My earliest memory of online dating is the Indian matchmaking service shaadi.com. Founded in 1997, I viewed it as only being suitable for losers. As a teenager with questionable morals, I spent time on shaadi.com making fake profiles of people that I abhorred – oh, there were many. I’d give them various contagious diseases to see whether they would generate any interest. Astonishingly, I found that people ‘back home’ were still willing to marry them. My good deed was completed with the virtual match being given the phone number of their future spouse. Don’t judge me, I know I was a mean little shit..
Fast-forward a decade, coming out of a serious relationship that didn’t end in sunshine and roses, I found that ‘meeting people naturally’ was no longer a thing. You see, when you’re Muslim and you don’t drink or hang out in bars, the chances of meeting someone new reduces significantly. Prince Charming is unlikely to come looking for you whilst your mouth makes tender love to chicken breast at your local halal Nandos.
If you want to find Brown men, your only option is to head down to your local Shisha lounge. Clutching your asthma inhaler in your left hand, you’ll acrobat your way through the crowd to your 21st century Muslim Don Juan, the ‘Seducer of East London’ i.e. Abdul with the gold tooth. You will find him manspreading over a germ-infested red sofa, letting out silent, but deadly farts. Bad-boy Abz will be ‘chillin with da boyz – innit’, and if you’re wearing your lucky red knickers, he may just undress you with his cold, empty, leering eyes. Blowing smoke rings in your direction, he’ll say “alright buff ting” as you walk past, noticing that bit of coriander stuck between his teeth – no doubt, a remnant of the fish curry that his mother cooked for his dinner the night before last.
I soon came to terms with my fate. I would join the loser brigade and turn my attention online. Thankfully, Muslim online dating had improved by leaps and bounds since my teenage years of searching for life partners for the diseased antagonists in my life. We now had ‘Muslim Single Solution’, ‘Single Muslims’ and dating apps such as ‘Muzmatch’ and believe it or not, ‘Minder’.
Ready for my new adventure, I joined the dating sites and apps. Following a little trial and error, I set my profile to read as follows:
Ok so here is the criteria [split into mandatory and desired requirements]:
- Must have an original non-tampered British passport with a security chip (protection against fraud).
- Must have a sense of humour that goes beyond reading jokes on the back of a Penguin chocolate bar.
- No history of domestic violence please – slap me once and I’ll punch you twice.
- Must be family orientated. That means being more than a lodger to your family.
- Ideally someone not on benefits; ambitious enough to have a job?
- Ideally Salman Khan or maybe a look alike.. but don’t worry, Jonny Lever’s will not be discriminated against.
- DBS cleared (enhanced preferred).
- Ideally come from a family that won’t set me on fire for dowry.
I thought I had it all covered. Online dating can’t be that hard, can it? What could even go wrong?
Well, it seems that a lot can go wrong.. find out more in the next dose of dating disasters..
The Accidental Lawyer