Portrait of Tammy Strobel


My Reading Room
“This guy I was set up with barely said a word. I tried to start a conversation but he didn’t have anything intelligent or interesting to contribute. Asked about his hobbies, he said ‘I like to sleep’. I asked so many questions it felt like I was interviewing him for a job! We didn’t talk when he drove me home. There was no second date.”

– Deborah Dayani Nanayakara, 31, senior public relations manager

“I went back to this guy’s house after our date, thinking we were going to watch DVDs. I excused myself to use the bathroom, and when I came back out, I saw that he had taken all his clothes off . He stood there naked, with a grin on his face, and asked if I’d give him a blowjob. I was both traumatised and offended. I left in a huff and told him I never wanted to see him again.”
 – Shirley Wight, 32, lawyer

“Like me, my date loved books, so on our first outing, I suggested checking out a bookstore. Everything was fine until he got a text from his boss, asking him to pick up his pay cheque – or so he said. He asked me to wait for him while he went up the road to collect it. I waited for an hour but he never returned!”
– Shelby Sekar, 30, account manager

“He arrived 45 minutes late and acted like a total diva. He spent most of the meal blotting his face of ‘excess oil’, and when I offered him wine he refused, saying that alcohol gave him pimples. And all he could talk about were his dreams of becoming a Bollywood star and his journey to ‘find’ himself. At the end of the date he asked, ‘So, do you want to be friends with benefits or are you thinking longterm?’. I replied, ‘None of the above’.”
– Bridget*, 40, writer

My Reading Room
“Our walk along the river was very romantic until he asked if I was a virgin. I was taken aback but told him I’d had sex before. He looked at me like I was the most disgusting person on earth and told me that he couldn’t see me anymore. Judgmental jerk!”

– Lisa*, 35, lecturer

“During dinner, my date kept pointing out random guys, and asking if I found them attractive. I thought he was being funny so I played along, but little did I know that he had other ideas. When I casually remarked that one guy in particular looked super-hot, my date invited him to our table and asked him if he wanted to have a threesome with us. I didn’t know where to put my face! I had to explain to this poor dude that it was all a joke. When he left, I gave my date a piece of my mind.”
– Chelsea*, 34, finance executive

“Dinner was going pretty well – until the bill arrived. Looking at that slip of paper, my date asked ‘So, after this, your place or mine?’. I replied ‘Neither, I’m going home alone, and so are you’. He was expressionless as he signed the bill, and said that if he’d known I was going to be ‘like that’, he wouldn’t have taken me to such a nice restaurant.”
– Alexandra*, 37, lawyer

“After dinner, we took a stroll through the Botanic Gardens. He reached for my hand, ran his fingertips along my palm, and caressed my fingers. I was on cloud nine until he blurted out: ‘Gross, you have man hands, so big and rough.’ Then he laughed like crazy. I wanted to cry. I made up some excuse to leave early and never saw him again.”
– Regina*, 29, civil servant

“He brought his best friend along to our lunch outing. I kid you not. It was our first date! When I asked him what his friend was doing there, he answered ‘Sorry, he insisted on checking you out so I told him he could join us for a little while’. I was out of there in a flash.”
– Pamela*, 25, teacher

“I’m vegan, but my companion didn’t consider that when he took me out for dinner. When I pointed out that there was nothing on the menu that I could eat, he told me to ‘please stop whining and just order a salad or something’. A couple of minutes later, I told him that I needed to use the loo, and never returned.”
– Serene*, 37, self-employed

“I was asking him all kinds of questions about himself, because how else do you get to know a person, right? But he had a problem with it and after a while he asked: ‘What is this, an interrogation?’ Then, while driving me home, he yelled at me because I accidentally gave him the wrong directions. That was the last straw. When he stopped at my place I got out of the car and slammed the door as hard as I could. I heard him complaining as I walked away but I refused to look back.”
– Theresa*, 40, managing editor

“On our first outing, this guy I met online told me that I looked better in my profile photos. He also said that I looked darker in person and asked if I’d digitally altered my pictures to make myself appear lighter-skinned. I replied that he must not have many women lining up to date him, seeing as he was so rude. I left right away because I couldn’t bear another second with him.”
– Catherine*, 33, bank officer

“I went out with this dude who tried to sell me insurance! A mutual friend set us up. When I told him to stop talking about his job because he was on a date, he replied that everyone he met was a potential customer. That he viewed me as a prospective client instead of a prospective life partner totally ruined the mood for me.”
– Elisa, 30, drama teacher

“He showed up for our brunch appointment drunk. Not hung-over, but drunk. I didn’t think it could get any worse, but halfway through the meal, he passed out at the table. I quickly settled my bill and left, not bothering to wake him to tell him how offended and embarrassed I was.”
– Shelley*, 25, dance instructor

My Reading Room
“After I ordered a slice of cheesecake for dessert, my date remarked that I was ‘already quite chubby’ and ‘didn’t need to eat so many calories’. When I pointed out his tactlessness, he explained that he was ‘just being honest’.”

– Sandra*, 28, laboratory technician

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