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Shawn Millar's Blog
Why I am still single at 34
or (What I want to find in a woman)
A friend of mine showed me her list of everything she wants in a guy... so I made a list for what I want in a woman... Think I'm shooting a little high?
Posted on : 10-21-07

{From a recent Vent at ajc.com "Iím 35 and still single. Can I sue Hollywood for making me believe he wasnít the one unless he raced through an airport to tell me he loved me, or unless I heard a swelling orchestra when we kissed, touched or simply met eyes from across the room? I think Iíve got a case here!"}

A friend of mine today was talking about how a friend of hers had made a list of all the things she was looking for in a guy, and that her friend had found a guy who fit perfectly into her own list and they have been married for five years now and are very happy. My friend sent me her list that she had been working on today, explained to me how it works, and inspired me to make my own...

There are two categories. 1) Non-Negotiable, and 2) Bonus Round

For each question you're prospective dating partner does not fit in the Non-Negotiable category, you subtract 1 point. Then she said for each Bonus Round question your mate qualifies for, it would take three positive responses to Bonus questions to negate a missed Non-Negotiable question. So in essence, each positive response to a Bonus question is worth 1/3 of a point.

Below You will see why I am still single at 34. I decided to make some of the bonus questions progressive, because although they are not deal killers, they would be extremely nice added features.

I gotta say though... I think this list is pretty close. These are about all the things that go through my mind when I'm evaluating a new potential girlfriend. I've never had it ordered out, and broken down into a point structure before... but it was always there.. in the back of my mind. Although on the subject of having no control of who you fall in love with at any given time... I would say this. I think as I've lived and dated, I started off with an initial list, but it was no where near as long as it is now. As things have gone wrong, new things have been added to the list, which makes it harder to find the next person, but at the time the people I dated might very well have fit into my list as we began seeing each other, and then during and after some dating disaster... the list got longer for the next woman. I can pick out several items in the non-negotiable list which come directly from past experience, and are what I am no longer wanting to have in a woman.

That being said, I also realize having a list can reduce your chance at finding something you might not realize you are looking for. I have often had regret when I saw an opportunity, but did not act upon it. I've seldom felt regret when I've tried something and failed. But in the end, the list can be a time saving measure, allowing you less failures, and giving you more time to explore something with a better potential outcome. But you never know if that Midget with the mullet might just be your soul mate.

That being said... here's the list.


1) Intelligent
2) Confident without being too arrogant
3) Creative
4) Generally filled with Joy (Not all the time, we all have bad days)
5) Not prone to extended periods of depression (2 months +, death of family members can be an exception)
6) Honest
7) Faithful (not as in religious, as in to the relationship)
8) Ability to commit to something, preferably many things
9) Able to communicate in a positive manner
10) Understands the give and take of a conversation
11) Hard Working
12) Energetic
13) Has her own life. Able and willing to spend some times alone or with friends without me there and willing to allow me the same freedom.
14) Also able to hang out with my friends and become a welcome part of our group. If my friends love you, youíre passing a critical test
15) Not possessive or incredibly clingy
16) Willing to work when possible and help contribute to savings and retirement funds
17) Will love intellectual debate on any range of topics with either myself or my friends
18) Generally a positive person
19) Open to new ideas, not always with the intent of having someoneís mind changed, but at the very least to allow themselves the chance to strengthen their initial beliefs
20) Interested in the arts
21) Someone who can occasionally take charge of a situation and see it through to fulfillment in both a personal and commercial vein
22) Improvising ability. Has the ability to change at a momentís notice and deviate from a plan
23) Has my back when I need some help
24) As a musician over the years, I have found that I am best while being a bass player when I play in groups. Meaning, I like to support the group on the bottom, and lift them up, lift their notes up, and make sure what they are playing sounds perfect. I also believe I am that way in life. Meaning, when someone comes along with a good idea or something fun to do, they can, if they manage me well, have a tremendous rock to stand on and someone dedicated to making something perfect. So to some upÖ someone who has dreams and talents that could require my help to achieve. I like a good project.
25) Isnít 6 inches shorter than me and wears bigger pants than I do
26) A good kisser
27) An enthusiastic lover
28) An adventurous sexual spirit
29) Comfortable with public displays of affection
30) Very comfortable with private displays of affection J
31) Kind to others at all times
32) Sense of humor (or at least able to laugh at 2 out of 3 of my jokes)
33) Either already rather wise or has the ability to grow in wisdom over the years
34) I find her attractive
35) Loves cuddling
36) Feisty, has a spark in the eyes bordering on playful disobedience
37) Able to love deeply
38) Able to enjoy receiving romantic gifts and experiences, and also will reciprocate
39) Able to tolerate Phish music
40) Understanding that I am a complex and at times emotional man
41) Understanding that my brain runs at 700mph sometimes and I may not have heard what you just said for the three lines of thought and music that are running through my head. A simple ďThis is important, please listenĒ will usually suffice
42) Understanding of my need to rebel at times and to stretch the limits of what's socially expectable
43) Is not embarrassed by my occasional antics in public or my incessant talking to strangers
44) Comfortable with if not revels in occasional Chaos
45) Doesnít mind too much that I smoke and hope to quit someday
46) Doesnít mind that I drink and occasionally get drunk (Typical weekÖ Drunk 1 night, Drinking slowly 4 nights, Not drinking at all 2 nights)
47) Can both dress up and dress down
48) Could make a great Mom someday. (Iím not sold on kids, but would be nice to keep the options open)
49) Someone who enjoys outdoor activities. (I donít do them by myself, I need a partner)
50) Someone who acknowledges synergy, and believes that together the sum of two peopleĎs accomplishments can equal more throughout a lifetime than if both people were separated
51) Loves dogs
52) Doesnít love long haired cats (Iím allergic, some short hairs are fine)
53) Doesnít mind that I am going bald. Itís not my fault. Itís my genes. Blame my mother.

Bonus Round

1) Someone who will often play with the top of my right ear
2) Sings +1 2/3 points
3) Dances
4) Plays music +2/3 points
5) Writes music +1 point
6) Writes poems, scripts, stories +2/3 points
7) Acts
8) Directs
9) Shoots Video
10) Edits Video
11) Paints
12) Around 5í4í tall
13) Brunette
14) Red Head
15) Curly hair
16) 6 pack abs
17) Able to go 0 to road trip in 10 minutes
18) Cooking skills (Iím good at breakfasts and anything on the grill) +2/3 points
19) Can discuss topics involving science and physics in particular +2/3 points
20) Absolutely loves Phish music +1 2/3 points
21) Nympho +1 point
22) Able to be a lady in public and a slut in the bedroom
23) Good deep throat technique +1 point
24) Petite
25) Great legs
26) Doesnít wear make-up often or not at all
27) Can give a good massage
28) Likes camping
29) Likes traveling, when economically feasible
30) Loves Guinness
31) Doesnít mind being a sober driver on occasion
32) Hates Basketball
33) Has fashion sense, and doesnít mind improving mine
34) Loves cold weather
35) Has a happy relationship with air conditioning
36) Has a green thumb, enjoys plants and landscaping
37) Has an eye for decoration
38) Doesnít mind when I peek around the curtain while youíre showering
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On 12-11-07 ex-girlfriend said: 39) Likes, or will at least tolerate, the Green Bay Packers
40) Doesn't mind various computer parts on the kitchen room table
41) Preferably a night-owl, but definantly NOT a morning person.

On 05-20-08 Shawn Millar said: Update: Almost 2.5 half months, and everything is going good with the new girl. I'll keep my fingers crossed.
On 09-01-08 Shawn said: Well it seems some guys over at a message board picked up on this and decided to have some fun with it. Here's a link in case you want to give it a read. Seems its about 50-50 on whether or not I'm nuts.

Ashcrons Call Vault
On 05-05-09 Thitosix said: emm... amazing..
On 01-09-10 Tiara said: You are SUCH an a-hole! I'm literally laughing at your list. You're an idiot. I hate dogs. I hate Phish. And I hate you. I'm breaking up with you before we even start dating. Eww! I'm totally embarassed for you, you f*g idiot!! hahahaha!!!
On 01-09-10 Shawn Millar said: Why thanks, Tiara. I'm sure my fiance will appreciate you giving up on me so easily. For my part, I'm just thankful to get a comment from someone who actually read the post instead of bot spammers. I was glad to be able to approve a comment from an actual person.

By the way, I'm not single anymore. I got engaged over xmas, and the date is set for Oct 16th, 2010 at present. She even lets me listen too much to Phish.
On 01-09-10 Deisha said: Well Tiara, He's pretty darn amazing. And though his "list" was made premature to meeting me - I am happy to say that he's not so much asshole. Simply put - he's a man who knows what he likes and what he doesn't and to be honest - it's a breathe of fresh air. Date a few more indecisive, passive aggressive, sensitive types that fuck around on you -- and then think -I wish he had a list somewhere of the things he wants out of life. Lucky me, I am marrying someone who knows what they want.
On 01-10-10 Michelle said: I like your list and the honesty it comes with. Congrats on finding the lady that has the qualities you were looking for; I can say it has gone a little way to restoring my faith :-)
On 02-07-10 Caroline said: It would help if your items didn't disagree with each other. For instance, you want commitment, but not possessiveness/clinginess. Commitment is a two way street. If you want it, you have to give it, ergo, she wouldn't -have- to be possessive in the first place in order to have an actual relationship with you.

Also, it's obvious why you're still single. Your list is 3 times longer than any woman's. And a lot more selfish. You have to give, give, give and not ask, want, need. It's too idealistic. Sure, your friend found the "perfect guy." And all the things on your list are great things (except the last one, #38, that's just creepy). But the problem is, you're asking human beings to fit into your list instead of getting to know human beings for who they really are and just loving them as they are. You're looking for properties (the way a scientist dissects a new element) rather than enjoying the women in your life for who they already are.

And yeah, I'm no saint. I get angry when I find some old list I made 10 years ago that's so idealistic and all -- I used to make them too. There's nothing wrong with wanting good things. What's wrong is not accepting people as they are, and also, what's wrong is all the underlying -FEAR- that goes into making such lists.

You can't be afraid of what hasn't happened yet, and you can't blame yourself for making normal mistakes in picking who you have a relationship with. Try getting to know the women in your life on a closer "best friends" (with some space, please) level. Buddy up with another male friend and then take 3 or 4 female friends to the mall and a movie (and DON'T try to get physical with them, they're still just friends). I.e., just hang out, as friends. Not just once, but a few times. Change it up, regarding who and where and what... Have fun. Stop stressing over all these nitty gritty details, and know you'll never find a woman who's even -interested- in fitting into your little fantasy. How would YOU like being held up to some list like that, and then rejected over a bunch of ideals? How do you enjoy being JUDGED like that? Can you even live up to your own list? How about someone else's? Probably not mine! Heh! But does that mean I have the right to write you off? Since when is love about judging others?

Good grief, even as I write this, I'm repulsed by how I've made lists myself in the past. Sure, some relationships don't work. But that happens on it's own. You CAN'T protect yourself from a breakup. You CAN remind yourself that, in the end, if it wasn't meant to be, then at least you don't have to deal with it/her anymore, and you're now free to move on.

Life's too short for all this list making idealism. *Throws on her Darth Vader mask* "Come to the dark side..."
On 04-19-10 ana said: i liked the list! :-) cheers from brazil.
On 05-20-10 Shelley Coleman said: I like your list. Being a single gal at 34 - I get it!!!
On 06-01-10 NELLIE SIMPSON said: I do not think I have seen this depicted that way before. You actually have made this so much clearer for me. Thanks!
On 11-30-10 Shawn Millar said: I suppose I should mention for full disclosure that I am no longer single. I see that several people a day still find this post by searching for something like "34 and single". I actually got married on October 16th, 2010, and we are living happily ever after... and as insane as my list seems... she really did qualify for most of the items I added way back then.

So woohoo for me. :)

I have a beautiful wife and wonderful four year old daughter that makes my heart happy, and I think it's the best decision I've ever made in my life.

So cheer up folks... there's a match out there for even the pickiest among us.
On 01-16-11 John said: Probably because most conservatives are just intolerable narcissists.
On 07-15-12 Preeti said: wtf are you Prince William? Get real, or be prepared to stay single all your friggin Phishing life.
On 10-26-12 Chickfactor said: Wow... If all men have got similar lists then it's little wonder I'm still single at 34 :(

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