This story is not mine. This is – in fact – the first in the declare your disasters series where I share YOUR awkward tales! Names have been changed to protect those involved…especially if the guy in this story ever wants to go on another date again.
Bless his candy cane heart.
Carly is a cute, young actress living in London. Last summer she was asked out by a guy she’d just met through friends. An Australian dude called Mike.
They had plenty of mutual pals on Facebook so she decided “carpe diem and all that!” and said yes to a date with this almost-stranger. You have to applaud her for giving love a chance.
They met up for a meal in London’s bustling ants’ nest, Leicester Square.
In his opening gambit, Mike told Carly it was his first ever date.
Eek, she thought. Good start.
They made polite conversation. He seemed nice enough. She had that hopeful first date feeling we’ve all experienced…perhaps this might actually go well.
As they finished eating, Mike turned and declared: “I have a BIG surprise for you!”
Carly – who we’ve established is a fledgling actress, newly out of drama school – was hoping that since they were sat within spitting distance of the countless West End ticket booths that surround the square, the surprise would be of the Les Mis or Lion King variety.
This date was looking up. He knows I love the theatre, she thought.
He practically skipped ahead as he led her excitedly across Leicester Square and then stopped dramatically.
Right in front of M&M’s World.
Our heroine laughed out loud, sensing the joke.
He was pretending that a trip to M&M’s World was the “big surprise”, she thought. HAHA.
He looked completely crestfallen.
“Don’t you like M&M’s?!”
What could be sexier than a bunch of sweaty tourists on a sugar high?
“Yeah, yeah…of course!” our poor maiden reassured him.
“Well – isn’t this just the most amazing place you’ve ever been in your life?! I practically pooed myself the first time I came here!” he exclaimed.
Those were his exact words.
He then proceeded to jump around the shop in the way only a true M&M’s fan could, instructing Carly to take picture after picture as he posed animatedly in front of various different candy displays.
Then it was time for our Aussie friend Michael to UP the ANTE. This was the moment he had been secretly building up to.
He pulled Carly over to the part of the store where M&M’s can be personalised. Carly shuddered in horror as he typed out the words that would appear on their sweets:
Mike & Carly
Her heart started beating faster in her chest. Carly wanted to curl up among the hard-shell chocolate confectionery and disappear. This man was insane.
Instead polite Carly stood by Mike’s side as their “First date!!!” M&M’s flashed across the screen for the whole shop to see and then came tumbling out of the machine.
Tourists nearby cooed at this public display of love; Carly was sure she saw some of the staff sniggering.
Mike whipped out his phone and took selfies of them both as the sweets – held aloft – proudly displayed their ardent message.
Tell the one you barely know how you truly feel
“I’m NEVER going to eat these”, Mike declared proudly.
“I’m going to keep them on my shelf forever.”
Having endured an hour or so of the wonders of M&M’s World, Carly sensed the date must be drawing to an end.
“Right – now we need to see all the other floors!” Mike announced at full volume, like a man possessed.
She was too polite to turn and run.
Eventually Carly managed to make her excuses and shuffle off towards the tube. Unfortunately – but predictably – Mike was getting the same train.
Sat in their carriage among the other travellers, Mike began to debrief on their date. Right there on the tube in front of everyone.
“I had the most amazing time today but…I have to admit…I was a little bit disappointed at your reaction to M&M’s World. I mean, fair enough if you didn’t like the M&Ms…” he began, sideways-glancing at her accusingly.
“No, no. I loved the M&Ms….” Carly replied, defeatedly.
JUST LET THIS DATE BE OVER…she begged silently.
The next day Carly was working and unable to check her phone. Turning it on that evening, her stomach flipped over as she saw a series of notifications. All from Mike.
She was tagged in a public photo album. An album merrily entitled: “MIKE & CARLY’S FIRST DATE!”.
She thought of their numerous mutual FB friends. She thought of how long this album had already been up…live…on the world wide web.
She’d had enough. She saw red.
And pink, and yellow, and green, and brown. M&M’s of every colour were etched on her retinas.
For her, M&M’s now only stood for madness and misery.
Our intrepid dater turned on her CAPSLOCK and messaged Mike.
“GET THOSE PHOTOS OFF FACEBOOK. NOW.”
The album, obediently, disappeared.
Many months later Carly got a message on her birthday from the one and only M&M’s Mike himself. All it said was “I miss you”.
They hadn’t seen each other since that ONE single date.
But don’t be disheartened, you daring daters. It’s good to put yourself out there. Just take a leaf out of Charlotte York’s Bumper Book of Dating Rules.
Never go on a date without the fake emergency call arranged with a friend. It’s too late for Carly, but it could save you from appearing in a disaster blog.