enthralling weirding everyone out with my tale of supernerd dating a few months ago, I thought I’d ran out of entertaining dating stories. But then, my dear blogging buddy Debbie of travelwithintent published a post featuring Treadwell’s Bookshop in Bloomsbury, and the memory of another bizarre dating anecdote came rushing back to me.
Like the previous instalment, this happened ten years ago, when I was living in London as a cash-strapped, mature student. I was still pretty new to London, and to create a bit of diversion from the daily college-clinic-job drudgery, I’d subscribed to a fuzzy networking website purporting to serve the dual purpose of kindling of both romance and friendship. I had ticked the latter box, in case you’re wondering.
These sites do yield some colourful characters, and I got chatting to this Brit, who had authored a book on… wait for it… how to fashion your own talisman and imbue it with magical powers. He was due to travel to London shortly to attend some kind of world wizardry congress. He mentioned that he was currently living in an Eastern European country with his Eastern European girlfriend, and that they were very happy together. So happy, in fact – and this was pretty obvious – that he was desperate to get laid on his upcoming London sojourn.
Now, I’m a rather
incompetent reticent flirter and I avoid making promises that I’m not sure I can deliver on, so I didn’t agree to anything beyond meeting up for a chat and a coffee. I was keen to meet him, because, you see, I used to be intrigued by people who were slightly out of step with reality. Not the beyond barmy types who might gouge out your liver and then hurl themselves off Beachy Head, wildly flapping their strap-on sequinned fairy wings, but those with a minor disconnect in their reality fuse box. And this happy-relationship delusionist with one foot firmly planted in the slippery cauldron of black magic hocus-pocus fitted the bill. There was also the prospect of free cake.
So, we met on a grey and dank Friday afternoon in Bloomsbury, home to the stunning British Museum, the University of London, as well as countless cafes and bookshops, including aforementioned Treadwell’s, THE global Mecca for junkies of all things preposterous, pagan, and plain potty. If Rupert Giles existed, this is where you’d find him, stationed behind the counter, weighing out ounces of freeze-dried demon gonads.
Shortly after having introduced ourselves, my wanna-be wizard whisked me right into this esoteric establishment. Ushering me past the stuffed crow, the crystals and the tarot cards, he proudly pulled the fruit of his hard labours off the bookshelf, parading it before my witchcraft-weary eyes. While forcing myself very hard not to roll them, I produced an appreciative “aaah-oooh!”, and with that out of the way, I finally got to have my cake.
From my perspective, the afternoon went spiffingly. No sexual chemistry bonfire (maybe he’d overshot the target while pleasuring his dating talisman?), but the cake was good, the conversation engaging, and then we parted amicably. I was satisfied.
The seedy sorcerer, however, wasn’t. The next day, he called me and made it quite clear just how disappointing the whole affair had been for him. After airing his disgruntlement, he jinxed me with a bout of the black boils.
So far, except for a few run-of-the mill zits, I remain relatively unblemished.
But you never know… somewhere, in a galaxy far, far away, my warrior princess alter-ego may have come down with a nasty case of suppurating saddle rash.
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If you’d like to read about another vexatious dating experience, The Big Bang Theory Of Dating, click here.
For travelwithintent’s post & picture of Treadwell’s Bookshop, click here.