Tuesday, October 24, 2006

Questions, Questions

There is one annoying, offensive, bothersome, anger-inducing question I am asked that seems to pop up repeatedly from all kinds of sources: Why is a cute/nice/smart/flattering adjective girl like you still single?

Why do people insist on asking this question of us singletons?

From now on, my answer is going to be, "Why not?"

It's always off-putting when someone slams you with this question in-person, for what are you supposed to say? That all the men you meet are creeps? That most of the good ones are taken and the ones who aren't are like you--single because they are not yet ready to settle down?

OK, so here are my answers, because I had my bimonthly phoner with my therapist last night and she asks me this damn question every time I talk to her. And I tell her the same things, over and over and over again.

1.) I refuse to settle.

2.) I have very a specific physical type to whom I am attracted: Dark hair, slightly Semitic looking, not short, decent body, full head of hair, handsome face.

That pretty much rules out a large part of the single, over-30, Jewish male population. And I'm not being a snob here and I'm not saying that I think I'm so good looking that I think I should be with a hottie or anything like that. What I'm saying is that I am simply not physically attracted to other types, and physical attraction is obviously an important factor in any relationship.

3.) I am actually quite chaste and do not sleep around. At all.

4.) I hate the process of dating. I would rather go to the dentist or dermatologist (esp. if Botox is involved;) than on a first date.

5.) I have been told that I can be slightly intimidating--with brains, good jewelry, designer clothing, a fabulous family, solid opinions, a good sense of humor and sophistication actually working against me.

6.) I don't cook, and I never will.

7.) I don't believe in the traditional male-female gender roles wherein the woman stays home and caters to the male's every need. That's not how it works in my family and any guy I fall for would have to be the type of guy who carries the burdens of a relationship equally, e.g. cooks, cleans, runs errands, tends to the kids, the dogs etc. as much as the woman. My dad is a case in point, and in my family, the roles were divided equally, period. My dad wants dinner? He cooks it himself. He wants his dry-cleaning picked up? He gets it himself. My mom works as hard as he does, so why should she have to go home after work and do more than he does? She shouldn't and she doesn't. Period. The end. This is a rarity in upper-middle-class Jewish culture, where many women do not work and instead go shopping all day and are completely dependent on their spouses. That's not how it works in my family and that's not what I want.

Sadly, I think most Jewish guys want a subservient woman, whether subconsciously or consciously. I am not her.

8.) I like my independence and a lot of the time, I like being alone with my thoughts. It would be nice to spend some quality time with a quality fellow a few nights a week, but I think that the other nights, I would just like my space.

9.) I am easily annoyed and like to be in control of my environment.

10.) I take up the entire bed and often talk in my sleep. Loudly.

11.) Guys suck. Girls are crazy. Stereotypes are true.

12.) I think I actually like being single, as much as I bitch and moan about the lack of decent men. Because the truth is that I think like a guy most of the time and have this "what if I could do better/the grass is always greener mentality."

13.) My parents are the perfect couple--looks, brains, success, kindness, love, respect the whole nine yards. And, as we all know, our parents are our primary role models in everything. And I don't think it's a coincidence that my younger brother, who is a perfect specimen of physical beauty and is also kind, cool and smart, is also still single. So until I find the perfect guy for me--perfect for me, not "perfect"--I shall be single, OK?

14.) And, oh yeah, I don't want kids. I'm not a baby person; I prefer dogs. Apparently this makes me some kind of freak of nature. I'd like to think it shows that I am self-actualized enough to recognize the fact that I would not be a good mother. If Roxy, my grandmother, had recognized this, she would have saved my mom and her sister a lot of grief. And a lot of money paying for hired help.

15.) I want someone smart, well-educated, funny and successful. At best, I think most guys I meet have three of the four. OK, so I only have three of the four at this point in my life too, so maybe that's part of the problem. Whatever. That's my bitch session for today.