The Trader:I'm getting shirty

`There are plus points. No one can accuse us of rushing things'

ONE UNFORTUNATE effect of Rory taking off for a spur-of-the-moment two-week holiday is that it's delayed Jaap's move across to his new position as head of marketing. As this means he's still my deputy boss, we've agreed to hold off on the budding romance just a little bit longer.

No, that's not quite right. Jaap is the one who's being grown-up and sensible, which I suppose is one of the side effects of being 30, though it seems to have bypassed Rory. Jaap came up with his perfectly logical reasons over our first restaurant meal together, which wasn't a date because we're not doing those yet.

"Do you agree?" he asked as we tucked into our main courses. "Mmm," I said weakly through a mouthful of seared tuna, but what I was actually wondering was what he'd look like without his shirt. The thought was so distracting I had to change the subject, and we spent the rest of the evening in intense discussion about hedge funds, futures traders and the capacity of both for utter disaster.

Unfortunately, beguiling thoughts about Jaap aren't normally so easily banished. They're worst at night, of course. I've had to resort to reading books about options pricing to send myself to sleep because the downstairs neighbours said the shrieks from me having cold showers in the middle of the night was too disturbing.

It's just as bad at work. I'll be staring at the screens when suddenly I realise the figures don't mean a thing to me. This, I'm aware, puts me on a par with about 99.9 per cent of the rest of the population, and at least half of the senior managers in the City.

Nevertheless, it's not good. A couple of times I've nearly mispriced deals for that proverbial pain Simon - our new junior salesman - and you can just imagine how much political mileage he could get out of that.

Added to all this is the fact that no one else knows what's going on. Normally I would regard this as an advantage; the less anyone in the office knows about my private life, the better. The problem is Kirsty, who has taken rather a fancy to Jaap. To say it's unexpected is putting it mildly. Our girl's favourite slogans are generally along the lines of "a woman needs a man like a moose needs a hat rack", so I can only assume the moose has changed its mind and got into home improvements like the rest of the country.

So you can imagine how it feels to see Kirsty pressing her silk-covered arm against Jaap as she stands next to him to discuss some deal or other, and, boy, does she seem have a lot of deals to discuss at the moment. "Really, trust me, I'm not interested," Jaap says when I accuse him of enjoying the attention. "Well, perhaps a tiny bit flattered, but not interested." Then I notice the way the hair curls around his ear, and I lose concentration and have to sit down again.

Still, there are the odd plus points in all this. No one, after all, can accuse us of rushing into things, and as we all know from reading the problem pages "rushing into things" is up there with "not having a favourite Spice Girl" as one of the top Nineties crimes. Apparently, according to Jaap and any of my girlfriends still prepared to answer the phone to me, there's also the delicious thrill of anticipation.

"Well, I suppose the anticipation is rather amazing in an almost unbearable way," I tell Jaap over our second dinner-not-date together. "Maybe the moralists knew what they were on about after all." Then my thoughts begin to stray. Oh no. Oh dear. I don't think I can take another week of waiting.

Kenny Ireland, pictured in 2010.
peopleActor, from House of Cards and Benidorm, was 68
A scene from the video shows students mock rioting
newsSchool leaver's YouTube video features staging of a playground gun massacre
View from the Llanberis Track to the mountain lake Llyn
Du’r Arddu
environmentA large chunk of Mount Snowdon, in north Wales, is up for sale
A family sit and enjoy a quiet train journey
voicesForcing us to overhear dull phone conversations is an offensive act, says Simon Kelner
Arts and Entertainment
The cast of The Big Bang Theory in a still from the show
tvBig Bang Theory filming delayed by contract dispute over actors' pay
England celebrate a wicket for Moeen Ali
sportMoeen Ali stars with five wickets as Cook's men level India series
Morrissey pictured in 2013
Life and Style
The director of Wall-E Andrew Stanton with Angus MacLane's Lego model
gadgetsDesign made in Pixar animator’s spare time could get retail release
peopleGuitarist, who played with Aerosmith, Lou Reed and Alice Cooper among others, was 71
Robyn Lawley
ebookA unique anthology of reporting and analysis of a crucial period of history
i100  ... he was into holy war way before it was on trend
Arts and Entertainment
High-flyer: Chris Pratt in 'Guardians of the Galaxy'
filmThe film is surprisingly witty, but could do with taking itself more seriously, says Geoffrey Macnab
Life and Style
food + drinkVegetarians enjoy food as much as anyone else, writes Susan Elkin
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs Money & Business

1st Line Support Technician / Application Support

£20000 - £24000 per annum: Harrington Starr: A leading provider of web based m...

Team Secretary - (Client Development/Sales Team) - Wimbledon

£28000 - £32000 per annum: Ashdown Group: Secretary (Sales Team Support) - Mat...

Accountant / Assistant Management Accountant

Competitive (DOE): Guru Careers: We are looking for an Assistant Management Ac...

Senior Investment Accounting Change Manager

£600 - £700 per day + competitive: Orgtel: Senior Investment Accounting Change...

Day In a Page

Save the tiger: Tiger, tiger burning less brightly as numbers plummet

Tiger, tiger burning less brightly

When William Blake wrote his famous poem there were probably more than 100,000 tigers in the wild. These days they probably number around 3,200
A tale of two presidents: George W Bush downs his paintbrush to pen father’s life story

A tale of two presidents

George W Bush downs his paintbrush to pen father’s life story
Save the tiger: The day America’s love of backyard tigers led to a horrific bloodbath

The day America’s love of backyard tigers led to a horrific bloodbath

With only six per cent of the US population of these amazing big cats held in zoos, the Zanesville incident in 2011 was inevitable
Samuel Beckett's biographer reveals secrets of the writer's time as a French Resistance spy

How Samuel Beckett became a French Resistance spy

As this year's Samuel Beckett festival opens in Enniskillen, James Knowlson, recalls how the Irish writer risked his life for liberty and narrowly escaped capture by the Gestapo
We will remember them: relatives still honour those who fought in the Great War

We will remember them

Relatives still honour those who fought in the Great War
Star Wars Episode VII is being shot on film - and now Kodak is launching a last-ditch bid to keep celluloid alive

Kodak's last-ditch bid to keep celluloid alive

Director J J Abrams and a few digital refuseniks shoot movies on film. Simon Usborne wonders what the fuss is about
Once stilted and melodramatic, Hollywood is giving acting in video games a makeover

Acting in video games gets a makeover

David Crookes meets two of the genre's most popular voices
Could our smartphones soon be diagnosing diseases via Health Kit and Google Fit?

Could smartphones soon be diagnosing diseases?

Health Kit and Google Fit have been described as "the beginning of a health revolution"
Ryanair has turned on the 'charm offensive' but can we learn to love the cut-price carrier again?

Can we learn to love Ryanair again?

Four recent travellers give their verdicts on the carrier's improved customer service
Billionaire founder of Spanx launches range of jeans that offers

Spanx launches range of jeans

The jeans come in two styles, multiple cuts and three washes and will go on sale in the UK in October
10 best over-ear headphones

Aural pleasure: 10 best over-ear headphones

Listen to your favourite tracks with this selection, offering everything from lambskin earmuffs to stainless steel
Commonwealth Games 2014: David Millar ready to serve up gold for his beloved Scotland in the end

Commonwealth Games

David Millar ready to serve up gold for his beloved Scotland in the end
UCI Mountain Bike World Cup 2014: Downhill all the way to the top for the Atherton siblings

UCI Mountain Bike World Cup

Downhill all the way to the top for the Atherton siblings
Save the tiger: The animals bred for bones on China’s tiger farms

The animals bred for bones on China’s tiger farms

The big cats kept in captivity to perform for paying audiences and then, when dead, their bodies used to fortify wine
A former custard factory, a Midlands bog and a Leeds cemetery all included in top 50 hidden spots in the UK

A former custard factory, a Midlands bog and a Leeds cemetery

Introducing the top 50 hidden spots in Britain