Wednesday, January 25, 2006

My Perfect Lover

Tagged! Who me? Yes, me. Vishwa tagged me to write about “What eight qualities do I look for in a perfect lover?” I really don’t think much about the perfect lover, but since we are approaching February and Saint Valentine’s Day, I’ll give it a shot:

Honesty. I look for honesty in all of my relationships. That may be a lot to ask of some people. I know many who would rather tell me what they think I want to hear than tell me the truth. Now, I don’t mean brutal honesty, such as “I will not make love to you because you are too fat,” which is what one potential lover said to me. Rather, by honesty, I simply mean a candidness and openness that leads to really knowing one another. As I try to be straight with others, I expect the same from others.

Compassion. I look for compassion, not only towards me but toward all living creatures. I have a friend—perhaps a potential lover—who cannot stomach cats. Of course, my housemate, Alex, is a cat. At times she has joked about cooking Alex in the microwave and at others times has walked up behind him, stomped her foot, and scared one of his nine lives out of him. But still she is able to show compassion toward Alex and other cats. I appreciate this in her because I know she is allergic to cat dander and being around Alex literally makes her ill.

Intelligence. I hope I don’t sound snobbish, but I really do seek a lover who is intelligent. I have dated women who could have posed for Playboy but can’t carry on a conversation for more than three minutes.

A Sense of Humor. I like to laugh and I like to be around people who laugh and have a sense of humor. That doesn’t mean that they have to share my sometimes absurd wit or appreciate my jokes. It does mean that they have an exuberance that goes beyond the serious side of life.

Adventurous. I like taking risks and I enjoy a woman who is also a risk taker. By that, I don’t mean one—as one of my friends is—who takes unnecessary and sometimes hazardous or self-destructive risks. By adventurous I mean a woman isn’t timid, but who is daring, courageous, willing to explore new things and places—a woman who may even be audacious at times.

Sensuous. I am not speaking of being sensuous in the sexual meaning of the term—although I have never rejected a woman who is—but in an aesthetic way. A woman who enjoys splendid food and drink, who can enjoy exotic places or a stroll through the countryside, who isn’t bored gazing at fine art. I once had the pleasure of introducing a woman to the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York City. She argued with me—she did not want to spend an afternoon in such a “highbrow” place—she said she would rather see a Broadway show (which is what we later did). However, once inside the Met, her sensuous nature took over and, as she later shared with me, she returned many times after I had departed the city.

A Sense of Social Justice. I suspect that having a sense of social justice isn’t found on too many lists of qualities one desires in the perfect lover. However, since justice—and peace—are important to me, I much prefer being with people who share those concerns. One of my favorite women—a potential lover?—doesn’t outwardly express her concern for justice. However, if one really gets to know her, one sees in her actions her reaching out to people who are oppressed and her indignation when confronted with injustice.

Love. I have saved love for last. A perfect lover for me would be a woman who loves me as much as I love her. I have loved women who did not love me and I have been loved by women who I may have liked and respected, but did not love. Without mutual love there can be no passion in any relationship between a man and a woman.


Well, Vishwa, that's my list. I considered several other attributes of my perfect lover, but these eight came out on top. Thank you for tagging me; I don’t believe I would have performed this exercise had you not challenged me to do so.


  1. I think that would make sense for pretty much everyone. I wouldn't say wanting someone intelligenet is snobby. If you want it to last your lover must also be your friend. At least that is my belief.

  2. I love your list. I think it is just perfect...


  3. Nick...that was a good and thoughtful list. I believe, such lists bring out the hidden person within us; and what we want in others reflects what we actually are or want to be.

  4. You know Ive been subjected to such a tag.And in my head I know what I want, but doubt I can express it as well as you have.Very realistic attributes.I totally endorse intelligence amongst all the others.

  5. El—I wondered about putting down “Intelligence” because I am not sure that is the most accurate term for what I need in a lover. My ex-wife was highly intelligent and yet she often could not carry on an intelligent conversation. A friend I know now is neither as intelligent nor educated as my ex-wife, yet she can be an intriguing conversationalist.

    jd’s rose—Thank you! A “perfect” list of the attributes of a perfect lover. I like that idea.

    Kylee—Thank you. The more I think about it, though, the more I want to edit the list. I suppose it really isn’t perfect yet!

    Vishwa—I agree that such lists being out the “hidden person within us.” When attempting to describe a person who is for one the “perfect lover” I think there is quite a bit of projection going on, plus I realize that I am in some manner describing what Jung called my own anima—the feminine aspect of my own personality.

    Educatedunemployed—Thank you for the compliment. Of course, using words is my profession so I hope I can express my thoughts well. Unfortunately, with this specific question, my thoughts are not organized as distinctly as if I were discussing something else.

  6. I just love your list. Honesty, but not brutal- fantastic!
    Intelligence is a biggie for me. I swore i'd never date a man that didnt go to college. Phil never wanted to date a law student. (Because the ones he 'saw' were all snobbish, mommy and daddy paying their way, expect things on a silver platter- yes, sadly that is 80% of the student body at my school)
    Yet, the night he and I met- we clicked. He is very intelligent, but not college educated. I'm one of the few decent law students. He's even said that the friends I have he really likes, because they're not all snobbish and stuck-up.

    I learned, college does not equal intelligence. It was a good lesson!

  7. Lawbrat—You make a couple of excellent points!

    I agree completely: college does not equal intelligence! I will be meeting two women today. I am lunching with an associate who has three college degrees. We will be discussing a subject that is within her professional paradigm. However, if we get off that subject she will not be able to carry on an intelligent conversation. This evening a personal friend is coming to my house to cook us both lasagna. Her college consists of an associate’s degree. However, no matter what we talk about, what she says will be intriguing. (Can you guess which woman interests me the most?)

    When you say that “we clicked” I think you have hit the central point of the perfect relationship. No matter what I have listed as the attributes of my perfect lover, it is when I click with another person that the “love” really begins.

  8. I'm thinking you prefer the one coming to cook lasagna!

    Being able to carry on a flowing conversation, not related to 1 or 2 topics is so important.

    I wrote about how Phil and I met, here:

    You can check it out if you to, you're, of course, not obligated.

    Have fun tonight!

  9. if only this ideal person existed.
    It's what people aspire to become, I guess, but if anyday I meet someone with even half those qualities, I'd consider myself lucky. and for once I don't think this has to do with my low expectations lol. Key terms of your list, however, include intelligence, sense of humor, and compassion. all the way.

  10. Hey Nick. I don't think any list could be perfect...but then I don't think we could ever find a person to fit "perfectly" either. I think there has to be a certain level of flexability...with all the key elements being met MOST of the time.

  11. Lawbrat—Yes, I much prefer the woman coming to cook lasagna! However, as so often happens in life, even though we were together for about five hours today, the lasagna has been postponed until tomorrow. That’s OK, because it mean we’ll be together tomorrow, too.

    I’ll check out the link to the story of how you and Phil met.

    I’ve had fun—as well a several other emotions!

    Sheeesh—You are so right! Ideal and perfect people just don’t exist! Except, maybe, when we place them on pedestals and cast perfection onto them. But that never lasts!!

    There is a story that Anthony de Mello told about a man who spent his life seeking the ideal woman. I’ll have to post it as a blog soon.

    I hope you find a guy who lives up to your desire as much as possible. Mostly, as I told a woman some time ago, I hope you can find a guy who loves you as much as you love him. I think that is as close to “perfection” as we can find.

    You and I have to have a talk some day bout your “low expectations!”

    Kylee—I agree: I don’t think that a list could be perfect any more than a human can be perfect. I also agree that flexibility is vital in all human relationships. While shopping for the making of lasagna this afternoon, it seems my good friend got teed off at me for no apparent reason. I rather took it out on her by becoming huffy. Later, after we have postponed the lasagna until tomorrow, we talked about our mutual irritation with each other. I admitted I was pissed because she seemed pissed at me. She responded that it wasn’t me she was pissed at, but a woman who was making demands on her that she could not meet. After we talked and sorted it all out, we were back to being good friends again. Had I exercised the flexibility to ignore her huffy mood without assuming it was directed at me, we would have had a much more civil—and enjoyable—day together.

  12. Just read this one. Well, our mutual friend doesn't qualify, does she? She would never make it past the first one: Honesty!

  13. Mike in Tucson—No, our mutual friend doesn’t pass the first one. I sat by yesterday while she used my cell phone to telephone her father. I was amazed—maybe not—at the untruths she told him.

    Jody—thank you.