Writer, photographer, "rapper" and general technophobe takes on the internet in what could be a very, very messy fight. But it's alright: she's harder than she looks, and she's wearing every single ring she could get her hands on.


Thursday, 19 March 2009

First Date

"So," my sister rang to say this morning, "I've got a question. Is this Producer Boy blind?"
I narrowed my eyes at the phone, knowing where this was going.
"And does he have hands?"
I looked at the phone again, now not so sure where this was going.
"And is he over the age of seven, and under the age of seventy?"
"Yes," I replied after a short pause.
"So, would it be fair to assume, Holly, that Producer Boy has the physical attributes and technological capabilities that will allow him to - how do I put this - read your Blog?"

Ah. Yes. The eternal Writer's Quandry. If you're not totally honest, your writing gets lost. And if you are totally honest, your life does. You have to, in essence, choose: to tell, or to live. And, if you're a writer, there is often no choice. You choose the story, and you risk the characters in it.


Had my first date with Producer Boy (henceforth known as PB) last night, and it went very well. At least, I think it went very well. Who ever knows? In the Old Days (every girl has Old Days: it's usually when they didn't shake their heads and mutter "men" under their breaths) I trusted my instincts on these things. If a date seemed like it went well, then it went well. Unfortunately, my instincts - along with my heart - have been severely trampled on in the last last few years, so I don't even give them the time of day anymore. "Bugger off," I say to my instincts nowadays. "You know nothing about men, or love, or sex, so keep your flamin' little noses out of it."

Within minutes, PB and I had both decided that we had met each other before: which would be cheesy, if we both weren't so sure that it was a literal, physical reality, rather than some terrible romantic line. "Could it be from a radio studio last Saturday?" I quipped nervously, and - bless him - PB did his best to laugh. That's the great thing about first dates, you see: they do their best to laugh. Give it six dates, and they stop trying, roll their eyes and say jesus under their breaths.
"No, because I thought I knew you then as well," he said.
"Maybe it's because I've been on telly?" I joked again, and then I had to put my head in my hands and say "God, you know what? I've not been on a date in six months, so you're going to have to bear with me. Nerves are making me sound like a tosser."

And they continued doing so, unfortunately. I don't remember most of the things I said - the human brain shuts away painful memories, luckily - but I'm pretty sure that most of them were motivated from nerves and made me sound like a plonker. His - if he had any - didn't, and he was perfectly lovely. Which just made me feel worse. We had dinner, drinks, laughter, 'what's your sister called?' questions: it was, all in all, a perfectly normal First Date. Especially the bit where he glazed over for a good three minutes, I panicked and talked faster, and then he glazed over a little more, and I talked a little faster, until - just as I was nervously talking so fast that my head was about to fall off - he swooped in and gave me a kiss.
"Did you glaze over because you were bored?" I asked him. "Or because you couldn't work out how to shut me up so that you could give me a kiss?"
"The latter," he said. So I calmed down and stopped talking so fast so that he could do it again.

Normality ends here, unfortunately. The next time we see each other (unless he cancels it: which I wouldn't blame him for) will be at Talk Sport. In front of 3.5 million listeners again.

"Do you know how much damage we could do to each other?" I said as we parted ways at Oxford Circus tube. "This isn't a normal date. I could say that you have bad breath and are a terrible kisser. You could insinuate that I stayed the night. We could destroy each other."
"It's alright," he said. "You've got a blog and a BBC film crew, but I've got a national radio station, so at least we're evenly matched."

Which, if anything, actually made me like him a little more.