Hey ladies, perpetual bachelor George Clooney may be off the market now but there’s another option for those still seeking Prince Charming.
Or, shall I saw, President Vlad?
After 30 years of matrimony, Russian President Vladimir Putin and his wife pulled the trigger on their year-long separation with divorce papers earlier this month. Vlad is now ready to get back out there but after so many years, where to begin in the search for his modern-day Anna Karenina? It’s not like President Barack Obama will jump at the chance to pay wingman and the former “Queer Eye for the Straight Guy” isn’t likely to reassemble and offer pointers on catching somebody’s attention. Thankfully, former action figure Steven Seagal has expressed his lifelong affection for his pal Putin — who knew? — so perhaps the Russian leader won’t have to navigate alone the treacherous pool of gold-diggers, casual hookups and rejects from “Flavor of Love.”
The first option in this post-Cold War world, of course, is online dating. Putin should probably steer away from OkCupid since he apparently shares similar views on acceptable relationships with former Mozilla CEO Brendan Eich who was infamously ousted over his Proposition 8 campaign donation after the dating site asked users to try a different browser.
But there are plenty of other sites out there where Putin can gamble on love, hoping the women responding to his ads actually exist and he doesn’t end up on an episode of “Catfish.” Of course, Putin could take a cue from the Opening Ceremonies of the Sochi Olympics and polish any flaws out of his photo, too.
Before you get too excited, though, at the fantasy of a mail-order leader, consider if he’s really the type of guy over whom women should battle. Putin has spent years cultivating himself as the outdoorsy type so there’s a chance his profile would include something about long walks on the sands of the Caspian Sea or making snow angels in the Siberian flurries.
He also reportedly had a long fling with a former Olympic gymnast — another sign that he needs somebody athletic or maybe an indication he appreciates flexibility.
Yet, what else do we know of the man who looks a little like Anderson Cooper’s less photogenic and more dour third cousin?
First of all, Putin apparently likes to always get his own way. Just ask Crimea. And Ukraine.
On the other hand, a potential Putin honey would save money by not needing to shell out for expensive delicate unmentionables. Beginning in July, a new law kicks in banning any lingerie that doesn’t contain at least 94 percent cotton. Goodbye Victoria’s Secret, hello Hanes. Putin obviously doesn’t want to be distracted on dates wondering what he might find underneath if he manages to get around the proverbial bases.
Speaking of dates, what would Putin plan for a fun outing? Drinking white Russians is a tad too literal although picturing stay-in movie night at the Kremlin palace with a copy of “The Big Lebowski” is worth a chuckle or two. Taking in a Pussy Riot comeback concert is obviously met with a big, fat “nyet.”
The bottom line, though, is that the true test of love for any future Mrs. Putin may just be what lies in her own heart. After all, what you get out of any relationship is what you Putin.
Michelle Durand’s column “Off the Beat” runs every Tuesday and Thursday. She can be reached by email: firstname.lastname@example.org or by phone (650) 344-5200 ext. 102. What do you think of this column? Send a letter to the editor: email@example.com.