Where the Men Are

On Life and Love after 50 eNewsletter – February 19, 2021

By columnist Thomas P Blake

       Where the Men Are

Today’s eNewsletter reminds me of two songs. The first is Connie Francis’ 1961 song, “Where the Boys Are,” (link at end of this eNewsletter) which was the theme song for a movie of the same name. The movie was about four coeds seeking love on spring break in Florida.  

At least twice a month for the 26 years I’ve been writing about dating, I’ve been asked “Where the men are?” and “Where do I meet senior men?” by women. If my math is correct, that would be approximately 624 times. And that’s a conservative number.

Sometimes, the question is stated differently. For example, this January, a woman wanted to know “where to meet a nice, decent man?” and another asked, “Where the senior single men are.”

My answer has always been that there is no place, of which I’m aware, where older single senior men go to hang out with the sole intention of meeting single women close to their age. Admittedly, there are some singles functions that single men attend, but the ratio is usually somewhere near four to five women to each man.

And then women say, “Some of those men aren’t potential mate-material.” Reasons cited: age, weight, still-married, broke, smoker, drinker, couch potato, kids living at home—the list can go on and on. So, in effect, a more realistic ratio is even greater, like six or seven to one, women to men. For women, those are pretty discouraging numbers.

However, one of our woman Champs has discovered a place where there are lots of older single unattached men. She emailed, “I live in California, but I bought a condo on the beach in Sarasota, Florida. I love it there!

“If it weren’t for my grandson living in California, I would move to Sarasota. Beautiful beaches, tons of museums, theaters, fantastic restaurants, hiking, biking, and water sports. It reminds me of a smaller, less-busy San Diego.

“Californians and East-coasters are moving to Sarasota in droves. A California couple rented, sight unseen, my house in Sarasota because they are building a custom home in Sarasota.”

Our Champ provided Sarasota population demographics: “41 percent married, 59 percent single, divorced or widowed; 48.7 percent men, 53.3 percent women. Where are you ever going to get those odds? The average male age is 46.2 and the female age is 52.4 (respective numbers higher in South Sarasota).

“I meet retired single men everywhere in Sarasota! Grocery store, beach, home-improvement stores, restaurants/ bars, walking, and living in my condo complex. It’s like a candy store for senior women!”

A candy store for senior women? Sarasota sounds too good to be true for senior women wanting to know where the eligible men are. But, Sarasota comes with some quirks, which our Champ explained:

“I returned from Florida yesterday and wanted to share some experiences that might make you laugh. In Sarasota, I made an appointment with my painter, Oscar (not his true name), a mid-30-year-old, to repaint my window sills after having hurricane windows installed. I employed him three times previously for various paint jobs. 

“For some odd reason, this young man, after viewing the window sills and slider frames, decided to hug me and kiss me on the lips. I was so shocked I pushed him away and said “Oscar! I am old enough to be your grandmother! Please don’t do that!”

Tom’s comment: (Not to mention the danger during the pandemic).

“He left, looking chagrinned. Oscar returned and completed the paint job appearing crestfallen and quiet. He only charged me $250 for about six hours of work and said it was a ‘special discount’ just for me. I wonder what he would have charged if I had let him kiss me? LOL!

“The next day, I met with a photographer (mid-70s) to take photos of my condo for renting purposes. His name was the same as my ex-husband’s name so we joked about the coincidence. He is a widower who lost his wife to cancer after 52 years of marriage. He asked me to go on a date. 

“He has had no luck with internet dating sites. He was a very nice man but I didn’t feel any chemistry. He was quite overweight. I told him I was leaving for CA in a few days so dating was probably not in our future. He still insisted I call him when I return to Florida. Maybe he will have lost some weight by then?

“Soooo…for all those women looking for a man, Sarasota is just teeming with single men of all ages looking for women. At least that has been my experience. BTW, my girlfriend, her husband, and I went out to happy hour one evening and another evening went out to dinner, then dancing.  So enjoyable to do some ‘normal’ activities during this pandemic.”

The second song our Champ’s story reminds me of is the Eagles’ “Lyin’ Eyes,” because of this line:

                                “Every form of refuge has its price.”

Sarasota sounds like a great place to take refuge for senior single women, but, at a price: be prepared to be kissed by your 40-year-younger painter. Oh, and then there’s the cost of moving there.

The link to the Eagles’ song Lyin’ Eyes


The link to Connie Francis singing “Where the Boys Are.”



Now, with signs that the pandemic is easing, face-to-face dating will become more prevalent. Let’s hear what has changed in senior dating. Send me your questions and experiences to share with our Champs.

Also, some of you have asked why some weeks you are emailed two copies of the eNewsletter. The reason: If by Sunday, you haven’t opened Friday’s eNewsletter, I resend a copy because some people have told me that they inadvertently deleted the first one and want a second one sent. By sending a Sunday copy,only to people who didn’t open,  it saves me from sending a bunch of individual emails. 

Why I don’t play Cupid for senior singles

  On Life and Love after 50 eNewsletter – January 29,2021

By Thomas P. Blake columnist

                        Why I don’t play Cupid for senior singles

Why I’ not a matchmaker

A woman Champ suggested this week that I add playing cupid to my job description.

Cheryl emailed, “Because you know a lot of single men and women, you would be a great person to introduce them. For me, it may not work because I live in L.A. County near LAX, about an hour’s drive from South Orange County. As you have previously mentioned, senior singles are not interested in driving long distances – especially at night.

“I’m not saying you should become a full-blown matchmaker – that would take a lot of work and responsibility. But there are other ways you could become a ‘go-between.’ 

“How about allowing your readers to sign up on an ‘eligible-list’ page on your http://www.findingloveafter50.com website, and perhaps have them include the general area where they live, their status (divorced, widowed, for example), and a photo? 

An ‘eligible-list’ with a mini-profile of each person? While Cheryl’s intentions are honorable, she is in effect suggesting I become a matchmaker.

Cheryl added, “I’m sure there’s a great guy in my area who is looking for me!”

Cheryl, I know where there’s a single guy. But you’d have to travel to Dingle, Ireland to meet him
                                                                                 photo by Tom Blake

In 27 years of column writing, I’ve encountered hundreds of seniors who’ve found love, and thousands who haven’t. And I’ve tried to introduce some of them including widowers, widows, never-married and divorced people, particularly when they live within 25 miles of each other. Some have become couples, but in most cases, no match was made. I heard the words, “We just weren’t right for each other,” often.

Some people who had asked me to find them a mate were annoyed that I wasted their time, even though they were the ones who approached me in the first place. Older singles, who are set in their ways, can be very picky and hard to please. It’s often a no-win situation. For example:

A woman who asked me to introduce her said, “You didn’t tell me he drinks bourbon, gambles on football, talks too much, and snores.”

Me: “Sorry, I didn’t know that.”

Another reason I won’t match-make is there are more single women seeking love at age 65 compared to men of the same age; the ratio of single women to single men is about four-to-one. At age 75, that ratio increases to approximately five-to-one.

A similar ratio would exist on an eligible list website page. Men who are out there wouldn’t post to it. And then I’d hear the all-too-familiar cry: “Where are the men?” Imagine, having an eligible page that listed only women? It’d be a flopper-rue of a page.

Would including an “eligible” page on my website as Cheryl suggests yield successful matchups? Perhaps a few, if men participated. However, the time, effort, and cost to create and update a list would be prohibitive.

Nearly every day during the pandemic, an email arrives in my inbox promoting new dating and/or matchmaking sites. One matchmaker included these words:

“Local matchmaker has more older women and needs more men to match with female clients.”

The same site said its workers do their best to find that person and introduce you.

“Do their best?” Wow, matchmakers who often charge between $700 and $25,000 are only as good as the clients they have in their dating pool.

Will I add a “fixer-upper” list to my website? No thanks. However, when I sense that two people might make a match–similar ages or the same city or similar interests–I will mention to each one about the other one. If they both agree, I will share an email address but I must have permission from both of them. I’ve done it many times through the years. 

When the pandemic is under control, my partner Greta and I will resume the monthly senior singles meet and greet gatherings at Tutor and Spunky’s Deli in Dana Point. Many people met their mates there. But I didn’t fix them up. They did it themselves by being willing to get off their couches and out of their houses.

And with some of those successful couples, I was amazed when they got together. I wouldn’t have thought to introduce them, thinking their interests were too different. Hence, I would have been wrong.

So, Cheryl, Tom Blake will remain a columnist and leave the matchmaking to the dating sites and matchmakers. They are the so-called “pros” and the only thing they lack: single men.  

Here’s the website link again. Tell me where on the site the page you suggest would go: http://www.findingloveafter50.com


A quick mention of thanks to so many of you who sent me your condolences regarding the death of my brother. I was surprised at the number of you who’ve had similar losses. 

Where are the men?

On Life and Love after 50 eNewsletter – May 24, 2019 – Two parts today:

Part One “From the Mailbag”

Part 2 – Wednesday night’s Meet and Greet (with photos)

Part One  – From the mailbag – responses to Where are the men?

I’m surprised. Despite last week’s eNewsletter being laden with Census Bureau statistical information about people age 65 and older, which I thought would be boring to some, a surprising number of sage responses arrived in my email inbox.

Some of the responses, had the usual off-the-wall twists and humor in them. A few of those comments follow, with my responses back to the senders. Women wonder: where are senior men?

Mohammed Gariba (unedited) emailed, “How can i get widow to marry  iam in Ghana”

As you can surmise, particularly from the poor grammar, I suspected a scammer. Not to mention, an individual who was geographically undesirable. Usually, I ignore emails like that. But, a couple of brief replies popped into my head so I answered Mohammed:

“How can you get a widow to marry you? Have you asked one?”

And this: “Move to Alaska.”

He responded, “I will do that if I have the means.”

His dilemma solved.


Andrew emailed, “Tom, you wrote, When you consider that many of those men included are in a relationship, or don’t want to be in a relationship, or never married, or aren’t ‘relationship material,’ as some women point out, the realistic ratios are much larger.”

Maybe there are a similar proportion of women in a relationship, etc., etc., so the realistic ratios remain the same.”

Tom to Andrew: “Good point. I considered it. But more women than men express the not-relationship-material aspect. Regardless, whatever the actual, realistic, ratio, it’s still tougher on women than men. Where are senior single men is asked often. ”


Thomas (not I) emailed, “Five years ago, I lived in San Clemente and twice attended your deli Greet and Meets. I have since moved to Salida, CO.

“I still believe I am one of those men that can’t find that woman to be with the rest of my life. I bought a motor home this past year and spent the winter in Texas and AZ. I am 80 and in good health. So, I am asking the question, ‘Where are all the women?’”

My reply, “There are lots of wonderful, single women in Texas and AZ. Perhaps your RV park was geographically undesirable. Once you are encamped in those areas, you still need to get off the couch, and out of the motor coach, and seek outside activities where others will be. Just hanging around the RV park won’t be enough.


My reply: “I didn’t intend for the column to be depressing; I felt it substantiated what I’ve been saying for years–the ratios make it more difficult for women.

“And yet, it’s not impossible to find a mate later in life. I published a hardcover book titled, How 50 Couples Found Love After 50, a few years back that featured 58 couples who had found love.


Many of those couples are still Champs and remain together. Meeting a mate later in life takes effort, and some luck. But, it can and does happen.


Champ Jim, a humor columnist (RaisingDad column) for the Desert Exposure Magazine in New Mexico (www.desertexposure.com), responded to the May 9 eNewsletter, about the woman who complained about her partner who spends time in the backyard, ostensibly flirting with neighbor women.

Jim wrote, “I wasn’t planning on responding, but since the response to that lady’s complaints seems to be 100% against her partner, I thought I’d give an opposing perspective.

“First, two stories:

(1) “I have a cousin who went on a group trip to Italy with his wife. During the trip, whenever he would recommend that they do something, his wife would defer. She preferred staying at the hotel and enjoying the amenities.

“My cousin was disappointed, but what could he do? He went off to enjoy the sights alone. When they returned from the trip, within the year, he and his wife had divorced, and he was involved with another lady he had met on the trip.

(2) “My mother could talk to anyone. My father, not so much. Whenever they would go anywhere, my mother would end up talking to whomever happened to be within hearing distance. My father, on the other hand, would be sidelined by his own choice, fuming. Who was at fault? My friendly mother or my unsocial father?

“Like you, I don’t know that lady’s situation, but I do know there are two sides to every story. Other than (he) being, in her opinion, overly friendly, her partner doesn’t seem to be committing any great sin.

“Maybe she can quibble about how the household chores have shaken out, but, really, what has this guy done? Is he a drunk? A freeloader? A womanizer? Does he beat her? Berate her? Disappear for great lengths of time with no explanations upon his return?

“Apparently, no. His sin is that he likes to work on his yard and flirt with his neighbors. Is that so bad?

“Like my cousin’s ex-wife, maybe if she had joined him in the activities he enjoyed, she wouldn’t have felt quite so ignored. Same for my father.”Ramping up for the Wednesday night Meet and Greet at Tutor and Spunky’s Deli in Dana Point, CA.

Susie, Fairfax, Va., emailed on Tuesday, prior to the event, “Why don’t they have more meet and greets for older, young-at-heart people over 70?”

Tom’s response to Susie: “My question is: Who are the they you refer to? The government? Restaurants? Senior Centers?

“My experience, as a former restaurant owner, is: Meet and Greets take time to plan, and then it’s hard to predict who will show up. If, not enough men attend, women complain.

“Plus, for restaurants, seniors don’t spend much money so there is little financial incentive for restaurants to sponsor events like that. The restaurants prepare food that might go to waste if the turnout is poor. Then, they have extra staff members on hand and that costs money.

“The event Greta and I helped with took hours of prep work by the deli staff and new owners, including purchasing extra wine and beer, promoting the event, and contacting people. I hoped for at least 50 attendees.

The Champs who sent RSVPs were all women, not one of our male Champs said they would attend; so, I hoped this wouldn’t be a disappointing event. I understand that people have other obligations and can’t always attend.

One woman wrote: “After 17 years of being single after two divorces, I’ve seen what’s out there. It ain’t pretty.”

I responded: “Who knows? Maybe a few good men will attend the Meet and Greet in Dana Point on Wednesday from 5 to 7. You live just down the road from Dana Point, 10 to 15 minutes away. Might you join us at Tutor and Spunky’s Deli, 34085 Pacific Coast Highway, DP 92629?

She said, “I don’t have a car, so no.”

What? I thought, but didn’t say to her: “Have you heard of Lyft or Uber?”

Her comment made me think about an article, that Kip, a buddy who kayaks at Dana Point Harbor, told me about, that appeared in the May 14, 2019, Los Angeles Times online newspaper. It was titled, “For lonely men in Spanish towns, the ‘caravan of women’ brings hope of love,” written by Meg Bernhard.

I accessed the article online out of curiosity because of our “Where are the men?” article. I ended up reading it because of how well written it was—a fascinating article.

It’s too long to get into it in this eNewsletter, other than to say, it talks about 50 single older women who live in Madrid, Spain. They each paid $23 to take a charter bus to Calzadilla De La Cueza Spain, a tiny town (24 permanent residents), four hours away, in hopes of meeting the single men there. They were in the tiny town in a bar for about eight hours.

The return bus headed back to Madrid at 4 a.m., arriving at 8. Women in this country who think they have a hard time meeting men, should read this story. Again, it is incredible journalism.

Bottom line: It’s hard to meet older single men anywhere in the world. Not just in the USA. Link to that story:


And finally, Champ Sue said, “I live near Chicago and don’t know how to find the boys! I just keep hoping. Have a beautiful day.”

Part 2 – Meet and Greet recap from Wednesday night 

We hadn’t had a Meet and Greet at Tutor and Spunky’s Deli in Dana Point CA in four years. So, I didn’t know what to expect.

Early crowd at the deli

People started arriving before 5 p.m. By 5:15, there were 50 people there. By 5:30, nearly 100. They kept coming into the deli. Greta was filling in name tags as fast as she could write. Jackie Hammond and her sister Judy Frank arrived.

Greta, Jackie, Tom, and Jackie’s sister Judy (Jackie graciously shared many of the photos taken with her camera that are shown here today)

About 15 of our Champs attended. Stella took a bus from Newport Beach, just as she did five years ago. Marinell came early and introduced herself. Then Mary Ann joined the party.

   Greta and Tom with Mary Ann (photo courtesy of Mary Ann)

Champ Susie was there and seemed thrilled with the group. Mirtha came with friends. Dee, who had been to many Meet and Greets, arrived with her daughter Julie, and Julie’ significant other, Vince.

                   And yes there were men, I count five in this picture 

Guys there: included Ken, Jim, Cluny, Vince, Cliffy, Bob and Mike—seven guy pals of mine.

Yes, there were more single women than men, but men did show. At one point, I counted 20 men interspersed with the women. It was a great way to introduce the new deli owners, Samantha and Elena, who hugged more people in one night than most of us hug in a year.

One table of women had an international flare—they were from Mexico, France, Bulgaria, and Iran.

Greta’s family and friends were there in droves—sisters DeDe and Jeanne, and her son, Tony, who was the volunteer bartender, just as he’d been five years before, and her daughter Terri. Her long-time friend Lula. Several members of Greta’s Dippy Dolphins Water Aerobics class attended.

Tom with 2 owners–Elena and Samantha– behind him on the right side

One of the first couples who met at our first Meet and Greet six years ago—Fred and Joanne—were there with friends. And another couple, Jack and Joanne (not the same Joanne) who say they met because of my articles that encouraged them to keep trying years ago were all smiles.

Tony the bartender (Greta’s son). He looks busy because–he was

What more can I say? Great night. When addressing the group, I asked the people, when for the June Meet and Greet? Oh my Gosh. Not on Tuesdays, that’s Taco Tuesdays. Wednesdays? No, that’s country dancing night at
Stillwater Restaurant and some people go to church on that night. Third Thursday? Nope, that’s the Chamber of Commerce mixer night.

At home, Greta and I flipped a coin. It was heads: the next event will be Thursday, June 27, 5 to 7 p.m. My guess is, Tutor and Spunky’s is going to be packed on that night.  Stay tuned.