As a 30-something single in Victoria, I’ve experienced firsthand the unique dating ecology of the Island.
At first Swipe it feels like most other cities, but Victoria has a distinct identity in the world of romance, and not just because it bears the namesake of the UTTER BABE Queen Victoria (monarch of England and queen of my heart).
No, Victoria is unique because despite the plethora of humans stumble-Bumble-ing and Tinder-flaming their way through the dating scene, we all fall into one of a few archetypes.
Let me show you.
If there’s one thing I know about Canada, there’s a lot of it, and Vancouver Island is no exception.
There are over 30 million people in this country, and we occupy approximately one-fifth of the area here.
In between are the spaces where The Hiker thrives.
“Let’s get in touch with nature!” they tell you. “It’s good for fitness, too!”
You’ll wheeze and gasp your way through the Elsie King Trail, gulping through water and hoping they don’t notice you came wearing slip-on Skechers, all in the vague hope that you can keep up with The Hiker.
But when they say to you “I think we should try something more backcountry” your interest will be piqued all over again. Dear reader, I must shatter your dreams: that is not a euphemism.
That is your signal to acknowledge your physical limitations and disinterest in deer ticks.
It’s only natural that the capital city of Victoria should attract its fair share of political protest. The question is, how far are you willing to go to please The Activist?
Maybe you’ll read just enough on Wikipedia to feign knowledge of the highly endangered Pacific Lamprey. You’ll nod sagely when The Activist tells you “Not all animals are cuddly, but when we’re destroying natural Lamprey habitat, who’s the REAL bloodsucker?”
Then it’s time to pump signs and march, and you’ll stick it out because The Activist is just so EARNEST, dammit, that they must be on to something. Learn the chants. The lingo. Cultivate a shared self-righteous passion.
And then one day you’ll see them cussing out a minimum wage worker at McDonald’s for “supporting the corporate man.” Then they’ll walk back to your car, say “AND they forgot my ketchup. I am writing a letter.”
And the magic spell will be gone.
OK, so the bad experience at Mickey D’s is getting you out and trying bold new things. Somewhere in there you meet The Foodie, who just “HAS to take you to this place, you HAVE to try it.”
But here lies a trap. For dating etiquette demands that they who were told of the best dining spots should be the one to pay for the evening’s meal. You pay for The Foodie what brung ya, basically.
Nervously sweating through progressively more and more expensive tastes, the restaurants will begin to blur together. Like a predator eating their way up the food chain, you’ll go from food truck to diner dive to family-owned to major local eatery to luxury restaurant faster than you can say “check please.”
And finally, the dam will break, and when The Foodie asks you to pick a fav, you will explode “I CANNOT TELL THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN A SAVE-ON FOODS HOT DOG AND THE $60 BRATWURST WE HAD LAST NIGHT. THEY ARE BOTH JUST GROUND UP PIG MOULDED INTO A WIBBLY DONGLE.”
Alas, this Foodie has spoiled.
They’re just trying to work some stuff OUT, you know? And maybe you are, too.
They remember the times the family would drive out to B.C. when they were younger, hitting the Island, seeing the cute otters and the whales.
Now they want to get in touch with themselves, find a part of that lost childhood. And maybe date a cute person like you, too, that will fill that terrible void that was left when Alberta “just didn’t feel like HOME any more, you know?”
Only, when The Lost finally does find themselves, they’ll invariably find it in the perfectly sculpted abs of the ex they left behind back in Medicine Hat or some nonsense.
But they will always be grateful for having known you (“always” used here in the same way too many people use the word “literally” — which is to say a complete lie).
Rumoured to exist. I, personally, don’t believe a word of it.
Welcome to Ford on Fridays: a weekly column where Victoria Buzz staff writer Tim Ford offers his thoughts on life, love, and the pursuit of the perfect joke.
This column is for comedic purposes only. Please feel free to send feedback, thoughts, and [constructive] criticisms to email@example.com.