Deep-Fried Mars Bar Man

February 23, 2012 § 26 Comments

If I might stick my neck out and say the unsayable.  I have a friend who is startlingly, coruscatingly ugly.

He is tall and exceedingly unhealthy looking, a man who looks as though he was weaned for all the world on Cornish pasties and deep -fried Mars Bars; face like a bean bag.  I met him when were on a work trip together some years ago and his physical appearance was notable.  But he was so funny he made me laugh till tears tore down my cheeks.  Clever and warm and irreverent and witty and the best possible company.  I was married at the time (as was – still is – he), but I do remember thinking had timing and circumstances been different, I could very easily have fallen for him, spectacularly.  He was – is – astonishingly attractive.  But if you saw a photograph of him, you would think, Good God, not for a million quid!  You might be lucky enough to pick up on the twinkle in his eyes, but you wouldn’t begin to get it.  Yet, in truth, I could envisage spending the rest of my life with him (were he not married, obv), I adore this friend and find him very fanciable, but I am only being honest here when I say that if his photograph was on a dating site “gallery” of gargoyles, he would stand out amongst them as the gargoyle to end all gargoyles, and I would click him away in a millisecond.

I own the fault is in me, my superficial regard to looks, though it is not so superficial really, because of course I only have to meet someone for a few seconds to remember again that looks can mean Jack Shit in the overview of a person.  This friend’s character is such that his looks are irrelevant.  No, more than that, his character renders his looks actively appealing, sexy, and I don’t think I am the first woman to feel that about him, shall we say.

I am looking at online dating sites every day so no one can accuse me of giving up, but I am worried that I am missing out on winners because of picture prejudice before I have even looked at their profiles.  And yet I can’t help it.  Human nature and all that.   Natural selection.  Warthog in Walthamstow: Next!  There are thousands of profiles on these sites.  I cannot study them all.

I don’t know what I am saying, really.  I have learnt that online dating is a modern force for good and every person I know has a happily ever after story.  I hear them every day.  I know there is something in this lark and I am persisting, honest.  But it is of course a lottery that initially, at any rate, cannot do the chemistry.   I do love that thing of meeting or bumping into someone somewhere and feeling a surprise connection, as I did with the brilliant Deep-Fried Mars Bar Man who was an instant hit with me (and, I hope, me with him), and who became a friend practically on sight, and would surely have become a lover, had timing and circumstances been any different.

Online dating?  It’s not so good at that.  But I guess that’s not its thing.  Its thing is giving you a greater chance of putting yourself in the way of people with whom you might, one in a hundred, one in a thousand, find that kind of connection.

I press on.  And we shall just have to see.


§ 26 Responses to Deep-Fried Mars Bar Man

  • Check out the profiles too. If well-written and amusing you can get a feel for the person, and if not, they probably won’t interest you anyway.

    Have fun with the filters too. You can filter in those you’re likely to be interested in, like located within 50 miles, university educated, etc.

  • Eliza says:

    I’m pressing on too P! Been following your blog and especially enjoying all the info about online dating. Like your friend in Italy, I am now a bit of a pro. Started when I lived in Sydney and have had some really good dates and dinners and diversions, and 2 good long-lasting friends from it so far. Oh – and THREE friends who started when I did 10 years ago have now married online finds. So on I press. My older sister, married 40 years,says she would never have found/been attracted to her husband if she had seen his profile – going by looks and ‘ticking the boxes.’ But now I’m back in the UK and it doesn’t seem so easy. Yesterday I met someone for lunch after several emails, he said he was 60 (slightly older than me…) and 5’10” – imagine my horror when I turned up and walked straight past a very short man of about 78!Just another tale to tell but now I need your friends help, I’m still learning how to NOT be polite – he seemed so sad and lonely! On we go!

    • H says:

      Eliza, in hindsight can you recognise any mistakes made in the several emails you can pass on to us? The fool must have been crazy to think he could get away with it. Even if he claimed to be a well worn 60 a sudden attack of dwarfism might be a little far fetched. I certainly wouldnt worry about not being polite to such a liar . I don’t know if you travelled far to meet him – how inconsiderate of him. I presume it was him and not a “no show” 🙂

    • The Plankton says:

      Dear Eliza, Thanks so much for this. I don’t think you’ve commented before? Forgive me if you have, but there have been thousands and thousands of comments since I began. I am glad you are enjoying it, and please do keep in touch. The story about your date with the short OAP was helpful, and funny. Best of luck with the On we go! Pxx

    • Aidos says:

      I wish people would be more honest on their profiles. It’s bad enough being 57 and feeling 37; without people assuming I’m really 77!

      • Twinkletoes says:

        Had this happen to me and did not feel the need be polite to such a blatant liar. He was a creep too: emailed me the next day telling me I had lovely boobs. Euw. The correspondence ended with me telling him he needed to buy a new tape measure, because his old one had obviously shrunk!

  • Lydia says:

    If they write well or have written me a clever email then I don’t let the photo stand in the way and thus you get over that issue. I suppose with video too you see more of someone. People watch video of me on you tube, web site etc to [ look down my chest and salivate at my voice ] I mean… to decide if they want to give me work… I don’t use video for dating although once someone knows who I am they can go and look at stuff on line I suppose which might give them some idea of personality, sense of humour, smile and even cleavage.

  • rosie says:

    Yes yes yes! I coined a phrase – sexually repulsive – for this years ago! As long as they’re not overweight (sorry, but that just doesn’t turn me on), smelly or covered in boils they can be pig ugly and still as sexy as hell. I’ve been besotted by men who I wouldn’t have looked twice at had they passed me in the street (or, sadly, seen their pics online) but if I like what comes out of their mouths, so to speak, that’s it, I’m hooked.

  • ex-pond-slime says:

    For any short fat male plankton who may be reading recent posts and getting a bit depressed – I find tubby chaps perfectly fanciable, and I actually prefer short to tall. Not that I’m looking myself, but I’m sure there are plenty of women with equally variable tastes.

    Ironically, my husband is tall and slim, which is bit of a waste really. But he is also bald, wrinkly and ugly (in the most adorable way), which is why I was able to snap him up.

  • Alison says:

    Physically, its the eyes that do it for me, if they have nice twinkly eyes that show interest and humour, then from eyes down can be a total disaster, I will be hooked and will only gaze into those eyes and enjoy their conversation thats all that matters.

  • Aidan says:

    Alison, if a bloke had nice twinkly eyes, was funnny and interesting to talk to and weighed 27 stone would you still fancy him?

  • Margaux says:

    Coruscatingly – what a great word! A new one on me – I looked it up and love the idea of glitteringly, sparkling ugly! Thank you for improving my vocabulary today,P !

    That is indeed the conundrum of the profiles. We are attracted or repelled by profile pictures but in real life attraction is a whole different kettle of fish.

  • EmGee says:

    Sensory Overload! Looking at that many pictures of strangers -how indeed to separate the wheat from the chaff? Too bad one couldn’t set filters based on what ones sees in pictures. Setting ideal looks aside, I am sure that your instance, Ms P, you click right through the fellas with facial hair. Beyond that, perhaps judging only by other general criteria; like weight and hair mass.

    Funny charming witty etc can be hard to determine by profile too. Some people can write, some can’t, and some may have Cyrano at their back. 🙂

    Anyone who is taking on the role of pursuer has to expect to put in much more effort than the pursued.

  • tvmunson says:

    I guarantee you that DFMBM developed the traits you describe (wel, he was born intelligent) to “let fair wit mend foul feature”. (“Ivanhoe) All males do this. Unathletic boys develope humor as a defense. Indeed, the ultra-attractive athletes and runway models (are the latter required to look vacuous?) that can “rest on their laurels”, and too many do. (Rare to see smashinlgy good-looking comedians).

    But we all know that. I predict that in the not-too-distant a method will be devised to post, easily, snippets that allow them to audition, as it were, the sides of DFMBM that yo noticed casually.5 minutes dates are too intense, current models too remote. Just a way to measure a guy/gals sense of humor, sense of the ironic (close, but not the same as the former, just as esential IMO), confidence, maybe even empathy and the more ephemral human traits. Or at least get it going. I know there are Cyranos on line but I cannot see how it could possibly be discerned under the preset system.

  • Caz says:

    I agree with the above – one of the most attractive, charismatic men I ever met is pretty ugly and has a stammer. He developed a fantastic SOH, irony and intelligent conversation and is fabulous company. Unfortunately he’s also married, albeit unhappily and rarely talks to his wife.
    Too many good looking men rest on their laurels…..or even blue eyes!

  • Can we have a “Plankton Life” app, so we can keep up with your blogpage from our smartphones now?

  • Apparently in Scotland, it’s actually not uncommon for people to deep fry EVERYTHING, including candy bars- Really, I saw this on the Scotland episode of “Bizarre Foods With Andrew Zimmer”

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