How to start dating when you’re painfully British…

By Andy Moore

‘What is this life if full of care, we have no time to stand and stare.’ Sound familiar? Was poet, William Henry Davies, correct? How many times have you stood staring at that delightful dating profile, summoning up courage to contact him or her? Dozens I bet. How to start dating might be more gainful than painful.

After all, the reason might be because you’re British: with natural-born reservation; with reverse psychology, leaving your ‘courting confidence’ as stiff as the Tin Man left out in the woods with his wistful metal heart. His hand aloft an invisible screen.

Starting a new relationship….don’t wait for the last dance

When my late Grampie Watts socialised in the 1930s his idea of starting a new relationship was to walk to a village dance hall two miles away, loiter in the doorway and avoid eye contact with everyone. He had ‘no time to turn at beauty’s glance. And watch her feet at how she danced’. At first that is.

Dating for dummies…

Like my Granddad, I needed to take a leaf from the Dating for Dummies handbook in my earlier years. Painfully shy, aloof beyond recognition and socially awkward, I adopted the same dating rules as an untamed bachelor. ‘No time to see in broad daylight.’


How to start dating again when time is on your side…

Again, like my strong and silent Grandfather, I needed no advice on how to start dating again. We struggled to do it in the first place. Even so, time was on our side – as it can take between 90 seconds and 4 minutes to decide if you fancy someone. This is according to New York psychologist, Professor Arthur Arun.

Choosing a dating site. And not the village hall

Challenged by the mere prospect of ‘courting’, I marvel at how my Grandfather would get to grips with choosing a dating site these days. When he passed away in 1998, he loved the Blind Date TV show and the ‘worldwide web’ was inconceivable. My eyes moisten when I imagine the serendipity of him luring my Grandma out of the dance with his handsome face, with greater odds than a TV game show or online dating.

Dating for beginners. Absolute.

So my Granddad fulfilled his autobiography of dating for beginners. As a farmer, he had ‘no time to stare like sheep or cows. Nor time to see the woods he passed.’

But he had time to stand. 87 years to be precise. ‘And enrich that smile, her eyes began’. Of my dear Granny Watts.