Summer is just around the corner but, let’s face it, most us have already mentally sacrificed the dream of the perfect beach body in exchange for the promise of weekly pub garden piss-ups and barbecued sausages. But never fear, there is still one sure way to shift a bit of excess weight... That’s right, as the skirts get shorter and the shirts come off, it’s time to ditch whoever it has been keeping you and your spare tire warm during winter hibernation and get ready for a summer of humping and dumping. Here’s a list of Londoners you can expect (or desperately try) to meet, and perhaps even date, during that time...
The human equivalent of the post-drink kebab
Extremely bad for you (and a major cause of heart problems) but impossible to resist. Especially after alcohol. Player, lothario, arsehole – whatever you want to call them, the basic problem is that they aspire to the 'hoes in different area codes' philosophy. Except this is London, so we guess it would be more a case of 'thorough in every borough' – less catchy and actually wildly inaccurate, as even sexual deviants don't want to spend all their time on the tube.
The future Neighbourhood Watch member
Easily identified by the M&S clothing, they have an unremarkable but well-paid job in accounting, understand the different pension options and always read the T&Cs. Practical to have about but the novelty of well-hung shelves and lifts to the airport will soon wear off when they propose moving to the suburbs. Run as fast as you can to avoid a life of well-mowed lawns and people carriers.
The tube fantasy
Fit enough that they make you want four kids, a debilitatingly large mortgage and a labrador. Unfortunately, with rising temperatures underground, the likelihood of you looking anything other than a sweat-drenched mess during rush hour on the Central line is pretty much non-existent. This is one liaison destined to be only in your mind.
The pretentious culture vulture
Can most often be spotted reading dog-eared copies of Nietzsche on public transport. They only listen to music on vinyl and will drag you to renaissance or obscure modern art exhibitions, praising the artist’s ability to capture the fragility of life using semen. Our tip? Fill up on the free booze and get out.
The one that’s got their shit together
Most notable for the fact that they’ve managed to get on the property ladder. Of course, they’re probably a drug baron, mafia boss or, even worse, a banker. But it will be worth if it means there is a chance of living in their townhouse in Hampstead. Or so you think, until you realise it means weekends spent in an IKEA in Wembley – a journey that should only be made annually and purely for the meatballs.
The walking Wikipedia page
Bogus, self-righteous but a good companion for the pub quiz – if you think winning a £30 tab is worth wanting to repeatedly stab someone in the eye (and with the cost of a pint these days we wouldn't blame you if you did). Time in the bedroom will be accompanied by a blow-by-blow account (no pun intended) of the history of condoms (well, did you know they used to be made out of lamb’s intestine? Did you?). If you do have a ball gag, now might be the time to fish it out.
Morning raves, immersive theatre and naked yoga. It's like they ate an entire year's worth of Time Out and threw it up over your diary – when all you really want to do is go down the pub and drunkenly ingest a KFC like everyone else. The only answer is to turn off your phone, close the curtains and eat a jumbo jar of Nutella while wearing only your pants. We won’t tell if you don’t.
The hot mess
They’re fun, exciting and will convince you to do tequila on a Tuesday night (a fact less to do with being spontaneous as it is to do with their not having a job). Expect a whirlwind of sex so hot that it will distract you from the fact that they still live at home – that is, until their mum politely asks you to keep it down. Uber for one!
The one with 99 problems
Like the digestive effects of late-night chicken, emotional baggage tends to be revealed when it's too late. It could be an emotional hangover from their last relationship or the shock of the cost of renting in London. Whatever the cause, dates will double as therapy sessions (but without the financial gain), leaving you drowning your sorrows as a way of dealing with theirs – avoid AA meetings by ending it now.
They'll attach themselves to you with more force than that mould your landlord has given up on. In a relationship reminiscent to that which you had with your Tamagotchi, the incessant beeping (in this case, your phone) will at first make you feel wanted but will ultimately end with you contemplating burying it/them in the garden. What can we say? iPhone battery is precious. Still, maybe use that existing juice to send a cowardly break-up text instead.
The dodgy take-away addict
You have the same taste in TV series, both hate Justin Bieber and share a love of olives. In terms of London dating, it’s the holy grail. There’s only one problem: they live in Zone 5. A thing you can no longer ignore after an hour's travel to Mordor (sorry, Morden), when you realise they live outside of the Deliveroo catchment area. Neither true love nor regular nookie is worth hours on the tube and bad take-away – back to civilisation you go.
Single and ready to mingle? Here are six dating apps that make a change from Tinder.