Our own dating site humorists (Renee Taylor and Joe Bologna) have been married 48 years and have been writing and performing scenes of relationship fun and foibles for almost that long.
We asked them some questions..
For so many years you both have been writing and performing about relationships, it therefore seems pretty understandable that you are now involved with online dating sites.
Q. What is it about relationships that you both find so fascinating?
RENEE: To me, there IS such a thing as love at first sight. Which, I choose to feel anew every time I see Joe.
JOE: I’ve known of “love at first sight” marriages that didn’t last past the first “You left your socks on the floor” fight. What I find so fascinating is that, amid the epidemic of divorce in the country, we’ve been able not only to have our marriage survive all these years, but have it deepen.
RENEE: Even though, he still leaves his socks on the floor.
Q: What do you think is the secret to a long marriage?
RENEE: Well, Oscar Wilde once wrote that “Marriage is mutual misunderstanding.” So, I guess Joe and I, as of August 11, will have been mutually misunderstanding each other for 48 years.
JOE: Curiously, I just heard that they recently did a definitive study at Harvard and they ascertained that the first 48 years of a marriage are the easiest.
Q: I see you two have a Boomer dating site (for those 50+) and a Senior dating site (for those 65+). What do you find is the difference when it comes to humor?
JOE: To me there’s no age difference. Funny is funny. Irrespective of whether one is a boomer, or a senior, when it comes to love relationships, we’re all looking for the same things, have the same foibles and experience the same problems.
RENEE: Except, Boomers hate to be called Seniors; and Seniors hate being called Boomers.
Q: What advice can you give to a Boomer/Senior who wants to match up with someone on line?
RENEE: When you describe yourself. Just be real. Each one of us is unique. It’s that uniqueness that makes each of us interesting.
JOE: Everyone tends to write the same things on their profile – “I like to take long walks on the beach. I love good music and fine food. I’m sensitive and serious, but I enjoy a funny joke.” – We have a good friend who wanted to meet someone on line. He showed us how he was going to describe himself. In his need to impress, he wrote, along with myriad other attributes, “I’m a Yale graduate, a successful lawyer, a very good tennis player and I play the piano.” All true. Renee crossed out practically everything and added instead, “I’m an executive shopper at Costco.”
RENEE: He matched up with someone he’s been seeing for a year and they’re talking marriage.
JOE: People make the mistake of thinking that the secret to a lasting relationship is to find someone with the same interests as themselves. That’s only half the secret. You have to at once have the same interests and be completely opposite.
RENEE: Each person has to bring something to the other person’s life.
JOE: For a business partnership to be successful, you can’t have a Mister Inside and a Mister Inside. A Let’s Leave should marry a Let’s Stay. A Let’s Keep should marry a Let’s Throw Out.
RENEE: If a Let’s Leave marries another Let’s Leave, they’ll never stay. If two Let’s Stays get married, they’ll never leave.
JOE: Renee is a Let’s keep. I’m a Let’s Throw Out. Had Renee married another Let’s Keep, they’d end up in an episode of “Hoarders.” If I married another Let’s Throw Out, I’d walk into my living room and say, “Where do I sit?”
Q: What advice can you give about sex?
RENEE: Well, Joe and I believe that good sex is very important in a marriage.
JOE: Very important.
RENEE: But, bad sex is better than no sex at all.