Gold, Silver and Bronze
Growing up being exposed to as much Hollywood propaganda as I have, it comes as little surprise that when it comes to women, I am pretty superficial. If all the years I spent watching Beverly Hills 90210 has taught me anything, it’s that good looking people have all the fun, interesting stories. Though I was never really part of the “in” crowd when in High School or College, I have found myself somewhat fortunate to have dated some of the most beautiful women I have ever seen.
I’m not really a big fan of weddings. Every aspect is planned out to the smallest detail, leaving little room for spontaneous fun and hijinks. You are forced to wear some ridiculous monkey suit that the bride earmarked back in 1993 in her perfect wedding journal, sporting lavender cravats and puce cummerbunds. But if there is one thing weddings do have going for them, that’s the amount of single women who attend, flush in the romance and envy of the occasion.
It was at such an event that I met Ms Bronze. I had seen her around in the wedding party, but had paid her little attention as my duties were keeping me very busy and someone as good looking as her would surely be attached. When I say she was good looking, I really mean it. Imagine a blonde Cheryl Cole (Google her Yanks!) but without the horrible tattoos and (probable) hygiene legacy of having a cheating footballer ex-husband. Her long, thick blonde hair cascaded down her back in curled ringlets and her figure hugging purple dress showed off a slim, young, taught body that had yet to be ravaged by childbirth or the famous Welsh addiction to alcohol and fatty foods. The only downside to her otherwise flawless physical appearance was her bizarre instance on caking her eyes with cheap looking makeup in some misguided attempt to achieve a “Cleopatra” look.
As the night wore on and most of the wedding guest started to disappear, I started to get more relaxed and made the rounds, chatting with various family and friends. It was at this point that I got chatting to the bride and during a lull in conversation I asked who some of the guests were. When I enquired about the “really pretty girl in the purple dress”, the brides eyes lighted up! It seemed that they had been school chums and were now good friends. The bride told me to stay where I was and ran over to the table where Bronze was sitting with her friends. It was precisely at this point that I began to feel very self-conscious. The bride was currently trying to set me up with an insanely beautiful woman who I’ll happily admit was well out of my league. This could only end in one outcome, that of course being the soul crushing chorus of “She likes you, but only as a friend”.
The bride came running back over and took me to one side. “She said you look nice and you should Facebook her and have a chat.” Hot diggity! That was good enough for me. The bride told me I should go over and chat to her, even if it was just to say hi. This was a tricky one. Should I risk the good work already done by actually talking to her? In my experience things usually start to go badly as soon as my mouth gets involved. I decided to compromise instead and told the bride that I would run over and say “hi” as I was leaving in a few minutes anyway. Perfect compromise I thought, as if I make an arse of myself I at least don’t have to hang around covered in so much shame and disgrace. A few shots of Dutch courage later and I waddled over to her in full wedding regalia. “Hello, nice to meet you. I’ll send you a message on Facebook.” I had at least managed to get that part out of the way without dribbling or throwing up over her. She made all the right noises and facial expressions and bid me goodnight as I headed for my taxi.
First (and hardest) step out of the way. Now all I had to do was woo her. Once we got chatting on Facebook, things started going well. My ability to write humorous messages and make her laugh seemed to be winning me major points. Soon phone numbers were exchanged and a date was set. Taking the bull by the horns I suggested going to a Chinese restaurant. She eagerly agreed and all I had to do now was wait until the big night and try not to cock it up.
Then I started to worry…. What to wear? I’m not usually one for fashion and all this hipster shit. If it’s clean and in the closet, then as far as I’m concerned it’s this season’s must have! But obviously I wanted to look good and make a decent impression on what would be the first time she would see me in regular clothes. I contacted a few female friends who gave me some sound fashion advice that largely amounted to “don’t look like you’re trying too hard” and “make sure you try to look as good as possible”. Trying to figure out what women are saying is hard enough at the best of times, but when it comes to understanding what the hell they’re talking about when it comes to fashion, well they may have well been speaking French.
With all the new information about what to wear floating around my head, I headed out to the shops to engage in a bit of retail therapy. My first purchase was a fairly simple and obvious one. If you want to look good, buy a black leather jacket. From The Fonz to Tyler Durden, the leather jacket has been the ultimate symbol of coolness and style. Now I just needed the clothes to go with it. This was my first mistake. I went to a fairly high end department store and for some unknown reason decided that a dark blue sweater with a shirt collar sown into the neck of the sweater was a good buy. Costing almost as much as the leather jacket, I assumed this preppy clean cut look would for some reason work?
Deciding that this would be all the clothing I needed, I headed back home. I would just throw on my black jeans and shoes, thus completing the outfit and winning my place in the hearts of women everywhere. A slight problem arose however when I went to get my jeans ready an hour or so before the date. It seemed that somehow during the washing process the had shrunk 3 inches, putting them half way up my shin. I tried on the shoes and realised that they were completely inappropriate for the outfit I was going to wear. As I said, I’m not much for fashion and it came as something of a shock to me to discover that you can’t really wear glossy black dress shoes with a leather jacket…
In something of a panic I rushed out of the house and over to the shops to find something more suited for the occasion and better fitting. Most of the top end fashion retailers had already closed for the day, leaving me to make do with the kind of down and out barging clothing stores that are usually only frequented by people on a tight welfare budget. I picked up a new pair of trousers and shoes for the princely sum of £25. As long as they didn’t fall apart in the next few hours, I should just about get away with it.
Having showered, shaved and scented, I got dressed in my newly assembled outfit. It didn’t look half bad. I was now ready to start the evening’s activities with the lovely Ms Bronze. Just as I was leaving the house I felt something rubbing on my leg as I walked. Looking behind me I discovered that there was a great big “£10!” sticker on the arse of my new trousers. When I say crisis diverted, I really mean it. It’s hard to really come back from something like that, but thankfully Bronze never saw how cheap my arse was and I lived to fight another day.
I picked her up from her house and we started our journey to the restaurant. I was again immediately struck by how good looking she way. Though she had toned down her makeup somewhat, she still persisted in her wide eyed, cat like appearance which remained a mystery to me and akin to putting go faster flame decals on a Ferrari. During our drive over we got chatting and I managed to find out all the really important stuff about her. She was single, had a good job, no kids and lived with her folks after moving back home from England. I never managed to get to the bottom of why she left her job and moved back home, but I couldn’t escape the impression that there was a far bigger story going on that her simply “missing the mountains”. I’m fairly sure that a broken engagement was the cause of her return, but was never really able to uncover the truth during our brief time together. Possible engagements aside, I got to thinking just how perfect she was (on paper at least). To have been able to have found someone local who works, is single, has no kids and looks like a model was too good to be true. The added cherry fact that she was looking to date someone and had agreed to go out with me was just the good fortune that I had been waiting to hear.
Sadly this proved to be the apex of our brief relationship, though I didn’t know it at the time. Our meal went amazingly well and I found the envious glances of my fellow diners to be the all desert I needed. “Yeah that’s right, I’m out with the best looking woman you’ve ever seen. Have fun with your homely bitch, ya loser!”
Though not much of a talker I ended up doing most of the chatting during our date. Nothing usual about that I thought, she’s probably just a bit shy and just wants to enjoy all my witty banter. Things only seemed to get better as the evening wore on. The meal was amazing and she had suggested that we go watch a movie on the weekend. So as far as I was concerned, at this point everything was gravy! She had done the hard work for me and brought up and arranged the all-important second date, just leaving me with the simple task of charming her for the rest of the evening.
After 3 hours in the restaurant the staff had finally had enough and kicked us out as they probably really wanted to go home. We drove home in my car, laughing, joking and enjoying each other’s company. Though it was obviously early days and we had technically only known each other for 4 hours or so, the ease of which we got on and felt comfortable around each other told me that this would be the first of many successful dates.
Then the gravy turned sour.
I have no idea what happened. I’ve racked my brain to figure out if I said anything to upset her or somehow give the impression that I was going to stab her before burying her body in the forest? Our ride home was perfectly pleasant and normal, but as soon as I pulled up outside her house to drop her off I could literally feel the atmosphere change. Maybe I was giving her the “rapey eye” or maybe she was worried what the neighbours might think? She just froze up and give off the vibe of someone who had just shit themselves and needed to get to a toilet asap. Constantly twitching, changing subjects or talking about the most random crap possible (still don’t know why she told me about the pot plant in her garden??).
I sat there dumbfounded. My racked my brain to think of what to say in order to make her feel less terrified, as her body language suggested. In the end all I could do was watch her more or less run out of the car and into her house, waving briefly as she slammed the door behind her.
I drove home completely at a loss. What had been pretty much a perfect first date up until the last 2 minutes had now become a harsh lesson in the insanity of women. Needless to say I got the dreaded “Let’s be friends” text a day or two later. I did try briefly to win her over and get that promised second date, mainly due to the fact that she was so good looking. I’ll honestly admit that if a swamp donkey minger had pulled that shit, I would have drop kicked her arse from the car after dropping her off.
Aside from the occasional late night, angry, horny, drunk text I have not contacted Ms Bronze since. It still rankles with me a little since she seemed pretty perfect in theory, but as many scientists will tell you, theory doesn’t always translate into reality. Those last few minutes will always remain a mystery to me, but then maybe this was the reason why she left England? Maybe she told England how happy she was and wanted to continue to live there, only to pack up and move back to Wales the next day. This really sucks because that would mean that I’m England in this story. Fuck….