I spent some time last night dredging through my poetry vault - poems that were written months or years ago and put down, left behind as I pursued new enthusiams, or otherwise determined to be unsatisfactory, and left to molder in the depths of the My Documents folder. I hauled them all up before the light, inspecting each as though it had equal probability of turning out to be a lovely diamond or a rotten apple, and saved some in a new folder, while leaving others to continue their efforts at biodegrading. I'm hoping that, out of the twenty poems I brought forward for further review, one or two will turn out to be diamonds, and maybe another three or four will prove to be salveageable. Some will, undoubtedly, when viewed in the cold light of day, show themselves so unrelentingly awful that I will have to actually burn the print-outs while uttering ritual apologies to the poetry gods.
As I went to bed last night, my eye fell upon an old wallet of mine lying in a dish on the nightstand. It had some personal ads taped to it. One of the great pleasures of my collegiate and law school life was reading personal ads in the back of the C-Ville Weekly and Washington City Paper. I still like to peruse personal ads whenever I find myself in possession of a tabloid-sized local alternative weekly. I used to circle the ones that seemed most indicative of large-scale social disabilities on the part of the writer (always three or four of those), and spend some time feeling smugly superior to those poor, anonymous, love-hunting dorks. It was a perverse pleasure, without any redeeming virtues. But on occasion, I would run into a personal ad so amazing, that I would clip it out and save it. I present two of them for your consideration now, both from decades-old publications. I hope their authors have found who and/or what they were looking for.
BUCKWHEAT IS BACK! Just in time to be yo' chocolate Easter bunny. Womantic, debonair, kallege edicated Ivy-weed university. More cultured than spoiled yogurt, and yo' hair don't have to be nappy fo' you to make me happy cuz i is a equal-opportunity romancer. Otay?
SWM SEEKS SF for mediocre pleasure. If you like waiting in line at the DMV, going to TGI Friday's for daiquiri's, or collecting new post office stamps, then I'm your lover. Me, a 5ft 10in moderately-adequate lobbyist who eats too many microwave dinners, loves watching Law & Order, and bowls at duckpin alleys for relaxation.
An earlier wallet had a third, equally-wondrous ad, but the wallet succumbed to the ravages of time. However, I have reconstructed a facsimile of this precious work of art, for your perusal and enjoyment:
ANTONYMICALLY CORRECT? Overbearing, arrogant, vapid, manipulative, uninteresting loser with low self-esteem seeks malicious, neurotic, petty, inarticulate, and angry harridan to ignore, maltreat, and despise.
I'm not saying any of these ads piqued my romantic interest, but I would sure like to meet the people who wrote them! Even the fascinatingly self-deprecating man who collects stamps and goes duckpin bowling. It would be like meeting a character from a British comic novel.