Singletude: A Positive Blog for Singles

Singletude is a positive, supportive singles blog about life choices for the new single majority. It's about dating and relationships, yes, but it's also about the other 90% of your life--family, friends, career, hobbies--and flying solo and sane in this crazy, coupled world. Singletude isn't about denying loneliness. It's about realizing that whether you're single by choice or by circumstance, this single life is your life to live.

Monday, September 21, 2009

Singles in the News: 9/13/09-9/19/09

Sincere apologies that "Singles in the News" is late again this week. I've developed a health problem that makes it difficult for me to sit at the computer for long periods of time, and I'm trying to adjust to that.

In the meantime, don't forget that the Singletude Newsreader is now available on the homepage with fresh singles news every day! You can find the newsreader right under Blog Archive. Just click on your topic of choice to display related headlines. Current topics are "single adults," "single people," "single women," "single men," "single moms," "single dads," "single mothers," "single fathers," and "single parents." If you can think of any other search terms you'd like to see, please feel free to post a comment here.

On to this week's roundup! There were a lot of stories on singles this week, but, sadly, many of them gave this week's winner of the Singleschmucker a run for its money.


"Review: I Can Do Bad All By Myself"
By Jette Kernion
Summary: This otherwise unremarkable movie review contains a rare pro-single message: "I also caught a whiff of the same sexist message that came through in Tyler Perry's earlier film Daddy's Little Girls: single women just can't lead a decent life until they marry a Good Man and get themselves some children to raise, whether those women are successful lawyers or boozy singers. In Perry's movies, everybody needs a supportive and loving spouse, a family, and a healthy church life. Otherwise, you might end up dead, or worse yet, like Madea."


"7 Types of Men Single Women Encounter"
By AV Flox
Summary: This trip down memory lane sums up the seven types of men that Helen Gurley Brown so condescendingly described in the '60s--the Eligibles, the Eligibles-but-Undesirables, the Womanizers, the Married Men, the In-the-Closet Men, the Divorcing Men, and the Cubs. Can you imagine what an uproar there would be if a single man categorized women so disparagingly, say as Nice Girls, Whores, Bitches, Career Women, Married Women, Single Moms, and Cougars? Good grief!

"Preparing to Sell Your Home"
By Ginny Mees
Summary: Many real estate articles for singles address how to buy a home, but this one explains how to prepare it for a sale. Moving from room to room, the writer lists the steps you should take to ready each space for an open house.


Singleschmucker Award
"Q&A: Comedian and Author Aaron Karo Takes Us Inside the Eternal Bachelor's Mind"
By Jessica Bartlett
The Frisky
Summary: Just what we need, another book that reinforces stereotypes about the "beer-drinking, chick-banging perennial bachelor." This one is called I'm Having More Fun Than You by Aaron Karo, who sits down to talk about it in a stunningly offensive interview in which he asserts, "If you're a [single] woman, you start to feel self-conscious, and if you're a guy, you realize, 'Wait a minute...I'm living the dream.'" This sweetheart goes on to brag about his "numbers," his female rating system, and his love 'em and leave 'em philosophy while advising single women to beware of the double standard because "women who sleep around are sluts and guys who do get book deals." Single ladies, are you crying yet? A self-proclaimed champion of bachelors, Karo does nothing to advance the cause of single men who want to be taken seriously as mature, productive individuals. Instead, his glib insistence that he speaks for his entire demographic reduces the single male to a shallow, pathetic individual who lives to objectify women and contribute nothing more to society than a bunch of used condoms. To top off this edifying exchange, Bartlett plays the jealousy card, asking Karo if this is all about how much he envies his married friends. Um, no. This is about how much of a schmuck he is. Marriage won't make him a good guy; it'll make him a married schmuck. And, to prove it, he is now the winner of his very own Singleschmucker.

" Poll: 95.5% of Single Men Feel Powerful, Career Oriented Women Are Better in Bed Than Stay-at-home Moms"
Summary: Look beyond the big, splashy headline, and you'll find a press release with more substance than it would suggest. The big find here has nothing to do with bedroom antics. It's that 88.9% of single men surveyed would prefer to be with a "corporate ladder climber" versus a "stay at home mom," but 85.8% of single women would rather be stay-at-home moms if their families could afford it. Furthermore, 100% of men surveyed said they'd be happy to have a partner who made as much or more money than they did, but 90.3% of women thought that "it would be hard for the guy to be in a relationship with a woman who makes more money, and it would cause a strain in our relationship." As with many of these online dating service polls, the results aren't reliable because the statements participants must endorse are leading questions, worded to elicit certain responses. Also, some singles may have felt pressured to respond in ways they perceived as "right" or politically correct. However, it does seem likely that there is a difference between the roles that single men and women would prefer to take in relationships, even if that difference isn't as drastic as this survey implies. Could that be yet another reason why more people are remaining single? It would have been nice if a married population had also been polled to see if attitudes toward gender roles changed with relationship experience.

"Industries with Jobs for Single Women"
By Paula Santonocito
Summary: Health care. IT. Sales. Education. The federal government. The green energy market. Any questions?

"Kate Gosselin Says Being a Single Mom Is Hard"
Summary: Yes, it is. Especially for single moms who don't have millions in the bank, a 6,000 sq. ft. estate, 24/7 hired help, and their own fanclub. Cry me a river of crocodile tears. Am I the only one who's sick and tired of listening to this woman whine? She makes a mockery of single parenthood, and her singletude is sorely lacking.


"Are Single Men at Increased Risk of Prostate Cancer?"
eFitness Now
Summary: While the article is fair-minded enough to admit that we don't know for sure and that there are other, more significant factors which predispose men to prostate cancer, it still advances the theory that single men are more susceptible because they don't have spouses to nag them into getting their annual prostate exams. Unfortunately, we can't know what the study really demonstrated because there is no link or citation.

"Banish Single Men to All-male Mega-city"
Maktoob Business
Summary: Amina al-Hail of Qatar's Ministry of Education has proposed that single men be transferred out of the capital since their record numbers are making families uncomfortable. You can't make this stuff up, folks.

"Best Place for Single Straight Women--San Jose?"
By Anna Marie Hibble
San Francisco Chronicle
Summary: Two Californian cities are contrasted by their ability to draw single female homeowners.

"Cougar Cruise: Older Love on the High Seas"
By Scott Mayerowitz
ABC News
Summary: Remember the First Annual Cougar Convention? Well, it's spawned the First International Cougar Cruise, hosted by Singles Travel Company. The weekend Mexican cruise, which costs $258-582 depending on accommodations, departs from San Diego, CA. In this story, the newly crowned Miss Cougar America shares her thoughts on May-December romance and why she likes "cubs," a rather demeaning term for adults of any age. Note also how the reporter defines cougars as "older women who prey upon young, virile men." And sap their strength, steal their "seed," and eat them afterwards, too, I suppose.

Singles With Singletude Award
"Dating Over 50 vs. Being Killed by a Terrorist"
By Kristen Meinzer
Summary: This brief, upbeat article corrects the longstanding myth that single women over 40 are more likely to be killed by terrorists than they are to get married. Not only do 41% of divorced women over 50 remarry, but the author wisely asks if it's "possible (probable, even) that a lot of women over fifty who are divorced don't WANT to be remarried." Her answer? "We think so." Unfortunately, there wasn't much competition for the Singles With Singletude Award this week, so this pro-singles article wins it easily.

"Learn to Be Smart Singles"
By Carla Hinton
Summary: A Smart Singles class in Oklahoma emphasizes "put[ting] careful thought into major relationship decisions," communicating even when it's difficult, and working to improve relationships. Says one participant, "It really teaches you to value yourself. It teaches you to figure out what your values are." Sounds like they're onto something. When is this class going nationwide?

"Surrogacy--A Gift of Modern Science"
By James Johnson
Best Syndication
Summary: Have you ever thought about becoming a single parent by a surrogate? Then check out this article, which explains the basics of surrogacy for those who might want to pursue this option.


"Money Talks. At Least to Lovers."
By Lee Dye
ABC News
Summary: New research from the University of Pennsylvania and Northwestern University concludes that "tightwads" and "spendthrifts" may be especially attracted to each other, setting these couples up for problems in long-term relationships. The survey of 1,000 single and married individuals suggests that this attraction is unconscious, reflecting a desire to stop "being too reckless, or too stingy, with your money." The study, "Fatal (Fiscal) Attraction: Tightwads and Spendthrifts in Marriage" by Scott I. Rick, et al., actually is much more relevant to marrieds than singles, but it seems aware of its potential biases, especially its all-important sample bias.

"Region Mulls Over Women's Shelter"
By David Fleischer
Summary: Responding to the finding that up to 10,000 single women live under the poverty line, York, Canada makes plans to open a homeless shelter.

"Single Women On-the-go: What to Do If You Miss Your Flight"
By Jody Yetti
Summary: Finding yourself alone in an airport in a strange city can be an anxiety-provoking experience for a single traveler, female or male. The writer explores three situations in which you might get stuck in an airport--when you're late for boarding, when you miss your connection, and when you get bumped from an overbooked flight--and lays out your options. Hint: you can talk your way out of a lot if you're pleasant and cooperative.

"What Every Man Can Learn from George Clooney"
By Sarah Hampson
The Globe and Mail
Summary: There are so many things about George Clooney that one could emulate--his professional success, his acting craft, his charity work, his gentlemanly carriage and personable demeanor. But, as usual, this disappointing article wants single men to emulate his womanizing. Hampson plays up the worst stereotypes of single men, calling Clooney a "playboy" with "commitment phobia" in danger of becoming, like all single actors, "a slightly creepy Hugh Hefneresque cliche." Yet, in the next breath, she seems to relish her identification with the aggressor, reminding single guys that "women, if treated well, will accept almost any disappointment" and egging them on to "have your tart, muffin and cupcake, and eat them, too." Thanks, Ms. Hampson, for promoting seedy stereotypes and encouraging single men to "serial date with impunity." Your single sisters thank you for your support.

"Women's Center Lands $400,000 Federal Grant"
By Phil Devitt
Summary: Transitional housing for "single women who are victims of domestic and sexual violence" gets the green light in Massachusetts.


"The Economic Benefits of Marriage: A Closing Gap"
By Barbara Kiviat
Summary: Even though married couples still reap the benefits of two incomes and over 1,100 legal and financial perks, singles are slowly catching up, especially as wages rise for working women, or so the article contends. However, it also cites the falling birthrate and increase in nontraditional living arrangements as partly responsible for singles' gains in economic security. In other words, singles are getting by because they aren't having kids or living on their own, and the author seems to view that as acceptable, which is a problem. Granted, she supports policies "to let unmarried individuals recapture some of the advantage of marriage," but these mainly apply just to single parents. It begs the question of why there should be an "advantage of marriage" at all.

"Why Women Are Attracted to Bad Boys, Thugs, and Players"
By Deborrah Cooper
Summary: Cooper does a decent job of explaining how the confidence, leadership, individuality, bravery, and resourcefulness of a "bad boy" attracts single ladies, not the callousness, arrogance, manipulation, dishonesty, or violence that may accompany him.

Do you have thoughts on any of the stories above? (When commenting, please reference the title of the article.)

Don't forget to enter the Singletude giveaway contest for your chance to win over $150 in prizes from! Time is running out!

Do you have a question for Clever Elsie about some aspect of the single life? Have an unpublished rant or rave about singlehood? Write in, and you just might see your question in a "Singletude Q&A" or your rant or rave in a "Singletude Sound-off"! Singletude makes every effort to republish submissions in their original form but reserves the right to edit your submission for length and clarity.


Special K said...

"Late?" Who makes rules about when you have to post up??? This information is always on time, you've got a life outside of keeping us informed, a fab-o one at that, and we are ALL GRATEFUL! to you for it. Thank you SO MUCH!

The Singlutionary said...

Thank you! I so very much wish you the best health! This review always makes me feel much encouraged, enlightened and slightly irate (in a good way)!

Clever Elsie said...

Special K: I guess it's just me being hard on myself! I always try to get "Singles in the News" up on Sunday and a mid-week post by Wednesday or Thursday. I think I need to re-read some of your posts about perfectionism, huh? :)

Thanks for your encouragement! It means so much to me.

Singlutionary: You're very welcome, and thanks for the health-related wishes. My tests are still not showing what the problem is, and I'm crossing my fingers they come up with an answer soon.

Thank you, as always, for being such a faithful reader and commenter!

Anonymous said...

Thanks for the news feed, Elsie. Good luck with your health issue--that must be frustrating. I have faith that you can work it out, though!

Clever Elsie said...

Christina: It's my pleasure! Thanks for your encouragement!