Speed-dating in Portland with Godfrey Elfwick | #facebookdating | #tinder | #pof

This article is in The Spectator’s February 2020 US edition. Subscribe here.

Portland, Oregon

A polyamorous friend recently extolled the efficacy of speed dating. Relationship-wise, I’ve had a rather long dry spell, but I must stress that I’ve crossed this sexual Sahara entirely by choice. I actively embraced celibacy to holistically detox my chakras, because chastity, like meditating on an icon of Rashida Tlaib, clears the mind of toxicity. If you assume I haven’t had sexual contact with another human being for 17 months, two weeks and four days because I have failed to attract partners, you would be embarrassingly wrong. Your racist narrow-mindedness amuses me. So, whatever.

Now that I have utterly destroyed your bigoted preconceptions, perhaps I can continue my story? A couple of weeks ago, after months of psychic cleansing, I successfully achieved nirvana. To be honest, I found it overrated. It was like watching Keeping Up with the Kardashians: enjoyable, but you’re left feeling slightly bewildered and disoriented. Nevertheless, it’s something to add to my LinkedIn profile.

Having attained the highest stage of enlightenment, I felt this would be the perfect time to dip my rod back into the dating pool and see if I could reel in an organic, pesticide-free supper. As the late-capitalist economy of efficiency monetizes desire and turns us into sex-serfs, I thought I might as well take my friend’s advice and try speed dating.

A quick Facebook search rewarded me with a bountiful selection of local events: from ‘Speed Dating With Your Dog’ (rejected due to connotations of pet abuse) to ‘Speed Dating UK Style’ (rejected because I’m a refugee from the gammon-faced fascists of the United KKKingdom). I finally settled on ‘PolyPortland Speed Dating’ and added my name to the list of attendees meeting at a tapas restaurant the following Saturday evening.

I have to admit I felt nervous. ‘But Godfrey, how can someone of your intellectual prowess and social stature possibly feel nervous?!’ I hear you exclaim. Well, the agitation I felt was more on behalf of my potential mate(s) as I imagined how intimidating it would be for them to see Godfrey Elfwick, transracial genderqueer Muslim atheist, striding confidently into the room. To lessen my sociosexual footprint, I decided to dress down for the occasion. I opted for a simple vintage paisley kaftan complemented by a black, wide-brimmed floppy felt hat and winkle-picker kitten-heeled pumps. Suitably approachable, I probed the night for polyamorous adventures.

As a multicultural zeitgeist, I see no race, gender or sexual orientation and have no preference for prospective partners’ age or social status. None of these things have the slightest bearing on compatibility. If you have a ‘type’ when it comes to physical attraction and matters of the heart, then your narrow-mindedness sickens me. If a cis Eskimo man cannot have sex with a trans Yoruba man (or a woman with a penis) without feeling even mildly uncomfortable, then he seriously needs to detoxify his fragile masculinity.

In the streetcar to the tapas bar, I sensed hungry eyes upon me. Turning in my seat, I caught the glance of an elderly man behind me. I gave him a coquettish smile that said, ‘Sorry, I’m out of your league.’ He quickly averted his covetous gaze, the pervert.

I arrived fashionably late by a good three minutes and was greeted by a young white cis male who, in a gesture typical of the unthinking racism with which trans people contend every day in Amerikkka, gave me a badge that read ‘GOFFREY ELWICK’. Although it was a tapas restaurant, no one was speaking Spanish, and most of the guests were sickeningly white. As I sat sipping my kale and elderflower mojito, a cis/white-identifying woman approached me and asked my name.

I cannot say for certain what it was that got me ejected from the restaurant that night, but I will say this: I regret nothing. Not one person in that place was worth my time, let alone my body. None of them understood the first thing about genderqueer transpolyracial cisneg subnormative relationships, because every one of them was cisgender, heterosexual and white. The Drumpf-loving alt-righters deserved every expletive I screamed at them and every piece of calamari I threw in their stupid ignorant faces.

Avoid speed dating. Too many bigots.

This article is in The Spectator’s February 2020 US edition. Subscribe here.

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