Wednesday, 26 November 2008

Danonymous Dan: The First Kiss

Hands up who has seen Dawson’s Creek? Or its more recent clone, The O.C? I am sure there are plenty of ‘Emo in disguise’ shows which I could list here, all aimed at the American middle classes. We all know how good American ‘aim’ is, and unsurprisingly, in a hail of televisual friendly fire, those shows ended up here on our TVs. Mowing down our impressionable young people in a cross fire of weepy teenage angst, I was luckily just old enough that these show’s bullets of cathartic simplicity bounced harmlessly off my embittered British skin, when they first started arriving in the late ’90s.

“Did you see the one where Dawson agonised over his naughty thoughts while hiding himself in a shack by an idyllic lake which the director brilliantly juxtaposed with Dawson’s roiling inner turmoil. You see! He’s just like us, except with a bigger forehead, obviously.”

Whether you think these shows are escapism, catharsis, or simply crap, you can’t deny their subject matter, first kiss, first fondle, first act of onanism (‘onerism’ is incorrect – look it up), strikes a chord with everybody. Unfortunately, life doesn’t do soft focus, and most people’s experiences are far more interesting and visceral than daytime US sop-soaps can cover. Looking back, I find my first kiss incredibly funny, but at the time it threatened to scar me for life. It was pre-Dawson by about two years – the only television I had to help me cope was Blue Peter and Byka Grooove.

Being the ‘creative type’ (read dyslexic and emotionally stunted) I had managed to land myself a bit part in the school play and was at school one weekend for a rehearsal. The play’s lead, played by one of my year’s cooler sorts, had brought a few ‘out of school’ friends with him, like a coterie of groupies. It was with one of these girls, a hoop ear-ringed, shiny shell suit wearing meta-chav with an expression of permanent distaste on her face, that I had my first kiss. I’m being a bit nasty after the fact, because I do remember her as very pretty despite all the Elizabeth Duke trappings.

I was a Nirvanoid, so I guess if she was a blueprint for chav, I was the blueprint for Emo and as they say, opposites attract. After much ‘my-friend-fancies you,-do-you-like-her’-type chat this girl and I ended up away from everybody behind a bush or something romantic like that. Things were going well, hotting up even. I cracked jokes, she laughed. She cracked jokes and I pretended to laugh. You could almost hear the music in the background building the tension toward the romantic encounter that surely neither of us could avoid. We were two freight trains on a single track of destiny ploughing toward a perfect passionate moment – time would surely stop. I lent in and it happened, boy freight train met girl freight train, we kissed, our tongues questing, my eyes open in shocked surprise at my luck – ‘look mum, I’m doing it!’ The moment lasted what seemed like an age, the girl pulled back and looked deep into my eyes and said:

“You’ve not done that before, have you?” My train de-railed, rolled down a bank and fell off a cliff edge of sheer drop-jaw embarrassment. She went off and told people who laughed at me.

Cue Music: “I don’t wanna wait... for our lives to be over…”

Tuesday, 25 November 2008

Sam: Christmas Shopping List

With Christmas almost upon us it got me thinking about shopping lists – of the relationship kind. One of the things that I get all my clients to do is come up with their ‘relationship shopping list’ – these are the non-negotiable characteristics that their partner must have. As you can imagine, there is some prioritisation that is involved. Here are some samples from one of my female clients that ran to over 25 items

  • Over six foot
  • Built like a fridge/freezer
  • Huge weiner 
  • Oxford/Cambridge and/ or Ivy league education
  • Ability to get in a physical fight and win
  • Likes spooning
  • Not cheap. Duh.

Etc etc.

I force people to focus and prioritise – to get down to their top three non-negotiables. Though many women have a super huge shopping list, I’m always surprised at the number of people who have not even really considered this – particularly men. They really need to sit down and think about it. But this is crucially important, you wouldn’t buy a Playstation 3 if you wanted to play Halo and Gears of War! Personally my non-negotiable three are loving, sexy and trustworthy.

What about yours? But strictly only your top 3!

Friday, 21 November 2008

Something for the ladies # 25

Ladies: If there's ever been anything about men you've wanted to know but were afraid to ask, or wanted a male viewpoint on a certain relationship niggle you're going through, drop an email to us at todger dot talk @ googlemail dot com. We shall pick one out and answer it to the best of our capabilities.

This week's question...

Anonymous writes: Hello lads,

I run my own business and I've recently sought the advice of a fellow business owner, who has been very generous with his time and given me a great deal of financial advice. I want our relationship to be more than professional, but I don't know how to subtly find out is he's single (there are no obvious signs like a ring). All of our correspondence is very professional and via email, and I desperately want to break down that barrier without making a fool out of myself.

When we first met at a networking event he looked over at me three times while he was talking to someone else, so I know that there is some degree of interest on his part. I feel a sense of urgency with this before our relationship enters a "strictly professional zone". I think so highly of him that I would be happy just being his friend if he didn't feel the same way that I do, so I know I need to act carefully. I'm 25 and he's 31, and I think he likes to see himself as my mentor.

Any bright ideas please?

Sam says: OK, there is some serious strategising that needs to happen here. Firstly, you need to remember that when a guy meets a younger girl in a business context we tend to lean on the side of caution. There is nothing worse than getting a sexual harassment suit from a younger woman to make your life a misery. What this means is that you need to discreetly take the lead and make it clear you are interested.

Step 1 – Gather intelligence

Do you have any mutual professional contacts? If so, discreetly ask if he is married or has a girlfriend. If you don't have any, then next time you see him as something like 'Is your wife involved in business as well?' You'll quickly find out whether he is single or not.

Step 2 – Get him out of the business strait-jacket

It’s crucial that you meet up outside a professional context. The easiest way to do this is to ask if you can meet up for a drink after work for him to give you some advice on business topic X. A bar is what anthropologists call a 'liminal' space – a place where the rules of outside society are temporarily suspended. Translation, you are allowed to flirt with business colleagues there. When you get there for the drink as quickly as possible move off business onto personal topics. Also, flirt like crazy with him. The more flirting the better.

Step 3 – Get a bit sozzled and have a snog

Alcohol plays a very important role – it allows you to do things you wouldn't otherwise try and get away with it. I would suggest when going out to drinks aim to get a bit sozzled and then at the end of the night, when saying goodbye, rather than offering your cheek, tip you head to one side, lean in towards his lips and let him close the deal. If it all goes wrong you can always blame drinking a bit too much booze. If it goes right, Hurrah!

‘Mr Sex’ says: Right then, I’m going to be the angel on your shoulders and hit you off with the other side of the coin; yes, he was checking you out at that networking meeting, mainly because a) he’s male and b) those things are boring as fuck. Personally, if I were at something like that and a balloon with swastikas drawn on it with marker pen floated in the room, I’d be thinking about shagging the arse off it, just to alleviate the sheer boredom of it all.

The problem is, this is still a work relationship, even if you’re self-employed, and there’s still a degree of professionalism needed – after all, if it goes horribly tits-up, it’s going to have a serious effect on your working relationship. At best, it’s going to tip the balance decisively in his favour (after all, if he sees you as your mentor, he already feels he has a degree of power). At worst, it’s going to break it completely.

So my advice to you is to follow Sam’s advice, but add Step 0 – be a bit more chatty in your e-mails. Initiate a bit of random banter with a PS, or something like that, so you get to know him a lot better whilst basking in the safety of hiding behind a monitor. The benefits of this are that you can subtly steer the conversation in the direction you want without committing to anything, and having the time to think about what he’s said and what you want to say in return. All the info you need to know will be revealed in time, and you’ll have a far better idea where you stand without risking your professional relationship or making an arse of yourself.

Readers of TT – comment!

Wednesday, 19 November 2008

Danonymous Dan: Into the lionesses’ den

I once had the misfortune to work as a freelancer in an all-female public relations office. Me, the lone rogue male, thrust into their midst like a sacrificial slave. Lunchtime was a daily competition about who could eat the healthiest salad – the shocked, jealous stares engendered by my M&S sandwiches were the highlight of my day.

This agency was ‘trendy’ in the painfully-boring way that PR agencies try to be (one PR agency I worked in had sand on the floor of its meeting room, another forwent chairs for beanbags), with its point of trendiness being Unisex toilets. It was a mere two days before I got told-off for leaving the toilet seat up. Already rather irritated by the job, and knowing it was only a two-week contract, I decided to argue my case. I posited that a group of strong-minded career women should really be able to manage the lowering of a toilet seat. If they weren’t looking before they sat down then it was a problem with their own personal due diligence practices – after all, I didn’t just walk in and start pissing on a lowered seat without looking.

“Look,” said one of the senior account directors, a particularly po-faced harridan – pregnant at the time, although how I have no idea how – “It’s just basic manners.”

I’m pretty sure toilet seat etiquette is not included in any manners books, but it does bring me to the wider point. The reason I mention the toilet seat thing is because it’s symptomatic of ‘a woman’ expecting that ‘a man’ should do something for her simply because she is ‘a woman.’ With the advent of equality over patriarchy is it not time to start looking at the balance of ‘manners’ that govern social interaction of the sexes?

It’s fashionable to think women are happy to go ‘dutch’ on a meal, but as a guy you still worry that raising it as topic will lose points. So what is the real deal these days? What are the new rules? Should a guy automatically let the women go first, and ensure he’s holding the door for her? If it’s cold is the man supposed to give up his coat? No women I know has turned up to a date with a gift of flowers for me, not that I would want flowers, but the same garages men buy flowers from also sell charcoal briquettes and plastic footballs – I’d happily accept either.

I know I am being facetious about this but I guess what I’m driving at is if things are more equal (or to become so) then men should be in line to have a more equal share in the social niceties. Social rules we use find their route in the patriarchal societies of the past. They were designed, unconsciously I assume, to reinforce dominant male, inferior female stereotypes, “You can’t refuse him, its his right, but at least he holds the door and lets you into the bedroom first, what a gentleman.” Do we still need them?

One girl I know who earns well over £50K, but if her boyfriend suggests she dip into her pocket for anything she turns into a bile-spitting harpy, because as a woman she should be ‘looked after’. If we mock her, she looks to her beleaguered boyfriend to defend her tight-fisted behaviour. I know, or have had the displeasure to meet, various such women. I freely admit that part of me quite likes the ritual of it all, acting the gentlemen by going through social motions, but another part of me would like to say fair's fair – let's see consistent equality with the ladies taking the initiative 50% of the time.

Monday, 17 November 2008

Sam: The pain of first love

I was chatting to a guy at a party the other day and he came up with a great story. (There are some real benefits to being a Love Doctor, either people spill loads of great love related stories, or swear I am really an accountant pretending to be a love doctor as a cheap pulling trick.)

Apparently he had only just got over his first real love. He was in his late 30’s, so was not a quick healer. When he just started University his parents hired a Swedish au pair for one of their younger kids. Blond, beautiful, buxom and apparently very skilled in the bedroom, he as a spotty young Englishman fell madly in love with her. Towards the end of his university degree she decided that she wanted to go back to Sweden and demanded that he come with her. Rationalising that he needed to finish his degree, and perhaps not quite realising how good his first real catch was, he decided to stay and that was that. He never really quite recovered.

Fast forward about 18 years later and bring on the joys of Facebook. She found him, got in touch and dropped him an email saying she had been thinking of him all these years and invited him to come to Sweden. She of course was a bit worse for ware and had a couple of kids in tow from previous boyfriends. Apparently this was enough to unbreak his heart – that she wanted him, and was no longer the glorious goddess that he held in his mind all those years. The relief on his face was something to behold.

First love is one of those things that burns and hurts not quite like any other love you have. And it is strange the things that let you move on. What was your first love? How did you get over it?

Thursday, 13 November 2008

Sam: That other woman

The other night I was at a charity party doling out love life advice to punters and as usual was keeping a keen eye on the antics going in the crowd. One thing that particularly caught my eye was how the most attractive woman in the room kept giving me looks in between dancing with the guy in the Lion suit. Got to keep up the old skills, teachers got to be able to do too, etc etc, I rationalised (translate as, lets go and have a chat with her and get a bit of an ego rub even though I’m taken).

Anyway, I wander over and we start chatting. Now this girl could have had any man in the room. Turns out the Lion, just like me was taken. In fact she has spent the entire night flirting with taken men. A quite attractive single guy was showing some serious interest in her as we chatted. When I asked her, she dismissed him, saying ‘no, he’s way to keen’. She then proceeded to complain about how the only men who ever approach here were they taken ones (that’s because you pick them, flirt like crazy and reel them in like fish honey – I had to bite my tongue on that one).

What is it about these women? Why do they un-erringly pick out men who are taken? I can understand it to some extent, men, and women in relationships are attractive. They are getting regular action, they are usually happy and confident, and most of all, not at all needy. Then there is the biological thing of saving time and searching for a mate by picking one that other’s already find attractive. But the problem is, if you are a plan B, 95% of the time, the man stays with the other woman. Lady readers, can you enlighten me more on this one? Lads, any thoughts?

Wednesday, 12 November 2008

Mr Sex: Friend of a Friend of an Unbelievable Shag-Rat

Conversation I had the other day with someone I sort of know, in the pub, at dinnertime, after asked him what he did last Friday (in the charmingly lilting Nottingham accent, for authenticity's sake);

(Him) "Yeah, I was gunnu come up your way for a pint, but me mate worn't up for it. Soz mate"

(Me) "Ah, shame, man. it wor a good night"

"Yeah, ah tode him all the pubs were good up your way, but he said "Fook gooin' up there. I want to goo ter taahn to talk to some slags". So we ended up gooin' to the usual taahnie shitholes"

"Ah man, that's rank"

"Ah, don't set me off, mate. He's a fookin' shagrat, 'im. All he's bothered abaaht is the fanneh. He'll get 'is leg ovver owt, 'im"

"Shitting hell, I know a few people like that"

"Norr as bad as 'im, mate. He spends all his money on getting kitted aht, and before he comes aht, he 'as a wank, so he can keep going longer if he cops off wi' 'owt. And then he won't have a pint, in case he can't gerra bonk-on. And he chats up owt. All fucking night. Relentless. And if he can't get his end away, he's 'ad a shit night."

"Fucking 'ell. That's one lad who really teks his Friday nights serious"

"Well, it's the only time his missus let's him aht, in't it?"

Tuesday, 11 November 2008

Danonymous Dan: Pissing away the moment

My history is one of serial monogamy. I’ve had a string of two-to-three year relationships since I was 16. But I have had the odd one-night-stand which has actually turned out to be rather good – I’ve even managed the holy grail of sleeping with a best female friend and it not being awkward afterward (high five!).

But while serial monogamy is a great way to learn one woman really well (references available on request) it fails to prepare you for the one-night-stand awkward moments passion killers that shoot the mood quicker than Sarah Palin hunting a polar bear.

The UK’s drinking culture tends to mean that if you meet a girl through friends it’s usually at a party, or a pub. Let’s fast forward. Your sales patter worked and you’ve scored a night of fun and frolics. Excellent: have a hat and pat yourself on the back. Now you’re balls deep, passion is high and...

Beep, Beep.

You get a mental text message from your bladder: ‘Stop now, make a dignified exit and return once empty.’ How do you broach the subject of a mid-bang pee break?

Brazenly carrying on with the irritating ‘bladder-on-the-brain’ thoughts is distracting and means you’re not putting your entire focus into enjoying the young lady’s company. You had better hope you orgasm before the pressure becomes unbearable. If not, you’ll be running from the room and hoping the erection subsides in time to avoid painting the bathroom mirror with piss. Unless you both met at a water-sports convention, this may dampen the mood. You can pull out and say ‘I’ll be back’. However, pulling out mid-stroke saying ‘I’ll be back’ will seem odd; it’s an action that invites not only self-doubt and annoyance on her part, but also questions like, ‘where the hell are you going?’.

Answering that in a way that doesn’t murder the magic? Tough ask.

You can’t admit you’re going for a piss, as it reminds her the male member has two purposes – an instant mood killer with some girls. So what can you say instead? ‘ …a piss? No, I’m going to take a dump?’ Unless you’ve picked up a scatologist, which is different from scientologist who simply invented a religion based on it – then this isn’t going to work either. Saying you are going to wash your hands is an epic fail because it suggests you think she has a personal hygiene problem. Search the bathroom – there is nothing that serves as a good excuse.

You could go to great expense and keep some form of vibrator in your bathroom cabinet and then after you’ve taken a piss, bring it back with you. However while using a girl’s own vibrator on her is seen as sexually enlightened, having a spare around the house ‘just in case’ would have the same effect as asking a girl to put her hair in pigtails and humming ‘Do you wanna be in my gang’. Girls tend to be a bit icky about used toys – ‘its good to share’ doesn’t apply here. I put this to a real girl I know and her response was: ‘you can’t trust a man to wash his own cock, let alone a spare one.’

The only serviceable answer I can think of is to say that you don’t like that condom and you have a better type in the bathroom. It is good to make sure that you do have a better one because if you don’t it looks weird putting on another one of the same type. Ok, so we have solved the problem… well, assuming you have taken her back to your house. Now, what do you do if the bathroom isn’t yours because you’ve gone back to her’s …

Sam: our first new guest

Well, you lot are keen! We already have our first new guest crew: Dan. He'll be joining us for the next month as a guest writer and we'll see how his rowing skills turn out.

Anyone else out there who fancies joining Todger Talk as guest crew, please email us at todger dot talk at googlemail dot com

Monday, 10 November 2008

Sam: Recruiting Crew for HMS Todger Talk

As you may have noticed, Mr Sex and I are rather annoyingly busy at the moment, but that is no good excuse to stop talking about Todgers! I was contemplating that it might be good to get in some guest writers, and then I thought, what about our readers?

Would you like to talk about your Todger and all things related? Are you funnier than me (easy) or better funnier than Mr Sex (hard)? Secret hankering to start a writing career? Would you like to be able to add to your CV that you write for an international award winning blog? If you have answered yes to these questions then please do get in touch with an example of your first post.

You can reach us at todger dot talk at googlemail dot com

PS you also need to be male. Sorry ladies.

Thursday, 6 November 2008

Sam: Sexual Politics

In case you haven’t seen it, I’d like to share this hilarious clip that I originally picked up on popbitch under the heading ‘our favourite political journalist’

Now this brings up an interesting point the mix of sex and politics. This guy clearly went to the US with good political intensions, but then the main focus became the women who swooned at his British accent and parties in Miami.

There is nothing quite like the potent mix of excitement and adrenalin of politics to create a sexually charged atmosphere. I only have to hark back to when I dabbled in democrat politics, and watching a group of 10 men stand around and dote over Natasha Stott Despoja to realise the real reason they were there, shamefully, myself included. A lot of people pulled on election night after parties.

I am willing to bet there were a lot of people getting action after every single one of Obama’s rallies . . . and after that acceptance speech . . .