One of the greatest mysteries in my life, besides how to program my Tivo, is why it's taking me so long to meet my soulmate.
After all, Los Angeles is filled with hundreds of thousands of women, maybe even millions, looking for their soulmate. And I've had coffee dates with seemingly most of them. You'd think by now we would have run into each other. Perhaps we've passed each other on the way to coffee dates with others who are wrong for us. That makes me sad.
Granted, I did not appear in People magazine's most eligible bachelors issue -- I guess they didn't receive my photo by press time. Still, what am I, chopped liver? I've got all my vital limbs and organs. Original teeth. Original hair. Fairly decent personal hygiene. Gainful employment. Far more attractive than the Elephant Man, and capable of cooking an omelet in a single bound. Take that, Orlando Bloom!
So, what is it? Am I being too picky? I don't think so. I mean, it's not like I'm asking for the moon and the stars. My place doesn't have room for them anyway. All I want is someone who's reasonably attractive, preferably brunette, not yet collecting Social Security, with a slender to athletic figure, who's a nonsmoker, eats healthy, regularly exercises, has a sense of humor and fewer than nine cats. There should be a few women like that in Los Angeles, wouldn't you think?
Of course, as with any fully evolved human being, I'd expect her to be optimistic, enthusiastic, energetic and creative -- not to mention considerate, affectionate and passionate. And, of course, I wouldn't say no if she turned out to be giving, flexible, romantic, spontaneous and communicative. Considering the fact that this person will hopefully be my life partner, is all that really too much to ask? I'm even willing to help with the intensive training on the affectionate and passionate parts.
All the above qualifications would naturally be the absolute minimum I'd expect, for her to even be in the ballpark of consideration, which is located just a few miles from the soccer fields of possibility. Additional icing-on-the-cake qualities might include trust, commitment, sensitivity, intellectual curiosity and a love of intimacy. Aren't these things everyone wants and deserves? I mean, come on, folks, this is basic, Relationship 101 stuff, isn't it? Hello? Operator, I think I've been cut off!
Am I being absolutely out of line to expect my romantic partner to enjoy Chinese, Indian, Italian, Japanese, Mexican, Thai and vegetarian food? Is it crazy to think she should be fond of big band, swing, classic rock, classical, folk, blues and rock music? Am I really stretching things to expect that she'll join me in biking, bowling, hiking, jogging, swimming, tennis and weight lifting? And that she won't say no to movies, plays, bookstores, comedy clubs, poetry slams, museums, concerts, walks and exploring ethnic restaurants and festivals?
Am I being outrageously unrealistic in having these kinds of expectations? And please don't misunderstand -- I'm not looking for a carbon copy of myself. I just want someone who shares most of my interests and traits and beliefs about a romantic relationship. It's not like I'm not flexible or don't accept people's differences. If she doesn't enjoy playing Scrabble, that's fine. She probably has some hobby or interest that I'm not into as well -- such as Parcheesi or the Republican Party. As long as she's Jewish.
Even if my potential soulmate has just 50 percent of the above attributes, I'd be thrilled and consider myself very lucky. And I can't help but noticing that that percentage figure seems to be shrinking as time marches on. Catch me in five years and it should be down to 10 percent. Five years after that -- if she's breathing and female, it'll be fine with me.
OK, forget all the above. I'm basically looking for someone who's nuts about me and vice-versa. And if she turns out to be a Tibetan yak-herder obsessed with barbecued pork and Yoko Ono music -- well, she's my dream girl!
Mark Miller has written for TV, movies and celebrities, been a professional stand-up comedian and a humor columnist for the Los Angeles Times Syndicate. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org