In Diary of a Beverly Hills Matchmaker, Marla takes her readers for a hilarious romp through her days as an L.A. matchmaker and her daily struggles to keep her self-esteem from imploding in a town where looks are everything and money talks. From juggling the demands her out-of-touch clients to trying her best to meet the capricious demands of an insensitive boss to the ups and downs of her own marriage to a Latin husband who doesn't think that she is 'domestic' enough, Marla writes with charm and self-effacement about the universal struggles that all women face in their lives. Readers will laugh, cringe, and cry as they journey with her through outrageous stories about the indignities of dating in Los Angeles, dealing with overblown egos, vicariously hobnobbing with celebrities, and navigating the wannabe-land of Beverly Hills. In a city where perfection is almost a prerequisite, even Marla can't help but run for the Botox every once in a while.
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Marla Martenson is the bestselling author of Excuse Me, Your Soul Mate Is Waiting and Good Date, Bad Date. Marla is a dating and relationship coach, Beverly Hills matchmaker, and professional speaker. She has appeared on numerous TV shows, including the ""Today Show,"" WGN Chicago ""Morning News,"" and others. When not busy writing or coaching, she can be found sipping vanilla soy lattes, getting Botox injections, and nagging her husband to put the toilet seat down.
Matchmaker, Matchmaker! Make Me a Match
A chichi decorator came up with the color of one of the walls in my Beverly Hills office by matching paint swatches to the silky dark chocolate Godiva heart-shaped ganaches that sit in a crystal dish alongside Teuscher Irish Cream truffles, and chocolate cordials of cherries soaked in black port and wrapped in gold foil. We do pamper our clients. I mention this so you'll know that there are many aspects of my job that I absolutely adore. Such niceties distract me from fantasies of . . . dismemberment.
Hi Marla, Scott, here. I'm so glad I joined your dating agency; I can see this is going to be verrrrry interesting. . . . Hey, the gal you lined me up with last evening was gorgeous, but I would really like my matches to be a 10 or, ideally, a 10+. And the gal needs to back up her beauty with an income of her own and her own living quarters. No roommate situations. I don't waste my time with someone who doesn't live up to my expectations—you know, long legs, firm small butt, double-D's, thin arms, blonde hair.
To paraphrase the deathless sentiments of Roseanne Barr, I'll get my wand. Oh, wait, it's in the repair shop, utterly depleted. I'm having to make do with our back-up magic lamp, but the genie keeps laughing and muttering about peace in the Middle East being an easier request as he disappears in a puff of smoke. He's such a joker. But since you have so much to offer, it shouldn't be too difficult to find the woman of your fantasies since all the 10+s in our database say that a man willing to plough up his bald scalp with those cute little tufts of implanted hair is a real turn-on. And most "gals" don't mind giving up their stilettos to avoid towering over a man of your stature.
Of course, I don't write this. This is my first e-mail of the day at Double D Dating Service here in Beverly Hills where I'm the head matchmaker. Double D is not the company's real name, as you may have guessed, just my own special pet name for it. I dash off a breezy professional response to Scott as if diplomacy were my mother tongue.
I'm so glad you enjoyed your evening with a gorgeous woman. A new and interesting experience, huh? Well, we do have an ever-growing list of many stunning women, eager to meet you. I'll get back to you later in the day with another name.
Something is nagging at me. Oh, my conscience. It's not bothering me at all about the direct lie: eager to meet you. I've left in a little dig. I change that one snarky line about dating gorgeous women being a new experience to simply "An interesting experience indeed," and hit send. Next e-mail.
I really found Sandy to be attractive, fun, intelligent, and cultured. We had a great time. The only thing is, I am wondering if she has a big butt. She was wearing one of those puffy dresses.
She says that she does all kinds of activities like dance classes, working out at the gym, and hiking, but I just can't be sure how big her butt is. Is there any way you can let me know if it's big or if the dress she was wearing just gave that illusion?
Joe, don't you know that when we bring a woman into our service, it means that we have carefully inspected her butt from every angle and therefore certify it is also a 10 along with the rest of her? I'm so glad you asked though, because you must never ever consider dating a woman with flesh on her butt. Oversized curves belong above the waist only. Makes perfect sense. How could nature have created such a serious design flaw?
Sigh. I find it so comforting to type out what I truly want to say to some of these clowns before writing the response I must write. God forbid Gary should ever see this stuff. I am, after all, good at what I do. Pictures of my successes hang on the chocolate colored wall above fresh pale pink hydrangeas: two of happy couples at their respective posh wedding receptions, and several more couples on honeymoons at places like Bellagio on Lake Como in Italy, or snorkeling with humpback whales off Vava'u, Tonga in the South Pacific, or skiing in Aspen. I do still believe in love—the soul-mate kind of love. I think deep down, the Scotts and Josephs do too. They just rarely know it.
Sandy's dress probably created the wrong illusion. Call her for another date; I think you will be pleased to find that in addition to being beautiful, intelligent, and a most remarkable woman, she's also fit and trim.
I polish off my vanilla soy latte, ready for the next e-mail, when I hear Gary, my boss barking at Charlotte, the other matchmaker in the office. She hangs her head as she follows him into his office. He doesn't usually come in on Thursdays, so this isn't looking good for Charlotte.
I step outside the artistically etched glass double doors of my office to check with Alana at the front desk. "What's going on?" I ask in a stage whisper.
Alana, a petite brunette in her twenties with big blue eyes and a gorgeous smile, is just about to say something when Gary strides over. "Back to work!" he tells me. Then to Alana he says, "Find the Harrison file. . . . And never wear those shoes here again. If you want to look like Peter Pan, work somewhere else."
I can't help but turn to check out Alana's shoes. Ohh, they're darling: green flats with little cut-outs of stars.
"Marla, I hope you have some make-up in your bag," Gary says. "You're looking washed out again. Do you go to the gym before work or something? Don't you two get it that we're all about glamour and sex appeal here? Our clients don't want Peter Pan and Miss Grundy lining up their matches."
"Right," I say, feeling my face redden to the roots of my already red hair. "I'll touch up." Gary can be a nice guy, but he does go on rampages.
Back in my office, I pile all my black matchmaking catalogues on my desk to hide from Gary's view. I eat a chocolate. Then another. One more. Call it an early lunch. Mmmmm. Better. Deep breaths, a few affirmations. I am young and hot-looking; I am a terrific matchmaker. I am lucky to have this job.
Back to work. Next e-mail.
Denise looks like she's pushing forty. Not to say there's anything wrong with that. I live in Newport, so I can't help but date forty-year-olds occasionally, but when it comes to being set up with someone through an exclusive agency such as yours, I don't want to waste "matches." And we
need to talk about Natasha, the last gal you lined me up with—a bit low-brow, don't you think? I will send you a few photos of females that I find attractive so hopefully that will help you see the caliber of beauty I'm seeking. I want to date ONLY beautiful women, and I just won't settle for anything less.
Let me know if anyone in your stable meets my criteria.
I had matched him with Natasha because of the astonishing bounty of her bosom. But as to Denise—she's nowhere near the accursed four-oh. But if she were, how could any man in his fifties possibly be expected to tolerate a crone of such advanced years?
His comment reminds me that I haven't "touched up" yet. I pull out my compact and scrutinize time's deepening etch in the tiny lines around my eyes. I pat them over with mineral powder, add a dusting of blush to my cheeks, a brighter lipstick, and heavy gloss.
I sit back and ponder the photo of Denise, a gorgeous twenty-eight-year-old woman, and all I can do is shake my head. This beautiful young woman is Dave's fourth reject. Before I worked in the matchmaking field, I honestly had no idea how shallow, picky, selfish, and entitled some clients could be. After six years of feedback, demands, and expectations, I'm still thrown for a loop now and then. I don't want to pass judgment on people; I want to keep an open heart, but geeze--
It's times like this when I need an anchor, a sane voice, someone who lives far away from the zany nuttiness of Beverly Hills. I call my friend Shelly in Federal Way, Washington where we both grew up—it's a little suburb of Seattle, a land far away from this town's obsession with age, looks, and perfection.
"Listen to this," I tell her and then read her Dave's e-mail—anonymously, of course.
I hear a gasp on the other end of the line.
"My reaction exactly," I tell her.
"What is he? Some rich stud?"
"Well, rich anyway. I'm supposed to find matches for these guys. They all want perfect tens—even if they're dweebs who'd be lucky to rate a five!"
"What about the women?"
"Yeah, some days the gold-diggers and airheads get to me too."
"Guess I don't have to envy you anymore, thinking that you have the perfect life in Los Angeles," Shelly teases. "At least you're not still a waitress in Chicago."
Shelly is referring to my life seven years ago. Memories of my fourteen years spent waiting on tables jolt my sense of perspective, spurring me to work ever harder and continue with the exasperating e-mails,.
I see Charlotte walk past my door, head held high, but I can tell she's gotten the ax. She starts cleaning out her office. We weren't close, so I won't be going over and chatting. I'll get the scoop later from Alana. After Charlotte leaves, Gary sticks his nose in my door.
"You look better," he says. "You'll have to meet Charlotte's noon appointment. I'm not replacing her, so you'll be taking her people." He closes the door and leaves before I can say anything.
In other words, double the work, same pay. Oh boy!
Dutifully, I meet Andy and take him into the "selling office" with its stunning wall fountain sheeting water over pink-veined slabs of granite and pooling in a pink copper basin beneath two spotlights angled to form a soft heart-shape. The arty painting on the opposite wall captures dancers, hungry with passion, a slash of pink light falling ... (Marla Martenson Diary of a Beverly Hills Matchmaker)
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Book Description Bettie Youngs Book Publishers, 2010. Paperback. Book Condition: New. Large type edition. Bookseller Inventory # DADAX0984308105