You know what it's like when you see a trailer for a movie or a series - 2 minutes where they show all of the interesting bits condensed, and you want to watch it right that minute but then a sentence comes across the screen saying 'coming next Wednesday' or more likely 'coming when you won't be home'. And whatever is on now is always crap and you're only watching it because you think something good is coming on after it, but it isn't, because you got the day or the week or the year wrong.
So when I saw the trailer for the 'Undateables' on Channel 4 there the other week, I just assumed that it would be another one of those documentaries that look great but are really bad and that I'd miss anyway.
But then, ah then, something happened. I was reading a review in the Irish Times that had something to say about this documentary, 'The Undateables'. So there were some interesting points made. One of them being that the title was damn cruel. Yes, I guess you can't label someone as undateable, even if I'm not sure where you would take someone to court under the nine grounds of discrimination if they called you that.
So anyways, it talks about how the people on the show are all people with either a physical or mental disability of some kind or another, and, well it made it sound like I'd made the wrong decision to have that one night stand with the much younger than me girl from Tallin the night it was on, because it sounded more fun than she was. So I began to think about dating; my inability to accept that a serious, possibly not so gorgeous but practical 40 something year old might make me ultimately more happy than a homesick blonde from Tallin, unless, of course, it's just for the one night...
So I sent Carmencita ( yes, it's her real name, I swear) a text message to say I couldn't meet her tonight and that I'm so sorry but I'm washing my hair tonight (my one hair), and then I got one of the random teens I live with to pull up the 'Undateables' on the Channel 4 website. Watch it after you read this, because you need to hear my comments first considering I'm an expert in bad relationships but still have that bit of pulling power that we all need a bit of.
You see, it's easy. They could have picked me for the show, come on, after all I'm a mouthy middle aged fat lesbian with bad teeth, thinning hair, a load of teens hanging out of me and I live way out west in the outback of Ireland. I mean hello, I should be in the Tollhouse, so how come I still seem to have that bit of pulling power when most of the weirdos in the documentary were way more dateable than I am?
Well it's because of this. Everyone in the documentary talked about what they were looking for. One girl, who was disabled and on a wheelchair, went on a date with a guy on a wheelchair. She turned him down for a second date, commenting something like 'I don't want to date someone with a disability'. Well like, helloooo... , did she ever ask herself why someone should be with her or want to date her? Personally the disability wouldn't bother me, but the girl had no personality, much worse. Then there was a guy with Aspergers who met a lovely woman who was keen to meet him again but he too was all about how he didn't really fancy her. ( And in this case it was probably because she wasn't a clone of his mother.) But all of them - and granted, I only saw the first show, there are more to come, and also there was a guy with tourettes who was an exception, but the others, they were all about what they want from a partner... I want to meet someone who... he/she should be..... I'd like.... these are my terms and condiditons... I mean, like, where's the love of people? Where's the 'I want to embrace a challenge' or the 'This is what I offer'.
So here's the trick. Forget about what you want to meet and ask yourself what you have to offer. When you meet some horrendous ghoul remember that they might be thinking the very same thing about you, and they may be right. Make it your mission to look for their qualities. Ask yourself what you can do to make them feel happy, make them laugh, find out what they like, turn them on and see the whole thing as a challenge.
At the same time though, you have to make them see that even if you are old and fat or whatever your physical or mental trait of unattractiveness may be, that you make up for it in other things (like in my case, I'm great in the sack, so I go straight for the jugular). But come on, even a drop dead photo model blonde who isn't called Carmencita, will be undateable if it's all about 'I'm specifically looking for this that or the other...' because if you are looking for the perfect partner, forget it.
So there you go. Give love a chance. And remember that I'm single right now, and open to offers. But ok, it would help, of course, if you are a drop dead gorgeous heiress of 20 something who loves housework, disappointments and older women...