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Do you care if wild animals needlessly suffer and die during wintertime? If so, see www.shelteranimals.org.

Why I declined an offer to go on a blind date with Katie Couric

The strangest thing that happened to me as a result of writing my books:  being offered a blind date with Katie Couric . . . yes, NBC's Katie Couric.

This unimaginable offer came about in the following way.  A woman read my book True Emergency Room Stories, then wrote to me.  To make a long story short, we became friends and she eventually offered to introduce me to a friend of hers, Katie Couric.  I appreciated the offer, but I declined the proposal for the following reasons:

  • Katie's career will keep her in New York (or some similar megalopolis) for the indefinite future.  I can't stand cities.  In fact, I am probably the only doctor in the history of the world who did not attend his medical school graduation.  That came about as a result of my distaste for spending any more time in urban areas than is absolutely necessary.  I called my medical school shortly before graduation and asked, "Can you mail my diploma to me so I can skip the graduation ceremony?"  They said yes, so I spent that day making some electronic gizmo.  If I had that day to live over, I would have attended the ceremony, just to please my mother.
  • I thought my political beliefs would clash with Katie's well-known liberal bias.  Contrary to popular opinion, I am not an inveterate Republican.  I agree with more Republican positions than Democratic positions, but in general I think most politicians are unprincipled people who forget about us "little guys" the second they're in power.
  • I am realistic.  Ask yourself this question:  if you were one of the most lauded celebrities in history, would you date someone who looked like me?
  • Reason #4:  I will not discuss this, because I think that Katie deserves to keep her private life private.

My friend tried to persuade me that Katie is even more fun to be with in real life than she is on television.  That is probably true, and I doubt that Katie and I would have spent our time locking horns over political issues, but I still declined the chance to meet her because living anywhere near New York City is a deal-breaker for me.
3-21-2003

UPDATE, NINE YEARS LATER: Now that my political views have changed, and I am likely much further left than Katie on some (almost certainly not all) issues, it would be interesting to talk politics with her, or anyone else who enjoys such discussions. Incidentally, isn't it regrettable how people who disagree about politics online often go bananas in lambasting their opponents, while people in real life can harmonize well even if they are on opposite ends of the political spectrum? For example, I get along very well with one of my sisters-in-law who is purely liberal, and so does my conservative brother, of course. My relationship with her was no more contentious when I was purely conservative. I am always thinking and trying to become a better person, so some of my opinions change in time. Thus, even I don't agree with all of my prior opinions. Knowing this makes it easy to get along with others even if they disagree with me.

Did you believe the Media Matters lies? Read this and other articles in my blog. Even the über-liberal New York Times called Media Matters “highly partisan.” That's a nice way of saying they aren't fair.

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