Thursday, June 5, 2008

Assisted Loving: True Tales of Double Dating with My Dad

Assisted Loving: True Tales of Double Dating with My Dad: What would you do if your eighty-year-old father dragged you into his hell-bent hunt for new love? Bob Morris, a seriously single son, tells you all about it in this warm, witty, and wacky chronicle of a year of dating dangerously.

A few months after the death of his wife, Joe Morris, an affable, eccentric, bridge-obsessed octogenarian, starts flapping about for a replacement. If he can get a new hip, he figures, why not a new wife? At first, his son Bob is appalled, but suspicion quickly turns to enthusiasm as he finds himself trolling the personals, screening prospects, and offering etiquette tips, chaperoning services, and post-date assessments to his needy father.

Bob hopes that Joe will find a well-heeled lady—or at least one who is very patient—to get him out of his hair. But soon they discover that finding a new mate will not be as easy as they think: one date is too morose, another too liberal; one's a three-timer, another just needs an escort until Mr. Right comes along. Dad persists and son assists. Am I pimping for my father? he begins to wonder.

Meanwhile, Bob suffers similar frustrations; trying to find love isn't easy in a big-city market that has little use for a middle-aged gay man with an attitude and a paunch. But with the encouragement of his father (his biggest fan and the world's "most democratic Republican") he prevails. In the end, this memoir becomes a twin love story and a soulful lesson about giving and receiving affection with an open heart.

With wicked humor and a dollop of compassion, Bob Morris gleefully explores the impact of senior parents on their boomer kids and the perils of dating at any age.

About the Author: Bob Morris is a frequent contributor to the New York Times Sunday Styles section, where his "Age of Dissonance" column ran for eight years. He's been a commentator on National Public Radio's All Things Considered and a contributor to the New York Times Magazine, the New Yorker, and Travel + Leisure, among other publications. He is also a playwright and the author of two picture books, one for children and the other for reading-averse adults. He grew up on Long Island and now lives (miraculously) partnered in New York City.

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