Single? It’s a date

IF YOU are one of the millions of Australian adults who are single, separated, divorced, or widowed, I have good news for you. You will go on a date again.

I also have bad news. You will go on a date again.

Dating, for the young, is full of hormones and excitement and possibilities and, well, hope.

Dating for the older single is not so much about biological drive or, in fact, excitement but, okay, it is definitely about hope. I hope they don't hate their ex and want to talk about that all night. I hope they don't want me to give my life to God. I hope they're not expecting athletic sex and on the first date. I hope they have their own hair/teeth/money for drinks.

I've been on good dates, heck, great dates. And I've been on dates that could send you running for the nearest taxi cab.

But you don't have to be unprepared. Give it a little fore

thought and you will realise there is always a definitive moment on a date when you realise which way it is going to go.

This is either accompanied by relief - your date isn't Charles Manson/Pauline Hanson - or by curiosity, about just how big the bathroom windows are and how far the drop.

I remember one particularly awful date where I asked a man who seemed reasonable, if a little alternative, what his hopes for the future were. When he replied that he wanted to find someone of good breeding stock so that they could have the new humans who were going to rebuild the world after the Apocalypse, I suddenly lost interest in the main course. Unfortunately he was serious. Terence, I hope it worked out for you.

 I have also been on a date where the man in question brought his friend. I am not sure if this was for support or for the possibility of a threesome. But, in this case, the bathroom windows were big enough.

Other things that can go horribly, horribly wrong - he/she starts drinking heavily from the moment you enter the bar/restaurant; he/she is inexplicably rude to the waiter/waitress; is that the ex and he/she's taken you here to show they can still pull?; he/she talks about his/her frankly fabulous self for the whole date; he/she asks you if you're into that stuff they did in 50 Shades of Grey and shows you a pair of handcuffs he/she just happens to carry around, just in case.

Of course sometimes things can go terribly well. Oh, you like Twister too. Really, your favourite movie was Groundhog Day. You're not voting One Nation at the next election?

Yes, dating. It's so thrilling. I can't wait for my next date.

I already have an escape plan.

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