Thursday, April 26, 2007

Why I Won't Introduce Him to My Single Friends

I know a guy who most women would find desirable if they saw him listed on a dating website. He's not bad looking, is educated, has a well-paying job, and owns primo real estate.

He's always asking me, "Don't you know any nice single women?" Of course I do. They're everywhere. But I'm reluctant to introduce him to any of them.

He's stuck in a groove of work, eat, sleep, work, eat, sleep, complain about being single, work, eat, sleep, quick vacation, work, eat, sleep, buy a new car, work, eat, sleep, complain...

The dude needs to climb out of it. Take more than one vacation a year, for instance, and stop taking it with the same lame-o friend who hates women. Put yourself in a place where you'll make some new friends who'll introduce you to other new friends and new experiences.

The guy always drives a beautiful car, but he never goes anywhere. He lives in an incredible house, but he rarely invites anyone over. He did have an excellent party (he's a great cook and a good host) several years ago, but everybody on the guest list was married. Surely some of those married people had a single friend or two they could have brought along.

He should take a little more initiative. It would make him more attractive, for one thing. What woman wants to date a guy she has to drag around like a sack of bricks?

The other thing that holds me back from introducing him around: He's moody as hell. If his basketball team loses, he goes into a funk. He's just ridiculous to be around. Other things, little things, set him off as well.

I'm just not willing to take responsibility for hooking a friend up with a landmine. Maybe if he ever decides to stop being so willing to be bummed out, I'll reconsider.

A friend of mine did introduce him to a lovely woman, but he rejected her for not being "good-looking enough." This set the friend who'd made the connection on fire. The lovely woman, while not a great beauty, hardly qualified as repellent. She fit safely into the average category, as does this guy. My friend vowed never to set him up again.

Today Is My Birthday...

...and I am younger than springtime.

Someone said to me a couple of years ago, "Oh, you mustn't like having birthdays, anymore," as if I were some sort of fossil. I'm not, by the way, anything close to a fossil. But I've had friends who started complaining about feeling old at the age of 25.

One such friend is B, who is two months and two weeks older than me. He is forever saying, "Well, I'm old now." His wife, who is even younger than me, says things like, "It's over for me, so I'm living through the kids now."

This is just not my attitude.

Anybody who has ever met my father knows that he is not the most positive human in the universe ("Why must you always be so negative?" my mother used to ask him), but one good thing he taught me was to not talk yourself, or let yourself be talked into, old age. This man, who scoffed at positive thinking and described himself as not a pessimist but a realist, went around the house telling us, "I'm younger than springtime."

"Getting a little gray there, Dad," we'd say.

"My hair isn't gray," he'd answer. "It's sandy."

Today, this guy is 75 and swims every morning. He lives in Manhattan so he can walk everywhere, and he does. He does not take cabs under any circumstances. He walks down and across town to visit my brother. He will take the subway to visit one of my sisters in Queens, or to visit some old priest at Fordham University in the Bronx.

Age really doesn't mean much. Peter's brother, an athlete, died of an aneurysm at the age of 20. His great aunt still lives on her own, shops, cooks, and throws dinner parties at the age of 102.

For many years, we didn't know what her age was because she kept it a secret. She wasn't ashamed of it, but she knew that if it were common knowledge, people would treat her differently. They would limit her.

I choose not to be limited. Every day is a gift, whether you're 20 or a 102. Today is my birthday, and I am younger than springtime.