Down with Dating | Event Review
In these dark times of austerity cuts, angry protests and widespread malaise, it seems only fitting that our nights out should include a brutal, hate-filled edge.
In this spirit, Down with Dating’s spin on the speed dating format is therefore a thoroughly modern approach to socialising.
The idea behind speed hating is simple. An even amount of ladies and gentlemen sit opposite each other. The host announces the start of your window of ‘flirting’.
You then have 3 minutes in which to flirt nonchalantly with your partner whilst simultaneously complaining about your rubbish day at work, your irritating boss or, somewhat more controversially, how much you hate your partner.
It's not a popular option though. Indeed, for a night built around hatred there doesn't seem to be any actual loathing going on. If anything everyone seems quite cheery.
"It's nice to vent" says one of the participants. "It’s important to get it off your chest". Maybe that's it then. Maybe all people really need to be happy is someone to complain at.
It does seem a little forced sometimes. Hating is hard work and it's all too easy to run out of inspiration. More than once I find myself beset with a form of hater’s block and left with little choice but to refer to the little cue cards dotted around the room. Plastered with such helpful hate-suggestions as ‘Jeremy Clarkson’ and ‘Richard Blackwood’, they're designed to give you a back-up plan if the hate juices aren't quite flowing properly. After an hour or so of conjuring up things to complain about it can be hard to resist.
The true stalwarts will just plug along though without them, plunging the depths of their souls for some sort of bitter bile.
True success at this lark seems to be entirely dependent on you being a bitter person. One thing that can be learned is that sometimes you aren’t filled with as much hatred as you first thought.
Down with Dating: 2 out of 5.