Strictly Dating caught up with MBE, author of a dating blog that captures the highs and lows of a London love life. In this interview MBE talks Tinder, car crashes and managing expectations.

What’s the best bit of dating advice you’ve ever received?

My flatmateis full of pearls of wisdom when it comes to dating advice. I used to ask him about stuff a lot but there’s no need anymore because I can pretty much predict what he’ll say – and it’s never what I want to hear!

He’s a bit older than me and when I moved into the flat a few years back he’d been online dating for a while. One of the best bits of advice he’s given me is perhaps as much to do with the period after you have met someone you like, and that is to have no expectations – no hopes and no expectations. And, following on from that, if it’s clear that someone isn’t prioritising you on no account should you prioritise them. Oh and on the subject of Viable Prospect (my big crash of 2014) and Matthew (2013) he has made the point – and it’s a good one – that they know where I am and how to reach me and if they wanted to they could. It’s so easy nowadays to contact people that if someone isn’t contacting you… there’s your answer.

Tell us a bit about your background and how you got into blogging

I’ve always loved comedy. That’s probably why I ended up reading English at university. A-level English classes were one long laughter track so part of me must have thought – three years of this? I think so. Of course Oxford wasn’t quite like that.

Blogging… I can’t honestly say how it first occurred to me. I do remember a conversation with Flatmate:

Him: You should start a blog.

Me: I don’t have time.

Him: Yes you do.

It was at his suggestion – and with his help – that I bought a domain name and set up a website rather than using a blogging platform.  It gives me ownership of my work which is reassuring.

How does dating in London compare with other places you’ve lived?

The main difference between dating in London and dating in Oxford is that I do actually go on the occasional date in London. My university years were a dating desert; not sure why exactly. It was at uni actually that I first joined an online dating site – I remember meeting a Russian computer scientist for coffee in the run-up to finals. Now, with dating apps like Tinder, I imagine it’s easier to take control of your dating life – or at least to have one – wherever you are.

You cover the “highs and lows” of a London love life – can you share an example of each?

Haha highs… my mum says I’ll be done under the Trade Descriptions Act for having this in my tagline! The best nights of my time in London were the dates I went on with VP. We met on Tinderand he’s pretty much the only guy I’ve ever dated who I haven’t thought anything bad about. As in, too often I go on a date and I’m appraising it, wondering if I can see a future, critiquing every word that comes out of the guy’s mouth (yeah yeah I know, not good) but with him there was none of that. It was like something out of a film:seven-hour dates, dancing til 3, riverside walks. But mostly we just laughed a lot.

Lows – I don’t have any dating horror stories. I guess the most boring, why-am-I-here-when-I-could-be-watering-my-plants dates have been the ones where the guy just monologuesand it’s neither interesting nor entertaining. But they’re not lows as such. No, those are the moments when things go tits up with someone you really like.

SAMSUNG DIGITAL CAMERAI gave a dinner party the other day, the first I’d given since the car crash that wasmy birthday. I can laugh at the memory of it now: sitting there, making awkward conversation with FFS– who could barely look at me – with Bruno Mars’ ‘Marry You’ playing uncomfortably loudly in the background. And then, ten minutes later, in the kitchen, being dumped – that’s what it amounted to – with a load of guests still in the other room. Yeah, not great. But as I’ve got older I’ve noticed that recovery time is shorter, on the whole, perhaps because I’m learning to take my flatmate’s advice and a) not have too high expectations, and b) realise that I deserve someone who wants to be with me as much as I want to be with them.

What’s your top tip for any single women looking for love in London?

Trust your gut. FFS – I felt he was only interested in one thingand he was. VP – too good to be true and it was. In my experience, annoyingly (or helpfully, depending how you look at it), your instinct is almost always right.

About MBE

MBE has been blogging the highs and lows of a London love life since May 2012. Tube station escalators, cruising at thirty thousand feet, mens’ trouser shopping… who knows where your next date is coming from, or where it’s going?


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