One day this week around 5.30 pm, this email arrived in the inboxes of probably everyone in my organization. For obvious reasons, I have removed the names and other specificities.
Dear Staff of ___
I am writing today with a request for help: The senior programmer of ___ at the (Jewish organization) in downtown___is (Name of Woman). She is beautiful, kind, funny, smart, compassionate, pleasant, and wonderful. She is liberal, from ___, and is one of the original members of this generation of young Jewish women who are in many ways leading the Jewish community.
She is 35, and unmarried. This is because she has spent so much time being awesome in a million other trail-blazing ways.
She would be a great wife, and a wonderful mother. But she needs help finding someone in her league. (That’s my boldness speaking, not hers). Downtown ____ actually doesn’t have that active or large of a liberal Jewish community. I think that the community of ___ is a community where the type of person ____ could marry would be.
Please help her! And, in any case, she’d be a great person to know. She is someone really important to people here in ___, and is maybe on a bit of an island sometimes out here. Please keep her in mind and support her, up here holding down the house… Her email address is ______. Please email her directly.
(Name of Dude)
I’ll give you a moment to compose yourselves.
According to my colleagues who did some intense Googling, this woman is a real person and does actually work at the referenced organization. We’re not sure if she knows about this email, if it’s supposed to be taken seriously, or what, but we’re pretty agreed on the fact that on many levels, this is totally horrifying.
1. Obviously, “beautiful” is the most important thing a woman can be, because it’s listed first.
2. In case the existence of a 35 year old unmarried woman makes you reach for the smelling salts, you should know that this one has been doing great things. It’s not because there’s something wrong with her! She absolutely wants to get married!
3. In some Jewish communities, there’s a person known as a shadchan, whose job is to find matches for other people. We’re not sure if this is a move brought to you by a shadchan or what, but a shadchan is usually someone of the same gender. The fact that this is happening in a liberal community might mean that’s not the case, but for me, it’s unsettling that a man wrote this, even (especially?) if it’s just spam.
4. A few of us discussed our serious desire to write to this person, tell her how many awesome women we know, and ask her if she’s interested. The letter doesn’t specify which gender she’s looking for.
5. If you’re reading this blog post, Woman in Question, I am rooting for you. I hope you get exactly what you want, and that you get it on your own terms and no one else’s.