Single Girl: The merits of toyboys
Single girl about town Bryony Gordon receives a bit too much information on the merits of toyboys.
Not to be beaten in the man stakes, Chloe has also got herself a younger bloke – though, in her case, he really does qualify as a proper toyboy. Here there is a 15-year age gap, as opposed to the pathetic two years between me and Ollie, with whom I have not yet even gone on a proper date.
Andrew is 25. Chloe is 40. The only shocking thing about this is that it hasn't happened before. When I think about it, Chloe has cougar written all over her expensively wrinkle-free forehead. She is the kind of woman who chews men up then spits them out, washing away the aftertaste with a shot of straight vodka. How amazing she hasn't gone there before.
'Oh, I have,' she says, lighting a cigarette. 'I've just tried my best to delete it from my memory banks because the sex was so bad. It was all desperate pawing, like something out of a particularly bad episode of Skins. No, scrap that – The Inbetweeners. But Andrew is different.'
I am not sure I want to know any more but she tells me anyway, in the kind of explicit detail that – suffice it to say – is not fit for publication in a quality newspaper such as this. They met at some underground bar in Soho, the sort where creative types hang out and pretend to be part of La Nouvelle Vague. These places are not for me, because I don't like sawdust or fire traps, but Chloe thrives in them. 'He's a film-maker,' she says.
'Really. Has he made any films that I might have heard of?'
'Of course not,' she tuts. 'The only films you know about star Lindsay Lohan and are set in high schools.' I say that this is not fair, that I once watched Apocalypse Now.
'I was sitting there drinking absinthe [of course she was], when this young man comes up to me and grabs my hand. He has such passion, such intensity, and it passes right through me like electricity. I want to tear off his clothes then and there!'
I am feeling cliché-induced nausea.
'And he says to me, "Lady, your hair is on fire!" And it was. It had caught on the candle on the table! He poured a glass of water over my head and he saved my life.'
So she has pulled a man who threw a drink over her because she was on fire. Only in Chloeworld.