Searching For A Mensch

by Ronni Miller (Sarasota, FL)

I hit “send” on a nonsectarian, computerized, singles site. I thought the profile defined me. Widowed from my Irish Catholic husband who had been attracted to my legs and body as long as I left my mind somewhere else, I now hoped to find a Jewish man who was attracted to my body and mind.

Three men responded. Their profiles contained the words: “intelligent, sympathetic, curl up and grow together in each others arms.” We met. They talked.  I listened. The first, a retired scientist told me he was divorced and trying to get out of a relationship. He balanced his bulk on one hip while he withdrew his wallet to show me her picture, a zaftik, well stacked woman draped in diamonds. I, slim with barely protruding breasts, long, costume earrings, polo and jeans, realized he was looking for a clone and it wasn’t me.

The second, a retired surgeon, divorced with grandchildren had married a young, woman who filled his bed and stole from his wallet. He divorced and was forced to take jobs as a doctor in a clinic. I told him I was a writer with an unpredictable income. He sighed and said there was no chemistry for him.

The third date was with a retired man, never married who was in love with his new toy, a BMW. His picture, a rotund man with a sexy aura was not the man who sat across from me in the Italian restaurant’s bar.  This man was angular and bald and reassured me he would comfort my sorrow, something I never elicited. His last remarks were “merry Christmas”. Obviously he never had bothered to read my entire profile that identified me as Jewish.

I needed a new profile. I composed: “On this Saturday afternoon free from deadlines I will tell you what I’m looking for…”

Delete. This is not an essay or a short storyIt’s an advertisement on a single’s site. My fingers ignored the warning. “I need a mate who appreciates a woman who earns a freelance income. I need to be with a mensch, a man who from his own life experiences recognizes and appreciates me for my sincerity, diligence, creativity and works I’ve produced.”  Should I use the Yiddish word without definition?

Delete. The most popular words on men’s sights were “having fun”. “Fun for me is living in Italy and finding Alessandro, the fictional hero in my last novel.” Delete. “Fun is sharing a home wherever that is.”  Delete. “Fun is being connected on many levels…”  By the time I finished writing and editing darkness had descended.  I also felt spent and at the same time relieved.  My thoughts and feelings were cleaned out. Prospective matches or men who might become significant others would never read those words.  I would rewrite the profile again and would include the word mensch without definition.

I wrote the final, profile: “Female mensch searching for male mensch for fun and good times.”

Ronni Miller, author of Dance With The Elephants: Free Your Creativity And Write and Cocoon To Butterfly: A Metamorphosis of Personal Growth Through Expressive Writing, among other published books, is an award winning fiction author and founder and director of Write It Out®, a motivational and expressive writing program for individuals of all ages since 1992.  She teaches and lectures in the US, facilitates writing retreats in Tuscany and Cape Cod, and writes about her Jewish roots, feelings, memories and experiences in published books, short stories, essays, poems and plays for children and adults. In her private practice as a Book Midwife, she helps people birth their books. See www.writeitout.com for more information. 

 

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Filed under American Jewry, Jewish identity

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