Tag Archives: chilango

#51 – Rina

Remember Eevil Midget from date number 45? She became date 51 as well. I met her outside Chilango on Upper St for the penultimate time. I really have become a damn fine burrito eater, I must have eaten between 100 and 150 of the meet, beans, rice, salsa, cheese, sour-cream, lettuce and guacamole – 1,000 calorie burritos (guesstimate)! And today was my best yet. Not one bit spilled out and I only needed to use one napkin! The same can’t be said for Rina, who resorted to eating the burrito with her fingers, that’s the first time that’s happened!

Rina is the girl from the Philippines, attractive, outgoing, into art, works in advertising and almost as mad about Social Media as I am. I’ve got more followers than her though, which I don’t think she likes. We met once since our last date, but have Tweeted, emailed and text-ed as well. And while we hit it off on the date, it didn’t develop in cyberspace as well as I had hoped. But I guess I was keen to give it another date to see if there was something more than friends.

We talked Social Media and work. One of the things I like about Rina is all the fun stuff she does outside of work, for example this weekend she is working of the Becks Pub / Art Crawl in Shoreditch.

Dan from Lucky Voice, the Karaoke place, got in touch a few weeks ago. They do private booths and so it seemed like the perfect post burrito date activity. Singing isn’t something that I’ve ever done well, it wasn’t going to be my comfort zone. But I felt I knew Rina a little bit already and wasn’t worried if my voice didn’t impress her.

Rina on the other hand could sing. We ordered a couple of whiskeys and she got the ball rolling with The Sundays. I sang a couple of old staples like Westlife’s Mandy and Elvis’s In The Getto. We dueted on Wheetus’ Teenage Dirtbag and The Killers’ Mr. Brightside. An hour and a half had passed before we knew it.

She used to sing in church as a kid in the Philippines. I used to do the same in Ireland. They must have better singing priests in the Philippines. Rina thought I could sing, I just needed to try a little harder. I told her it’s that kind of support that leads to deluded tone deaf appearing on X-Factor. I won’t be trying harder. But I would do this kind of date again, if I had discovered Lucky Voice on Upper St. earlier on in the Burrito Dating adventure, I would have used it more often.

There were moments in the booth when I thought differently, you know the feeling when you’re singing face to face with a girl the lyrics ‘It was only a kiss, it was only a kiss’… but walking Rina to the tube at the end of the date it was clear to me that this burrito dating episode wouldn’t have a romantic ending. Ah well, we tried.

So, 1 to go. I’ve pencilled it in for next Wednesday but I haven’t organised a date yet. I have been trying to finish with a splash, dating someone famous. You know like, if you could have a burrito date with anyone in the world, who would it be type of finale. No joy as yet, I’ll keep ya posted.

Vote for Rina!

#48 – Kathryn M.

Burrito date 48

This time last year, the 25th of March 2010 to be precise, I won a year’s supply of Burritos at London Twitter festival, a prize from which this blog emerged a few weeks later. So when Twestival came along again, it seemed only natural that I would take a date to the event. I opened up the invitation to people attending Twestival with a blog post on their site, asking those interested in being my date to comment. Kathryn responded and the burrito date 48 was set in motion.

Kathryn is from Carlow in Ireland, and we have mutual friends (35 according to Facebook). She spent many years studying in Edinburgh so I don’t know her as well as I would her friends. She originally studied something along the lines of textile designs, and that interest in fashion is evident in her style.  I knew that she would be good company at Twestival, where we would be chatting to lots of different people, and  I was glad when she wanted to come on a date with me.

As well as having friends in common, Kathryn is also a blogger. She is passionate about cooking, from what I’ve seen she is excellent and has a unique original twist to everything she cooks. I’ve been really impressed with how quickly she has taken to blogging, on her blog Tasty Ribbons, and she also makes great cooking tutorial videos.

We met at Chilango on Fleet St., first for a burrito. It was a bit awkward at first, because we already new each other, for some reason. We joked about it though, and soon we were asking those first date questions that you never get the chance to ask a friend of a friend. We were soon getting on well, so well that I wondered why we hadn’t done something like this before.

Soon we were checking into the Cape Bar a short walk away, where Twestival was taking place. The venue was a wide open bar, with most of the fun on the stage, from various music acts, to karaoke and a charity raffle. There were screens with live tweets, you can see my tweet in the below image if you look close enough! Eric and Shannon from Chilango were there feeding the crowd with their amazing burritos, I’ve gotten to know them over the year and they are really nice people. They are opening the 5th Chilango in Holborn soon, and I wish them lots more success in the future. They had kindly donated another prize for the raffle, and asked me what I’d do if I won? Dates more burrrito babes of course!!

I met all my old colleagues from We Are Social, who I haven’t seen in months. It was great to catch up offline and in person! They are another small company who are doing great things, also opening their 5th office soon. They played a big role in the beginning of this journey: it was with them that I attending last year’s event and they helped get the word out there from the first tweet, as well as on their blog. A big thank you to them as well!

Alas I didn’t win the prize again, so the slim chance of more burrito dates won’t be happening. I bumped in to one of the top Social Media bloggers, Adam Vincenzini. He was telling me that he did a blogging adventure about how he went one year without reading newspapers. Near the end of it, he said there was pressure to go out with a bang as people asked him how he would finish it. He told them, it’s just another week in a long year. That’s exactly how I feel about the burrito dates, and it was nice to hear that from someone who had been there, done it.

Is this post getting a bit sentential? Well that’s not how the date was. It was very much focused on Kathryn. She made me laugh all night, and had ALL my attention. Check out this video of Kathryn on helium!

At around 11 we left to go for a quieter drink somewhere. I gave her a cross bar on my bike, probably a bit silly but so much fun. Then in a bar by Old St round about, we kissed. I hadn’t planned it at all, it just kind of happened. I think we’re both glad it did. I don’t think there will be another date though, as there I think she likes another boy. And so another chapter ends, 4 to go.

Vote for Kathryn!

#40 Stacy S.

Date 40

A few of days before date number 40, Stacy emailed me with a couple of questions:

1. How tall are you?
2. If you could have one of these two superpowers, which would you choose and why: The power or invisibility, or the power of the flight?

Wondering what she was getting at, I thought long and hard about the second one, and gave her an answer with practical things such as the scientific development of an invisibility cloak, to the sensation felt by hang gliding. And before I pressed send I added that I am 5ft 10ins.

Stacy wrote back to say she just wanted to know what shoes to wear on our date, as she was 5ft 8ins, and she disguised the weirdness of the question with the super power question. It worked, and made me laugh. I was drawing the impression that she had a sense of humour, her original email included a photo of her with a clown nose on.

We met in Chilango, it was packed but we got a seat upstairs at the back.  The height issue didn’t come up at all, because of the correct choice of shoes. Thinking about it now though, height is quite an important part of dating in general. I think I prefer small girls, but Stacy’s height didn’t put me off. We talked about her being ‘funny’, or ‘crazy’, and she wouldn’t claim to be either. We both agreed that such self proclamations would be weird. I did find her to have a sense of humour that, added with a inquisitive shyness, made for an enjoyable date.

Stacy is from Salt Lake City in Utah; having studied acting in Birmingham she is now living in London. Her mum posted a Facebook status update to day, ‘Good luck to date number 40!’. Stacy’s Mom’s has got it going on!

We talked a lot about acting, theatre, movies. I told her the story of Catfish, a movie I saw recently. It features some pseudo-people on the Internet , and we considered the possibility that Stacy wasn’t who she said she was. Then about how she could use her acting skills to create a alternative personality online. Maybe even to help her acting career. She went for a role recently that required her to be a goth, and despite dressing up as one, her true personality was transparent. I think that says a lot about her, she is a genuine, honest person.

So when we parted at the end of the date, I was left wondering was she a nice friendly, shy, but not that adventurous girl? Thinking about it, and looking at the first questions I asked her in an email, I found something that shows and fun and spontaneous side of her, her answer to my question. So, the burrito is our first date, what would you like to do for our one year?

Well, I think it only right that we first return to the scene of the crime and celebrate the now-legendary burrito date that brought us together in the first place. And after that, I would suggest booking a last-minute flight to somewhere that neither of us have ever been, and just going. No pre-planning excursions or anything like that: just get off the plane and go wherever impulse leads us. Who knows, maybe it would give rise to a new tradition.

That’s a pretty great answer, unfortunately I think a one year anniversary is unlikely, although I would like to go to the theatre with Stacy at some point.

Vote for Stacy!

#32 jessica c.

burrito date 32

How on earth do I tell you about date number 32 with Jessica? I could write a post about what we talked about, where we went and how good looking and fun she is. Or I could be a bit more descriptive and tell you that she is wild as a march hare and by the end I was relieved to get away with my face intact?!

Let’s go for the latter shall we? Jessica’s colleague at a publishing company, Anna, requested a date a while ago, and when the time came to go on a date her circumstances had changed so she suggested Jessica go instead. We emailed a bit, and it turns out that Jessica’s surname means Rabbit in Portuguese. That, and her Facebook profile image, was all I had to go on.

Jess suggested a drink beforehand. I suggested a wine bar, Cellar Garcon, by Smithfield Market. I waited for Jess at the door. I could see her cab pull up, and I witnessed the cab driver talking to her for a few minutes before she got out. It turned out he was giving her a lecture about taking care of her self. To be careful. It was a cold evening and we drank a bottle of red wine fairly quickly. I was the one who needed the lecture to be careful.

I needed to get a photo at some point in tburrito date 32he evening. Usually I take a quick snap and it’s no big deal. Jess didn’t like how the photos were coming out and wouldn’t let me take a proper one. She kept on putting her hand up. Instead she suggested that I take a picture of her boobs, and she showed off most of them. In Chilango, the place was closing but the staff let us stay to finish our burritos while they cleaned up. Jess wanted a photo behind the counter, but thankfully the guy said it was against Chilango insurance policy. She asked the staff to take a photo of us both. We really were making a lot of noise, and Jess knocked over her beer. I was glad to leave.

We played a drinking game, ‘I have never’. Then Jess changed this to dares. I thought it wasn’t a good idea in a respectable wine bar. I said that she should stand on the tables and run across them, thinking that would put her off dares. She said not to dare her to do that, because she probably would. I didn’t dare Jess in the end, but when she dared me to touch a pig’s trotter that was at the other side of the bar I did.

We got to know each other a bit. We chatted about dating, London and the places she has been to in Ireland. Dublin, Westmeath, Wexford, Wicklow, Kerry and Waterford. We chatted about our friends, and families. I had my bike with me, which Jess didn’t like the idea of as she wanted to go to a for more drinks after the burrito. She thought I would be drunk cycling and it would be dangerous cycling home. The conversation quickly dried up, and kept asking me how I was, which was nice, but we couldn’t just relax, everything was intense.

We kissed outside Chilangburrito date 32o, and continued in the Cheshire bar. First she bit my lip a few times, and then moved on to biting my face. I was getting a bit worried. At that stage I didn’t want to drink more, as I was cycling home. Jess lived the other side of town as and was getting a train. I suggested we leave. Jess wasn’t impressed.

We left on good terms though as we did have a good few laughs. In the end I think Jess is a bit overpowering for me and I didn’t really feel comfortable with her.

#20 – katie-louise h.

katie-louise contacted me while researching her thesis in advertising at high wycome when she came across my blog. no, she wasn’t asking for my input, just for a burrito! we had what was a very enjoyable, outgoing and adventurous date.

when it was time for our date she is back home in oxford getting some work experience with oxfam. katie suggested a cycle date. the plan for the date was an friday afternoon burrito on fleet st., and then a cycle to peckham. there is a deserted multi story car park in peckham, and on top of that is a unique cafe called franks – that was our destination.

this photo is of katie’s driving license, she had dread locks as a teenager when she was in a band. I liked how individualistic she came across. she likes travelling, but not all those photos of facebook of group of friends on there gap year that literally could be anywhere. she likes advertising work, but not the obnoxious egotistical side of it. she likes new york, but not the… no wait, she likes new york full stop.

the burritos went down a treat – it was actually the first burrito date on fleet st. I prefer the upper st. chilango, as it is bigger and angel is more fun than fleet st. in the evenings. katie had taken the train in from oxford, i would give me my bike, and i would cycle jd’s bike. jd works with digital marketing agency cybercom, and he lent me his bike (and yes, i do think that by linking to the cybercom website i am in a small way returning the favour). katie hadn’t rode a fixed gear bike before, so i though i would video her first go just in case she fell off, alas she didn’t (i know, how boring 😉 – here is the vid:

setting off for peckham we had a google maps connection fail and had to follow our noses. luckily we got there with out too much trouble. we only had a beer in franks so can’t comment on the food and the place was quiet, but it is a class setting and worth the trek to peckham alone (there is nothing else worth going to peckham for btw). there was an outdoor art installation on the car park roof as well..

the cycle back was a bit trickier – we were going a bit further up to oxford st and it was rush hour. by the end of it i really felt bad to have made katie cycle all the way, she wasn’t used to cycling in london, or on a guys fixie either, but she didn’t complain. i thought she deserved a drink so we went for a cocktail, thirsty after the cycle we both knocked them back. we went separately to meet friends for the rest of the evening, but all in all, i enjoyed the date and i hope katie did too.

vote for katie-louise!

request a burrito!

#2 – louise n. (part 2)

burrito date #2what if this was part of a scary movie where i entice girls by offering a burrito date, with the intention of murdering them – american psycho style?

the idea emerged during this date with louise. see, she likes sci-fi / thriller / scary movies. it’s one genre i haven’t given much time to really. but she made me think i was missing out, and gave me a list of movies i should watch. i intend to. this was a rescheduled date. unintentionally i was twenty minutes late. we met in chilango on upper st., and had a burrito and a beer. i had a steak burrito and louise had a chicken burrito.

louise is a couple of years younger than me, i think, and has started a new job with an integrated marketing agency.  we discussed the possibility of this being part of ‘the burrito killer’ scary movie. she said that my story line wasn’t convincing enough. she was probably right; i didn’t really think it through. maybe if i watch a few more of these suggested movies, i could be a real life ‘social media psycho’ and pull it of? maybe if louise gave me some pointers? ‘you should take prostitutes out, like patrick bateman, – less connections’. i said that i thought she was a prostitute, trying to be funny. i knew straight away that i had said the wrong thing. that was the end of the scary movie fantasy story.

change the subject. twitter question time… would you prefer to be one meter taller, or one meter shorter? ‘i’ve been really tall since i was 12, and it’s annoying (5ft 9”), so i would prefer to be a meter shorter.

cameron or clegg? ‘cameron’ why? Its just a historic choice, and I am from the countryside so everyone, pretty much votes Conservative.  we meant who do you fancy 😉

we went to a cocktail bar. i was beginning to regret not having anything special planned and then a jazz band suddenly started playing. great i thought. or not, louise hates jazz, something about a family guy episode! we moved away from the jazz, and this did feel like a real date. we did have a lengthy debate over whether dressing up as an avatar at a summer festival would be a good idea? agreed to disagree. we walked for a bit, the moon was full; louise recommended a book called ‘who made the moon’. then, we said good night.

there was a comment on a recent post about hearing what the girls think  about the date aswell, so i emailed louise and asked her what she thought…

“I thought the date went well (apart from being called a prostitute! ha ha) I think its mammoth task going on dates, I can’t wait until you get a reeeeally bad one, that will be a funny post I think.”

would everyone have been offended by being called a prostitute, even considering the context?

#3 – claire w.

claire works with a social media agency in london. claire loves running. perfect! one minor detail that emerged later – claire has a boyfriend…

…i thought, ‘so what, it might be cool to meet her anyway’. the idea of a running date crossed my mind. i asked my sister what she thought of it (helps having a girl to cross check important things like this!), and she said something like ‘you’re such a boy, most girls wouldn’t like to go for a run on a first date’! instead, i mentioned to claire that we could watch the london marathon on sunday?. her impressive response was along the lines of, ‘why don’t we go for a run on friday night, and have a burrito after, there is this nike running game, it’ll be fun!’. so a running date it was.

nike grid is a phonebox activated running game which takes place around the streets of london, where players compete to gain post code ‘crowns’. it kicked off at 8pm, and we were there ready and excited. we ran around the streets, coughing our way through the moving cars to the 3 special phone boxes in n1. with claire dialing our game code at each phone box in a panic, we managed to be the first to claim the crown! delighted with our result, with the fun running and the competitive edge, we then got to the serious part of the evening – the burrito!

claire at nike grid

we went straight to chilango, upper st. (n1), and had a burrito and a beer. claire had the chicken burrito, black beans, peppers, medium spicy salsa, guac & cheese. i went for the pork one, rice, black beans, peppers, mild salsa and guacamole. claire told me about her training to become a fitness instructor. we are both doing marathons later this year and will probably go on a few training runs together…

…i did have time to throw in two questions from the twittesphere…

would you rather fight a duck the size of a horse, or 50 horses the size of ducks? claire deliberated over this one for quiet some time, and in the end went with the 50 horses the size of ducks, ‘because i could just kick them’.

who would play you in the movie of their life? claire found this a tricky question, to help her, i suggested megan fox.. then she said she has been told she looks like rachel stevens, and it would have to be her. i always fancied rachel stevens, just saying.

of the many friday nights i have spent in bars and clubs, i have rarely met someone as nice as claire. and who would have thought that a run and a burrito date could have been such a laugh. they all won’t be like this i’m sure, now where was burrito date number 2?

vote for claire!