I normally meet men on the Internet, that is what I do best and I get to know 'the person' before I am subjected to his dreadful flirting skills or bad manners, but on occasions I am approached 'in the real world' and I am concerned at how many confident Lotharios are out there, using Dutch courage to approach women.
I was sitting alone in a crowded, noisy bar the other day. I was reading a book and sipping a drink, occasionally glancing at my watch. I was waiting for my friend and it was obvious I was busy. Nearby, a group of red-faced, middle-aged men in suits were getting stuck into their third or fourth round of drinks. They had been getting steadily louder and more raucous. Once in a while, one of them would glance over to check me out, then turn back and make a comment to his pals, then they would guffaw with drunken laughter. I was making heroic efforts to ignore them. Eventually, to my horror, one of them got up.
'Oh please god no, please don't come over' I thought to myself. I hoped he was just going to the loo, but no, he was heading my way. The group fell silent as he swaggered towards me. I braced myself.
'Did it hurt?' he asked
'Did it hurt?' he repeated, slightly louder this time. I could hear his friends sniggering like Beavis and Butthead. 'When you fell from heaven.'
There was a long, embarrassed pause, I couldn't believe he'd actually used that line. I tried to be polite.
'Look, I don't mean to be rude, but I'm waiting for a friend and....'
'Oh come on darlin', don't be like that, come and have a drink with us.' Clearly he didn't know when no meant no.
'I'm really, really not interested, thanks for asking though.' I got up to walk away, annoyed that my peace had been disturbed.
As I was about to turn my back I heard 'Suit yourself pet, you don't know what you're missing!' I smiled to myself, I knew exactly what I was missing, and if I hadn't been in heels I would have been running from it.
He staggered back to his friends, shrugging his shoulders and grinning inanely. His pals chortled and guffawed once more and I distinctly heard the phrases 'Must be a lesbian' and 'Not that good looking anyway'.
Sadly this scenario is played out in every bar the length and breadth of the country almost every day of the week.
Flirting is good, it is an essential human interaction and without it nobody would ever get together and the human race would die out. Men and women have been making eyes at each other over the campfire and asking 'Your cave or mine?' since time began. But why, in this day and age, when we are bombarded with flirting techniques from every magazine, newspaper and television channel, when there are entire books and websites devoted to the art of the pickup, must women still have to put up with these ham-fisted, embarrassingly inappropriate attempts at seduction? A little finesse, gentlemen, please. Its not rocket science.
When you speak to us, look us in the eye. If you really fancy us, a glance at our mouths every now and then works wonders. But, please, keep your eyes above our necks. We love our breasts too. They are womanly and attractive and biologically very handy. They are indeed wondrous things, but they have not yet mastered the art of conversation, they won't reply to you, no matter how persistent you are.
Whistling is for dogs and the Von Trapp children, not for us. We are not dogs. What do you think is going to happen when you whistle piercingly at a woman in the street? Do you think she will march over, smile seductively and say 'Well, hello to you too, handsome. What are you doing tonight?' If one day the impossible should happen and a woman actually responded in such a manner, you would probably fall over in shock, and that would be a good thing.
If you're going to approach a woman in a bar make sure the manoeuvre hasn't got an audience, please don't smell like you've just licked the floor clean in the Black Sheep Brewery, and be in control of your bodily functions, including the amount of spit being produced in your slurring, drunken mouth. We have to tolerate you saying things to us uninvited, we don't want the same amount of words spraying on us.
If she turns you down it is NOT because she is a lesbian, she probably has good taste, or is already getting far more from someone else, who is, no doubt, sober, attractive and polite.
And for my lady followers, a timely, well-delivered, none-to-subtle slap-down is often the only way to ensure the would be suitors get the message loud and clear.
He says: If I could see you naked I'd die happy.
You reply: If I could see you naked I'd die laughing.
He says: If I could rearrange the alphabet I'd put I and U together.
You reply: If I could rearrange the alphabet I'd put F and U together.
He says: Haven't I seen you someplace before?
You reply: Yeah, that's probably why I don't go there anymore.
He says: So, you wanna go back to my place?
You reply: Well I don't know. Will two people fit under a rock?
He says: Is this seat empty?
You reply: Yes, and this one will be too if you sit down.
He says: I'd like to call you, what's your number?
You reply: Its in the phone book.
But he persists: But I don't know your name.
Deliver the final blow: That's in the phone book too.
And if all else fails, and he's decided to talk to your breasts, paying no attention to your face, and not hearing that you're really not interested, get down on your knees in front of him, and talk to his cock, maybe he will hear you say 'No' then.
Happy Flirting :)