dates of our lives

Dates of Our Lives: Pints, poison, and puking

There I was. On the floor. Not the floor metaphorically speaking, it’s not 5th week yet. Instead I was on the floor of my bathroom. Head in the toilet. Dreaming of happier times and better places. The harsh fluorescent, usually so helpful in pointing out the blackheads was now instead more akin to a laser beam shooting through my eyes. I wasn’t sure whether I was in a budget Star Wars spin off or the depths of Hell. As I sat there groaning, my hair being held back by my faithful friend, I wondered, no doubt as you do now, how it had got to this point.

Well, it all began with a date as seems to be the case with me. Readers remember, I deleted Tinder and so had to resort to more old fashioned methods which included putting an advert in local newspapers, notably absent from the chosen few was the Cherwell, leaving my glass shoes lying around, and actually talking to people in the flesh. All in all a rather time consuming project but I am nothing if not faithful to my adoring fans, in this case I rather feel, to my detriment.

It just so happened that I had met at several different occasions this one boy. He was a friend of a friend and so I knew he wasn’t completely bonkers and the likelihood of a gruesome chainsaw death (a la American Psycho) was minimal. Although, looking back on it now he did look a bit like Christian Bale…

Anywho, when I met him once again at the most recent event and he suggested getting coffee and to message him, I did. It was really rather magical, I was in a delightful little black tie-esque dress. Think 1950s glamour, think Marilyn Monroe, think jaws dropping as I walk past and men falling to their knees and you’ll be halfway there. Don’t, however, think Kim K’s Met Gala look. An abysmal disappointment which no doubt Blaine’s Style Files will be covering as we speak!

The messages were exchanged and the date morphed like a sped up Darwinian evolution animation from GCSE biology from coffee to drinks. And that may be the first whisper of where it all went wrong.

And that may be the first whisper of where it all went wrong.

We went to the Rose and Crown on North Parade because it was close to both our colleges and also very cutesey. Their selection of bathroom cacti really are some of the best I’ve ever seen, and, coupled with the fairy lights and (fake) ivy I really would say it’s one of the more understated pubs of Oxford.

We chatted and drank, and drank and chatted and it really was going quite smoothly. We laughed, we cried, it really was very nice.

And then we were (rather unceremoniously) chucked out because of closing time. As soon as I stood up I felt woozy. I hadn’t had that much to drink and had eaten before although possibly not enough owing to the college culinary masterpiece that was spiced cauliflower, tofu, and bean enchiladas with beetroot slaw.

I persevered thinking I was only merrily tipsy. Readers, I was very much not. He walked and I wobbled; he schmoozed, I swayed. I was now feeling more than a little sick.

In either a classic gentleman’s move, or a well trained philanderer he invited me to his room and I gladly took the invitation so as just to sit down and gather my bearings.

I was a very nice room and quite tidy; there was a nice selection of arty postcards and some books lying about the place. There were photos of friends and a nearly dead plant and a good selection of half consumed alcohols.

He even had an ensuite which, unfortunately, mid conversation, I ran to groaning.

It was a false alarm. I returned and slurped some water. He sat on the bed and invited me to do the same but I couldn’t, the only seat I moved towards was the toilet where I then began to decorate it with recycled enchilada.

Some insight for you all; it’s a real mood killer.

Poor ****** was quite taken aback. There was some stuttering from the other room and then silence. I sank to the floor, green with a slight sheen of sweat. The kind of glassy skin look beauty influencers die for. I just felt like I was dying.

When I had managed to summon the strength to stand I went back into his room to find him, oddly I thought given the context, In his bed, with his shirt off and Netflix open on this laptop. He raised his eyebrows at my and I had to do everything in my power not to laugh out loud for fear of other emissions instead.

I was almost flattered, but, I felt, a little presumptuous. Maybe the glassy skin look was more attractive than I’d given Nikki Tutorials credit for.

I muttered something about needing to leave, I wasn’t very well, I was so sorry and I ran out.

I managed to crawl back to college. I scratched at the base of the door like a mangy cat, clawing and mewing sadly for someone to let me in to the building, and also ideally their hearts. I needed someone to feed me warm milk from a tiny bottle and tell me everything was going to be alright.

Maybe the glassy skin look was more attractive than I’d given Nikki Tutorials credit for.

Luckily that person did appear in the guise of my faithful friend who had managed to ascertain my whereabouts from the Wordle style messages I’d sent which included:

“Font dio hak me”

Translation: “Front door. Help me”

She gathered me up and we ascended the stairs as I imagine Christ ascended to Heaven after being taken down from the cross, stopping on each floor to baptise a new bathroom.

She eventually poured me into a spare room. I melted into the bed where I stayed until the next morning where I was abruptly awoken by the scouts. Like a weak Victorian child, dying of typhus I could only raise my head and flutter me waxy eyelids in their general direction before wheezing out an apology and sinking once more into a fever induced slumber.

My faithful friend revived me some hours later with a croissant and enquired as to the progress of the date. I simply looked at her dishevelled and worse for wear, a budget Bellatrix Le Strange. As a woman in STEM she had done her research and concluded that I actually couldn’t drink on the antibiotics I was taking. I had essentially poisoned myself for the evening.

Maybe it was the universe and my subconscious telling me to stop dating and maybe, just possibly, I should focus my attentions on revision?

But then again it was much more likely to have been a silly mistake. What does my subconscious know anyway?

When I finally managed to heave myself out of bed and checked my phone I found a lonely Facebook message.

“I don’t think we’re on the same page but I had a lovely time. Hit me up if you fancy something casual”.

Not even a kiss or an emoji.




The names, characters, and incidents portrayed in this work have been altered to protect the identities of those involved. No identification with actual persons (living or deceased), places, buildings, and products is intended or should be inferred.