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Just as I thought I stacked the odds too high, a friend recommended a new society for gay professionals in London, called The List. Of course, the idea of holding social and professional networking events for gay men is nothing new. After checking out their website and reading about their core values, I booked a ticket for their Date Night. The venue is elegant and certainly different from your usual Soho bar. Unlike my previous speed dating experience, I instantly feel welcomed by James, our host. Great stuff. Before we get started, James explains how things will work.
He also gives a few tips on how we can make the most of our evening.
However, The List is the only speed dating organiser that ensures everyone gets a chance to meet all the guys who are attending the event. So with that in mind, I prepare myself to answer a whole lot of the same questions: Where do you work?
What do you do in your free time? Where are you from? Since my aim is to simply meet new people, I decide to just go for it without following any set of rules or working from a specific list of questions. My game plan is: Be organic. Be yourself.
I Went to a 'Tops' and 'Bottoms' Speed-Dating Event | HuffPost
The best thing about this speed dating event was that you are your own matchmaker and you get your results at the end of the evening. The List really do seem to offer something different and I recommend you check out their website. There was a drizzle of uneasy laughter from the men in line. I looked at my name tag, which was peeling off already, as if it knew that the "T" written on it was all some horrible lie. Get a couple of drinks in you and what are you? You're gayer than Judy Garland's Christmas ornaments.
You're a sham! Once everyone had registered, our organizer separated us into our respective groups. Come over here!
And just like that, there we were: It was like a nightmarish game of dodgeball that would air on LOGO. I was surprised to see that of the ish men there, only three including me were dressed up. Far too many of the men, who were essentially about to go on at least 15 first dates, were wearing T-shirts and tank tops.
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Whereas I tried to look as though I had just gotten off my fancy job as a writer, a majority of the men looked as though they had just left their shift at Aeropostale. Had all these men lost hope?
Why were they dressed like that dude from high school who always tries to sell you knives when you run into him every trip back home? If you learn anything from me at all, it's that you should always dress how you want to feel, not how you actually feel. To be blunt, most of the men on either side including me were average-looking -- sometimes aggressively so. These men weren't the living mannequins you see gliding on the roller skates of their good looks through Chelsea.
I'd like to go on record and say those men are horrible, and the human equivalent of a parfait. The men here were normal dudes: Have you ever been at a party and realized, with a cold sweat and a shiver of dread, that you were the smartest one in the room? It's happened to me once before; I realized that if I was the smartest person in the room, then we were all screwed. That's how I imagine this gentleman felt, except that instead of being the smartest man in the room, he was the best-looking.
This was only heightened by the fact that most of the men at the event were, as I said, aggressively average -- like, community-college average. Don't get me wrong. Most of the men were hilarious -- unintentionally, that is. One gentleman, for example, interrupted me halfway throughout our introductions and asked with a smile, "Are you a Greek god?
The List – A new take on speed dating
Flattered, and with a bit of beer foam dribbling out of my mouth, I politely declined. I know how that scenario usually ends: By the end of the night, I had met about 16 different men, and I can tell you that the look of disappointment that flashed on their faces upon seeing me never got old. I tried my best to be my most "top" self like trying to polish a turd, as they say.