A mild-mannered registered professional engineer by day, with one or two surprises beneath the surface, like Clark Kent.
OK, maybe not THAT big of a surprise.
I don't have a specific "type". Whether we hit it off is much more important than whether you're the right “type”, but for starters, you should be intelligent, articulate and accomplished. You should have a Nobel, Pulitzer, patent, element named after you, Grammy or the like, speak four languages fluently and sing classical opera in two, (coloratura optional) run a five-minute mile, clear your own height, press your own weight, consistently score 1,000 Tetris points and have mastered an aircraft, sailboat, dressage, Tunierhundesport or something similar. You'll have a dazzling smile, 32 teeth (or more; I'm not prejudiced against immigrants), mischievous eyes, 20/10 vision, legs that go all the way down to the floor, a classic sense of style, monumental strength of character and be at least six feet tall. (I want to see your face, not just the top of your head)
I'm looking for an onion. A woman with many so layers that every time I peel one away, I discover another surprise beneath the surface.
Update: I have received the odd e-mail or two advising me to relax my standards if I ever expect to find someone because nobody in the world measures up to all that. So be it; I'm nothing if not flexible: Six feet (with heels) will suffice.
Even though a lot of people here seem to find it difficult, describing myself is quite easy: I resemble Dilbert. Same height, build, glasses, fashion sense & hair. Similar age, same education, same job, same luck with women, same ease with small talk, same attitudes, same sense of humor – a little on the dry, droll side and filled with obscure references, a bit like Tom Lehrer without a piano.
The Top Ten things you need to know about me:
1: I've lived in Illinois, California, Ohio & Michigan and been to Canada, England, South Africa, Germany and thirty states. I've lived here since 1995, but I'm not a Michigan native and don't have any family or other roots here.
2: I'm mainly a city kid but once managed to learn to drive horses, clean hooves, change shoes and diagnose founder. I've also done rural electrification and water systems.
3: I was the firstborn of three and the runt of the litter.
4: I am Scottish and have tossed the caber, but never tried catching one.
Caber tossers and sumo wrestlers are athletes, right? If you're looking for a guy with an "athletic" build, then I still have it.
5: I cook. Not haggis and not epic culinary events, but I'm a pretty good everyday cook. I bake awesome cookies. (but seldom do; they go right to my waistline)
6: I've been published in both refereed journals and popular literature.
7: I enjoy kissing and I'm better at it than any Saint Bernard you've ever met. Probably better than Saint Bernard, himself. (especially now!)
8: I have never caused a serious motor-vehicle or airplane crash, although my obituary was once broadcast on the 11:00 news. The TV crew didn't check facts very thoroughly and greatly exaggerated their report of my demise.
9: I seldom listen to music but trombone solos give me goosebumps.
10: I seldom watch spectator sports unless I know one of the competitors personally, and even then not very intently. I was a Chicago Cubs fan in my youth and have endured enough heartbreak for one lifetime.
11: I can count better than I can anticipate how long a Top Ten list will end up being.
12: I'm rather handy around the house & garage. This shouldn't be much of a surprise; since I've worked construction, been a machinist, millwright and industrial electrician; car, truck, bicycle & forklift mechanic, race team pit crew, and now a powertrain engineer. I didn't hesitate to buy a house built in 1927.
13: I am studying German and occasionally babble something completely incomprehensible to English-speaking people. Quite probably also to German-speaking people. Ich studiere, aber ich kampfe noch. Curiously enough, studying a second language has caused my Englisch grammar & spelling to suffer.
14: I don't use the Oxford Comma, but neither do I argue about it.
15: I have an Erdös number of 4, but remain unconvinced that a 4 is meaningful.
16: I have never married or sired offspring, though I did once adopt a puppy and share a good life with him until a spinal tumor exacted its toll, 105 dog-years later. I have not been dispatched to this planet to interbreed with humans, but don't object to the idea.
17: I have run for Congress, been a political prisoner (never charged or convicted, just jailed) and penned a call-to-action piece from jail, the lesser-known “Letter from the Brighton Jail”.
18: I built a solar-powered race car and raced it a thousand miles. (on a team, of course, not singlehandedly)
19: I'm reasonably creative but not terribly artistic. The visual arts just aren't very important to me. I'm perfectly comfortable in a house with bare walls or a car with no style.
20: It may seem like I have a skeleton in my closet, but it's actually only last year's Hide & Seek champion.
21: The thing that makes me unique? I have thirteen thoracic vertebrae and five floating ribs.
22: I like to talk about (and debate) deep things – technology, economics, public policy – and I am a veritable cornucopia of obscure and often trivial facts. If you're shallow, don't enjoy the back-and-forth, or prefer to sit quietly and let the television do the talking, it probably won't work out.
One final update: You must be OK with the idea of a tandem bicycle. It has been a life-long dream of mine – my first after-school job was in a bicycle shop and my elementary school had a program for the blind. After not getting one while I was single, I made the mistake of getting involved with a woman who's a bit of a couch potato and hated the idea. So instead of fulfilling the dream, I gravitated toward becoming a tater myself. BUT ... that was then; this is now! I invested in a spring tuneup for my (single) bicycle and I'm coming back.
Correction: The phrase "looking for a hot, sexy llama" should have read "looking for a hot, sexy mama".
(as it turns out, using spell-check software is a dreadfully poor substitute for actually poofreading)
To all the llama aficionados who wrote, and particularly to those who included photographs: My apologies for having dashed your hopes but it was really nothing more than a typographical error.
Conversation Starters (i.e. what you'd like to do on a first date...)
I loathe first dates. So awkward, so much pressure, the uncomfortable silences, the job-interview atmosphere. So here's my proposal: We skip the first date ... and the second ... and start with the third or fourth, where we're starting to let our hair down and get comfortable with each other.
Failing that, anywhere quiet where we can relax, talk and get acquainted - a casual lunch, a bowling alley, (they're so quiet you can hear a pin drop!) miniature golfing, shooting pool, riding in an elevator during a power failure, working a tramp steamer en route to Paraguay, ... you tell me. If you prefer something a little more outdoorsy, let's find the nearest Scottish Games and go caber-catching. (I'll bring the hardhats) Or if you preference runs toward the quaint & quirky, maybe Marvin's Marvelous Mechanical Museum. (for what it's worth: if you preference doesn't run toward the quaint & quirky, you're reading the wrong profile page)
I respond to everyone who seems sincere, even if I don't think we're a match, and mercilessly delete everyone else without a reply or a second thought. I recommend you do likewise. Much less wasted time, much less angst.
I've been here on Plenty of Fish for a quite a while now and haven't hooked a keeper. Anybody care to tell me what's wrong?