because if not now then when?

 

So with that, Happy New Year – hopefully I’ll have some more posts to share this year 😉

Mr. 10(B) Unibrow

Carrie – Having held my re-born again virginity for nine months in hopes for the elusive 10 to mean something more, I wasn’t going to let some non-consensual quasi-hookup with Mr. High School Musical take that title. After processing what happened (lots of alcohol + Bumble guys = bad choices), I decided to get on the Tinder train in Ottawa.

I was talking to this Naval Architect and he was checking all the boxes. He loved drinking, had a full head of hair, a daily gym goer with a stable job and I was hooked. Plus he had trendy circular-framed sunglasses in his summer pics near the water and I just envisioned us wearing matching pairs as we lounged on the beach. (Yes, you may roll your eyes at me). We had been talking every day for just short of two weeks before he finally asked me out… talk about the slow game. As fate would have it (or his poor planning), he was leaving town to visit the east coast for a week. He told me he’d message me when he got back.

In the interim, I had matched with this other guy. He messaged me a couple of times so when Naval Architect left, I answered him back but he was definitely a back-burner type of guy. An Ottawa-native with a U of T business degree, his responses were nice but boring. After Naval Architect had come back for a few days (which I deduced from frequent stalking of Tinder “km away” LOL) but failed to message me, I sheepishly accepted the date with the other guy.

I end up meeting him for a patio beer and the sunlight hit his slight unibrow and patch of four white-heads near his nose just so. I was repulsed and named him Mr. Unibrow, vowing to write a post for the blog.

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Continue reading “Mr. 10(B) Unibrow”

Mr. Fast Food

They say that things happen when you’re not looking, and that’s exactly what happened to Mr. Fast food and I.

Flashback to the spring: work was busy, my social life was crowded, and I was counting down until my summer vaca, which was filled with travel. Needless to say my dating life was at a standstill and I had sworn off dating – “I’ll look for a boyfriend in September” is what I told my pestering friends and family and once they agreed to believe that, my life was in balance.

Until one day I came to work and my co-worker, giddy as ever, ran up to me announcing “I have a boy” with excitement I was ready to listen to her recent boy story, until she finished her thought and said “for you”. Before hearing anything about him I quickly told her thanks but no thanks that I was sticking with it and like I just said, I had sworn off dating and was not about to change my mind. Well this didn’t stop her and she continued with it, telling me about this guy: cute, smart and most importantly funny. Though my interest was peaked I stood my ground and told her I was not interested. She asked if she could give him my number to which I said (surprisingly) no, to which she proceeded with “okay I’ll message it to him” before I could even respond.

Before I knew it, Mr. Fast Food started messaging me and just as quickly my heart started fluttering. Some creeping confirmed he was cute, and his texts made me LOL (for real) on more than one occasion, that when he asked to hang out I was already hooked and I broke my own promise and said yes.

I met him for Sunday afternoon coffee, at which we both ordered hot chocolate (can you say match made in heaven), and maybe it was all the sugar but our energy was undeniable with a date lasting 3 hours and I still didn’t want it to end. He was confident, unfiltered and hilarious, he’s not an awkward person but the first date awkwardness vanished basically before the date began. He messaged me by the time I got home, and the chatting continued until he secured himself a second date and I made it very clear that I was very into him.

Our next few dates exploring the six consisted of dinners, ice cream dates, Jays games and patio drinks. Each one was more fun than the last and I was hooked. The best part about Mr fast food was that he loved to cook and he was great at it too. He really understood that the way to my heart was through my stomach and always cooked the best meals and treats – it might have been part of the reason I was always so excited to hang with him (just kidding…).

It was the most comfortable I’ve ever been so quickly with anyone that the sleepovers, hook ups and ~deep~ convos came earlier than I could have ever expected. I was so into him, and was so comfortable with him that he became my number 2 (meaning the second guy I’ve ever slept with) and it was great. Not only did I get to break my year-long dry spell (I know) but I overcame the idea that sex with someone new would be awkward and weird – but that it was fun and just as great as I remembered 😉

However, Mr. Fast Food became less available as he traded his job at the vet with cute dogs for a cook at a new burgers and fries joint (not complaining because I love both), but the change of hours made him less available which sucked because I was leaving the six for the summer. Our ‘pre me leaving’ hangouts were becoming less and less and also began consisting of more movies, and Netflix and chills without as much of the chill. I chalked it up to our post-work hangouts that left us tired and didn’t worry about it at all. I left for the Pacific Northwest not thinking much of it and speaking to Mr. fast food everyday – whether it be talk or FaceTime and even referred to him with the “boyfriend” term on the trip because that’s where I thought it was heading.

Once I came home after a month – I couldn’t find the excitement to see him. After a month apart I went over to see him (mostly out of obligation) and was not impressed when his idea for our date day was to “watch a movie and nap”. And by watch a movie I don’t mean “watch a movie ;)” but actually finish the film. Huh. I could tell the vibe was off and it felt like I was hanging with an old pal rather than a new flame and that wasn’t going to work for me. I did the cowardish thing and blamed a headache for the reason of my quick depart, frantically sped dialling my best friend that I didn’t like him anymore and didn’t know what to do. I successfully avoided his texts for an entire weekend until I had to face it on Monday – I needed to break up with Mr. fast food. He took it well and we parted ways – still on good terms talking about the CNE and tossing each other the occasional Instagram like (I mean what says “friendship” more than that?!)

Like fast food, I was addicted for a bit until I realized that this thing with Mr. Fast Food wasn’t sustainable. Though Mr. Fast Food was funny and nice, he lacked the ambition and drive that I needed for this to go “next level”. Needless to say my motto is still fries over guys, even if the guys come with fries.

Until next time!

 

 

The Unluck of the Irish

It was the vacation we were highly anticipating – Sam and I were off  to South America for three weeks to hike, relax and of course find some blog stories. In typical Pam fashion, this story is very me (so basically rated PG) it still has some giggles and fun in it, and sorts of selective irresponsibility – at least more than I’m used to.

Our story starts with Sam and I sitting in a café enjoying lake views a few days into our travels. As we finished, we noticed these two adorable boys walk in and sit at the table beside us. Sam and I eyed each other, having not really met any cool and cute English speaking friends yet we saw this as our perfect opportunity. We mustered up the courage and played dumb asking them about their accents (though they were unmistakably Irish), our small talk opener landed them a seat at our table and we began chatting. The boys were cute and fun, maybe a little young for us but we rolled with it because they were the most entertaining people that we had met. A bit of chatting later, and they asked our plans for the night. Since we were in a pretty low pro city with very minimal nightlife, their offer to watch the sunset with a joint sounded like a perfect night.

We had planned to watch the sunset from our hotel, but once we arrived we saw that a big hill was blocking our view. Our one Irish friend had a wonderful idea (I say with sarcasm) to run up and watch it from the top of the hill mountain. Sam was super into the idea and ran ahead, leaving me and my Irish boy at the bottom. This is where I curse Sam – being not dressed and ready for the hike and also not yet acclimatized to the 3800 masl altitude and now I had to “hike cute” with this boy. My hiking cute thing didn’t last long, but as I walked my Irish friend stayed sweet, even holding my hand parts of the way up and chatting with me. Eventually, feeling too focused to just make it up, I sent the Irish boy up and slowly made it up after them, just making it in time for the sunset. We enjoyed the chill vibes and sunset and had a lot of fun chatting these new Irish friends – Sam and I both wondering if we’d make it a blog post even though they were a few years younger. Once we finally made it down (try hiking an uneven path down a mountain in the dark), we discussed what to do next. Maybe it was everyone’s own confusion, or the fact we were making plans with young Irish boys but we couldn’t manage to make solidified plans with our new friends – meaning that our night was over.

We did manage to say bye to our new friends the next day – hearing that they proceeded to stay in their room and get “fucked up” for the duration of the night, while Sam and I opted for some Netflix and sleep. Maybe better off we didn’t end up hanging out with them, but still gave us a fun/cute adventure and set the tone for our love of Irish friends.

Which leads me to our next eventful evening at a hostel bar. Sam and I were expecting (and I was surprisingly ready for) a fun and wild night, so we were hoping that the hostel would deliver. After sitting with a few friends we made, Sam and I started scoping the bar for hot boys – hopefully a duo. Sam pointed out the hot guy in the pink shirt, and my eyes immediately darted to his friend and it was a go. We jumped in at the opportunity to comment about the glitter on their faces, and found ourselves Irish boys 2.0. Sam again went for the tall brunette, as I chatted up the shorter blonde guy. Looked like we found our pots of gold, and stayed with them at the bar. Let me say, wheeling boys at the bar is definitely not my forte, so as Sam quickly and naturally chatted up her boy I was still awkward and very sober. Luckily (maybe?) for me, my Irish boy was nice and forward making it easy for me and I can say I was proud of myself for flirting back better than I usually ever do. Apparently, he got a good read on it too because without notice mid conversation he leaned in and began making out with me.

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I can’t remember my last bar make-out and for good reason – because I hated it. I could tell Sam had seen, and thought it was hilarious, as I tried to steer away from him before he could make out with me again. I did think he was cute, and maybe now wasn’t the opportune time to tell him that I don’t make out with boys in public bars. He went for it again and I kissed back a bit, but as Sam describes I basically stood there and let him make out with me. He then proceeded to ask if I wanted to go to the corridor. I don’t know what the hell he wanted to do there, but I saw it as my perfect out and proceeded to say “No thank you, I’m going to dance on the bar with Sam” and ran away.

So maybe all that glittered wasn’t gold that night, but it was one of my more scandalous evenings that now warrants a blog post. Shortly after finding Sam, we proceeded to leave but Sam’s Irish man wanted her to stay. After a quick dilemma, I sent her back to the bar to find her pot of gold, but he had taken it as a sign of disinterest and went along back to the end of the rainbow. Though Sam may describe it as an unsuccessful evening (or two), I figured it would be good content for a blog post – and also highlight our apparent interest in Irish boys (don’t be surprised when our next stories come from our vacation to Ireland…just kidding). But in typical Pam fashion, I had to share my “wild” nights abroad!

Mr. 10(A) High School Musical

Carrie –  For the past nine months, I have withheld my re-born again virginity from potential suitors in hopes that the next guy that I slept with would amount to something more. Not necessarily as in a boyfriend and not even necessarily more than one night (although ideal) – I’m talking about someone that I felt a connection with.

What was this weird self-imposed pressure to make it meaningful? Well, you see, the next guy I would sleep with would be my tenth. For someone who lost her virginity to someone she loved for five years after, I hadn’t ever envisioned myself having sex with more than one partner, much less eight others after that. Sex should be something more than lust, right? I started losing what sex had meant to me so I became infactuated with this idea that hitting double digits – the big 10 – should be something. Maybe 10 would even be my next One + Nothing (1 + 0) because everyone else before that didn’t really mean much.

Yet alas, the spell has been broken…

10(a) : Mr. High School Musical

            Upon heading back into the cesspool that is Ottawa from my May abroad, I felt hopeful my first few days of June. “Summer is the best season in Ottawa,” everyone boasted. With a best friend from the 6ix moving in with me for the summer and a good drinking crew, I was looking forward to Canada’s 150th anniversary in the capital.

Continue reading “Mr. 10(A) High School Musical”

Mr. Special Ops

Carrie – When my friend offered me her place to stay in Seoul and my credit card supplied me with free flights, I impulsively booked my four Asian-metropolis trip for May: Tokyo, Shanghai, Busan and Seoul.

We met interesting people along the way, that’s for sure. One night in Tokyo, we ended up at as the only two girls at this karaoke bar, where I proceeded to get serenaded and dipped by the big, burly bartender to Enrique Iglesias’ “Hero” (song is forever ruined).

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Cue to my last weekend Seoul, where I develop what I will term “Seoul Goggles” which is essentially a “do it for the blog” mentality.

Continue reading “Mr. Special Ops”

Mr. “Oh Yeah”

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Making noise in the bedroom is usually gratifying for both parties. When you hear a moan escape from your partner’s lips, you know you’re doing something right.

Unfortunately, some people take it out of hand. I’ve categorized these people into:

(1) Screamers
(2) Chatter-boxes
(3) Excessive moaners

The screamer is someone who sounds like they’re being ripped apart when they orgasm. They’re not just loud when they’re close to climaxing but rather release a shrill like yell, the type you hear in horror movies when someone just got caught by the murderer.

I lived with a screamer once. I thought I was home alone until I heard someone yell at the top of their lungs. I lunged for a kitchen knife because I thought someone broke into my apartment and killed my roommate. NOPE, just an orgasm.

The chatter-box can take one of two forms. The first is the overly-concerned chatter-box. This is the person who will repeatedly ask “do you like that?”. It’s important to be courteous to your partner but if I’m enjoying myself, shut up. The second is the dirty-talk chatter box. Some people may enjoy dirty talk, but everything has its limits. I’m comfortable with a few comments here and there but if you keep talking you’re going to ruin the mood. Like sir, we’re banging you’re not reading me erotica.

Recently, I encountered my favourite moaner. I have labeled this type the “oh no’s”.

I bumped into a guy I knew from undergrad a few weeks ago. We started chatting about a project we worked on together in school and how I was kind of a bitch because I was super keen. After reminiscing for a while we swapped numbers and said we’d catch up over drinks later that week.

Going for drinks, I had no idea whether this was a date or just two friends catching up. My plan was to go grab a couple drinks then go to a friend’s birthday party and have an early night.

Things didn’t quite play out as planned.

We met up for drinks at a really low-key place. We ended up really hitting it off. After a few hours of hanging out a couple of his friends came to join us at the bar. I mentioned my friend’s birthday and they took it as an invitation to join. So we all made our way to the next bar and continued to drink. Four beers and a gin-and-tonic later, this guy and I are making out on the dance floor like we’re first years at a frat-party.

Everything was going well and I was having a lot of fun with him. When he asked me to come back to his place, it only seemed natural to accept this invitation.

When we started fooling around I immediately had a flash back to that scene in Trainwreck where Amy Schumer is having sex with that really jacked guy and is just so not into it. At that moment I empathised with Amy.

This guy used to play football so he was pretty muscular. Unfortunately, while having sex there were points where he’d put all his weight on me. Having 180lbs crushing you isn’t really “sexy”. Not ideal but at this point I’m thinking it could only get better from there, right?

Wrong.

As I’m finally kind of getting into to it, I hear the words “oh yeah” escape his lips.

I’m thinking, okay… cool… guess I’m doing something right. Then I heard it again… and again… and again. This man was repeating the words “oh yeah” the entire fucking time.

There was a massive human being on top of me, closed eyes, and just repeating the phrase “oh yeah” while I lay silent and stunned. Was this man for real? Once the shock washed away the next step was not letting laughter escape me.

Like I was a participant in these activities. I could say from first-hand experience that it was not “oh yeah” worthy, much closer to “mmmm kay”. You’re not a god bud, you are a mere mortal with an average dong.

Bachelorette in Hell

 

Carrie – Move over Bachelor in Paradise, there’s a new show called Bachelorette in Hell and it is my love life. (That was cheesy, I apologize.)

Throughout the first few weeks of January, in order to get over my obsession with Mr. Heart Emoji, I distract myself with an app called Bumble where the girl has to talk to the guy first. Now, I’m pretty good with alluring men with one liners. In fact, I arrange three dates in one weekend.

Keeping em? That’s a different story (aka this blog post).

Continue reading “Bachelorette in Hell”

Mr. Heart Emoji – Part II

[Hey, if you haven’t read Part One, you might get confused. Click the link here!]

Carrie – In true blackout fashion, I remember saying “cheers” with my gal pal and Mr. Heart Emoji on our third round of tequila shots. Then not much more.

I am blackout at the pre but in cruel, cruel fashion, my brain can recall one interaction. Profusely flirting with Mr. Grilled Cheese, we end up as the only two people in the one of two rooms, probably because I was making everyone uncomfortable with my aggressive flirtation. (I was told later I was doing this IN FRONT OF Mr. Heart Emoji because I am a fuckgirl). I drunkenly confess to Mr. Grilled Cheese, “Well like you’re the last person I’ve slept with! Aren’t I the last person you’ve slept with?”

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I still cringe at how much of an embarrassment I like to make my life. Then he stutters “uhhhh” for approximately a minute. I save him by telling him I know I’m not, call him a manwhore, and top it off with a, “But I know you’re into me.” To my dismay, he answers, “A little bit.” Me: “A little bit?” “Yeah, a little bit.” I swear I probably would have mounted him right there if we weren’t in public cause I am such a horny little drunk.

I end up at a bar. How I got there, not too sure. As far as I’m concerned, Mr. Grilled Cheese was not there. I remember snippets of sitting in a booth with my gal pals and Mr. Heart Emoji, and also snippets of drinking water out of the bathroom faucet, just to prove that 23 is still not a classy age. I think I had fun and my Visa bill proves that.

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Accurate depiction of me receiving my visa bill.

Now the next bit is where it gets interesting. There is a 24 hour diner near the bars in Ottawa. At that point, I was not aware of this. (Now that I am, that Visa bill will only continue to grow.)

Mr. Heart Emoji and I wind up there. Alone. I deduce he must have asked me to go at 2 AM because I’m confused why we’re in a booth alone and none of our friends join us. But I happily order a $16 burger (one that I later proceed not to eat a single bite of) when a classmate shows up. Now let’s call him Tree cause he is ridiculously tall and dresses like a lumberjack. Tree starts by asking if he’s interrupting me and Mr. Heart Emoji. We say no, then he sits beside me and Tree asks, “but you guys are gonna bang tonight, right?”

Continue reading “Mr. Heart Emoji – Part II”