The holidays can be lonely if you’re single.
And if you’ve tried dating websites, listening to friends advice on who you should date perhaps you need to try the Sandy McCulloch approach.
He’s searching for a wife.
At age 82, Sandy says it’s not easy to find someone to bring into his life.
A little background on Sandy, he had three ex-wives by the time he was 39, he learned volumes in the first half of his life about what not to do in a relationship. He was an emotional cripple decades ago, he said, but he has since cleaned up his act.
So now he’s hit the streets, no really he has hit the streets wearing a sign around his neck, printed on paper and fastened by string and paper clamps, explains:
“Wanted: a wife."
That’s in computer-printed, bold, capital letters. Additional handwritten details describe his requirements: She must be over the age of 60, love books, have a sense of humor and live in Corvallis.
The inspiration for his sign came last month from a white-haired volunteer greeter at Good Samaritan Regional Medical Center.
The greeter at the hospital asked if he needed help. He responded no, but she checked in with him two more times as he waited.
Finally, he replied in the affirmative.
“There is one piece of assistance you can give me," he recalled saying. “I need a wife."
Although he was speaking in jest, she took a moment to consider the matter seriously. She responded that there were many single women that worked at the hospital and that he should wear a sign on his chest indicating that he’s looking.
You wouldn’t run a classified ad for a pet in an auto mechanic publication. Similarly, McCulloch doesn’t stroll around just anywhere with the sign dangling from his neck. He wears it occasionally and only in specific places.
He first mustered up the courage to put himself out there last week at the Old World Deli in downtown Corvallis. An event featuring live music and crafts for sale caused the restaurant to be more crowded than usual.
Sandy plans to sport his attention-grabbing sign in the hospital lobby, the Corvallis library and, perhaps, the Starbucks coffee shop. He walks fine on his own, he said, but his balance isn’t what it used to be, so when he makes his rounds, he is usually assisted by a walker.
With a Master of Science degree in zoology, he taught biology in private colleges for about a decade. Although he has no formal training in psychology, he spent another decade leading support groups from his home for couples who were considering divorce. He then became an innkeeper after he built a house and rental units on ocean-view property near Encino, Calif.
In this chapter of his life, he is a writer with a modest, fixed income that he supplements with book sales.
“I’m not greedy, I just need one wife!" he said. “In all honesty, I don’t know if this will lead to anything. If nothing else, it has been a lot of fun."