Friday, June 30, 2006

Summer Special: Internet Dating Profile Picture Clinic: Part 2

Such has been the popularity of my internet dating profile picture clinic (in which I offer my loyal readers objective advice on their photographs), I've hardly had time to comb the lice from my monkey head. Here's a selection of today's submissions, but keep them coming in, friends: it's what I'm here for. Email them to me. Come on, don't be shy - we're all friends here.

Hello to Dating monkey
Hi from Japan!!!! on some days my legs don't work. We made special computer table at school. Show it, yes? No?
Love from

Dear Kitten

Miaow! When you say 'legs don't work', what do you mean exactly? Do send a reply soonest and I'll get onto this immediately.

Nice bunches.

Love from

DM xx

Dear Datingmonkey
After many years of wearing contact lenses I've finally 'bowed to the inevitable' and am now wearing full-time spectacles. (A choice that became inevitable after 5 consecutive bouts of viral conjunctivitis.) What do you think? Keep them on for the photograph, or take them off? Plus, as you can see I have had a loose perm. Do you think it's succesful?
Thanks in advance.
Janet, Bury St Edmunds

Dearest Janet
Darling, you've got SUCH a sweet smile that I don't think either your specs or hair are going to make much difference.
Good luck!

Yo, DM!
I'm thinking: summer. I'm thinking: relaxed. I'm thinking: stylish, cool, popular, and familiar with the ladies' favourite, the cocktail. Thoughts?
Keep it real.
Jeff, Ealing

Dear Jeff
I'm thinking: cock. So I am also thinking: it must be working!
Keep it - as you say - real.
All the best

Dear Datingmonkey
Having recently achieved a 2:2 in Industrial Communications from the University of Dorset, I thought this picture (posed in a studio and taken by a professional photographer, naturally) would appeal to the more intellectual lady. Let me know if you agree, and don't be afraid to be honest - I'm feeling confident about this one.
Chris, Plymouth

Dear Chris
Honestly? You look like you're looking up an 18 year old Marketing Studies student's skirt. You therefore look very slightly like a dirty old man, but only very slightly.
Very best wishes

Dear Datingmonkey
I have recently had some facial remodelling work done. I know my teeth are a bit prominent but do you think it's OK to use this photograph or do you think it might put people off?
Thanks very much.
Lucy, London

Dear Lucy
Wassup, sista. The best kinds of gentlemen like a lady with a bit of 'bite', as they say, so I say: keep the teeth IN.
With love
DM x

Phantom Internet Pregnancy

I met someone for a date once. He was weird. I deleted his phone number from my mobile. When he rang the other day, I didn't recognise the number. And I picked up.

J: Congratulations.
Me: What on?
J: You're pregnant, aren't you?
Me: No.
J: Yes you are.
Me: No I'm not.
J: But you sent me an email saying you were.
Me: No, I didn't, because I'm not.
J: I don't believe you.
Me: I'm not pregnant.
J: Well, I sent you an email saying hi and you replied saying you were pregnant.
Me: No, I didn't. The last time I spoke to you or emailed you was over 8 months ago.
J: Yes! It was then!
Me: What was?
J: When you told me you were pregnant. And I emailed back and you didn't reply and I thought you were angry with me.
Me: Why would I be angry with you?
J: For thinking you were pregnant.
Me: What?
J: Do you think someone's pulling a fast one on us?
Me: Sorry?
J: Do you think someone's taking the piss?
Me: Like who? We don't know anyone in common.
J: I thought you would have had it by now.
Me: Had WHAT?
J: The baby.
Me: The imaginary non-existent baby?
J: Yes, that one. I mean I reckon that if I emailed you over 8 months ago, you will have had it by now.
Me: Yes.
J: I was in your paper last week. Did you see it?
Me: No.
J: It was great.
Me: Oh.
J: Yes.
Me: I'm very busy. I can't talk at the moment. I have to go.

Thursday, June 29, 2006

Guest Spot: What Happens When You Take A Friend On A Date

Tired Dad wrote this. It was a comment on my last piss-poor post. I like it.

* * * * *

It wasn’t via the internet. And it wasn’t *me* bringing a friend.

I am 20. I am student and barman.

Unfeasibly beautiful woman returns at end of term from her far-away University and always acquires casual work at the same bar as I. We get on. I pretend not to like her.

This amuses her.

We get on even more.

She jokes about us going out together.

Beauty is one thing. But self-awareness, wit and intellect are another. They rarely go together. Except in her case.

She is massively out of my league.

Fuck it. I ask her.

I see the moment of blind panic in her eyes. I shut it out. She still says yes. She is that wonderful.

I know I KNOW that so far as she is concerned, me grabbing her by the hair and bending her over her mother’s kitchen table is a far-off possibility.

But we get on. We are friends. I make her laugh.


I choose a suitably out-of-the-way venue. The city has more pubs and restaurants per square mile than anywhere aside from London. I am well known. I do not want to be troubled by regulars, barmen, waiters, chefs or proprietors, all of which know me.


Not only for security. I have seen said friend giving me the eye. One I have not returned.

*You have no chance* is the gist of this gesture. *But here are some scraps from the table.*

I buy them both a drink. Of a non-alcoholic nature. ( They were BOTH driving?!)

I think the evening could not be going worse.

In walks SadSack.

SadSack is a regular at my bar. Bit pudgy. Late thirties. Who regales me with tales of the Jag he is reconditioning. Of how he finds it quite hard living with his mother. Of the work that he does for the Ministry of Dfence that he cannot tell me about. But most of all HOW HE DOESN’T HAVE MUCH LUCK WITH THE LADIES.

Obscenely Beuatiful Woman is delighted to see him and invites him over.

Me and SadDack very quickly get very drunk. I know this will be the happiest ending the night has to offer.

Ridiculously You Wouldn’t Believe It Unless You’d Seen Her Beautiful Woman and Now No Longer In The Slightest Bit Interested Friend leave quickly.

SadSack shakes his head in a sorrowful manner. He reaches for my hand. Instinctively I take it.

We shake. As we do so, he says,

‘What do we poor sods think we’re playing at? I mean, as if?!’

I have just shaken on a Faustian pact. But not with the devil. But with the Prince of a Bit Shit.

I then spend a year shagging anyone slightly below my league and generally being a bit caddish in order to shake-off SadSack’s perceived kinship.

I was 20. Leave me alone.

All is ace now. Today-and-forever’s Stupidly Beautiful Woman is still massively out of my league, but our two children level it out.

Sunday, June 25, 2006

Summer Special: Internet Dating Profile Picture Clinic

When summer comes, thoughts turn to love. And what better way of finding it than a spot of light internet dating?

But it's not that easy to get it right when it comes to photographs. So, for this week only, I will be offering a free and objective point of view on your profile pictures. Do send them in.

Dear Datingmonkey

I'm looking for a classy guy. I think of myself as a classy lady, so I think this gives off the right signals. What do you think?


Jackie, Dunfermeline

Dear Jackie

No, sorry. Common. Like you charge for sex. And spend your earnings on Lambert & Butler and Bacardi Breezers. And what's with the eyeliner? Very '83.

Best wishes


Dear DM

I think mystery is the thing that keeps relationships alive, so I thought I'd put up this 'mysterious' photograph, with the title 'Mysterious Lady'. I think it's a winning formula. What do you think?

Thanks ever so much.

Beverley, Swansea

Dear Bev

Did your neglectful mother get drunk one night in 1973, leaving you in the vicinity of an easily-accessible pan of boiling chip fat?



Dear Datingmonkey,

I'm thrilled to pieces with this super photograph - informal but smart, I thought, with the splash of colour from Mummy's tea cup. What do you think?

Yours ever,


Dear Giles

Thank you for your enquiry.

I suggest a more informal shot - an insouciant pose against a tree, with, perhaps, a pipe in hand? More importantly, however, your winsome smile suggests you are not 'au fait' with the workings of the ladyparts. If this is the case, can I suggest a tweed cap as an addition to your ensemble?

All the best, and do let me know how it goes,


Dear Dating Monkey

I think this one gives off 'sassy and sexy'. What do you think?


Jo, Bexhill

Dear Jo

Very good effort!

All the best


Tuesday, June 20, 2006

Strange Men I Have Met From Doing Internet Dating

My judgment went on holiday for a few years. I think it had a good time, but it knew it had to come back eventually. Now it chooses wisely and well, and I, as a result, am happier. Don't get myself in as many harum-scarum scrapes, mind you, but this monkey is 36 now and too old for that nonsense.

Still, put 'em all together, and these stories will help you understand that you shouldn't spend time with:

1. The insane
2. Alcoholics
3. Daily Mail journalists
4. Immensely tall Canadians
5. Men who drive purple Lotuses.

The Strange Men I Have Met From Doing Internet Dating:

1 x therapist. Bonkers. Lived in a bedsit in Stoke Newington with two tiny cats and held my hand a lot. We had a strange evening stranded in a cheap hotel in Brighton on nylon sheets. Nothing happened, mind you. Must have been the sweat. He would sit cross-legged at my parties and my friends thought he was nice. He wasn't really, but he did remind me how good 'National Express' by the Divine Comedy is.

1 x complete and utter fucking lunatic met through someone I met on an internet date, setting off a chain of events including trying to launch a branded disposable golf tee in Cardiff, a fight in a bar in France, an ex-girlfriend who lurked like a ghost, another fight or two (including one in a car park in Swansea), an incident in a house in Devon involving a roast chicken, a visit to Safeway, a bottle of Chateau Talbot, a walk on which I was 'accidentally lost', a dog, a blowjob in a conservatory and my ex-best friend, a sheepskin rug, a comedy house sign, endless trips to Wales and back, a pie in Bad Bend Cottage, ghost-like ex girlfriend turning up in to my birthday party in a hippy skirt, 5 Welshmen in my flat in London, embarrassingly soulful singing, truly appalling poetry (awarded only by the internet), and occasional hand holding.

He has now, I think, lost touch with all his friends and lives in the hills in Wales with a plasterer (male) and keeps in occasional touch with his 4 children by different women.

1 x novelist. Bizarre evening in a pub in Pimlico. Handsome but unhinged. I read his novel afterwards. It was awful.

1 x enormously tall Canadian.Started telling me his secrets, bought me cocktails, offered nights at the Savoy drinking more cocktails then disappeared without a trace. (NB: he thought I might comment upon him in my blog. I said I wouldn't. Then he didn't bother to get in touch. Go figure, as I am sure he would have said.)

1 x bi-polar posh boy who played me Allanis Morissette, read me his poetry, and sent me photographs of other women's breasts

1 x man who brought his car steering wheel on our date and then got stuck in his Lotus trying to leave.

1 x journalist for the Daily Mail with a strange mouth who ate underseasoned Persian food and dribbled.

1 x owner of stationery website who sat silently through dinner then left.

1 x alcoholic who took it upon himself to join me on holiday with my friends, encouraged my alcoholic ex-best-friend (AEBF) to drink, shagged her in the orchard, earned the nickname 'Colossus', and asked me to 'turn the radio down -some of us are trying to get some sleep' - in my own house. AEBF and he then tried to leave without saying goodbye, were discovered at the last minute, and ended up trying to drink themselves to death for weeks in AEBF's father's villa in Provence. Universally reviled by all, he sent me an unsigned cheque for some money he owed me with a thank you letter, and is now living with AEBF in her flat in Hammersmith.

Oh, and 3,241 men who I can't remember.

Saturday, June 10, 2006

Oui, c'est moi, Datingmonkey

I've gone to France*. But they have the internet there too so my posts, whilst of course maintaining their current high standard, will have a little added 'je ne sais quoi' over the next few days.

Coming soon: Guide to Ladies' Profile Photographs. With examples.

A bientot, mes amis!


* With a bloke I met off the internet.

Sunday, June 04, 2006

The Secret Iconography of Profile Photographs

Alarmed by the amount of profiles that come up when you press 'Search'? Wondering how you're ever going to be able to read them all? Concerned that you'll miss 'the one' because your eyes don't work anymore?

The time of confusion is over, my friends. Have this handy guide by your side as you search the online for love, and discover how easy it is to sort the love wheat from the dating trash simply by looking at a tiny photograph on a profile.


No eyes. Just empty sockets. Leading to a brain full of feathers.


Skydiver or Dangerous Sport Fan. May die soon.


No taste. I wouldn't be keen, myself, but then there's - well, no accounting for taste.


Both caring. And sharing. Or blind - but check for white stick.




Knows what makes the ladies go 'aaaah'. Do not trust him.


Divorced or separated. Probably bitter.


a. trying to prove he was once Getting It;
b. gay, with best friend (lady);
c. not over ex;
d. annoyingly hearty, and says "I'm crazy, me!"


EITHER off-the-scale insecure OR an actor/tress OR really reckons themselves OR just weird. Either way, it's not good.


Probably nice.

Probably an idiot (applies to men and women, obv)

Definitely an idiot (ditto)

Reckons he is Mr Loverman. Usually a bit puffy and looks like he'd sweat a lot. An unsexy idiot. If it's a lady, she reckons she's all that, OR is called Pat, lives in Stevenage, has a husband in the army and a lot of 'needs'.


Smokes dope all day. Sensitive. Rough hands.


Dangerous killer.


Deeply insecure, actually quite nice, and thinks is only worthwhile if making everyone laugh.


No friends as only picture he has is of self at work.


Tiny cock. Obviously.

Ugly, but likes poetry.


Cut photo out of Littlewood's Catalogue.


Reckons is insteresting, therefore probably isn't.

Saturday, June 03, 2006

Things To Watch Out For If You're Looking For A Gentleman Caller Online

You're going to love this. And don't thank me. It's entirely my pleasure. I just want to give something back to the world.

a. Establish type of relationship with mother. If good (loving, affectionate, slightly wry, for e.g.), proceed. If obsessive, avoid. If full of hate, try the Tavistock Centre or other local mental health centre

b. Work out how many friends they have. If lots, and if they are normal, proceed. If only one or two, work out if he lived alone in a box for 20 years. If so, run away. If no evidence of friends at all, just no. Unless you don't have any friends either, in which case you might be good for each other

c. If someone is over their ex, they do not mention them in their profile, or indeed every 20 minutes in normal conversation. Talking about someone = thinking about someone = not much room in their head for you.

d. Talking about marriage/love/never leaving you within five dates. They are either fantasists, trying to get over another relationship, or not actually seeing you for who you are; just someone to go out with. You will be disappointed. Do not believe them. If they are still saying the same thing after 20 dates, you're fine. (I always fall for this one, by the way, so don't think I don't know what I'm talking about.)

e. Do not ever go out with anyone who plays golf (unless they do it ironically)

f. Or physicists

g. Or therapists (unless you think your cat is a baby, in which case proceed)

h. Or men who have profile pictures apparently shot at twilight with a disposable camera

i. Or at their computer lit by their screen

j. Or naked

k. Remember: if you have a degree, NVQ is not enough

l. If the face shot's not straight on, he's not a looker. If he posts a picture of his cock, he thinks he's dirrrty, but is in fact just looking for whatever everyone else is looking for. I'd avoid him if I were you, though.

m. Bad spelling and/or lazy grammar. This particular point means I always end up going on dates with copywriters and journalists, but that's another story. I'd look out for the IT boys who can write. They're always more interesting than you think.

n. People who don't have a picture up are suspect, unless they've hidden it and it's only available to their favourites.

o. If he likes salsa or ceroc dancing, mentions his car, has a photograph that suggests the interior decor of a blind man, lives with his mother, or marks 'Likes KFC' in his profile, just don't.

p. If he's online EVERY NIGHT, either both his legs are broken or he hasn't got any friends and never goes out.

q. I am suspicious of people who don't sound like they swear. Ever.

r. Pictures that were shot in a studio. By a 'professional' photographer.

s. What, exactly, does "I live life to the full" mean?

t. "I like feminine women" means a) he is gay; b) likes tiny women with crispy blonde hair who squeak, get waxed every week and never let "their man" see them without full slap on. (They like fake pink Juicy Couture 'sweatsuits' too, by the way.)

u. Excessive use of exclamation marks, unless obviously ironic

v. Or LOL (obv)

w. No, they're not really looking for marriage.

x. If their favourite books, films and music shows rubbish taste, avoid

y. Mistrust men who like West End musicals (except Sondheim at the National, bien sur)...

z. ... or who think Cirque du Soleil is 'a magical experience'.

Thursday, June 01, 2006

Ballooning Senior Citizen Love - And All Thanks To Online Dating

It really has been quite a week at Datingmonkey Towers. Our postbags have been stuffed to bursting with testimonials from happy couples, each and every one swearing by the power of online dating.

But this is the one that really pulled my monkey heartstrings.

Betty and Raymond, both 93, were both feeling isolated. Recently bereaved, they were living in retirement homes at opposite ends of the country (Raymond in St Ives, Betty in Aberdeen) - and although they shared their days with similarly jolly OAPs (some more continent than others), the real source of their isolation was their love of balloon sculpture which, although bringing them great personal and private joy, often left others confused.

Betty finally took the plunge last May, and posted an ad on Ray picks up the story: "I had a feeling in my waters that morning, which is no mean feat - first time since 1984, if I'm honest - and I just had to try out this dating on the line. My great-great-niece encouraged me, took a really nice photograph of me in my jacket, and 'posted' it for me. I could hardly believe it when Betty sent me an electronic memo the next day via the fax machine - there she was, as pretty as a picture, holding on tightly to a balloon sculpture of the new partially-built Wembley Stadium!"

Betty and Ray married last month, and are pictured here with their own inimitable artists' impression of their wedding day.

I'm Fat: Can I Find Love Online?

Hell, yeah! Mike and Nikki met via last November, and were recently married in Dungeness Town Hall. Nikki's daughter, Kylie, was chief bridesmaid, with Mike's first daughter from his 3rd marriage in place as Matron of Honour.

Cat and Dog Logic Applied To Internet Dating: Pt 2

"Although I am an irritating lapdog, it is in my best interests that my owner finds love online for then they will be happy, and take me for little runs when they go on a 'walk in the park' with their new paramour. Therefore, I will not obstruct access to their computer. Wanna touch my neckerchief?"

"Me. Me. Me. Me. Me. Me. Me. Dead eyes, with feathers behind. Me. Me. Me. Food. Me. Me. Me. Me. Me. Stroke me. Me. Evil. Evil. Kill. Kill."