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:EIght things that could be troubling George" - opinion column

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Post by Katiedot Mon 09 May 2011, 12:40

This is rather odd. It seems to be recent and came up in today's alerts yet it seems to have been written in 2007. Nevermind, it's a funny article Whaddaya think, ladies? Is this columnist right in her eight points?

From San Juan Islander
Eight Things That Could Be Bothering George
George Timothy Clooney broke up with another girlfriend [Sarah Larson - Katiedot], and I don't know what to think. Part of me is relieved, of course. I'm single and George is newly single, so that works out well. It could complicate our future together if I were presently in a committed relationship. I'm not saying that I wouldn't surmount any formidable obstacle and fight like a wounded tiger to get to him, you understand, but it could get messy.

It takes a lot of maneuvering to say you're leaving for an off-island trip to Costco when you're really sneaking out to Cannes. It's a logistical nightmare to fabricate a quilting camp on Orcas and pack both your sewing machine and a week's worth of aprés film outfits for Sundance. Those credit card charges or passport stamps from meeting George at his villa on Lake Como would likely come back and haunt me. Then, there's the omnipresent paparazzi.

I'm just saying that it's a positive that neither George nor I are, currently, seriously involved with other people. It allows us to freely explore our possibilities as a couple without fear of detection, guilt or deception. We can make a fresh start without emotional ambivalence.

But, in all honesty, George's enduring bachelorhood since one divorce in 1993 is also of some concern to me. Attractive and affable men in their late 40s usually have plenty of opportunities to fall in love with women and remarry. I'm not so wildly besotted with the institution of marriage that I believe that it's the only path to enduring happiness, but it IS a road commonly traveled by our species. This makes George a bit of an anomaly, and before I load up the truck and move to Beverly to be closer to him, I need some reassurance that there isn't anything seriously impeding his ability to commit.

To that objective, I've compiled a list of Eight Things That Could Be Bothering George, which may be preventing him from coupling in any sort of semi-permanent way.

1. Girls don't really like George.
That's not likely. We know that mammals and birds put a very high price on the appearance of potential mates. Human males, universally, go for females who display the likelihood of fertility – a curvaceous healthy body, clear skin and full lips. This is why standards of beauty for fashion models and Playboy centerfolds are wildly divergent.

Females, on the other hand, are all about "bilateral symmetry" when it comes to choosing a male. A female wants the two halves of her man to match and for the parts to be proportionate to the whole. Research shows that the nearer the man gets to this ideal, the more attractive he is to women.

George Clooney's bilateral symmetry borders on perfection. Even if he were a complete toad in other areas of his existence, his symmetry alone would simply be so spellbinding that any other flaw would be negligible – at least for awhile.

2. George doesn't really like-like girls.
I suppose this is a possibility. Plenty of men in film and politics have chosen to remain closeted for the sake of their careers and/or families. George's lady friends, however, have not lodged any complaints.

My instincts reject this conclusion. It seems that if there were anything to discover about George's preferences, we would already know.

3. George is only interested in gorgeous young women.
Well, George is certainly photographed with women who fit the Hollywood criteria of desirability. But our national aesthetic has elevated Tila Tequila and The Girls Next Door to beauties. Set Pamela Anderson (a scary caricature of a woman) up against, say, French actress Juliet Binoche and the differences become horribly painful. Poor Pam looks like she was constructed from a box of miscellaneous exaggerated woman parts; Juliet is, at an unaltered 43, the genuine article.

George has a large international meadow from which to graze. I suspect that if there are women he actually loves, they are either not quite as predictably and artificially photogenic as the ones we see him with, or they don't happen to live in America, or both.

I don't, yet, know from where he's getting his real adult female companionship, but George must be falling in love somewhere. Unless...

4. George is incapable of monogamy.
This is biologically possible. Despite our Western consensus that monogamy is normal to our species, it actually isn't. Judeo-Christian morality and our legal system put a high value on monogamy in modern times, but it's more of a Universal Collusion than a social reality. Statistics show that at least 10% of human nests have chicks in them who were sired by a different rooster than the one in the house; 50% of all married people engage in extra-marital affairs (although, this common statistic may be both inaccurate and misleading). We don't like to admit that we stray, but it is more common than not no matter how much we tut-tut disapprovingly.

I'm not celebrating it, you understand. Roaming tends to destabilize your primary relationship (there's an understatement) and suddenly your annoying habits and irritating behaviors are not so easily forgiven once your partner realizes that someone else is sharing your affection. But we invented the rules of life-mating, and we can reinvent them however we like even if all hell breaks loose.

Within our species, a tendency toward monogamy in males may be partially dictated by genes and the hormone receptors they control. Males with particularly long genetic chains for these receptors exhibit devotion to their partners and nurturing behavior toward their offspring. Males with shorter chains tend to run around and demonstrate less commitment to home and hearth. Interestingly enough (and I don't think this is necessarily hard science, but more of a casual observation by scientists), males who posses more Clooney-like symmetry have chains inversely proportional to their stud good looks. That is, the cuter the guy, the shorter the chain.

Before we get serious, I plan to have the length of George's vasopressin receptor genes measured, just to be on the safe side.

5. George had uncaring parents who did not model a nurturing relationship.
While I have not yet met Nick and Nina Clooney (although I'm planning to travel with George to Greensboro [where?!? Katiedot] for Thanksgiving), I feel like I know them already. Without making any special effort, I've seen George and his folks together several times on TV and heard George talk about them in interviews. Although I know he's an actor and is, therefore, capable of displaying emotions he may not even feel, I think George loves his parents.

If George is unable to experience long-lasting happiness with a partner, it's not because the elder Clooneys, who renewed their wedding vows in 2007, were incapable of modeling the positives aspects of monogamy and marriage.

6. George has lost his passion.
That's a hard one to call. I suppose that George could have become so apathetic from all that soulless dating that he doesn't spark as, maybe he's still got fuel, compression and combustion, but his ignition is sporadic. Still, it's the rare human being who doesn't follow the siren call of new passion, whether or not the outcome is promising. George claims that he's never going to marry again, but I haven't read that he doesn't plan to ever lose his heart again.

Tom Robbins wrote some of my favorite lines in fiction addressing this very topic in "Half Asleep in Frog Pajamas":

"...why should romance 'lead anywhere?' Passion isn't a path through the woods. Passion IS the woods. It's the deepest wildest part of the forest; the grove where the fairies still dance and obscene old vipers snooze in the boughs. Everybody but the most dried up and dysfunctional is drawn to the grove and enchanted by its mysteries..."

My money is on George - I don't think he's ready to hang up his frog pajamas just yet.

7. George is suffering from decreased testosterone.
Born in May of 1961, George is now 47. His testosterone level may have dropped as much as 70% since he peaked at 25. Even if he is the sexiest guy in the galaxy, George may be less interested in recreating with very young women. The spirit may be willing, but the flesh may just as well be off doing something more introspective and undemanding. Thus, it's possible that George may be contemplating a less testosterone-driven life.

Biologically speaking, energy levels between men and women can and do make a precipitous shift in opposite directions at mid-life. Women, often, ramp up in all areas of their lives right at about the time that men think about building a workshop and buying a band saw.

After females are relieved from the responsibilities of home and motherhood between the ages of 50 and 55, females have the biological upper hand in terms of endurance and vitality. That is, the 50-year-old male may face a challenge keeping up with a 28-year-old partner. But for a typical 50-year-old-woman, that sort of action won't even register as being more strenuous than shifting the laundry from washer to dryer.

I can't help but think that this will work to my advantage. George is getting to be an older dog that may be ready to curl up in a basket by the fire with a female from his own generation. He won't be out of the hunt for many years to come, but he won't be at the front of the pack for much longer.

8. George hasn't met the right girl (me, for instance).
According to the findings of a study that appear in the February issue of the Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, published by the American Psychological Association (APA), researchers at the University of Iowa find that opposites, in fact, do NOT attract.

Psychologist Eva C. Klohnen, Ph.D., and graduate student Shanhong Luo, M.A., of the University of Iowa examined assortative mating issues (mating based on similar or opposite characteristics) among 291 newlyweds who participated in a study called the Iowa Marital Assessment Project. Results showed that unlike in television sit-coms, people tend to marry partners who are highly similar in their attitudes and values. However, the cornerstone of actual marital harmony lies elsewhere.

Happiness with a partner relies on having similar "personality-related domains such as attachment, extraversion, conscientiousness and positive or negative emotions." What this says is that George and I could be attracted to each other initially through shared interests or political and religious beliefs. Of course we'll be delirious with joy at our intimate celebrity wedding on St. Barts. But if we are going to be happy in all of the years that follow, our basic personalities are going to have to be synchronized. Again, statistically speaking (which may not reflect individual marriages in the least), we will have to be gregarious or introverted together; organized or scattered in the same way; equally reckless or cautious; predictable or free-spirited; frugal or spendy; tardy or early for appointments in tandem.

So, do George and I have the necessary similar assortative marital characteristics? I think so. George has English bulldogs; I have a Pomeranian. I am interested in Italy and Italian culture; George has a lovely home in Italy. I go to movies; George is in movies. George has a pad in Hollywood; I have a sister in Hollywood.

I have several recordings of Rosemary Clooney, including, but not limited to, "Mambo Italiano"; George is related to Rosemary Clooney (he's her nephew, in fact). I'm originally from Michigan; George grew up in Ohio. I like his parents; he likes his parents.

As far as our "personality-domains", I don't have any firm data, but I remain hopeful. George appears pleasant. I think of myself as pleasant. We could really bond over our mutual pleasantness.

Whatever is bothering George, I look forward to our couples' therapy for years to come.

Thank you in advance for both your kind wishes and respecting our privacy should you see us around town.

© 2011 Ingrid Gabriel


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Post by fluffy Mon 09 May 2011, 13:51

Thanks Katie for this article, it's made me smile! I needed that after this "birthday weekend"! What a let down! Does anyone else feel the same?? I'm glad that Gee had if that's what he wanted, a "nice quiet" birthday, but it does make you wonder whats going on is Gee's head! Is he or isn't he?? Will he or won't he?? I think IMO, it's better to be alone and happy than with someone and miserable, or just being tolerable with that person. Or maybe Liz is getting the "Lisa effect", and we could see her around for the next 5 years....arrrrrggghhhhhhhhhhhhhh!!!!!!!!!
Ooh, Mr Clooney!

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Post by melbert Mon 09 May 2011, 15:27

Cute article Katie. She does make some valid points. Some, not so much.
George Clooney fan forever!

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