Tales From... The Archive

Wing Man

“It must be great being single!” These words are nearly always uttered by a serial monogamist who has been in back to back relationships since they were 7 years old.

 I confess I’m not single, but I practically have a degree in it as I didn’t start dating till I was 25 years old. I know, I know I have no I idea what the hell I was doing before then. I mean my life was so uncomplicated you’d think I’d have done something worthwhile with my spare time. For heaven’s sake I could have written a book, become a successful stand up comic or at least learnt a language. But no, I seemed to have focused my attention on eating my body weight in cheese whilst simultaneously trying to figure out why the eczema on my face was making me resemble the Elephant woman. Yes I see now that I’m allergic to cheese…

So, due to my many years in the wilderness I often think I have more empathy for my single friends than other people. In fact I’ve always considered myself to be a pretty good wing man. In case you don’t know what a wing man is, I’m that special friend that will help you engage with the opposite sex or the same sex or whatever. Unfortunately, I’ve recently discovered that I am in fact crap at this. When it comes to discretion I have about as much subtlety as a brick to the face. It would seem that I have little to no control over the expressions that appear on my face. I think I’m looking upbeat, casual, approachable, so that any man that might want to chat to me, or my friend will feel confident to do so. The reality is that I have adopted the face of a constipated shot putter after my third disappointing throw.

I also have a terrible habit, as soon as someone tells me not to look somewhere, I will look. Couple this with no sense of direction and you have a disaster waiting to happen. I was out in a bar recently with my single girlfriend and I was doing my best to look casual (we’ve already established how that looked.) Meanwhile my friend had spotted a guy that she liked and decided to adopt the subtle clock strategy. Needless to say, I had no idea what the hell she was going on about, “Ok, don’t look now but that guy I like is at 6 o’clock” “Where’s 6 o’clock?” “Behind you… I just told you not to look!” “Sorry… I can’t see him, where is he now?” “ Ok…he’s at 3 o’clock’.” “What? Where?” “No that’s 9 o’clock you idiot!” “ I don’t know where 9 o’clock is?” “He’s at 20 past 8, no 3 minutes to 4, he’s at 17 minutes past 7!” ‘Where the hell is he?” I’m now spinning around on the spot, I look so obvious people are looking at me just to see if I’ll fall over. “YOU IDIOT! HE’S OVER THERE!” “Oh, I see him…don’t worry I’ve got this…Excuse me mate my friend over there…hang on! where are you going? COME BACK!” We haven’t been out again since.

It’s just as well that fate has been kind to me and despite my general incompetence I am now extremely lucky to have the love of a good woman. She’s always there for me, through thick and thin, even during shot put practice and not many people can say that. (Or would want to…)

Posted on 17th August 2010


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