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A man drought state of mind

21 Jun

manMap's in a man drought state of mindMan drought. A phrase that twists many a female heart. Like a plague of locusts, it buzzes in the mind of the singleton as she preps for a night out. It haunts her as she strains her eyes across the seemingly man-less landscape of her work. Like a stone in her shoe it digs into her with every step as she goes about her life, making her hesitate when she tries to be positive and assertive. And in moments of hope, she hears it hiss:

“He’s gotta be taken.”

“He won’t like someone like you.”

“He must be gay.”

“He’s probably looking at the model-esque woman over there.”

“He won’t make an effort because he knows he’s in demand.”

A shamefully long time ago (sorry – busy chores!) our WWWtK question was:

Do you make less effort to chat with women because there are so many in Sydney that it’s now up to the women to make the effort?

Well ladies, I asked. I asked tradies. I asked suits. I asked entrepreneurs. I asked guys in the east, in the city, in the inner city. I asked guys in their 20s and guys in their 40s. I asked sporty guys and guys who love their pets and guys who are creative. And history was made. This is the first occasion where all agreed. And what did they agree on?

Men don’t think about the man drought. In fact, lots of them didn’t even know there was a man drought in Sydney until I asked them our question. Many of them were under the impression that there was a woman drought. Guys don’t feel that women should approach them because there are more of us than them. As one guy said, “It doesn’t come into it.”

If a guy likes the look of you and he’s got grit, he’ll speak to you. If he doesn’t, it’s not that he thinks you should make the effort, or even than he doesn’t find you attractive. It’s often a matter of him not being confident enough (possibly because he’s tried before and had his head promptly bitten off) or much like you, he thinks you’re probably taken or not interested.

So it seems, lovely readers, that while the man drought might be a statistical reality, more than anything, it’s a state of mind stirred up by regular appearances in the media. Between magazine and newspaper articles, reality tv shows and ads for online dating services, we’ve been conditioned into a man drought state of mind.

Luckily, there’s an easy way to break your personal drought. Squish that buzzing locust into the footpath and give the guys out there a little encouragement. In not time at all, you’ll realise it’s raining men.


Single but grateful

7 Apr

When you’re single and you don’t want to be single, it’s easy to become a tad jaded, particularly when friends announce engagements, pregnancies or even romantic getaways with their partners. It can be hard to shift that feeling of despondency and remember that we are lucky. Things could be much worse. We could be living a few generations ago and be labelled as the ‘maiden aunt’ or the ‘spinster’. We could be living a few centuries ago and have no scope for independence. If worrying about being single is our biggest concern, we’re already living a blessed life.

Melina Schamroth of m.a.d. woman has launched a new campaign called Grateful in April. She wants us to remember that, although we’re single, we can still enjoy what we have. By signing up you’ll receive an inspiring tip for 30 days plus you’ll have the chance to receive a gift.

And here’s what I’m grateful for, our new WWWtK question:

Do you make less effort to chat with women because there are so many in Sydney that it’s now up to the women to make the effort?

Thank you to Dating Safaris for submitting this question!

March Mapping Report

30 Mar

Beloved reader-peeps,

My apologies for being tardy. Among the usual juggling of coordinating the production of a publishing house, fighting the man drought by rounding up single men, co-running a writing group, obliging my OCDesque habits and maintaining some resemblance of a social life, I’ve had a few other chores thrown into the mix. So there’ll just be one post this week and I figured the timing’s perfect for a March Mapping Report.

This post comes with a language warning…enjoy!

March Mapping Highlight: hitting 600 surveys at the Lord Dudley in Woollahra. Thank you to all the helpful guys there! 

March WWWtK results

Our WWWtK question was:

If a woman’s interested in you, what’s something/one thing she can do to increase her chances of you asking her out?

A lot of guys said the same things, so I’ve put them in order of most common response to least common response and clumped together similar responses:

  • Make eye contact (or as one guy put it, engage in some eye-fucking) or do something physical that makes it clear you’re interested – maybe it need to get back into palm-flashing!!
  • Make the first move.
  • Smile.
  • Be relaxed. Act normal.
  • Be approachable and make sure you communicate that you’re approachable. Don’t be stuck-up or as one guy put it, ‘be on the level’. One guy said, ‘Ditch the princess act.’
  • Start the conversation.
  • Know how to have a decent/interesting conversation. Be intelligent.
  • Don’t be too full on, keep it light and casual.
  • Be lady-like.
  • Don’t be shy.
  • Be interested in the actual guy you’re checking out, don’t just focus on what he can offer you as far as security, money etc.
  • Stand next to the guy. You won’t need to say anything to him. Just by standing near him you’ll get his attention.
  • Offer the guy a drink.
  • Whisper something filthy in his ear.

A very cute Irish guy at Bronte contributed that last point.

From Mars to Venus

Earlier in the month I posted a poll to find out why some women don’t feel comfortable approaching men. This poll is open for another two week, so if you haven’t voted, please vote!

There’s some interesting information surfacing. So far the most common reason is: I figure if men like the look of me, they’ll come to me. So far no one has said they’d rather meet men online…interesting considering how popular dating sites are…I’ll do a full report when this poll has closed.

Over to April

It’s time to decide on our next WWWtK question. Here are the contenders:


A sweet note to end on

I had a drink with a publishing wing-girl at The Grasshopper during the week. It’s a great spot for a catch up if you’re in a small group. There’s a very cute barman working there who gave me a friendly wink and set my heart aflutter (yes, I’m sure he does it to everyone but I don’t care!).  It gets rather packed on Fridays, which is an advantage. You’ll be forced to rub shoulders with  guys whether you want to or not.

Have great weeks and even greater weekends!

Package deal love

22 Mar

The older we get the more inevitable one thing becomes: baggage. We accumulate it, so do the men wemanMap's musings on luggage meet. And if a serious relationship develops we end up with the challenge of fitting two sets of furniture and two sets of baggage into one relationship.

A few weeks ago a single wing-girl said to me, “I’ve realised I’ll either end up with a younger guy or a divorcee.” While this might not be true (time will tell!), there’s definitely honesty in her statement. Women moving into their mid-30s need to accept that odds of them becoming the second wife/partner are pretty high. And if it’s a first marriage/partnership for them, this thought can be confronting.

Ending up with the younger guy has its cons too. With the pressure of procreation growing with every additional birthday candle, women wanting kids have to consider if their man will be happy to be a father earlier than his mates. Will he be content to swap parties for pre-natal classes? Will he grow resentful in a few years because he feels he’s missed out on something?

It’s always said that when the right person comes along, baggage-related issues are dealt with or even embraced because love is stronger. But what happens when baggage can’t be easily stored in the cupboard or cleaned up and donated to Vinnies? What if it’s lifetime luggage, rather than baggage?

On our very raining Sunday, I had a day off surveying and went instead to the Australian Museum with my beautiful cousin and her delightful four-year-old son. Being a wet Sunday, the museum was packed with parents and kids. Some of the daddies were there without mummies. Perhaps Mummy was finally having a day to drink champagne and get a pedicure. Or perhaps Mummy didn’t live with Daddy anymore, and Daddy was fair game. And perhaps playing dinosaurs with Daddy’s little darling was a good way to meet Daddy.

Women often gush at men with babies. There’s something alluring about a set of masculine arms, reeking of strength and security, cradling a baby or cuddling a child. But being faced with the prospect of dating a man with kids is a Big Deal. It’s not even the kids that might make women fearful. The permanent link to the ex and therefore the baggage could end up being the bigger challenge.

When I’m out surveying, the first question I ask single men is, “What are the three most important things in your life?” Men with kids generally list their children – if they didn’t I’d be worried. This means I know they’ve got a family before I know anything else about them. In the dating world, this information isn’t always offered so quickly.

So I wanted to put it out there: ladies, how would you feel about dating a man with kids and how soon would you expect him to tell you?

And just so we’re Even Stevens, the question I’m going to add to this month’s WWWtK options is: would you date a woman with kids? That way, everyone gets a chance to have their say.

What Women Want (to Know): Round 2

17 Mar

Ok lovely readers, it’s time to throw your questions in the ring! What do you want to know? Send your questions to me over the next week by leaving a comment on this post or emailing them to

In two weeks I’ll be revealing the answers to this month’s WWWtK question, which was:

If a woman’s interested in you, what’s something/one thing she can do to increase her chances of you asking her out?

Here’s a sneaky glimpse at some of the responses so far:

  • Start the conversation.
  • Offer the guy a drink!
  • Know how to have an interesting conversation.
  • Whisper something filthy in his ear.

Yes, a guy’s response certainly does give you a hint about his personality…

I look forward to receiving all your fabulous questions. I have  few of my own I’ll add as comments and I’ll throw the others from last time back in the mix. 🙂

Why you might be single

10 Mar

A wing-girl sent me this and it’s too funny not to share. Many thanks to the wing-girl (and her wing-girl!) who sent it through:

In other news I’m hoping to hit 600 surveys this weekend – exciting!! I’ll be mapping on Saturday night and Sunday afternoon, so I should be able to get there. Cross your fingers for me that the weather is lovely and the men are plentiful – and single.

Finally, I’m halfway through our current WWWtK question, so start pondering what you’d like me to ask in April. I’ll put up a post next week for you to add your questions to. If any men would like to answer our current question (What’s something a woman can do to increase the odds of you asking her out?), please leave a comment here. We’d love to hear from you!

Growing a love culture

1 Mar

[There are a few sweeping generalisations/stereotypes in the post, for which I apologise. Hopefully further research will make them less sweeping.]

Sydney society is big on cultures, and I don’t mean the cultural type. I mean the type you grow in a petri dish. We like to drink Yakult to help defrag our digestive system. And some people inject bacteria into their faces so they can’t raise a flirty eyebrow. If only there was a culture Sydney singles could be injected with to help them find love.

When it comes to dating, Sydney’s culture ranks low on the Love Ladder. After my time in New York, I’d put it down to Sydney’s conservative tendencies. Of course it was difficult to meet men in a city where they won’t make the first move and women still want them to. Despite our multiculturalism, we’ve still got a reserved British heritage hampering our efforts to find love.

‘If only we were les European, and more American in our attitude,’ I thought, ‘life would be filled with dating and potential love.’

But this weekend I learnt some harrowing news.

Keen to catch the boys at the beach in the Eastern suburbs while the weather was good, I slathered on my invisible zinc and headed to Bronte on Saturday. The plan was to work my way south to Maroubra, but there were so many guys at Bronte I didn’t get any further.

As expected on a sunny day, lots of guys on working visas were enjoying a barbie on our coastline. Since there were more men than bbqs, I had a captive audience. Guys were happy to do surveys while they stood in line waiting to cook. (Thanks guys!) Many of them had come out to Australia with their partners, but most of them had single friends in Sydney keen to find love. I realised these guys were useful. They were in a position to compare Sydney’s dating culture with their homeland.       

Two of the guys I surveyed were French but had been living in Australia for nearly a year. Representing the pinnacle of romantic culture, I was almost too embarrassed to ask them how Australia compared to France. The response was rather grim. Apparently in France most people are happily settled in a relationship by their mid-30s (ie. don’t move to France hoping to fall in love ladies. You’ve got better odds here.). I asked the guys why they thought this was and one responded that most men want to start a family in their 30s. Was this the difference? Men want to settle down, ergo they date with serious intentions, ergo they find love by their 30s so they can have kids. I realised I have no idea when Aussie guys want to start having kids (if they want them at all). Is our youth-perpetuating culture resulting in a pitiful dating culture because no one wants to settle down? Perhaps this is something to investigate in the next round of WWWtK.

On that note, I ask the French guys what a woman can do to increase her chances of a guy asking her out.

“Be a lady,” one of them said. For months now I’ve been thinking we need to be more like American women, friendly and (god help me) flirty and assertive. But perhaps what we’ve lost is that ability to lure men in with the feminine mystique French women are known for. Perhaps what we need to do is splice the American openness with French femininity, stick the petri dish somewhere warm and then dose ourselves daily with the resulting bacteria. What do you think?

 ~ ~ ~

As an aside, I had a great time asking guys our WWWtK question. They loved the idea that readers were sending in questions to add to my survey. I got some hilarious and some insightful responses. Can’t wait to share them with you in March.

A quickie!

24 Feb

Hi lovely readers,

Just a quickie today – I’m having a busy chores week!

The results are in for our first WWWtK question. The winning question is:

If a woman’s interested in you, what’s something/one thing she can do to increase her chances of you asking her out?

A big thank you to those who sent questions in, those who voted and even those who’ve taken an interest by reading. I’ll share the responses to this question at the end of March. What glorious knowledge we’ll all have by then!! I’ll put a post up soon for our April question, so put your thinking fascinators on.

In other news, I’m on the down-hill run to meet my CBD survey quota. Just a few more rounds in The Rocks and Darling Harbour and it’ll be mischief managed (for that hood anyway). Next on the agenda: the inner city and the Eastern suburbs, both of which I’ve already dabbled in. If there’s a particular venue you want me to check out or one you’ve had success at, drop me a line at

 Finally, it’s looking like it’ll be a beautiful weekend. Make the most of it ladies, summer’s almost over. Get your wing-girls together, go somewhere new and talk to a guy you don’t know. Could be the best weekend of your life!

Yours in faithful mapping,

What Women Want (to Know): Time to vote!

17 Feb

Ok lovely readers, it’s time to vote on our first round of What Women Want (to Know).

Here are the contending questions:

  1. If a woman’s interested in you, what’s something/one thing she can do to increase her chances of you asking her out?
  2. What’s the worst thing a woman could do to turn you off immediately?
  3. Do men feel like they need to make less effort to chat up/make conversation with women because there are so many single women in Sydney?

Cast your votes by the end of the weekend so the mapping can begin.

(Subscribers please drop by my blog to vote…and thank you for subscribing!)

The persistent heart and V-Day

10 Feb

When it comes to love, most of us have heard stories of persistence paying off. In fact, it’s a common theme for romantic comedies. Boy meets girl, falls in love immediately, girl either finds boy disdainful or is dating someone else; girl goes through some kind of trauma, has A Grand Moment of Self-realisation, ends situation preventing her from being with boy and the credits roll while boy and girl embrace.

Although real life might not be as rosy as the on-screen endings, I did read a story in last Friday’s MX that was too good not to share.

After being stood up on their first date, a persistent guy called his snubber consistently for four months. Daryl Tricker refused to accept the girl’s silence, and repeatedly dialled her mobile even though they’d only met five days earlier. After four months the girl, Lauren Prior, awoke from a coma in hospital. She had been thrown through a car windscreen in a serious car accident the night before the date.

Lauren was so impressed by Daryl’s persistence that she agreed to honour the original date. They now live together and are planning their wedding.

So there you have it: a case where stalker-esque behaviour ended in love!

What do you want?

Don’t forget to add your What women want (to know) questions to this post by 10am Friday 11th so we can kick-start this new manMap feature. Can’t wait to find out what this month’s question will be!   


Now we all know from the rash of love hearts spreading through news agencies that Valentine’s Day is upon us.

If you’re feeling a little fragile about your single status, don’t sit at home on Monday with a bottle of wine watching tragic movies. Email your wing-girls and organise drinks and/or dinner somewhere fun or new. If you’re afraid watching mooning couples will end in emotional breakdown, pick a bright, bustling venue or do something unromantic like Ten Pin Bowling. Worst case scenario, organise to cook dinner with your friends in someone’s home.

Personally, I’ll be doing yoga at my local gym. It’ll be a good opportunity to suss out which guys at the gym don’t have dates!