May 31, 2011
My first impression of Nicole, when she met me at my local Starbucks, was how adult-like she seems. I know that sounds silly — seeing as she’s a 31-year-old woman — but I’m 36, and my mannerisms probably haven’t changed a whole lot since I was a teenager. I still beatbox to myself, continuing my childhood fantasy of being one of the members of the Fat Boys. One day …
Born in Jersey and raised in L.A., Nicole thought she’d grow up to be a writer. She studied journalism in college, and when Kodak offered an internship to film students, she applied for the job. Though she wasn’t really a film student, they loved her essay and offered her the internship. She was assigned to shadow a film publicist, a field she knew nothing about. She loved it. After college, she worked for Disney in PR and then moved around the entertainment world for a while. And then she quit to start her own company. “I’m really nice, and this business is brutal, and I want to be a wife and mom and don’t want to be a bitter stereotypical woman … so I started a business at 25. It’s crazy.” Her PR company, NMPR, specializes in local businesses. “I wanted to distinguish myself, so I found a niche. L.A.-based clients only.”
When Nicole’s father was diagnosed with cancer, she went running back to corporate America. Maybe it was the fear of the unknown, and working in a corporate job felt the most stable. “But I wasn’t happy.” So she quit her job and opened up her own business again. “I think I live my life in a better way since it’s happened. I let the people around me know how I feel about them.”
“Do you want a family?” I ask. She doesn’t hesitate: “100 percent — which means I have to scale back my work. And I acknowledge that. You can’t have everything. And that’s OK.” What’s most strange about her is the dichotomy between this hardworking woman and the doting Jewish mother inside. It’s like they’re at odds with each other. But she explains it like this: “I’m very serious about my work, and I’m so much more playful outside of it. I know how to sit back and relax, and turn it on when I do the work stuff.”
When it comes to dating, Nicole likes her men confident. “It’s nice to be with a guy who lets you be a lady. I’m not asking for the moon and stars here. I didn’t even bring up money!” she realizes. “It’s not about material stuff to me. That stuff comes.” She laughs to herself as she says this. Then she qualifies, “It’s an added bonus, I guess.”
When I ask her how she describes herself, she says, “I’m girly but can throw on a baseball hat and go sit in a park or watch sports.” Her friends like to go to bars to meet men, but she doesn’t think that way. “If I run into him at the beach, great, or if I’m at Whole Foods and drop milk on him, great. It would be nice to find someone, but it’s not my mission. You put yourself out there and do your best, but it’s up to God. I really believe that.”
Seth Menachem is an actor and writer living in Los Angeles with his wife and daughter. You can see more of his work on his Web site, sethmenachem.com, and meet even more single peeps at mysinglepeeps.com.