Are you cute or crazy?

cute-and-crazyI’ve had a lot of people asking me about a new reality dating show on VH1 called Tough Love, in which “handsome, cocky and smart” matchmaker Steven Ward helps a handful of “desperate and single” spinsters … er … smoking hotties find true love by offering them brutally honest advice on how to trap a man.  (Hint: change your personality!)


As with previous reality dating shows, such as ABC’s now-defunct How to Get the Guy, Tough Love slaps labels on the contestants in order to facilitate the objectification process. Or as they like to spin it, the cast is comprised of “classic archetypes of the single woman.” You’ve got your Miss Picky, your Miss Bridezilla, your Miss Golddigger, and your classic “Too Much Too Soon” romantic. Apparently, Miss Too Smart For This Crap was busy. Although she did post a lovely video commentary about the show here.


While the “single-attention-whores-living-together-under-one-roof” motif is nothing new, there is a segment of the show called “Cute or Crazy?” that sort of stands out, probably because it focuses on human behavior, an endlessly fascinating topic (more on this here). In the style of a fake game show, male contestants sound off as to whether the contestants’ behavior is acceptably adorable or bunny-boiling-scary-as-hell.


Not surprisingly, almost everything is judged as crazy: organizing your cupboards, letting your cat decide whether you date someone, designing your own wedding dress, etc.


Hmmm, now that I think about it, that first one does seem a little off.


While on one hand, I hate the idea of the game show’s basic message (quirky girls have cooties!) seeping into the minds of impressionable youngins, I love hearing about people’s weird habits and oddball obsessions. Especially as it pertains to dating. Maybe it’s because I’ve been there. I once went out on a date with a guy whose house was completely filled with serial killer paraphernalia. Not just a book or two. We’re talking floor to ceiling paintings, posters, statues, skulls, books, movies, memorabilia, you name it (to read more on this and other scary first dates, click here). I was slightly freaked and the date lasted all of 20 minutes. In other words, he scored a big fat crazy on the Cute or Crazy? scale.  


What about you? Have you been freaked out by a date’s behavior?  Or has someone been scared off by something you’ve done? What’s cute and what’s crazy in your dating book? Miss Happily Single would LOVE to know.

6 Responses to “Are you cute or crazy?”

  1. 1 Judy April 30, 2009 at 1:37 pm

    I didn’t realize how many crime books I had until a friend was over, looked at my shelves and told me that if she didn’t know me, she’d be afraid of me. I still think that’s better than shelves full of books like “The Secret.” But I don’t have souvenirs and you were probably right to run.

    The thing that really annoys me about the show is how the 37-year-old is billed as this tragic spinster. Not just by the producers, but by the other women. Many of whom look just as old—or older—than TTS. I’m talking to you, Russian babe.

  2. 2 onely May 1, 2009 at 9:11 pm

    Judy, you are SO RIGHT about the “tragic spinster” looking as young as the rest, who look older than they should because of all that makeup crap. Of course, the 37-yr-old would have to look as good as the younger women, because the producers of these shows select cookie-cutter clones of each other. They think they’re being all diverse including a (one!!!) black woman and a Serbian (?), but really they’re just choosing women of the same height and bust-waist-hips measurements, all with long hair, and none with any unique facial features like a big nose (the big nose issue is my personal hangup, and I am constantly being disappointed not to see big-nosed women on TV).

    Oh, that serial killer fanatic sounds horrifying, Single Shot. I am so glad you got out of that house.


  3. 3 Kristy in Bellingham May 4, 2009 at 1:59 pm

    I agree with what’s been said about the women they pick for these shows…I’d like to know what the producers say to the average-looking women who apply to be on these shows (you know they’re out there). E.g., are the producers as brutal as modeling agencies (“Your eyes are too close together, your hair isn’t long enough, you have bad skin,” etc.)

    Beyond that, what I wanna know, Diane, is how exactly DID you extricate yourself from that serial killer fanatic?! I mean, you wouldn’t want to alert him to the fact you were scared $#!%less, right? (That could be a turn on if he was dangerous).

    What DID you say/do?

    • 4 singleshot1 May 4, 2009 at 5:04 pm

      Thanks for the great comments on this, guys. I’m going to have to check out this show a little more closely; it sounds even more hideous than I realized.

      With regard to Serial Killer Guy, I have to say I never got a “dangerous” vibe off of him and I’m pretty sensitive to that stuff. And he was very self-aware with regard to his creepy interest and the effect it would have on most people. Before we set foot in his apartment, he tried to prepare me, but there was truly no preparation for all the scary sh*t he had strewn about the place (including, I might add, one of John Wayne Gacy’s elfin princess paintings). I guess it’s just a matter of degree. Like Judy, I have a ton of true crime books on my shelves and spend at least 10 hours a week watching “dead body” TV (Law & Order, CSI, Medium, The Closer, etc). But for me, it’s an interest; it’s not my life. This guy was WAY too immersed for my taste, although he ended up marrying a woman I knew who was equally obsessed with serial killers. The two of them are blissfully happy, I guess. To each his own and all that.

      As for extricating myself that night, I just told him, “I want to leave” and we were out of there. He even drove me home, although (understandably) I didn’t ask him in. Who knows, if I had, he might have been as scared of my three accordions and ginormous collection of vintage dating and sex manuals as I was of his Ted Bundy posters and clown killer art.

  4. 5 Singletude June 9, 2009 at 2:23 am

    I’ve never seen the show, but having seen many shows like it, I am SO irritated by all the sweeping generalizations and stereotypes that are applied to people who are FINE just the way they are. Everyone has quirks, and if we all had cameras following us 24/7, I firmly believe most of us would seem in need of the occasional straitjacket. Plus, as the serial killer story highlights, there really is someone for everyone out there, and the idea of self-righteous TV producers passing judgment on women who have minor eccentricities really rankles!

    Personally, I’ve never been freaked out by a date’s behavior in the sense that I’ve been scared, although I’ve certainly been turned off by slovenly dressers, touchy-feely types, and the like. However, I still laugh about how one guy I was seeing got freaked out over my tendency to occasionally talk to myself. I remember one evening, I went into the other room to look for something and casually commented to no one in particular, “Now, where is my such-and-such?” When I returned, he threw me a suspicious squint and asked who I was talking to. When I ‘fessed up that he had overheard a brief convo between me, myself, and I, he immediately said, “You know, my schizotypal grandmother used to talk to herself a lot. That’s not healthy, don’t you think?” I hardly knew whether to laugh him out of the house or flip him the bird and insult his parentage. In the end, I stupidly did neither. In fact, I’m fairly sure I kissed the fool not five minutes later. Those were the days in which I suffered many fools for the sake of matrimania.

  5. 6 Ed Smith May 20, 2012 at 4:50 pm

    **” I once went out on a date with a guy whose house was completely filled with serial killer paraphernalia. Not just a book or two. We’re talking floor to ceiling paintings, posters, statues, skulls, books, movies, memorabilia, you name it”**
    This sounds like many people I have known who are studying serial killers for their psychology and law enforcement courses. Since tv has highlighted the criminal profiler as a profession many people are considering this as a career choice. Personally I am going for the full on sociopathic experience. I am getting a degree in Business management . BD

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What’s my story?

I'm a former freelance writer, now gainfully employed at Fred Hutch (views and f-bombs all my own).

I write about health and health care; cancer research and the cancer experience; dating, lifestyle and singles issues and lots of other stuff including humor and fiction and a few songs here and there.

Book info below.

Looking for my breast cancer blog? Go to doublewhammied

Where are my books?

How to Date in a Post-Dating World A dating manual for the modern, mangled single.

Single State of the Union
Single women speak out on life, love and the pursuit of happiness.

Fifty Shades of Brains
Sex. Zombies. Really annoying present tense narration.

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April 2009

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