We interviewed terrible teen bands, created trivia quizzes and dreamed up coverlines (“Why boys are stupid! ”) We sipped endless ‘skinny caps’ (that’s a non-fat cappuccino to those outside London), flat-ironed our hair and stole from the beauty sample cupboard (“No you try the fake tan! Once she one-upped me at work with some cutting comment. Her description of the phone, “It’s really big and grey” was also problematic. He leaned in the cab window and asked the driver if he’d found a Blackberry. We ran to meet him and he said, “I’ve been trying to find you! Yes, he left her at LAX, to board a flight alone to London and drove off with her suitcase. I called the cab company switchboard and spoke to a nice man called Frank. It’s a choice you have to make.” That day, not only did Heathrow airport call Chrissie to say they had her passport, but a mutual friend traveling from London to LA agreed to bring her stuff back to London free of charge. You’re so predictable.” I was a bit pleased until a few hours later when my brother added, “He doesn’t care about you, I can tell by the look on his face.” Anyway, I digress. During a, shall we say, compromising moment with a friend recently (sorry mum, dad, grandma), he suddenly asked, “is this going to be in the blog? After two beers he’d mentioned his father eight times, including how his dad was disappointed in him. So while I downed one cappuccino, he plowed through eggs benedict. When my mum fell in love with my dad, it was, she says, because he had dry palms when they danced. Luckily my dad had other great attributes, like a charming personality and an ability to recite Shakespeare’s sonnets. It is hard to comprehend why anyone would put themselves through this, just because. Because I’m a Brit and I’m learning about US dating culture? Aren’t cougars by definition 40 women deliberately preying on 25-something guys? Then literally a single second later, with complete sincerity, said, “Sorry babe, that was really bitchy. ” It’s this genuine sweetness that makes me think she deserves the guardian angel that most definitely rests on her shoulder. But weirdly, at that moment, a familiar-looking cab pulled up on one of the live camera screens. ” Of all the many thousands of cabs that service that mall! A cab driver trying to find her to return her phone! When the time came for Chrissie to go to the airport, I happened to be working (if you can call watching Matt Damon receive an award work.) I left her with a cab number and instructions that as she planned to pay her cab by credit card, she should forewarn the driver, so they couldn’t pretend not to accept cards, like they always do. It emerged that, unable to use her credit card in the cab due to some international bank glitch, she’d spent over an hour trying to get her bank on the phone, negotiating with the foreign exchange desk at LAX and trying to give her dad’s credit card details to the cab driver. Did he phone the police and get them to help sort it out? He was however, kind enough to give her his name, cab number and cell phone. “I will call the cops on your driver and will report your company for theft unless you resolve this. My friend Anthony in London always used to call me out on my attraction to men-in-high-demand. Following much discussion with friends and a little influence from the film, ‘Coco Avant Chanel’ (the very fabulous Audrey Tautou smoking like a train, having affaires and never marrying), it has been decided that taking lovers is the way forward. ” See it’s a problem writing about dating – this blog’s very nature is personal, what with the whole auditioning people for sex thing (see Post #1). Where I go out with people because I like spending time with them, or they’re hot, or funny and sometimes all of the above. I know I know, I’m a modern woman, but he invited me, plus I went to his neighborhood. If I wanted passive aggressive, I’d be dating my college room mate. I opened my mouth to try and make this better for him somehow but then shut it again, having realised, beyond the delusional age of 22, that nice words don’t help that stuff much. ” In my limited experience of this official dates business, when the guy asks to be friends after you’ve given him the soft brush-off, what he means is, “let’s go for a huge amount of drinks, after which I will lunge at you in the hope of winning you over.” Sure enough Harry did ask me to go to a concert with him soon after (romantic, classical). Then just as I was hoping I hadn’t hurt his feelings, because he didn’t deserve that, he sent me something truly genius: Dear Antonia, after our conversation about worst experiences ever, I just had to show you this e-mail I received yesterday from a 48-year old woman. As for personality, this guy was a scientist from South Germany. I explained that in the US, this is known as a latte. But still, she would have given him the boot for sweaty palms. Does that topic really warrant this kind of torture? “Well I see you’re wheeling out all the stereotypes today.” “You’re taking the good-natured ribbing in good part,” he said. Then he told me all about his Literature degree, his law school, the wanky books he liked to read. So I ummed and ahhed and then vaguely mentioned I’d been approached by a few younger guys. “It’s just guys getting a kick out of telling their friends they made out with a cougar. But not laying out your terms, your rules of engagement, can badly bite a person on the arse at this ‘free love’ point in history. You can have $100.” Him: “It was $141.” Me: “It’ll cost her $300 to ship her case back home because of you. $100 and that’s it.” Him: “Give me the cash” Me: “Give me the case first.” Him: “Cash first.” Me: “Why would I hand over the cash without the case, when you know where I live and you can just drive away? I used to work in real estate development and I loved facing down those stupid liberals with their facial hair, holding their signs to save their rare trees or their stupid insects in the rain forest or whatever. Recently my brother asked me why I suddenly showed interest in a guy I’d previously thrown on the ‘nice guy’ pile. And in women, steely resolve and high standards might be the thin paper over some serious fear.