We're calling it - this might just be the most embarrassing dating story of all time.

So this is Dave Thornton… And that’s Sophie Monk.


Mike McColl-Jones – former head writer for Graham Kennedy – once told me that ‘comedy is laughing at others, humour is laughing at yourself.’

Well, by that reasoning this next story SHOULD be most humourous.

A few years ago I was doing a breakfast radio show. It was a fill-in shift over summer and it was broadcast nationally. (No biggie, stop bringing it up…)

Honestly, I have no idea why they gave me the job. I think they mistook me for Wil Anderson… or someone else who knew what they were actually doing. I was on air with the very left of centre and rad Dylan Lewis (for a reminder fire up your VCRs and re-watch ‘Recovery’) and Hollywood’s Sophie Monk.

Admittedly I didn’t know much about Sophie, aside from the teenage crush on Bardot and ‘that scene’ in Entourage. (Youtube search “Sophie Monk + Entourage” = shameful private viewing *hangs head in disappointment knowing he’s a creep.*) At the time, Sophie had just split from a Madden – the one without the swiveling red chair – and was only in Australia for a few weeks.

It’s easy to judge actors from what you read in the tabloids and nothing more. But once you’re in a room with a performer, especially a super famous one, you find that one thing the tabloids get right is, ah… the fact they’re incredibly good looking people.

Actors are usually hot. And as much as we would all like our cerebral brain to get to know a person on an intellectual basis, our primitive brain gets in the way with messages like ‘me likes food in my mouth hole’ and ‘me like her’. (Yes my primitive brain employs the same lexicon as The Cookie Monster).

So all of a sudden: I was flirting.

Why? Cause why not?

After three weeks on air every morning, Sophie and I had shared bad caffeine breath and mobile phone numbers.

Merry Christmas, Thorno.

Over the New Years break I had gone camping with mates on the Southern NSW coast. I then told Sophie that I could swing by Sydney and hang out, you know, if I could be bothered.

The phrase ‘just as mates…’ quickly followed. (*Pants heavily: not sleazy, not sleazy.*)

This is Dave Thornton doing his radio thing. We mentioned he was the host of Mamamia Today didn’t we? 3-4pm week days on the Austrero network *cough*

Little did Sophie know that ‘swinging by’ actually meant a last minute flight from Merimbula “airport” to Sydney costing $300 (on a comedian’s salary of… well… not lots).

Yes, Happy New Year Dave!


You’ve just caught financial diarrhea!

I never told Sophie I bought the flight just so I could see her.

I mean, newly-made radio stars like me only travel in stretch Limos drinking 80-year-old Grange out of Faberge eggs, don’t they? Not on cheap and dodgy commercial flights where they don’t even offer complimentary tea or coffee.

The next few days were spent planning my conversational A-game; dressing my chatter to impress, so to speak. Pre-prepared topics included playing ‘Marry, Kill, Shag’ with the characters of Friends and using words like ‘antithesis’ (to show I read n’ stuff).

But then: she stopped calling me.

I didn’t want to come on too strong and desperate so I felt sheepish calling her. Although I did think of getting a t-shirt printed reading ‘I’m into Monks and I’ve never been to Tibet’. Too much?

Then, the day before I was supposed to leave for Sydney, she called to say she had to head back to LA for an audition.

Sure. Why not? Sorry? What’s that noise?

Nothing – just my heart, hope, self-respect and bank account all shattering into a pile of disappointment.

No point in stressing about it.

I never took the flight and because it was within 24 hours of cancelling I never got the money back.

Chicken or the beef sir? I’ll just take the shit sandwich, thanks stewardess.

This whole sad and sorry story just sat in the ‘mates never let it go and keep heaping crap on me’ pile for the years that followed.


Now let me tell you, there is nothing like the constant reminder of desperate romantic failure to keep you looking busy at work. I tried to play it cool when Sophie started, however the first time I said ‘hi’ I could tell she was vaguely trying to place my face.

She gave me that question ‘hey……*name should be entered here*….mate…..what have you been up to…?’

Mate?!?! Yup, I was an after thought. A mate. So joy of joys… I now see Sophie pretty regularly. And my mates still heap shit on me but now they are doing so with re-inspired vigour.

Humorous, with a side order of humiliation cooked to soul destroying perfection.

Dave Thornton is one of the hosts of Mamamia Today (on the radio!) is known for his free flowing humor and extensive experience across TV, radio and stage, including regular appearances at the Melbourne International Comedy Festival.