Gavin and Aimee

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As anyone who found their eyes boring into yet another fuzzy closeup of an engagement ring on social media will tell you, Christmas is second only to Valentine’s Day when it comes to off-the-peg, “Oh I do hope everyone’s looking” romance.

There must be something about the festive season – all gorging on tins of Roses and waiting in for Amazon deliveries for what seems like the whole of December – that makes us go gooey-eyed and decide we shouldn’t be alone anymore.

But just as it is a time of togetherness and hearts and flowers, so too can the strain of a turkey’s least favourite day of the year destroy your relationship. The wrong gift, too many drinks, flirtations with a distant relative, bad memories of festive periods past – they can all turn the most wonderful time of the year into your very own personal EastEnders.

But now it’s “all over for another year” and all that remains is Boxing Day, a stack of packaging to organise for the recycling, mild hangovers, repeats of Dad’s Army and – amid the turkey curry belches – a Guardian Blind Date.

Read what happened between Gavin, 37, and entrepreneur and 30-year-old Aimee, a PA. I’ll be back on the other side with – as it’s a reduced service today, just like the buses – reaction shots ONLY.

Gavin is up first:

gavin hoping

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aimee hoping for

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aimee first imp

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gavin talk about

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aimee talk about

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gavin awkward

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aimee awkward

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gavin table

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aimee table

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gavin best thing

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aimee best thing

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gavin three words

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aimee friends

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aimee made of you

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gavin somewhere

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aimee somewhere

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gavin kiss

aimee kiss

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gavin change

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aimee change

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gavin score

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aimee score

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gavin meet again

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aimee meet again

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Note: All the comments I make are based on the answers the Guardian chooses to publish, which may have been changed by a journalist to make for better copy. The participants in the date are aware this may happen, I assume, and know these answers will appear in the public arena.  I am sure, in real life, they are cool people. I am critiquing the answers, not the people themselves. If you are the couple in this date, please do not take this personally.  If you want to give your side of the story, get in touch and I will happily publish any rebuttal. 

Photograph: Frantzesco Kangaris; James Drew Turner, both for the Guardian

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