Top Ten

For the last couple of years, my oldest sister has been getting on me about making my “top ten.” What is that, you ask? Well a top ten is your list of non-negotiables/must-haves that you’d look for in your future husband (or wife). I’ve kind of skirted around making one since she first mentioned it and told me a few of hers…BUT, I finally got around to starting a list and writing it down when I was visiting her a couple of weeks ago.

First, I thought this was a little ridiculous, but once I really started to think about the qualities I want in my mate and put them to paper, I realized how much it easier it will be to not waste time with people who fall short of those top ten. Now I know there is a lot of room for this to get really superficial really quickly, but if your really taking the time to think about the person you’d spend the rest of your life with (and if you’re bouncing off ideas with people who are already married), keeping things in perspective isn’t too difficult.

So here’s my rough/unedited list–it still has to be narrowed down a bit more:

1. Taller than me; or, if similar in height to me, then someone with more breadth: Ok, this really does sound superficial, but I guess it’s a protective thing for me. I like to feel physically surrounded by someone. Plus, I’m already 5’4”–average for a woman, but that would be a pretty short guy

2. Someone who takes care of their body: I use this to cover his being both athletic and caring about what he eats. After spending a year working at a health & fitness non-profit, and as someone very concerned with physical well being, it is very important to me that my future mate is on the same page. Not narcissistic, but someone who works out, enjoys doing physical/sportsy/outdoorsy things, and someone who doesn’t eat garbage.

3. Smarter than me: This sounds weird, BUT, if he isn’t as smart, if not smarter than me, I will run him over. I like to debate/hypothesize/intellectualize a lot, and if he can’t keep up, and come with some great counterpoints, keep me on my toes, then I’m going to think he’s dumb. And if I think he’s dumb, should I really marry him?

4. No weapon carrying for a living: Pretty self-explanatory. No cops, prison guards, military, none of it. Some women can do it, I could not. First it’s the constant worry about him getting shot at work, and then it’s the psychological mess o of always being around criminals; on the hunt for criminals; or worse, at war. No thank you.

5. Someone who will entertain my artsy side: I love dancing, so no wallflowers–even if he isn’t a great dancer I want him to at least be willing to give it a try. I’m a musician, so I love going out to hear live music, as well as museums, poetry, dance performances, theater, etc. I mean I’m flexible, we can compromise–he goes to the whatever show with me, and I’ll go to the game with him. Hell, I’ll even learn all the rules and people’s names on his our favorite team.

6. Older than me: well we all have heard the stats on men maturing later than women, so it just kind of goes without saying that I want to marry someone older than me. However (as recent events have shown), I guess I need to put an upper limit on that. I’ll ballpark no more than 7 years older than me. But at the end of the day, this may not make my top ten cut, because it really is flexible depending on the person/ality.

7. No kids/divorce: Yeah, no drama, no baby mamas, no ex-wives, and I’d really prefer not raise someone else’s children. It may be selfish, but I would like to start from square one with my future husband; have our little honeymoon period of married life-just the two of us-before starting our own family.

8. Some spiritual background: I’m not very specific about religion as I have an interesting relationship with religion itself. But I’m a very spiritual person, and I cannot believe there is nothing to believe in. So really, no atheists. But just to clarify, I’m really not trying to convert o anything that would be an upheaval to my life.

9. Adventurous: I’m not looking for some reckless daredevil, but someone who will and wants to try new things, visit new places, taste new foods, and so on; someone open.

10.  Someone with a critical consciousness about race/class/gender issues, etc.: My sister asked me whether race was important. While I think I’d prefer to marry someone of African descent, what I know is more important is that they have a critical consciousness about race, class, gender, and other issues more so than what they look like.

11. Someone able to articulate their emotions: I like to talk things out, so if he can’t at least articulate what’s bothering him, or if he just shuts down and/or becomes an incoherent frustrated mess, it’s not going to work.

12. 3 H’s: Humility, Humor, Honesty: Someone who can keep things in perspective; laugh at himself and keep me laughing as well; honest with me, honest with himself.

13. No time served: I guess I’d make the exception to civil disobedience, but in general, really no jail time. Another one that may not make top ten, but it is important.

Like I said, this is just a rough draft, obviously not down to ten.

What are your top ten?