Saturday, August 17, 2013

The Tom Waits rule

My friend La Chimiste has just one rule of dating: the Tom Waits rule. The rule is that if a potential boyfriend likes Tom Waits, green flag. If not, beware! Not good dating material.

I like the Tom Waits rule for its simplicity: it's very easy to follow. Liking Tom Waits shows that you have some nuance; his voice isn't exactly a crowd pleaser. A person who likes Tom Waits is capable of appreciating the unusual. A lot of people like Tom Waits, but a lot of people also dislike him, so it excludes a good-sized percentage of people but still leaves a big enough pool that the pickings aren't too slim. Also, it's funny because it's so random -- which, let's face it, is how dating often feels.

Of course, one can't be too inflexible about the Tom Waits rule, and in fact La Chimiste's boyfriend detests Tom Waits.

Some of my friends feel that the Tom Waits rule would be a stronger filter if another person were added to the rule: you have to like Tom Waits AND someone else to get a green flag. Here are a few candidates:

Atul Gawande
Pros: Smart people like AG. He's not white, so it gives the rule some diversity.
Cons: If it becomes the Tom Waits and Atul Gawande rule, that's a very male-dominated rule.

Dolly Parton
Pros: She's awesome and adds a woman to the mix. Like Tom Waits, she's not exactly mainstream (in New England, anyway).
Cons: There's no intelligence factor included in liking DP.

Hillary Clinton
Pros: A man who likes HC isn't afraid of smart, powerful women.
Cons: Using Hillary feels out of keeping with the random spirit of the Tom Waits rule.

Other ideas?

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