No Mandate for a Man-date

Man-date? I hear you cry – that is SO London!

Maybe you’re right, but can’t two grown up chaps outside the M25 chew the fat over a candlelit Beef Wellington? Can’t Ray meet Roger in Rhyll for Rioja? There’s no law against it.

But what exactly is a man-date? Well without the benefit of an OED definition, here’s my own:

An entirely platonic one-to-one social encounter between two men for no other reason than the enjoyment of each other’s company.

In other words, “Hey Kev, fancy catching the England game?” is not an invitation to a man-date. Clearly Kev would be left feeling confused.

But not just Kev I fear. It’s the ‘no other reason…’ bit that sounds male alarm bells across the nation. The problem is ‘British Bloke’ wants to know why he is exclusively meeting another. Give him a purpose like 6 Nations decider, stag planning or U2 gig and he’ll leap at the chance, but idly suggest popping out for some pasta or a weekly coffee bar catch up and suddenly it’s – Uh?

BB is essentially a pack animal that thrives on a strict ‘safety in numbers’ principle. Across the divide however, his more independent feline counterpart will happily rendezvous with another cat without so much as an eyebrow raised, bushy or manicured.

I generalise and hyperbolise, but you get the picture.

So in praise of the man-date, I hereby challenge all you ‘stuffed shirts’ out there to loosen your collars, drop your defences and buddy-up! I’ll even suggest venues:

For the gentleman that doesn’t need a sport-related excuse, but still enjoys their share of footie, head over to Cafe Football, in Westfield Stratford. Bar food, plenty of beer and sport screens everywhere to follow every match in the world. Great atmosphere, all in all a fantastic banter spot *insert ok hand sign emoji*

Are your whiskers wilting? Let the professionals at Mr Rizzo Grooming spruce them up, and prove to everybody that indulgence and pampering are not just a girl thing. With the ENTERTAINER you and your buddy can enjoy a traditional Wet Shave plus a Cut n’ Finish on a Buy One Get One Free basis.

What about some adrenaline-infused bonding? It doesn’t get any more thrilling than UK Bungee Club, and you can always create a sweet memento of your friendship by jumping together with your mate and recording your ordeal with a Go Pro, screams, whoops and all.

Last but not least, treat yourselves to some excellent whiskey and the finest Scottish cuisine at Boisdale. Their venues in Canary Wharf and Belgravia host the best live jazz and soul gigs in London. If you want to go the whole hog and embrace every man date stereotype in existence, don’t miss their cigar selection.

May bro-mance blossom! Next week, Nan-dates.