'I find confidence sexy': Meet the real farmer Alex
AS IT turns out, finding love is a far more complicated when there's a "women-drought" on and you're juggling shift work and a 78,000-acre property.
You might know him as the man who was rejected by all five women within his maxed out Tinder radius of 160km, but there's a lot more to Alex Taylor than meets the eye as Australia will soon discover in the new season of Chanel 7's Farmer Wants a Wife.
An exclusive one-on-one interview with the busy 28-year-old loveable larrikin from Cunnamulla revealed his hopes of finding love, dating and whether it's okay to get intimate on the first rendezvous.
Once first impressions are out of the way, it's obvious the cheeky young cattle and sheep farmer doesn't fit the traditional bill for your country born and bred Queensland bloke.
A self-described indie-music loving world traveller, Alex said his idea of the perfect date involved a night out at the theatre to see a musical or a concert followed by a couple of drinks at a bar, of course.
Alex said the decision to take his soulmate search on reality television came to him after returning from the UK.
"Most of my school friends and girls I've known for half my life are all getting coupled up," he said.
"It felt like everyone I know is partnered up and settling down and having kids and I'm really single, I'm not even seeing anyone I'm just working in Roma or on the farm.
"I was like "f**k, I just need to do something - I'm not even meeting anyone.
"I came home from two years in the UK in January and have been really lonely all year and I was at a party with some old friends they jokingly suggested I should go on Farmer Wants a Wife."
AN IMPULSE DECISION
Acting on impulse, Alex applied through the website.
"Then I sent in some photos and got a message back saying they really liked my profile and wanted to know a bit more about me and the farm," he said.
"Then we did a video interview and they asked me a lot of questions about the farm and whether I'd ever been in love and when was my last relationship and what I'm looking for in a girl and a relationship, as well as why it's been hard for me to find love.
"They showed the video to the production team and I must have done something right because they really liked my interview and before I knew it, I had made it to the top 20.
"Then we went through a bit of a casting process and they came out and shot a little video with me out on the farm and they told me I'd made top seven and had to shut down all my social media platforms and dating apps because I may or may not be going online on Friday.
"So when my profile went up online I actually found out at the same time as everyone else.
"It was all very abrupt. I only applied six weeks ago now, and it's all happened pretty quickly."
THE PROBLEM WITH LOVE
Cupid has been no stranger to visiting Alex, the young farmer said there have definitely been times he was close to falling head over work boots but as with all matters of the heart, timing often has a funny way of getting in the road.
"There's been plenty of girls I've really liked of course, but either the feeling hasn't been reciprocated or the relationship hasn't gone on long enough or there have been girls that have really liked me, but I hadn't put any real effort into it.
"When you've only been in a relationship with someone for three to six months and then it doesn't really work out I suppose you can't really call that love, so no I don't think so.
In today's tech-driven dating world Alex said finding love is much harder than it was for previous generations.
"We've got too much variety and there's too many different avenues out there to explore," he said.
Name: Alex Taylor
Birthday: April 21, 1991
Star sign: Taurus
Likes: Live music concerts, rugby union, theatre shows, confident women and travelling.
Dislikes: Toxic feminism and masculinity, shy and self-conscious women.
Talents: Building things from scratch, speaking some conversational German.
"People were a lot more content with settling down at 22 with one person and now more and more people want to have a career and work right up until their 30s, party and travel and then think about settling down."
"It's harder for us too in this day and age because when our parents were settling down it was ingrained in you that marriage was for life and for better or worse - not that I'm religious - but I do believe people are stepping away from religion and the ideologies of marriage, which is why there's definitely more break down in relationships.
As for being unlucky in love himself, Alex believes timing has been the main contributing factor to his setbacks.
"It's all about timing and meeting the right person and sometimes it just doesn't fall into place quite as quickly as we would like it to."
TO SWIPE OR NOT TO SWIPE?
Despite dabbling in a bit of Tinder swiping now and again and a short stint on a similar dating app Bumble when he lived in London, Alex says he'd much rather meet a girl in real life - a far cry from his upcoming experiences in front of a national audience.
"Smart phones were only really coming out when I was leaving high school, we had Facebook on the computer desktop, but it certainly wasn't at our fingertips like it is now.
"My sister, who is 30, and I have talked about it in the past and we both agree that we're just on the cusp where it's feels a little bit awkward for us to use dating apps … I'd love to meet a woman at a bar in real life without all this messaging back and forward.
"Half of my biggest problem is time management. I work on the rigs so I'm two weeks on, one week off then I'm back to the farm to work flat out and help dad with the sheep and cattle - it's hectic."
But don't get him wrong, Alex says he's still got a lot of energy and time for when the right person comes into his life but does admit 2019 has been a bit of a stale trot for the young rooster.
"I haven't been with anyone this whole year and you just start to feel a little bit like you've been put on the back of the shelf getting a bit dusty… I'm not shy or anything, I just haven't been able to get myself out there to meet anyone. It's frustrating more than anything.
With an ageing and male-heavy population of about 1500 Cunnamulla isn't exactly the kind of honey pot when it comes to attracting young, single females.
LOVE OUT WEST
Alex admitted the watering holes of the southwest make for great places to have a beer, but haven't been known as spots to find a love interest.
"Nothing against Cunnamulla, I'm a born and bred local boy myself but the town is a little bit dead right now," he said.
"We're in the midst of this terrible drought, the worst on record, so there's a number of social factors in why there's a bit of a women-drought on and why young people in general just aren't in Cunnamulla right now.
While he enjoys some of the delights larger towns and the city have to offer, Alex said he has plans to stay on the farm and take over running the show one day and is hoping to find a woman keen to join him out west.
"I help run our 78,000-acre cattle and sheep property in a partnership with my dad and two sisters. While I have travelled overseas and lived in Toowoomba while I got my carpentry apprentice, I do have dreams of staying on the land and continuing farming.
Family orientated, Alex says he is very close to his parents and two sisters.
"I'm the fourth generation to help run the property and I'd really like to raise my kids out here on the farm. Family means a lot to me so it's important for me to be with someone who can see themselves out here with me raising kids one day."
Now Alex is just waiting for filming to begin mid-January and said he can't wait for it to all kick off.
"I think it's going to be a hell of a lot of fun. I mean, what bloke doesn't want four girls out on your farm all fighting for his attention … It's the closest thing to winning the lottery isn't it?
"In all seriousness, I do feel the girls have it a bit rough, coming out here and then not knowing whether or not they will be around to see another week, it's really tough on them, but I suppose that's the whole idea of the show."
Alex says he isn't worried about the girls using the show as a platform to launch their television careers.
"Put it this way, filming runs from mid-January to mid-February so it's going to be the hottest time of the year … It's going to be pretty miserable so if they're coming on the show for the wrong reasons they're going to get caught out pretty quick.
"There's no two ways about it, the Cunnamulla summer is going to sort the princesses out."
But Alex says he's pretty optimistic there's a chance he could be about to meet his soulmate.
By far the nation's most successful reality love show, Farmer Wants A Wife has created more happily-ever-afters than any other, with nine marriages and 19 babies and another on the way.
THE IDEAL GIRL
"It's true what they say, I find confidence a very sexy thing," Alex said.
"I really want to end up with a fun, upbeat girl. Someone that's up for having a drink and a party, I've always been attracted to girls that can hold their own.
"I do like to be in charge, but I really like independent women - girls that can enjoy socialising with my mates and having a yarn … It's a really attractive thing and you notice those people when they're in a room don't you?
Not one to hold back from sharing his inner thoughts, Alex admitted he's physically attracted to curvy girls and women with a good set of teeth.
"Girls are meant to have lines that's definitely a big turn on for me as well as pretty blue eyes if you've got that then I'm all yours."
Alex said half the fun is not really know what he's gotten himself into and he won't get to meet the girls until filming begins.
"It's very exciting I think the producers really want us to have the element of surprise and a bit of that spark, or love at first sight because it makes for better television."
GETTING BACK ON THE HORSE
Alex admitted coming on the show will be quite the drought breaker for him after not being on a single date in 18 months.
But the romantic at heart said he wasn't too concerned about losing his touch.
"I'm not too worried about it, it's like riding a bike. I just have to jump back on.
"The last time I took a girl on a date was in London and I took her out to this really famous place called the Piano Bar then we went and saw Matilda at the theatre, so I definitely like to take my girl out and treat her, it's going to be fun to have the opportunity to do that again.
A true romantic, Alex has already been brewing up some nice date ideas to take his potential love interests on around the Cunnamulla region.
"There are some really nice little places out west I've suggested we go on for the show. There's the Eulo Artesian Spa Baths and the bilby sanctuary in Charleville which would make for a really cute date I reckon.
"Who knows, we might even get them to do a little bit of farm work around the place."
As for sex on the first date, ever the modern-day optimist Alex believes sometimes holding out is half the fun.
"If sex on the first date is on the cards, well I'm not going to knock it, but if you've got to hold out and wait a bit longer well that's half the allure and half the surprise.
"I think it's definitely important to have that initial physical attraction is there before the emotional (connection). Obviously the older you get the less your worried about it but sex is definitely the fun part of the relationship."
If farmer Alex sounds right up your alley but he seems a bit too young for you, you're in luck.
Mr Taylor, Alex's father is also currently single and looking for love.
"Dad is really excited for the show … He said everyone in Cunnamulla has been ringing up and talking about it around town too, so it's causing quite a stir around town.
"He said when the producers came out if they could help him out by also finding him a wife, that that'd be great."
Originally published as 'I find confidence sexy': Meet the real farmer Alex