The Guyliner
I'm a writer and editor in my mid-thirties who, on finding myself suddenly single after a long relationship, decided to try out the dating scene for the very first time. It soon became clear that the only way to get through it with my sanity intact was to write everything down, just like I used to scribble in my diary all those years ago about the people I hated at school. Some sit in a chair crying at their therapist; I perch at my kitchen table and write about it.

All the dates I blog are recounted from memory only – I don't sit there with a tape recorder and, I should point out, I am not going on dates just for blog material. I'm reporting the facts as I remember them. Yes, I'm an unreliable narrator, but I'm all you've got. Oh, and please don't take any of my relationship advice seriously. Clearly, I'm clueless.

Entries by The Guyliner

Yet Another 25 Men You Should Never Date

(0) Comments | Posted 18 April 2014 | (00:00)

What do you look for in a man? Nice eyes? Bright smile? Good taste in footwear? Ability to make you laugh? We all have tick-boxes and black markers at the ready when it comes to finding a mate.

I can't tell you who you should date - that is simply...

Read Post

Are You an X Offender? How Many Kisses Do We Need on a Text Message?

(1) Comments | Posted 10 April 2014 | (00:00)

There are so many social minefields these days, and endless faux pas just waiting to happen, it is surprising we bother going out at all, or ever communicate with anyone. If it weren't for our thick skins and ability to recover from public mortification, we'd be better off living all...

Read Post

Guys, That Flirty Straight Man Is Only Interested in One Thing - It's Not You

(0) Comments | Posted 24 March 2014 | (23:00)

When you are growing up a future gay, you learn very quickly that your relationships with straight men are never going to be anything other than complex.

Whether you're trying to explain to your dad for the eightieth time that you're not going to kick that football back at him...

Read Post

Five Things I Have Pretended to Like Just to Get Sex

(0) Comments | Posted 17 March 2014 | (23:00)


I remember a very miserable afternoon - a rainy Saturday - spent in a pub that smelled of cauliflower and dog, staring with great concentration at a TV up on the wall. I didn't really dare look away in case I looked like I was bored and I couldn't...

Read Post

A Near Miss With the Guy Who Had Attachment Issues

(0) Comments | Posted 2 March 2014 | (23:00)

I've been chatting online to Graham - a 35-year-old scientist - for a day or two and still can't quite work him out. And I'm not sure I want to. It's like there is something he isn't saying; the unwritten words hanging in the air like hours-old cigarette smoke.

He talks...

Read Post

Five Reasons You Should Never Go on a Running Date

(0) Comments | Posted 26 January 2014 | (23:00)

Dating used to be very simple: you meet a series of near-strangers for an awkward drink in a pub that's always too noisy/busy/rough/far away from a Tube station, decide whether you like them or not and if so do it all over again in a nicer venue and perhaps with...

Read Post

Why You Should Never Date a Christmas Fanatic

(0) Comments | Posted 23 December 2013 | (12:02)

Previously, I warned you against the man you should never date at Christmas: The Christmas Refusenik. Today, meet his bauble-loving evil twin.

It's July. You awake to a sound that seems at odds with the sunshine blazing through your...

Read Post

Why You Should Never Date a Christmas Refusenik

(2) Comments | Posted 22 December 2013 | (22:18)

"I don't do Christmas, " he will say, his face pinched with misery as if a stray strand of tinsel that has somehow found its way into his eyeline. Quite a statement, and one loaded with meaning. To him, Santa is just an anagram of Satan and nothing more. You...

Read Post

Think You're on a Date? For Him, It's a Networking Opportunity

(0) Comments | Posted 11 December 2013 | (23:00)

We have agreed to meet at a bar I haven't been to before. I don't usually do this - I like to be on familiar territory. But it is my date's choice and he has been pretty adamant about it in his series of texts, which he sends one after...

Read Post

33 Freakouts Your Date Will Have While Waiting for You to Show Up

(2) Comments | Posted 29 November 2013 | (15:48)

1. "All his photos were taken from quite far away. I hope he's not a horse-frightener."

2. "I hope he was joking when he described himself as a flâneur. Because seriously."

3. "Does my stomach look fat while I sit like this?"

4. "Should I stand up when he gets...

Read Post

A Booze-Free Date in a Museum - What Could Possibly Go Right?

(0) Comments | Posted 20 November 2013 | (23:00)

It is always important to answer questions honestly. Well, as honestly as you possibly can.

So when Mark, a civil servant from Kent, asks me "Do you like looking round old houses?" I should've at least replied "Not sure, depends" instead of an over-enthusiastic "Yes! I love that kind of...

Read Post

Five Condescending Compliments Nobody Should Really Want to Hear

(1) Comments | Posted 4 November 2013 | (23:00)

Think you're being nice with your throwaway accolades? Think again, baby cakes. Call me over-sensitive (if you dare), but I could really do without some of these more patronising praises.

The male version of the horrible frat boy platitude "Mum I'd Like To Fuck" pretends it is meant...

Read Post

How an Edamame Bean Turned an Awkward Date Into a Nightmare

(3) Comments | Posted 31 October 2013 | (23:00)

A good rule of thumb when browsing profiles is that if someone makes very bold personality claims, they usually mean the opposite. "I don't believe in jealousy; it's a wasted emotion" is shorthand for "I will try to strangle you for smiling at the checkout guy in the supermarket". By...

Read Post

Four Terrible Kissing Techniques and How to Fix Them

(9) Comments | Posted 18 October 2013 | (00:00)

Kissing is vital in any relationship. While a gentle squeeze on the arm or the arse can remind your partner you care, a kiss on the lips - even if it's a quick peck in the supermarket - is the internationally understood shorthand for intimacy. And you have to really...

Read Post

A Date With the Nice Guy Who Always Finished Last

(2) Comments | Posted 7 October 2013 | (00:00)

Is there anything less sexy than a date who dumps all his problems on you? Is it really only nice guys who finish last?

Internet dating attracts the loneliest of souls. Behind every profile advertising a "vivacious go-getter", there's a self-doubting emotional wreck searching for a friendly face upon which...

Read Post

Someone Left the Date Out in the Rain

(7) Comments | Posted 9 September 2013 | (00:00)

"It's raining" is the first thing out of his mouth.

"I know."

He hops from one foot to the other as if avoiding drops of lava from the sky. He seems stressed.

"Well, what should we do?" he asks. "It's raining!"

Let's go into the gallery," I reply, wishing I...

Read Post

A Slow Sunday and a 'Date' With the One-Hour Wonder

(10) Comments | Posted 20 August 2013 | (00:00)

The main problem with huge, exhilarating events is the crash back down to planet normal afterward. There is the inevitable need to prolong the high, to stave off the mundane.

It is when bored that I am at my most very dangerous, and the warning lights are certainly flashing...

Read Post

Dating Dilemma: Is It Ever Okay to Wear Shorts on a Date?

(1) Comments | Posted 14 August 2013 | (00:00)

I get asked a lot of questions, both on Twitter and over email. Usually it's things like "Is that your real eye on your Twitter avatar?" or "Who's that famous person you mention in this blog?" and other times it's women in America trying to get me...

Read Post

The First Date Was Great, but Can the Sequel Live Up to the Hype?

(6) Comments | Posted 7 August 2013 | (00:00)

Searching for Mr Right, it's a sad fact that I'm equally Mr Wrong for plenty of others. Could tonight be different? It is, after all, our second outing. Our first date seemed to be a meeting of minds, if not bodies. While we both definitely...

Read Post

Thanks, But No Thanks, The Kinder Way to Turn Down a Date

(2) Comments | Posted 31 July 2013 | (00:00)

No can be a tough word to say at the best of times. Another cake? Don't mind if I do. One for the road? Make it two. No always seems to want to play hide and seek when you need it the most.

When you're online dating, a lot of...

Read Post