phone with blank screen

Action, block, delete…

If you thought the development of technology was going to make your quest for love easier, think again. Complicating communication rituals and blurring the lines for acceptable forms of dumping (text? Facebook? Silence followed by a passive aggressive tweet?), it’s not all a bed of digital rose emojis. When you spread your little wings and flap off into the daunting world of ye olde internet, it’s wise to be prepared with some ground rules.Don’t limit yourself to match.com

It’s not just dating websites paving the way for a future of digital love stories, there’s some form of date/hottie/shag search app available for just about every brand of smartphone. Like radio tracking devices for bonkable men, Tinder has established itself as the most popular of these applications. Allowing you to ‘like’ (or block) any users registered within a 50 mile radius, this touchscreen creation of joy is hideously shallow and brilliant fun in equal measure. The pro is that you get to vet every guy before he contacts you. The con is that about 90% of users will ask to see picture of your tits after three lines of casual communication.

Play the field

The number one piece of advice to those on dating sites is ‘play the field’. Personally I’ve never been much of an impressive field player. The one time I tried with any real conviction, both men turned up at the club I was in and I had to spend 30 minutes hiding in the loos with a double vodka Redbull. That said, putting your eggs in different baskets works wonders for the self-esteem. And in my experience, men are very generous when it comes to sharing their eggs so we might as well join the club.

Laugh

Online daters must laugh often. This is partly because deliberately searching for a soul mate on the internet is like looking for your house keys at the bottom of Mary Poppin’s carpet bag after two bottles of Sauvignon. But mostly it’s because when a total stranger dressed like an 80’s porn star tells you he wants to be sexually experimental by inserting spoonfuls of strawberry jam into orifices you didn’t know existed, it’s really, really funny.

Don’t fall into the choosy trap

It’s good to be a little choosy when deciding on suitable mates to dance all night with/bring home for Sunday lunch/squish between your thighs for a 24 hour period. As Clueless’ Cher once wisely pointed out ‘you see how picky I am about my shoes and they only go on my feet.’ But alas, there is such a thing as too picky, and dating websites are the best way to bring this out. Several years ago a male acquaintance joined Match.com in a bid to find a suitable lady friend. Shared interests and hobbies were a pre-requisite of course, along with model looks and a porn star’s sex drive. Despite having an arse large enough to wipe out Lancashire if he sat down, he immediately dismissed girls bigger than a size 10. After suggesting at least 20 women, I gave up assisting his pursuit of love in favour of watching him send dozens of grammatically incoherent messages to the type of coltish beauties worthy of a part in the next Bond movie. Needless to say, he didn’t get a single response. Of course it’s not just men who make you wonder whether they’d be happier a pint of Stella and a dog eared Playboy centrefold. We lady folk are just as guilty as falling into the choosy trap. So if you meet a man with a bumpy nose or a member of the Shaun the Sheep fan club (a recent date forcibly assured me this IS a thing), don’t write him off immediately.