Archives for category: Film Reference

Have you seen the film He’s Just Not That Into You? I don’t care how much of a film snob you are, that film is educational. Well, you know the story involving Anna (Scarlett Johansson), Ben (Bradley Cooper), and Conor (Kevin Connolly)? For those of you unfamiliar with the film, the story is very simple. Anna falls for a (married) man called Ben. Whenever she is not getting the attention she craves from Ben, she uses Conor, because she knows that he is crazy about her and is willing to fill her with compliments and assurances.

Why is this relevant? Because I am Anna (although I can only dream of being as beautiful as Scarlett Johansonn), and my man is Ben (although, thankfully, he’s not married). He is taking the phrase ‘playing it cool’ to a frustrating level, and I am becoming bored with the situation. I went against The Rules and messaged him saying I missed him (I said it in a cute kind of jokey way)… and he ignored it. I told him it was rude to ignore compliments and emotional sentiments, to which he told me he does not agree with returning compliments because then they wouldn’t seem genuine. But he never really gives them at all. All I know is that he’s messaging other girls and trying to provoke jealously by looking at the slutty TV Presenter’s twitter in front of me (see previous post Oh I do like to be bedside the Seaside… I Think). So knowing the Rules, and craving the attention of Ben, I now have my very own Conor. Apart from Conor isn’t only one man; Conor is the men that are trying to pursue me, and the men that want to take me on dates. So I suppose I should introduce you to the Conor’s of my life…

1. Museum Man. I went to University with him so have known him as a friend for a long time. We kissed a few times before I went on holiday and met my man. He is perfect on paper: Head boy at school, captain of rugby, rower, intelligent, extremely handsome. Perfect on paper often means boring in real life. And well, there isn’t much of a spark there. He text me a bit since my return from holiday, but I was fazing him out. However, last Saturday I decided to go on a day date with him. The problem is, he only ever wants to go to museums. Don’t get me wrong, I like museums, but they aren’t exactly the most fun places in the world. And when there is no spark, and you’re in a musuem… Well it’s certainly not my dream date. We will only ever be friends, which is fine with me.

2. Catchphrase Man. The long awaited Catchphrase Date! Saturday evening… yes, dear readers, that does mean I went on two dates in one day. Catchphrase man is definitely not my usual type. He’s a banker. But we have chatted in the past and we got on and so, in the words of Dr Pepper, what’s the worst that can happen? On Saturday evening he informed me a taxi would pick me up at 8pm. Mysterious. Good start. The taxi dropped me off at Piccadilly Circus where he was waiting, and he took me to Bobby’s Bar, which is, as described on the website, a luxury English and Russian menu […] in London’s most glamourous all-booth dining room. A little snooty for my liking, especially as he was wearing a velvet dinner jacket. Plus, he ordered me a vodka shot without asking me – I like confidence, but I do not like shots (especially for my first drink of the evening), and I don’t really like to drink alcohol. Bad start. After a drink, we moved onto the next part of the night, which turned out to be one of my favourite places, the Soho Theatre. We ended up watching an amazing comedy duo called New Art Club. I love comedy! Perhaps I had been too judgmental. After that, we went for some more drinks at Paramount Bar, which gives the most amazing panoramic views of London, and then we moved on for a quick dance at a tiny club called Bourne and Hollingsworth, before heading back to his to play the music game and chat until I got a taxi home at 5am. We got on very well. I (somewhat briefly and reluctantly) kissed him. But something just wasn’t there… Perhaps it’s because he’s quite camp. Perhaps because, on removing my boots I realised I was wearing my man’s socks, and found myself wishing I was with him. Perhaps it’s cause he was a little keen, and started looking up flights on Ryanair so we could go away on a spontaneous city break for a day. There’s not enough excitement. No challenge. No Liesl feeling. Perhaps we girls are very complicated, because if my man did something like that I would be over the moon…

3. Frenchman. Monday evening. Third date in three days. I have known the Frenchman for over 7 years now. He was my French tutor whilst I was in my final year at school and I was completely obsessed with him. He was 23 and a rugby player. We kissed (and a little more) the summer that I left school, but I didn’t want anything to happen and things fizzled out, but we have always kept in touch. He’s extremely good-looking, built like a rugby player, now works in finance, and is VERY confident. He does not believe in compliments (giving or receiving), and he doesn’t like the idea of sharing things as a couple (I believe he’s even told me he’d want seperate bedrooms in the future – something I find strange). But I know he wants me, and around him I am confident – he even thinks I am extremely detached and unemotional with men…. if only he knew! Anyway, that’s enough background. I suggested we go to my favourite vegan restaurant near my house 222. I was slightly apprehensive about inviting an ex-rugby player to a restaurant that doesn’t serve meat, but he is extremely open-minded to discovering new things; a trait I find extremely attractive. Dinner was great, conversation was great, so everything was great… until the end of the night when he went for a kiss on the lips and I went for a kiss on the cheeks. Love awkward goodbyes! He has been messaging me since asking to see me, and I am intruiged by him…

4. Model Man. I used to work with this guy as a model a few years ago. He always asked for my number and I always turned him down. It became a bit of a joke actually. He’s very good looking (although he’s blonde, which isn’t my type), but a bit arrogant. People either love him or hate him, but he’s nice deep, deep down. Anyway, he asked to take me on a date when I got back from holiday, but obviously I was committed (emotionally) to my man, so I declined. Now that my man is not giving me what I want (and presumably messaging other girls), I finally gave Model Man my number. He joked that persistance definitely pays off! Nothing to report yet as I have rejected all his requests for dinner / drinks / lunch because I have been too busy… and I’m just not that interested.

5. Comedi(m)an. Exactly as his name suggest. He’s a professional comedian and has been dubbed a rising star of comedy. I met him after his show at the Edinburgh Fringe last year, and have bumped into him after a few of his small gigs in London. You might think this makes me a groupie, but HE was the one to start tweeting ME and HE added ME on facebook. Technically he’s my groupie. Anyway, there is nothing in life I find more attractive than people who make me laugh, and being a comedian, he’s pretty good at that. He’s not the most stereotypically attractive man, but when has that ever bothered me? We’ve chatted a lot and he has invited me for drinks on Wednesday night. Watch this space.
So they are my Conor’s. Am I using them? No. I suppose if my man continues to play it cool, and message other people in my face, then I will move on. It’s boring. But it’s a shame. We get on so well. Maybe I should tell him how I feel? But that goes against the Rules. And why should I have to be the one? In the past I have been very upfront about my emotions to avoid any game playing, and I have chased men away because they get the impression I am too keen. Am I keen? I like my man, but at the same time I don’t like him enough to put my pride on the line or put up with his rubbish. He must know I like him, surely?

What is clear is that relationships are very complicated. It’s always the ones you aren’t interested in that act the way you want the one you are interested in to act.

I don’t like having multiple men on the scene. I don’t like leading men on and then dropping them. I feel bad going on a date with a man, and then not wanting anything more. I am a one-man girl. I like the butterflies. I like thinking my man is the best thing in the world. Why do the dating rules make that so complicated? Why can’t you just like one man, and make it clear that you like him without him losing interest? Surely if you aren’t really keen, and just matter of fact about your emotions then that’s a nice feeling? Or am I old fashioned?

So this is where things are, dear readers. Me, a less attractive Anna, wanting the unmarried Ben, and trying not to be crazy and moving forward with my life with the multiple Conor’s. I’m trying to remember all the wise lessons from the film, and not make excuses for his poor behaviour (lack of confidence, age, intimidation), and remind myself that perhaps he’s just not that into me.

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Being at the start of a new relationship (and I mean relationship in a very loose sense of the word, as obviously there has been no talk of commitment yet), I am rather aware of ‘the game’. He lives 2 hours away from me, so I have to depend on my phone to keep in touch with him. But do I get in touch with him? Or do I wait for him to get in touch with me? Should I call him, or is that too keen?

We have grown up being told that we should play hard to get to capture a man’s attention. Men like challenges, so we should be aloof. But I like challenges too. And if we both play it cool, then neither of us will get in touch. And don’t men like confident girls? And if I want to speak to someone, shouldn’t I just be able to do it without worrying if he’ll still like me because I initiated contact? Do I really want to be with someone anyway if I can’t act myself?

And then we get down to the actual text messaging. Do I reply if he doesn’t ask questions? How can I be funny on a text message? Will he pick up on my sarcastic tone or think I’m being serious? Has he not put kisses on the end because he doesn’t like me, or simply because he doesn’t put kisses on texts?

Something very simple has suddenly become something very complicated. And what is acceptable?

I have lots of girlfriends who treat men badly. Like shit actually. And the result is that they have men falling at their feet. Literally. But does a woman have to be a bitch in order for a guy to like her? I know these girls, and I know that deep down they like the guy, but they aren’t comfortable with showing their emotions, and isn’t that because of pride and the fear of getting hurt?
And what about these obsessed men? Do they truly like the girl for who she is? Or do they just like her because they can’t have her? And isn’t all of this a huge effort to be with someone? Because surely you should be with someone that likes you for who you are, someone who makes you feel comfortable for being you, and who makes your life that little bit more exciting. Or is that just my romantically charged mind idealising relationships?

And I’m really not very good at playing games. Because if someone does something that annoys me, I react. And if someone arranges to meet me and doesn’t, I react. And if I text someone and they don’t reply, I react (in a jokey way and I wait at least a day, I’m not that crazy). And that’s how I treat my friends, so why should a man be any different? However, by reacting, I probably have given the impression that I’m crazy. But why should I tolerate someone treating me badly or making me feel inadequate? Because I want someone to appreciate me, and to realise what they have, and I shouldn’t have to compromise… Or should I? Because thinking about it, I HAVE scared a few guys away, or I’ve lost patience with them and ended it even though I still liked them.

And because I like my new man, and because I want him to like me, I’ve been thinking a lot about ‘the game’ and how I should play things. And I’ve been wondering whether I should wait for him to text me (we’ve all seen the film He’s just not that into you, and if he likes you he will get in touch, right?), or do I just text him (he’s probably trying to play it cool too, and we live in different cities so I don’t want things to fizzle out just because we were both trying to play it cool). And so far, I’m going with the just do what you feel frame of mind. It was ME to suggest he came from the airport to mine, ME to send the message to clear the air after the whole TV presenter fiasco, and ME to invite myself to the seaside. But i don’t mind driving it, because I’m confident, and I can tell that HE likes me. Or does he? Am I just making it too easy? Maybe I should start to reverse the power now.

So I’ve bought a book (I was directed towards the Self-Help section in Waterstones – how demoralising!). It’s called the Complete Book of Rules. Apparently is tells you time-tested secrets for capturing the heart of Mr Right. And what’s more, it’s a multi-million copy bestseller, so apparently I’m not the only girl on the planet to be questioning this.
But why should we have to use games to impress Mr Right? Surely playing games and not being ourselves means we capture the heart of Mr Not-Right?
But I’m going to read it. And I’m going to try it. And you can be certain that I’ll share my discoveries and report my experiences with you, dear readers.

Watch this space!

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Yesterday, I was texting a boy-friend, and he suggested we should have “dinner and a movie” one night this week. Dinner and a movie? , I thought. Isn’t that a date? Aren’t we just friends? Does he fancy me? Am I being arrogant to presume he wants anything more than friendship?


We’ve known each other for 7 years now. We used to sleep together. I was obsessed with him whilst at university, but he never committed. We stopped talking, and, coincidentally, I ended up in an 8 month relationship with his little brother (I didn’t know it was his brother at the beginning, I swear) – he hated me. We started talking whilst I was with Jules. We became friends. Good friends, because it’s nice when you’ve already been there, and there’s no way it could be anything (having dated his brother). And it’s nice to have that boyfriend you can talk to, and rely on, and share all your romantic dreams with and know they aren’t judging you.
But then it got complicated. In the build up to Christmas last year, I bought a christmas tree decoration that was a silver present you could open up like a box. Being a hopeless romantic, I was talking excitedly about how amazing would be if I opened it and found an engagement ring in there (I was single at the time, so it was just a silly fantasy). One night, he came round to mine and cooked for me; this was fairly normal so I didn’t read into it. As I wasn’t going to see him before Christmas, he put a gift for me under the tree and left. Then I received a text saying: “Check your silver box, then open the present under the tree, and let me know what you think”. Oh god, I thought. There is no avoiding this one. Surely he hasn’t proposed to me? Does he fancy me? Have I been blind? What about his brother? I was too nervous to deal with it. Too apprehensive to know what was waiting for me. Too worried about what conversation we’d need to have. So I replied with a cool, “I can’t open it, it’s not Christmas yet!”. oh no! Then I took the box down from the tree… and I opened the latch… And I looked inside… And there was a beautiful pair of pearl earrings. Phew! No ring, he was just being a sweet friend. Next, I opened the box under the tree… And it was an empty box for the earrings… Oh wait, there’s a note… “I know we never did years ago, but now I want to. Can I take you on a first date?” Uh oh. Although, I’m a girl, a hopeless romantic girl! So it was an aww that’s the most romantic thing ever BUT WHAT IS HE THINKING kind of uh oh! So we talked. And I ruled it out as ridiculous. And he said he didn’t care about his brother or what his family would think. And I told him I did. And I explained that those old feelings for his brother wouldn’t disappear, and I wouldn’t be able to do it. So much had happened and I just couldn’t see him that way. Then we agreed to be friends. Good friends, deep in the knowledge that nothing more can ever happen. And we are. But sometimes I sense it, by the way he reacts when I talk about boys, or the way I see him looking at me, and then I wonder if he still does want to be more than my friend.

We’ve all been there though, haven’t we? We have a boy(that’s a)friend, and either fancy them (although we convince ourselves we don’t), or we know they fancy us (and we brush it off and ignore it), OR we just wonder if they fancy us. OR we don’t think they fancy us, and then we become single, and then they try it on. OR the get a girlfriend and they slowly drift out of our lives, leaving us hurt and confused about how they viewed the friendship.

So this dinner and a movie text got me wondering if it’s possible for man and a woman to just be friends. I know, I know, it’s a contraversial topic. I went to a mixed school, and considered a lot of my best friends to be boys. I used to be extremely defensive with people who claimed that a girl and a boy could never really be friends. But the older I get, the more I’m starting to wonder if, perhaps, there is some truth in it.

So can a man and a woman be friends? And by friends, I mean a 100% platonic relationship?

It got me thinking of my all time favourite film, When Harry Met Sally, and the scene in which Harry (Billy Crystal) in and Sally (Meg Ryan) are travelling in a car together on their way to New York:

Sally: “We are just going to be friends, ok?”

Harry: “Great! Friends! It’s the best thing… You realise of course that we can never be friends.”

Sally: “Why not?”

Harry: “What i’m saying is, (and this is not a come-on in any way shape or form) is that men and women can’t be friends because the sex part always gets in the way.”

Sally: “That’s not true, I have a number of men friends and there is no sex involved.”

Harry: “No you dont”

Sally: “Yes I do.”

Harry: “No you don’t.”

Sally: “Yes I do.”

Harry: “You only think you do.”

Sally: “You’re saying I’m having sex with these men without my knowledge?”

Harry: “No what I’m saying is they all wanna have sex with you”

Sally: “They do not!”

Harry: “Do too.”

Sally: “They do not!”

Harry: “Do too!”

Sally: “How do you know?”

Harry: “Because no man can be friends with a women that he finds attractive; he always wants to have sex with her.”

Sally: “So you’re saying that a man CAN be friends with a woman he finds unattractive?”

Harry: “No, you pretty much wanna nail them too.”

Sally: “What if they don’t wanna have sex with you?”

Harry: “It doesn’t matter cause the sex is already out there, so the friendship is ultimately doomed and that is the end of the story.”

Sally: “Well I guess we’re not going to be friends then.”

Harry: “I guess not.”

And I realised that it is always the man to claim men and women can’t be friends. When you’re in a relationship, it’s always the guy that insists your boyfriends just want to sleep with you. And if the man is the one saying this, does this mean its true? But they have girlfriends, so does that mean they want to sleep with them? Should I be jealous?

So can dinner and a movie ever be friends? Or is there always a hope that it will be dinner and a movie … and something more?
And even if one of you does have feelings for the other, why can’t you just be friends? As long as you’re both clear that nothing will ever happen, then surely that’s better than not being in each others lives at all? Or is that just miserable acceptance of unrequited love?

And I really don’t have a conclusive answer to this one, dear readers. Because I don’t know. I think there will always people who have strong opinions for and against the sincerity of mixed friendships. What I am certain of is that friendships with girlfriends are much more solid and much less complicated. The older I get, the more I look forward to gossiping, and bitching, and talking about men, and drinking, and crying, and laughing so hard it’s like an ab workout with my amazing girlfriends. Because men really are from Mars, and Venus feels more like home.

What do you think?

I LOVE this! And I think we’ve all been in the situation before when you have a male friend and there are some underlying sexual tensions. It leads me onto my next post…

Have you seen the Sound of Music? You know the scene when the eldest daughter, Liesl, sneaks out into the night to meet Rolf and is so overcome with happiness she spins round and round laughing in the pouring rain? Well, right now I am Liesl von Trapp, apart from I’m not 16 going on 17 (and luckily my man is not a Nazi).

Did I actually spin around in the pouring rain? Of course not. I think I would have scared him away. The one great thing about age and experience, is that it makes you cool and collected… on the outside at least. I suppose girls never truly age when it comes to matters of the heart!

So let me tell you about my day at the seaside in the pouring rain… Wake up naturally at 7:56am. Check train times (9:12am), check weather (wet and cold). Get out of bed at exactly 8:36am feeling calm, and excited, and slightly apprehensive that I only have about half an hour to get my train. What do I wear for our date out of London? I’m thinking warm, comfortable, slightly rural, but cute. Abercrombie & Fitch skinny jeans, Ralph Lauren beige top, Nine West black leather flat biker boots, Abercrombie & Fitch burgundy lamb wool fleece, Barbour beige quilted jacket and green checked scarf. Make up? Natural. A bit of Mac Solar Riche bronzing powder, Mac shimmer blush (nice pink cheeks), some Benefit the’re Real! Mascara, and Vaseline aloe vera lip balm. Hair? Long, down, and a bit messy (well it’s going to be windy). And I’m out of the house by 8:56am and walking at a slightly rushed pace to the station.
Oh sh*t! I forgot my Young Person’s Railcard but there’s no time to go back. So my journey is £19:50 more expensive, but I don’t care.

10 minutes to spare in my changeover station, so I pop to Caffe Nero and grab a skinny chai latte and some porridge with soy milk and berry compote, and I’m off out of London on a 2 hour train ride!

During the journey I think again about how nice it is that I am not worrying about his opinion of me or what he thinks. I do momentarily worry that he will stand me up, and then I remind myself that I’m being silly. I suppose I am slightly apprehensive though… Because what if I don’t like him? And then I smile at the change in my perspective.
Then comes the first big decision to make… Where do we meet? He’s just had a serious operation so is unable to drive and living at home (his parents’ home) whilst recovering. He can pick me up from the station, but his mum would have to drive us (*is he cool with me meeting his mum? or does he feel obliged to offer?* … Stop over thinking things!). Or I walk 20 minutes into the city centre… In the rain. I worry that meeting parents goes against our agreement to take it easy and not be intense. So I… Take a taxi. You can take a girl out of London, but you can’t take London out of the girl! :)

What do you do in a seaside town when there are strong winds and heavy rain (obviously going back to his home is an option I quickly rule out)? You apparently get dressed head to toe in water proof clothing and embrace it. He brought a whole bag of waterproofs and warm clothes in case I wasn’t prepared for the weather (aww). I have fun trying on his waterproof trousers, but they don’t fit… so I settle for a wooly hat, and an oversized waterproof coat… well there goes my attempt to look cute, thank god I didn’t spend long planning my outfit! And I like being dressed a little bit dorky, it makes me all giggly.
And we go out onto the pier. And we laugh. And we walk along the beach. And he catches me when I nearly get blown away in the wind (Damzel in distress!). And we kiss but our faces our so wet that our faces slide off each other. And we giggle. And we clash teeth. And we laugh. And we go for food. And he pays (which means more when your man is poor and unemployed). And we take turns drying our jeans in the bathroom with the hand dryers. And we walk through the town. And we drink hot chocolate. And he gets whipped cream on his nose. And I giggle. And he wipes it over my face. And we laugh. And we go into the woods and have a woodland walk. And we sit on a waterproof (he picks a spot with a nice view). And we kiss. And I stop myself from singing love songs in my head. And we kiss. And we get wet. And we don’t care. And we kiss (*man, I wish we had a bedroom!*). And a squirrel comes right up to us, and I compare myself to Snow White, and then I remind myself to get a grip and stop turning my life into a Disney love story! And then finally, when we are so cold and wet we can’t kiss anymore, he decides that I can’t get the train back to London damp. So his mum comes to pick us up. And we go to his house. And we meet his brother. But I don’t care. Because I’m not freaking out, and I’m not over thinking anything, and it feels nice. And I have a cup of tea, and put my boots by the fire, and see his room. And I get in his shower. And… Oh hello, you’ve joined me in the shower ;) (a lady never tells remember) … And about an hour later and I’m back on the train to London.

And I’m not stressing. And I’m not worried that it’s intense. And I love that we laughed and had fun despite the miserable weather. And I have butterflies. And I’m smiling. And I giggled like a little girl all day. And I’m trying to snap myself back into reality… but I’m comparing myself to Liesl in the Sound of Music. Well I did warn you I was a hopeless romantic!

How do I feel? I just feel… And. Because and is a word that needs something to follow it. And who knows, maybe something will. Or maybe it won’t. But that’s also fine, because everything happens for a reason, and at least I don’t have Sunday blues. :)