July 31, 2013 § 179 Comments

A couple of nights ago I woke in a sweat with my heart beating like a banjo, only not in a good way.

I had had a nightmare, first one for three or four years.  Real nightmares, as in bad dreams when I am asleep, happen so rarely.  The one before last I still had a husband I could clung to at 3am, his flesh and warmth right by to offer inert comfort.  So we are talking one nightmare proper every few years.  I think it’s one of those blessings I should be counting: very few nightmare-nightmares to make up for all the daytime nightmares I have all day, every day.  Some fucking consolation.

Anyway, it was one of those horror film ones, the likes of which I remember having as a child.  And I woke up, shaking.  But as a grown-up, no companion, there’s no one to turn to.  I couldn’t exactly wake up my children, all scared and girl-like, and jibber to them that I had had a nightmare.  That would have been too fucking inverse and weird.

So I just had to beef out the fear and try to think about roses or cheese slices or whatever is supposed to be beautiful or bland and the opposite of nightmarish, and try to go back to sleep.

Yep, I am still sweating the small stuff, and sweating the small stuff, the stuff which no one bothers to mention or sweat to others, come daylight, and it is just one more item on the extensive plankton list of absolute shit.

The following night – last night – before putting the light out, I read Sharon Olds’s collection of poems about her husband leaving her for another woman, after thirty years of marriage.  I thought, these are good, very good, but they’re not going to grab me by the throat and squeeze stinging tears out of me because they are JUST NOT; because I have MOVED ON.

Well, no.  Obviously not so much.

I wept like a goddamn watering can.

§ 179 Responses to Nightmare

  • Eve says:

    I love reading your blogs — it’s as if we are dear friends commiserating. Please keep them coming!

    Have to ask, is it Carol Olds or Sharon Olds?

  • Jamie says:

    Sharon Olds I think. Not to be confused with Carol Ann Duffy.

  • EmGee says:

    I don’t have them often either, but I dread the prospect of having nightmares when I am alone.

    Thanks for the head’s up on the Poet – I already like the book by its title.

    • The Plankton says:

      It’s great. Except I am a pillock and got the author’s name wrong. Unforgiveable. But as Eve and Jamie have kindly pointed out she is called Sharon Olds, not Carol. Fool me. Apologies. Pxx

  • Two thoughts here- Firstly, I’ve said this before and I’ll say this again- Ms. P., based solely on what I’m seeing with your command of the English language in your blogposts here, I strongly suspect that you’d pass Mensa’s eligibility tests- You’d likely meet plenty of intelligent people at their meetings, approximately half of whom will be men, and some of them will likely be either single or married but curious to experiment….

    Second thought- I’ve been told a number of times that if you drink a glass of organic decaf herbal tea WITHOUT sugar in it before you go to sleep, and that if you keep a glass of it by your bedside so that you can sip from it as soon as you wake up, you’ll be less likely to experience nightmares- I don’t know enough biochemistry to understand the reasoning, but I know that it has something to do with antioxidants, free radicals and restoring a natural balance within your nervous system- From what I’ve read, you’re likelier to experience nightmares if the electric signals between your nerves are either understimulated or overstimulated, both of which can result from any number of factors in our day to day activities….

    • T Lover says:

      Two thoughts here too.

      First: brown-nose.

      Second: big girls’ blouse. Herbal tea. Next you’ll be telling me it stops your trainers from smelling.

      • She may not be a genius, this just a guess- Whomever our mystery hostess of this site is, for all I know, she may possess zero (0) understanding whatsoever of math, sciences, arts, interpersonal communication skills or any foreign languages- Her skill with our language is all I know about this woman, and this is indicative of someone with extremely high intelligence….

        For all I know, she may turn out to be like Bill Clinton- extremely articulate and concurrently had a habit of doing impressively senseless things (though not nearly as senseless as his successor, who elevated human stupidity into previously unknown depths….)

        Re- tea- don’t know about its effectiveness as a shoe or sock deodorant…. The companies that manufacture soaps, shampoos, shaving cream and toothpaste from green tea oil extract all make those similar claims about antioxidants and radicals- It’s supposedly true, but I possess only a layperson’s understanding of biochemistry- I know nothing beyond what I read in newspapers and see on television news shows about this subject….

    • Lydia says:

      I suspect if I mention my Mensa score to men it is unlikely to be the most important factor and would probably back fire although most clever people want a bright partner so the general point has substance.

      • you’re absolutely correct here Lydia- Nothing turns me on more than a woman who impresses me with her sheer lack of knowledge about anyting at all the first time we meet… …. “a chest full of silicon, contours of her facial features shaped courtesey of botulinim, hair color courtesey of several bottles of peroxide, facial skin shiny from cheap makeup (and way too much of it at that), and pretty close to nothing at all functioning between the ears, now that’s my type” I always say….

  • Oops- forgot to mention- I’ve read that it works best if you make the tea from bottled spring water or well water, and not from tap water- There are a lot of chemicals in tap water that can negate the calming effects of organic tea on your ability to sleep fully restfully….

  • @ Ms. P- restless sleep and frightening dreams could be a side effect of the p’zac that you’re taking- It does that to some people- just google “prozac and nightmares” ….

  • Lydia says:

    Ah yes, SB mentions prozac. If you want to increase happiness levels and aren’t on psychiatric drugs you can eat a potato before bed as that increases seratonin levels and tends to make you sleep long and deep and remember your dreams. It is like paying to watch a good film sticking that night potato into the microwave before bed so I suspect SB is right that it will be the prozac.

    On the nightmare description what sort of woman needs a man to cling to because she is scared? I don’t think I’ve ever been scared or anything. Actually it is very attractive to most men if you need them to keep you and care for you so surely plankton would be massive more attractive than I am to men due to that vulnerability and the fact a man can fix her?

    I was just emailing an ex today who is a friend and telling him someone famous’ views on how wonderful it is to be single at times (it is) – which seems almost the opposite of the plankton response.

    Are you eating enough and of the right foods? That has a massive impact on how happy people feel. Do you eat much meat and good fat on meat? It could really cheer you up.

  • zoe says:

    “I suspect SB is right that it will be the prozac”. Or it might just be the nightmares that we all get from time to time and P gets once every few years. The Mensa score doesn’t seem to be much of an aid in statistical analysis or soundness of inference.

    • Fi says:

      I had a scary dream the other night – I dreamt I drove someone off the road, sending their car summersaulting out of control until it landed on ti’s roof, and killed them. I was awake for a full 2 minutes talking myself into going down to the police station to report it before thankfully I realised it was all a dream. We’re all mental really, but mental in different ways.

      • T Lover says:

        Woman, can I call you Woman now?

        Well, on Tuesday night I had very strange dreams. In the morning I had a spot on the right hand side of my nose.

        At work on Wednesday morning my Secretary announced she had had a bad night – odd dreams. She had a spot on the right side of her nose too.

        We both denied going to bed at an odd time or eating late or eating something high protein.

        So there. Perhaps it was the atmospheric conditions – does not explain the nose spots though – or the moon.

        Disclaimer. I do not sleep with or have any physical contact with my Secretary and we live 25 miles apart.

      • Fi says:

        T, you can call me Woman if you want 🙂
        Bet you like that really – I can just see you calling out to your lady friend: “Woman, make us a cup of tea would you?”

      • T Lover says:


        If I was out with my girlfriend why would I ask you to bring me a cup of tea?

  • Vaso says:

    I read this post lastnight and the strange thing is that two nights previous i also had a very bad nightmare and in fact did go cowering to my daughters room for some comfort!! Didn’t really get any and she told me to go back to my room! Coincidence!!

  • kathy says:

    Something I have been wondering about , do you think there is an age where a person should just give up on the idea of finding a partner? Not for reproduction purposes ,but just a partner?

    I did a bit of research online and it seems that those women that have consciously given up feel relieved and happy they could just concentrate on other things

  • Eve says:

    Kathy, I’ve been wondering the same thing. I’ve given the idea a couple of trial runs without success. I don’t know how one achieves the mind-set of not looking for love anymore short of a lobotomy. It would be wonderful to give up on the notion, achieve acceptance, then just go about living life to the fullest.

  • kathy says:

    Eve, it would really be like being a child again, the last time I can remember not caring about boys was age 10. I think it’s a case of acceptance, just getting to a mental state of acceptance. I don’t have any real immediate family, mostly due to death, and so my need for love is maybe stronger, but I just seem to get hurt so much by men. I think my heart nd head would be clearer without a love interest at all. Empty, but at least clear.

    • MissBates says:

      Responding to your original question, Kathy: I don’t think there is or should be a specific “I give up” age, because it would be different for each person. I myself began to let go of any hope of finding a partner at about 45, and my feelings sort of ebbed and flowed on that topic for a few years, but now (I just turned 52) I can say that I have simply accepted it, just as you mention above. It’s not a coincidence that “acceptance” is the fifth and final stage of mourning. I don’t know that I will ever “get over” the loss, but I’m trying to move forward. Some days are better than others.

  • Eve says:

    I agree.

    • I read in The Book Of Scott that there’s absolutely NOTHING wrong whatsoever with spending many years without love or sex or various permutations of the two, IF that’s what you honestly and truly want for yourself- If you’re really busy working on a complicated project or on several different projects, or perhaps you simply want to spend a lot of time alone for any reason, that can be entirely healthy- The stress, frustation and pain begins to accumulate when you’re alone, and it’s NOT due to your own choice….
      This would seem to be true, whether you’re in year early teen years, or whether your age has reached 3 digits… And from what I’ve observed in my 41 years of living on this planet so far to date, this would also seem to be true regardless of whether you’re straight, glbt, gltbx, lgbtq (or whatever abbreviation some columnist for some hipster magazine or blogsite comes up with next week) or whether you like to experiment with various combinations of those too…..

  • rosie says:

    It’s such a subjective issue that I don’t think there’s any ‘right’ age to give up looking. You hear of people finding love in their 60s, 70s and even 80s (admittedly, they must be a tiny percentage and who the hell can wait that long anyway) who’ve been on their own for donkeys. Equally, people who have been alone most or all of their lives and say they are happy, though, as ever, I’ve never actually met any of these people and if I have they’ve been decidedly odd and/or damaged in some way.

    But if, deep down, you really want to be with someone (and I’m of the opinion that we all do), you can tell yourself that you’ve accepted solitariness until kingdom come but you’ll never actually feel it.

  • Eve says:

    I agree Rosie. I long to feel happy, content and okay with my life as is without a partner. Not sure how to do that without substance abuse.

  • rosie says:

    Just to add, there are obviously different kinds of solitariness. Having a big loving family and lots of close friends can help to take some of the edge off being in a romantic wilderness. But again, it’s always going to be subjective and a person with all of those things can feel just as lonely as someone with none of them.

    Eve, I know what you mean. The only problem is that when it wears off you feel a hundred times worse. *reaches for litre bottle of vodka*

    • Eve says:

      As long as we can share a good laugh (maniacal laughter?), we’ll be okay … I would reach for my vodka but my boss might not approve. I never could hold my booze well, though getting better.

  • Cindy says:

    I agree with you about having a clearer head when you don’t have a love interest. I am currently seeing a guy who runs hot and then mostly cold. It is doing my head in, and I often wish for the oblivion of not caring if I had a partner. I wish I could accept my single status and embrace it. I think I would be much, much happier.

    • kathy says:

      Yes Cindy there have been rare occasions, like maybe a couple of weeks where I’ve been able to just tune out and yeah it’s so relaxing the hot and cold thing, I just ended a six YEAR hot and cold and , well it ended earlier this year but we were still in agonising toxic contact. Anyway honestly when they are hot and cold , it really doesn’t change until you decide to end it.

      How old are you if you don’t mind me asking?and him?

      • Eve says:

        The hot and cold men are sometimes masterful at pulling us back in when they sense we’ve had enough. So, it takes real strength and determination. Short term pain for long term gain. A book I found helpful was “He’s Just Not That Into You” I think that’s the correct title.

      • Cindy says:

        Hi Kathy,
        I’m 47 and he is 49.
        I have thought so often about ending it, but I always seem to be drawn back in. I guess I am living off the little morsels of attention he throws my way.
        I really need to get a backbone and learn to appreciate my own company.

  • @ Kathy, Eve, Cindy, Rosie, Miss Bates, Ms. Plankton, etc.- I’ve written this story on Ms. P’s site here once before, but I think that it was back sometime in 2011 or 2012, so I’ll tell this again-

    Way back in the summer and the autumn of 1998, I had a job filling prescriptions at a pharmacy 3 blocks from our house here in the suburbs of New York City (“chemist” in the U.K. version of our language)- My entire job was to arrive at my desk at 8:00 AM, each morning there’d be a dot matrix printout of a list of somewhere between 200 and 300 prescription orders waiting for me, and I had to have them all filled by 4:00 PM when the delivery drivers would arrive to pick them up to deliver them to some of the assisted living facilities, psychiatric hospitals and nursing homes in our area which are too small to have their own in-house dispensaries. Most of the orders that I was filling were for prescription medications, although there were usually some over- the- counter items that the doctors were ordering for their patients too- I could always tell the ages of the patients because U.S. laws require the doctors to write the patients’ dates of birth on all of the prescription orders- And I can still remember now that in 1998, I was seeing some orders for people whose dates of birth were 1908, 1905, and one man who was born in 1903 whose doctors were ordering a 12 pack of Trojans lubricated condoms for them once per week- Unless these guys were assembling a menagerie of balloon animals to entertain their grandchildren or the elementary school children who read stories to them on the afternoons, then I’ll conclude that these were being used to engage in some nonagenarian whoopie !!!!

    I sure hope when I’m in my 90’s, I’ll still be ordering a 12 pack of condoms each week….

  • kathy says:

    You have no idea how comforting that is Scott, lol great story

    ……except for the visions of really old wrinkly men with erections I have now!

    • Some of the people who live in this assisted living home are centennarians, although I don’t remember ever seeing an order for condoms for anyone whose age had reached 3 digits- That doesn’t necessarily mean that their doctors weren’t ordering condoms for them, it just means that if their doctors were ordering condoms for them, the orders were being sent to some of the other pharmacists’ technicians to be filled- You’re only as young/ old as you feel !!!! You know what I do keep hearing people saying these days, that 100 is now the new 90 !!!!

  • rosie says:

    The only way to save your sanity (and self esteem and everything that goes with it) with men who blow hot and cold is to end all communication. Says one who speaks from experience!

  • therugbymom says:

    I agree with Ms. P. It isn’t so much that I NEED A MAN to hold me and make everything better after waking from a nightmare, but IF there was someone in bed with me, it would be a natural reaction to seek comfort in their arms. When I wake up frightened and alone, it just drives home the realization that I can’t remember the last time I had any physical contact with another human (excluding handshakes.) Adding that to the nightmare just increases my depression exponentially.

    Lucky for me, I’ve been perfecting my ability to fantasize recently. Even if I can’t get back to sleep, I can close my eyes and appreciate some happy thoughts of me and Mr. Perfect doing all kinds of enjoyable things! Heck yes!

    My worst real life nightmare is spiders. I DO need a man to kill spiders! Please.

  • T Lover says:

    Long story but yesterday, I wanted to go to a viewing in Wandsworth.

    So, because of this cycling whatever it was that was going on in London, I tried to get across the river first thing but was stopped everywhere. Tried again in the late afternoon but the same thing happened.

    In between times, I went into Kingston and from there walked down the Thames.

    What a world. This morning the rain is horizontal on my empty hillside. There, one never ending sea of people.

    Not so many of the obviously strapped obese you see in my local town. Beautiful, elegant, confident women everywhere. A rainbow of nationalities. I followed one 30ish couple down the river footpath. What a gorgeous girl. BTW I don’t want to say this but he too was tall slim, good looking, expensive clothes and haircut. She could have used my tongue as a carpet.

    Funny thing was that (this is a crackpot theory) my in depth research revealed the majority of the really good looking women were not coupled up but many of the less attractive (to me) were.

    The other research I was able to conduct was into Thai brides. Sorry Chris but I have always been wary of marrying someone from outside the EU since my then Secretary’s brother married a Thai, brought her in to find within a year (when she had the right to be here) the woman was having an affair and expertly taking the husband’s financial pants down.

    Anyway, they were everywhere. Sorry again Chris. It always makes me giggle to see these pairings. I only know one bloke who has done it (he is ribbed constantly) and nowadays only see Asian brides occasionally. Yesterday, there were droves of these mismatched couples.

    As I was talking to a steward about why I couldn’t cross the road for an hour and a half, three went by in succession. Brilliant. All three hopelessly mismatched. Not one of them was physically connected as they walked along. The first of the woman had a face like thunder. The second was, I swear, the bandiest I had seen for aeons. And the third was all but a bloody midget.

    How desperate must a bloke be to marry a joke? Mind you, they say girls who are bandy are normally randy so…..

    • zoe says:

      I wish you would keep some of your more unpleasant ramblings to yourself, TLover. So what if someone is taller or fatter or otherwise different to their partner. That’s none of your business. You sometimes give the impression that you are no oil painting. If you go out with someone attractive, should we consider that “a joke”?

      Or perhaps, the “mismatch” you have so much antipathy for goes deeper still. Don’t like the Thais with the British? And what about black with white? There was a hidden camera programme recently that planted a black woman dating a white man with an overtly racist waiter (all actors). The test was to see if other customers would object and whether this would vary in different parts of the country. In London they did. Vociferously. Not in the north. I love the fact – I am proud of the fact – that London is so tolerant of difference. If you don’t like it, as they say, go back home.

      • Fi says:

        I’m sure that you didn’t mean to imply that the North are racists. I travel between Scotland and London on an almost weekly basis, and i would say that it is the culture that is different – Londoner are much more vocal and ‘assertive’ and ‘forceful’ and I can quite easily see them publicly objecting to something they didn’t like where in other bits of the country people wouldn’t. That doesn’t however mean that as they didn’t object, they approved.
        I would also say that it is a myth that London is more tolerant that rural areas say – I have found the exact opposite to be the case in real life. I think this is because in smaller more rural areas people actually know each other better as they interact more with their neighbours, with other people in the street and in shops and this leads to more tolerance of each other – it is in the large anonymous cities that you are not so much tolerated as simply ignored, unless you get in the way that is.

      • WiddleandDa says:

        It is at it again


        Touched a nerve have I?

        And what’s this: “If you don’t like it, as they say, go back home.” Straight out of the BNP manual that one.

        The points I was trying to make were:

        One. It wasn’t always the girls I thought attractive who were paired up, rather the opposite.

        Two. Why are so many men so desperate they have to resort to a Thai bride with all the social and family consequences?

        For the record, as long as my life is not derailed you, and anyone else, can do whatever floats their boat so your hallucinatory remarks about my attitude to Britons with Asians, blacks with whites are, I am afraid, ill judged.

        However, the subtext to your comment is that you, in London, are in some way superior to we hicks from the North – your lovely tolerant attitude contrasted with my bigotry. If I don’t like it I can go home. Nice.

        I bumped into one of these “Pride” do’s the other Saturday. Some prat of a labour Councillor giving us some about tolerance and equality. I stood next to a lesbian couple. The butch one was plain. I accept that is not her fault but she was – very.

        Why are these women determined to make things worse? Overweight. Shaved head with an electric shock top. Denim dungarees, bib front, cut off at the knees. Big, big tattooed calves. White ankle socks. Bovver boots. Why can’t I smile? She chose to make herself look like that. She was not born in the outfit.

        By contrast it is not my fault I am only 5 feet 2 ins and as you put it, no oil painting. But you had to point it out.

      • T Lover says:


        Sorry. Did not mean to abrasive. Just tired. Sorry

      • Muriel says:

        What you said.
        I was married to a black man and my kids are – quite brown! I can attest that the Scottish community in which we live has been very accepting.
        I expect we did look weird walking down the street, but I had enough going on in my life not to give a crap.

      • Fi says:

        Unfortunately there is often the belief that London is where it’s at, and everywhere else is simply racist, homophobic hicksville. People forget that in Scotland we have Scottish Opera, the RSNO, Scottish ballet, Edinburgh festival, loads of museums and theatres, more money spent per capita on education and health, and because we have a higher disposable income we can afford to make use of these facilities more frequently that people in London – well the ones I know in London anyway. And I think there is more inclusiveness – people just get on with their life without the need to identify themselves with another subgroup. My son had gay friends at school, he also had a friend who had 2 lesbian mothers, my friend has a gay son, another friend of mine worked in a school where there was a boy who considered himself a girl, and what did all the kids do? Called him by his chosen girl’s name. In her village there are 2 gay guys, one of whom is a vicar moved up from England. They just get on with it and people allow them to because I think in a small community they are accepted first and foremost as people that other people know and not defined instead by their sexuality/colour/religion.

      • T Lover says:


        I tried to say before whoever started spitting out my comments again that I know we look odd, turn heads. Me so much older and 14 inches smaller when you are wearing heels. Still at that altitude you can’t smell my breath.

        They snigger, say you do it for my money but we know it isn’t true, I ain’t got any. It’s love.

        I resent being tarred a northern bigot. As though I goose-step round the drawing room listening to Wagner.

        The money down there is breathtaking. Lots of people are really friendly. But stupid. Lost sight of what life is about.

        We are funny aren’t we? I first employed an Asian thirty years ago. She is still brilliant. Strange at first. What earthly reason have I to say that? But it was. But then she stopped being an Asian. Because I stopped noticing.

        Sod Edinburgh. One of the most sophisticated cities in Europe. You haven’t mentioned Coldstream and the Pipe Band.

        I was trying to say that with so many unattached delicious girls out in the sun why import a Thai? You are middle aged and grey. Plump. OK she is young. But she’s bandy. And a bit vertically challenged. You do look a prat.

    • malcolm says:

      I hate that stereotype that northern people are more prone to be racists. I come from a working class Glaswegian family, out of five siblings, two married outside our “race?” and I have nieces and nephews that are partly Asian and partly African, and none of them have been treasured any less in our family than anyone else in our family. We are fiercely proud and supportive of one another.

      I can’t stand that stereotype about the Scots, as if they were small minded and bigoted people. I often think that it was their general good humour and ability to put up with the English for so long, that held the empire together for as long as it lasted.

  • rosie says:

    Whereabouts in the north did this take place, Zoe, or was it just The North?

    • Muriel says:

      Ha yes, would that be Manchester, Durham, Perth or Thurso? Does those Down South even know the difference?

  • Muriel says:

    As far as the nightmares are concerned, I am on SSRIs as well and have a lot of vivid, bizarre dreams although no full on nightmares. Yet. I think it’s one of the side effects.
    I also have disturbed sleep due to night sweats, another unlovely sign of my age 😦
    I can’t imagine ever daring to show interest in a man again TBH, I feel too ashamed and unattractive.

    • WiddleandDa says:

      Don’t be silly Muriel. PMA.

    • malcolm says:

      “I can’t imagine ever daring to show interest in a man again TBH, I feel too ashamed and unattractive.”

      With all the sensitivity I can muster, you’re just being ridiculous. We all have parts that have seen better days. You sound a bit self-pitying to be honest, totally not attractive. (Sorry, I’m not a coddler).

      The easy solution: Find a man who is roughly equal to you, both physically and mentally.

      Why this may work: Many such men roam the Earth.

      The problem with the solution: You will find your male equivalent unattractive, probably much like he finds you (despite your indignation at the thought). He will be an average fellow, much like you. He might even be experiencing male hair loss, something that affects many males – but you deserve better. A lot better, apparently, from reading the spinstersphere. Apparently, men, who are avaricious beasts, willing to rape and pillage at the drop of a dime, haven’t noticed you. It confuzzles me too.

      As for the coffee lady, things are going well, and surprisingly, she quite likes me, finds me fun, very admiring of my abs ( we had a beach day, where I couldn’t help noticing her looking). She actually sent me flowers to my work, a new experience for me, and seems very enthusiastic. Finally, it’s nice not to be the one who’s obliged to be enthusiastic while the other party “understandably” holds her cards close to her chest (God forbid she should get hurt).

      Against my better judgement, I’m cautiously optimistic that things may work out for me.

  • amouette says:

    Crikey McM (if I may) – you’re bright, funny, fit, great sense of humour, great personality, great kids, and only (about) fifty… Sit yourself down please and look at the bright spots.

  • rosie says:

    This has made me feel weepy (and wish that foreign publications wouldn’t quote the Daily Mail so much) as I contemplate going to the cinema on my own this evening (what if someone sees me!) or taking a bottle of vodka home and drinking the whole fucking lot.

    • steve says:

      Read the link – load of rubbish. There’s a massive difference between being lonely and being alone. They are most definitely not the same.

  • Eve says:

    I’m sorry Rosie. Chin up!

    To hell with anyone that sees you at the cinema. Think of all of the miserable couples you know and feel smug.

    I occasionally muse about the single/divorced/widowed women I know who seem to be content with their lives — their wholesome projects, their church-lady stuff, their bridge games, nary a sigh or an indication they’re still looking. How does one arrive at that place?

    Whatever they’re taking, I want some.

    • Fi says:

      “Whatever they’re taking, I want some.”
      I think it boils down to whether you are a glass half full or glass half empty person and this is a choice. There was an article recently in the Times (can’t link to it as it is subscription) but basically it says you can train yourself to be more optimistic in life, and why you should. It isn’t set in stone that you have to be miserable about your life because it hasn’t turned out the way you wanted it to- nobody has the life they wanted or expected when they were younger – but I do believe that you can choose to be happy if you want to. Apart from the practical things you can do to enrich your life (e.g. making more friends, socialising more, getting some exercise and eating well as well as getting plenty of sleep – turning into Lydia here) there are the mental things too – yoga, meditation, choosing to look on the positive side of life, letting the little things go, seeking out pleasure where you can get it, being more tolerant of other people and building closer relationships with the people already in your life….the list goes on. Last night I went out for a bike ride with 3 other people (2 men and a woman, all in their forties) and we stopped twice for a bottle of beer in the pub, and it was a lovely night. I felt as though I was about 10 in fact, going out with my pals to play on my bike. These are folk I met through my meet up group and haven’t even know that long, but they are all out of relationships having lost a lot of friends in the split and looking to make new ones. It is not a dating thing, but just going out with friends (or indeed having 12 of them over last weekend for a night of card playing and wine drinking) is enough for me. it all depends on how you choose to view your life. Once again, it is the choice you make.

      • Eve says:

        Of course, I’m well aware that attitude is everything. There are also peaks and valleys that we all go through. Glad everything is working out for you, hope it lasts.

      • Fi says:

        yep sorry – was a general comment really but it did look like it was directed at you, probably cos I quoted you and replied to you right enough, but it wasn’t. 🙂

      • EmGee says:

        Fi, that sounds like an awful lot of fun!
        I run hot and cold on socializing (right now I am in hermit mode, and could care less about having other people around), but I know when I’m feeling alone, the antidote is to just get out and do something that isn’t a solitary activity (solitary, like eating out alone or going to a movie by yourself – imo, that sort of thing leaves one feeling even more alone.)

      • Fi says:

        EmGee – it is fun but I can’t take any credit. 🙂
        It’s the meetup group, combined with the fact that there are literally loads of men and women who are looking to build up a social life and make new friends that join it. Men and women don’t seem so content to sit in the house or just go to the pub when their relationship ends, I think actually it’s part of this whole thing of having a second chance at life – we don’t let our hair go grey and knit baby clothes for other people’s babies or our grandkids, and the blokes don’t want to just play golf. Everyone in my group has joined for the same reason, and they are all up for having fun and enjoying themselves – they don’t want to sit around moping. Some are looking for someone but they do internet dating, they don’t bring it to the group as that would get all messy and spoil it. I can’t praise it enough – although it may be just the group I belong to that is like that, but it is fab.

  • rosie says:

    Oh god, please don’t let it get to the stage where I’m playing bridge or going to church! As for the cinema, it’s made even worse by the seating arrangements being soft squishy sofas designed for two. But at least I won’t have to have my stomach pumped. Deep breaths.

  • Well what a cheery group you ladies are- Today (Thurs. 08/08/13) is in fact Día Internacional del Orgasmo Femenino/ International Female Orgasm Day

    (I’m really not making this up, google it/ bing it/ yahoo it) If there were an annual male equivalent, I’d be certain to celebrate it…. alone if I had to… : (

  • rosie says:

    Steve, I’m not sure what your point is but, yes, there is a big difference between being lonely and alone, and unless you are a Supreme Being too much of the latter will almost inevitably (or just inevitably) lead to the former.

    Plus the usual ridiculous just-do-as-I-say stuff from elsewhere about what women *should* do to find a partner and, ta-dah, it will just HAPPEN.

  • rosie says:

    “but I know when I’m feeling alone, the antidote is to just get out and do something that isn’t a solitary activity (solitary, like eating out alone or going to a movie by yourself – imo, that sort of thing leaves one feeling even more alone.)”

    Quite. I think my point was that it’s not always possible to go out and do something that isn’t solitary when one is single.

  • malcolm says:

    I need help. I read something in the Guardian, and I’m wondering if this is how modern British women think, or whether the writer is merely insane.

    • EmGee says:

      The writer is merely insane.

      I understand that all she is saying is that she rues the day her precious snowflake begins to learn manners (apparently from her teachers and other adults, since momma seems disinclined to do so), and begins to conform to society’s norms.

      Of course how much she conforms has mostly to do with what she learns about comportment from her parent, so maybe there’s hope yet that she will be talking about [the adult equivalent of] her ‘enormous poos’ well into her 40’s, at which point she will be posting in a blog and wondering aloud why she hasn’t been able to stay in a relationship, why she can’t seem to get a date, or maintain a healthy relationship to save her soul, even though she has a well paying profession, keeps herself in good shape, goes to all the best places (like California, with it’s enormous fridges and dozen(!) egg cartons), etc, etc, etc.

      It’s one thing to be a free spirit, it is quite another to grow up without shedding the ‘princess’ role along the way. I am not convinced this woman knows there is a difference.

  • malcolm says:

    And just in case the title alone wasn’t incentive enough to click the link and read, here’s a paragraph;

    “I’m so in love with her big poos that I can’t bear the idea of them stopping. Of her realising that they aren’t things you want to show off about. Of the day when somebody makes it clear to her, whether by accident or design, that sweet little girls aren’t supposed to describe the massive steaming achievements cruising out of their bums, propelled by the wonders of peristalsis, into the marvels of the plumbing system. That curly little blondes such as she should desire to be small, and contained, and clean, and dress up as pink princesses. And shut up about their dirty selves; already, enough.”

  • T Lover says:

    Life can be crap on your own, especially when you get older.

    • Fi says:

      It can be, It doesn’t have to be.

    • Thanks for the encouragement… something to look forward to now….

      Already stocking up for next weekend… 12 pack of Philadelphia Dock Street Amber (12 ounce size)- check…. 6 pack of Deschutes Brewery Black Butter Porter (also 12 ounce size)… check…. beer glasses cooling in the freezer…. (always)…. 1/8 ounce of salad herbs from Alaska…. check…. 2 pints of blueberry ice cream… check… pre-ordered 2 pizzas w/ anchovies, mushrooms and extra cheese…. check… dvd’s for viewing… on their way….

      (technically, I can’t officially call my bedroom a “man cave” yet because I’ve not decorated it with any neon signs)

      • Fi says:

        Your bedroom? Do you still live at your parents? 🙂

      • zoe says:

        Of course, fi! Now it begins to make sense. Scott, did you ever see that experiment where older people recover their youthful selves when their living environment reproduced that of their earlier lives? Move out, Scott! Adolescence is not a good look on a grown man.

      • Fi says:

        It’s the ice cream, pizza and beer too. And glasses in the freezer. And the drugs and dvds. Teenage boy trapped in a man’s body.

      • Eve says:

        Ha Ha Ha Fi. What is D B Black Butter Porter? A British thing? I’ll Google.

      • zoe says:

        And porn. Don’t forget the porn! He used to quote us porn dialogue, didn’t he? 🙂

      • Fi says:

        Although….. 2 pints of ice cream and 2 Pizzas? Teenage boy trapped in a fat man’s body is probably more accurate. Scott, cut out the crap food and get down the gym 🙂

      • zoe says:

        Sorry, S, a bit of mischief here….

      • Fi says:

        god Zoe, you’re RIGHT. Forgot the porn. Scott – did you mean to say you’re 14? Have we misunderstood you?

      • zoe says:

        He didn’t after all say which DVDs they are…

      • Fi says:

        Poor Scott. We have to stop laughing at him. Really we do. But not quite yet…..:D

      • maria says:

        That’s it. There’s the reason why he hasn’t touched a woman’s body for three (?) years now. He still lives with his parents.

      • Eve- sorry- It’s Black Butte Porter, didn’t mean to type the “r” at the end of the word “Butte”- The Deschutes Brewery is a microbrewery located in Bend Oregon, “porter” is a style of beer, and they’ve named this particular porter after Black Butte, which is one of the mountains in the Deschutes National Forest….

        “Butte” means “hill,” I think that “butte” may be one of those American words that’s not in use in the U.K. version of our language, I forgot about that…. Perhaps comparable to your word “tor,” which is never used in the U.S. The word “butte” is mostly used in the western states, you won’t hear it used in the eastern states terribly often….

      • Betsy H says:

        Mmmm….porter…! As in Taddy Porter – made by the wonderful Samuel Smith’s of the UK. It was my late husband’s favorite beer…of course, sadly, my husband had a wee too many favorite beers…which is why he is my “late husband”. Sigh…ah well! It is STILL a great beer!

      • Fi and Zoe- thank you, not quite that desperate- I’ve watched a total of one (1) XXX rated movie in my entire life, it was back in the summer of 1991- (back in the VHS era), I don’t remember the title….

        For my viewing pleasure for this upcoming weekend, I’ve got “Waste Land” (2010)- It’s a documentary about artists who make sculptures and collages solely from items that they find while picking through various garbage dumps in South America….

  • Well, some good news for us today- It turns out that there are no potential dangers to our health from not being able to find Mr. Right or Mrs. Right or even Mr. or Mrs. okay- for- right- now:

    • There’s no joy in abstinence if you’re a guy… I mean there really isn’t … : (

    • Eve says:

      She does make good points. I’ll get the book.

      • Betsy H says:

        I agree with Eve, Scott, but there may be some pain we don’t know about…I try to never make assumptions. What I liked about the article was the author’s comments about marriage and sexuality (about a couple being ridiculous!) and also her points about quality over quantity. I have neither quality nor quantity so can’t speak to that…still…I will get the book too.

  • Steve says:

    Eve, why is it easier for men?

    • zoe says:

      Because, Steve, women make choices that make it harder on themselves. And then accuse men of having it easier.

      • Steve says:

        I’m lost. What’s the point of making choices that make it harder and then complaining that it’s too hard to find someone?

    • Eve says:

      I was asking. You know the deal Scott. I’m in Northern Virginia and the ratio of women to men here is … don’t recall … but know there are more women. Just ask the Plankton,, older women are perceived as less desirable than older men. Despite the “cougar” b s. Before coffee, that’s the best I have

      • If you’re in northern Virginia, why not just head into D.C. …. plenty of available men in our nation’s capital city, young, old, tall, short, fat, thin, interesting, boring, you name it, you’ll find plenty there….

    • maria says:

      Steve, I don’t believe you have trouble meeting women. Come on, you’re quite handsome. Either you’re too picky or your personality sucks.

      • Fi says:

        Steve – you ARE good looking. You must be doing something wrong. Are you selecting the wrong type of woman? Are you not meeting any? Are you not going anywhere where women are? Are you missing signals? Tell us what you are doing. How many new women do you meet and where? what sort of women are you attracted to?

      • Steve says:

        Maria – I’m not particularly picky. Must be the personality then…. 😦

        Fi – I don’t select anyone! I think a huge drawback for me is that I have a great many women friends so invariably when I am out I am with a woman and it might be reasonable to assume that we’re a couple, when in fact we are not.

        The women I have met recently have been introductions by friends and family, rather than random people I have met in public. I am attracted to certain physical attributes as are we all, but I value grace and intelligence a great deal more.

        However, the point here is that if I knew what I was doing wrong, I’d stop doing it, but isn’t that the same for all of us? That’s why we are Plankton surely? I read many comments on here and everyone appears to be intelligent and articulate so we must all be doing something wrong!

      • Eve says:

        Steve,I’m thinking it might not be a good idea to mention your many female friends to a new female. Not for jealousy reasons but it might appear that your life is already full. Just thinking back on my experiences

      • Betsy H says:

        Heck, I KNOW what I am doing wrong! I am just kind of scary to guys – really! I mean I am a black belt in karate, a relatively high-ranking university official, a strong mother of two boys who has been through the fire dealing with the life and death of an alcoholic husband and a two-time cancer survivor! It is my understanding from the “pop” psychology articles that men of my age need to feel “needed” – and I am guessing I give a vibe of such self-sufficiency that it is a turn off. But I really cannot change who I am – become a simpering, whimpering, eyelash-fluttering “lady”. So I am content to wait until someone comes along with the balls to take me on! ;-P

      • Fi says:

        what do you mean you ‘don’t select anyone’. Are you not identifying someone you fancy getting to know a bit better and engaging her in conversation and flirting?

      • maria says:

        Betsy H, you sound like you are a hell of a gal! If men can’t see that, it’s their loss.

      • maria says:

        Not “gal”, I meant girl. Sorry!

      • Betsy H says:

        Oh goodness, I don’t mind “gal”! But I prefer “ninja” ! ;-P

  • zoe says:

    (Not necessarily meaning Eve, I hasten to add)

    • Eve says:

      No worries we. In a lot of cases, my standards weren’t high enough. Maybe I’m over-correcting now. : )

      For anything more than friendship, there needs to be chemistry.

      • Eve says:

        Sorry Zoe, I typed We for your name.

      • Eve- I DO meet plenty of women these days- We even exchange contact information, and they give me their (real) email addresses, landline tel. #’s as well their cell phone #’s…. And then when I write to them or call them to invite them to see them a second time, they’re all “too busy these days for a relationship, sorry, I knew you’d understand…”

      • Eve says:

        It’s interesting to hear a man’s perspective. Are you going for a really young age group, say women in their 20s?

      • Ah Eve, I try to look for women who have seemingly interesting personalities- Tall, short, fat, thin, older, younger doesn’t matter at all to me- Over the course of the two years since Ms. Plankton wrote her first article in The Times, which was sometime back in 2011, I’ve attempted to capture the attention of women who are as young as their 20’s, and continuing on up into their 60’s ….. (and if you’re wondering, I was born in 1972, I’m presently 41 years young)….

      • maria says:

        Scott, that’s because they sense you’re desperate and a bit of a perv, besides still be living with his parents at 41.

  • Steve says:

    The last woman who politely declined me was 39, seven years younger. Do you think I’d be better off with women in their 20’s?

    • No- I’ve found that it works best if you don’t even think about their ages at all- Look for women with interesting personalities, regardless of whether they’re years or even decades younger or older than you…. It’s more interesting for both you that way….

      • Fi says:

        But Scott – why should he listen to you when only a couple of entries above you are saying you don’t even get a date? 🙂

      • Fi, you’ve been following what I’ve been writing into Ms. P’s blog entries, you’ll notice that I’ve been saying that I’ve not touched a woman’s body since 2010- I didn’t say that I’m a virgin- In fact, I have had girlfriends, as well as encounters which have lasted for no longer than 2 evenings- That’s how I’ve learned to look for women with interesting personalities….

    • Eve says:

      I only mentioned age because I thought perhaps you were going for the very young, career-minded women who aren’t necessarily looking for a relationship.

      I think Scott’s suggestions are good … Heaven knows, I don’t have a clue these days. Seriously I don’t. White flag here.

  • rosie says:

    Look away now if you’re of a sensitive or explosive nature but, in my own experience*, if a man can’t find a woman, he’s doing something wrong. Collectively, there’s been plenty wrong with the men I – and most of the women I know – have had relationships with: they’ve been liars, cheats, perennially unemployed, substance abusers, emotionally unavailable, you name it, but they’ve all had one thing in common, and that’s that they were charming, witty and smart. And, for a man, that really is all you need. Or rich, a la Simon Cowell.

    * just to reiterate, that’s IN MY OWN EXPERIENCE

    • Eve says:

      I agree.

    • Jezza says:

      In my experience*, anyone that comes across as bitter as you do has decided that all men are bastards and is highly unlikely (ie never) to form a relationship with a man again.

      *I stress , purely my experience

      • Eve says:

        I understood Rosie’s message to be that if a man is having trouble finding a woman, particularly an attractive man, then he needs to take a closer look at how he’s coming across.

      • Rosie says:

        Possibly @jezza, or possibly you’re just a bitter, inadequate man who can’t find a woman and doesn’t understand the premise of Plankton’s blog?

  • Eve says:

    Maybe up your game a bit — take care of the basics — hygiene, dress style, dental care, good quality shoes, no war stories on dates, listen, be yourself. Then, don’t try too hard. LOL

  • Eve says:

    Washington DC area is the worst for finding men. Lots of lonely women here … I could fix you two up.

  • nick says:

    I just thought I would update some of you that have asked to let you know how my search for a wife abroad went. I was delayed by a week due to family matters so have got back only a few days now. And I would highy recommend it, I went with the most reputable company I could find, and spent an hour passing their first interview here in the uk. Only then could I become a client (this is mainly as I would need to pass visa regulations or otherwise there would be no point in going in the first place).

    Ok so I went – The first 2 days are spent with seeing my first selections, about 30 women, at 15min intervals. This initial interview is really to see if either of us have any chemistry at all. Often ¾ are not seen any further and the latter quarter then go on longer dates. Here everything is discussed, all the big topics, religion, sex, children, family….etc etc….because your only working with a broad brush and not getting bogged down in any minutiae, its works extremely well. This went on for a further 3-4 days. Afterwhich they explained one or two ladies would stand out, as potential partners. Although I was a bit skeptical of this system, they were indeed right, and 3 ladies were very exceptional.

    I could have happily got hitched to all of them, but as none of us were Mormons, that wasn’t going to happen. One lady a teacher with a degree, really stood out, we got along extremely well, and have the same outlook on life, and on the last two days I was able to spend time with her family, (mother, farther) who are what I would regard as middle class I guess. The real people of the county have Victorian standards with regards to sex and marriage, so it was like going back in time somewhat, but I liked it; very refreshing to talk about love and family and not one night stands and drunkenness.

    You then get the opportunity to check over all the ladies details and records, (these are not bar girls anyway) – but it’s good to satisfy yourself to see all their financials and provenance, referees and legal documents, and so forth.

    The agency guide you through everything of course, they’ve done it a thousand times before, and you really do need their help. As of now, there is a cooling off period, and after which time I can fly out again and see my chosen lady which I will do. If all goes well then, we can arrange marriage proposals, and the real paperwork begins (pre-nups, visa, passports, legal details and so on). It’s important to realize this is not a holiday romance, and begin getting to know someone properly over the next 6-9 months. Any marriage preparations wont begin until then.

    The other men I met were mostly in their 40’s and 50’s sober and decent. Some divorced others not, some with disabilities, others you’d regard handsome. And on the second week, I did see a few men in their 30’s and even a guy who was 28, looking for a wife. I was told by the proprietor this was the trend they are seeing. The 28 guy, was an options trader with a big place on the California coast – which really surprised me.

    I’ve only given a brief overview here, and apart from the flight, which I really hated. The rest was very enjoyable. It took some investment in money and some time, but at least I can now move on with my life and found someone I can be with. The nightmare of the western dating scene I’ve left behind me – and I’m thankful for that. I know these things get a bad press, (usually from female magazine editors) but only until you’re out there seeing the mechanics of it all work, I can see why these agencies have so many customers.

    For those wondering why I wanted a foreign wife, sure there was many attractive British girls about, but I was completely out of step with them. I don’t drink or smoke, or watch soap operas on TV so that left very little in common to talk about. Plus I’m not that materialistic, and the women I have been with have always lived chaotic lives with ex-husbands giving you black looks, or the women’s girlfriends giving me suspicious glances treating me like some second class citizen – nope I’m done with that. The only thing I’m sorry about is I didn’t do this years ago. Hope that’s demystified some of the experience for those that wanted to know a little more.

  • Eve says:

    Interesting Nick. I’m a newcomer (interloper?) here … your new wife is from which country?

  • T Lover says:

    Caught the NE mainline train from York to Berwick on Monday. Came back yesterday. Had to stand all the way there and back. No seats and I had a big holdall type bag and I had a medium sized dog.

    Is it me or what? Nine out of ten people pushed past without a please, sorry, excuse me or thank you. No-one gave a damn.

    I was standing against a rack holding cases. This woman points at a case, looks at me and says “That’s mine”. I moved aside, me bag and dog. She says nothing. Just took the bag. I started to take the waz. “Thank you. It’s a pleasure”. She thinks I am barking.

    The worst thing. On the way back a woman I guess was early to mid eighties stood all the way to York. Next to a family of four. Girl 8/9. Boy 6/7 all sitting and not one of them offered up a seat. The 8/9 girl was up and down, bored, making a nuisance of herself, going for a drink, away to the la la leaving the seat empty. She pushed past me four times. I was tempted to throw the little baggage through the carriage window.

    How have we become so scummy and self centred? Does “Equality” and Women’s rights have anything to do with it? How can a bloke not give up a seat for a woman in her eighties?

    • zoe says:

      “Does “Equality” and Women’s rights have anything to do with it?” ROFL…

      • Jezza says:

        Not in T lover’s case.


        Offered my seat to a 20 something woman on the tube a couple of years ago.. The chilling look I got back has meant I’ve developed a new policy.. I only offer a seat to someone who is 85 and/or pregnant.

        Still ROFL ing?

      • T Lover says:

        Zoe, Here’s another. Just getting petrol. Car driven by lardy man draws up at next pump.

        Woman gets out. Puts fuel in car goes into kiosk to pay whilst lardy sits impassive like a Buddha.


      • maria says:

        Jezza, and why did you offer your seat to a 20 year old woman? Was she disabled or something? I bet she was hot.

    • T Lover says:


      What is it you find so amusing?

      My then wife then seven and a half months pregnant stood the whole way from Euston to Manchester. Rolling about at that one?

      Was a time when it was routine to offer up a seat. Now you are oddball if you do.

    • maria says:

      T Lover, in case you hadn’t noticed it yet, it’s a dog eats dog world out there.

      • T Lover says:

        Maria, I know. The trouble is if you have my temperament (grumpy and opinionated) it is very difficult to hold it in when you see the way people behave.

        I like kind, well mannered people, not ignorant, self centred sh one ts which in my sheltered life makes finding someone who shares those values difficult to find.

        One day I’m going to be thumped for making sarcy comments about someone who has been ignorant.

        Perhaps I’m just getting old.

  • MissBates says:

    Nick —

    “Prenups,” huh? I assume you live in Britain as you reference the various shortcomings of British “girls.” You should be aware that prenups aren’t yet valid in the U.K. Yes, there’s a movement afoot in the courts and in Parliament to make them valid and binding, but as we sit here today, in August 2013, they are considered a mere “suggestion” in British courts. I know whereof I speak, because I lectured last year in London on this very topic to a group of high-end divorce solicitors, giving them the benefit of my experience as a divorce attorney in New York, where I’ve handled prenups for 25+ years. You really must consult a top-notch attorney who specializes in this field, not just some local guy who deals with conveyancing and dabbles in so-called “family law” on the side, because it is questionable whether you will, in fact, be protected by such an agreement as the law now stands.

    Your story resonates because in the past two or three years I have handled a number of cases involving a financially successful middle-aged American man marrying a much younger woman from Russia/the Phillipines/Ukraine/Turkey. (Yes, each of those is an actual example.) I handled the prenuptial agreement in each of those cases (and here in NY, unlike in Britain, those agreements ARE valid and binding.) And in each such case, a couple of years after the wedding when the woman had qualified, solely by virtue of that marriage, for “permanent residency status” in the United States (the first step on the road to citizenship), the “marriage” — surprise!! — fell apart and the couples have gotten divorced while the ink was still wet on the wife’s “green card” (slang for the i.d. issued to those with permanent residence status). I note that a subsequent divorce does not strip the women of their new-found permanent residency status, and they are free to remain here, post-divorce. The men apparently went into these marriages thinking that they were “real,” even though they at least had the good sense to protect themselves financially with the prenup. (Although in one instance the parties ended up having a child which the husband wasn’t keen on having, and now he’s on the hook for substantial child support for 21 years. Think about THAT.) But, back to my main point — I was baffled as to why none of them thought that they were being married for immigration purposes when this was so glaringly obvious, as none of these women would have qualified for a valid U.S. visa and residency status under ANY other circumstances — i.e., they weren’t refugees, nor were they highly-educated types with jobs waiting for them here in the States, nor did they have family members already here to sponsor their immigration application. Their only chance was to find some poor sap to marry them, and they “did what they had to do” to claw there way here.

    So although you think you got “black looks” from ex-husbands and “suspicious glances” from the friends of the British women you have dated in the past, will it really be an improvement for you to be getting “pitying looks” from all and sundry who will think you a pathetic fool when one of these women takes you for a ride to get residency status in the U.K.?

    Be very, very careful.

    • fi says:

      These are my musings and may not be fully thought out, but I think the reason most (all?) Women reading about Nick would be sceptical is that we know men and women aren’t attracted to the opposite sex in the same way. I’ve heard, and think it’s true, that men look first and foremost for looks in a woman and can find a number of women attractive enough to select for a relationship. In other words provided that a certain level of good looks are there, women can be pretty interchangeable. It makes total sense to me that Nick can select a number of women from photos, chat for a few minutes, decide which ones he’d have sex with and pick on that basis. I don’t think though that women select like this. Just reading the comments on these pages the theme that comes over from men is that women don’t select them, and as both Scott and Steve point out they have a wide range of women they’d be up for getting involved with , whereas the problem reported by the women is the lack of men they want to select. I think Nick is an example of this – he describes a process where he selects firstly on the basis of women he likes the look of, then he chats for 15 minutes then selects one and despite not knowing any of these women there are some he’s happy to take away with him and marry after a few minutes chat. The reason I think women are so sceptical about this ‘relationship’ is that we know women aren’t attracted to men this way and we are choosy (not necessarily discriminating on the basis of good qualities, but we do de-select men on a range of qualities we think they don’t have that we want them to) and so we’re sceptical about the nature of a relationship in which women aren’t discriminating at all. And we conclude that if the women aren’t de-selecting Nick on the basis of all the (often ridiculous) personal foibles that we are looking for in a man, it’s because the women aren’t looking for a relationship as such but something else eg a passport. We are as sceptical of a woman like this as a man would be of another man he overheard telling women that appearance was irrelevant.

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