LIVE BLOG: Valentine’s Speed Dating

Desperate times call for desperate measures.

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Not to alarm you, but Valentine's Day is upon us. The clock is ticking. The heart-shaped truffles and singing teddy bears are flying off the shelves. Literally. Flying. The hurricane is gaining speed. The end of the world is here, and you are still single. This is all your fault.

*"Can't Take My Eyes Off You" chimes eerily in the wind*

Have no fear. I shall sacrifice myself for us all. Yes, I am embarking on the impossible: love in Cambridge. I met up with Cupid, and I told him that an end to crippling loneliness would be quite nice, but I am a busy woman. Tinder is dry, Bumble drier. Regular real-life interaction is off the cards. What am I, a mere damsel in distress, to do? Cupid suggests speed dating. "Kill seven birds with one stone (or arrow, har har)," he says. I agree. I am absolutely doing this for the greater good of humanity and not because I have my mother asking if I have met "any nice boys" every other week.

As a woman of the people, I live to please. Therefore, I come to you LIVE as I embark on the speedy search for a last-minute Valentine.

Adios friends, adios wine. I must be on my way, love calls.

Date #1: Cindies Lad

I approach the table, waving. I receive a nicely appropriated shaka sign back, followed by "LONG LIVE VKS MATE."

Is it too late to turn around?

Okay. I will proceed. I will persevere.

For reasons of security (and dignity), I have decided to keep these men's identities a secret. Looks like speed date #1 is in on this too, because he has misheard my name. He thinks I'm called Cindy. Now he's telling me he loves me.

Update: He's pouring a blue VK over his open mouth. I'm watching it trickle onto his drinking soc blazer. Now an orange one. Looks…sticky. A club bouncer has appeared. He's being carried away, screaming, "LADS LADS LADS." Goodbye, my love.

I thought I'd seen the end of it.

Date #2: Socially Conscious

Onwards and upwards, am I right? This guy appears promising, albeit predictable. Turtleneck? Check. Glasses that are rounder than your average pair but not round enough to crack Hogwarts? Check. Tattered poetry anthology resting artistically next to a chai latte which has suddenly appeared? Checkmate.

The conversation is flowing. Turns out we both like the same authors! Great! An interesting and engaging mutual connection. Do go on.

And on.

And on.

I've been nodding and smiling for the past ten minutes whilst he recounts every detail of their oeuvres to me. It's almost like he didn't hear me say "I know". Now he's waving his iPhone X around and showing me some flat lay Instagrams he took. Was this rehearsed? I've whipped out my laptop to write this. He hasn't noticed.

Date #3: Eccentric

This guy seems pretty nice. All is well. He has an anecdote to share with me. Stay tuned.

Abort mission.

Anecdote involved an estranged roommate and a missing hamster. I've decided to excuse myself to the toilets for the next five minutes, because I don't want to know how this ends.

Why is this picture of a hamster so relatable.

Date #4: Grad

Apparently my undergrad degree is "cute", you guys. I'm honoured. I will continue to revel in my naivety, youth, and spare time.

Date #5: Chill Guy

Number 5 arrives rolling a cigarette with his eyes closed, "baccy" spilling over his Palace jumper. Light reflects off of his freshly shaved head.

"I just want to find a girl on my wavelength," he begins.

I nod?

"Do you ever think about the universe? I do. That reminds me of this one time. Me and the boys, we were so waved, listening to Krule in JJ's basement. You heard of him? Ahahaaha. *Violent cough*. So sick."

I channel my inner Tumblr girl.

"Yeah anyway, I don't think we're on the same page. This is moving too fast, I don't want to be tied down. We can be friends though. You got Snapchat?"

Date #6: BNOC

I know exactly who this is. I must pretend I don't.

No spark, but I got his autograph and now we're Facebook friends. I'm sitting here pondering the concept of the student celebrity. Fascinating.

Date #7: Not Over His Ex

I say hello. He sniffs.

"…She used to say that."


"You know, I actually love the single life. I'm so free. Finally. I mean, she broke up with me, but it was a blessing in disguise. I'm really not looking for anything serious right now. Obviously I know I'm a catch, that's what my ex told me. But don't even try."

"You kind of look like her, actually."

Can I call for help? I think he could start crying. I don't know what to do in this situation. How much longer do I have? Poor guy. Come back when you're emotionally available.

Close, but no cigar. If anyone needs me, I'll be in the Valentine's section of Sainsbury's worshipping consumerism and buying a gift for myself.