Can money buy a person true love? While it may often help raise someone’s profile when attempting to attract a member of the opposite sex, multimillionaire Larry Greenfield says that spending a lot of money does not guarantee success in finding a wife – especially when it’s spent on professional matchmaking services.
The 47-year-old securities trader spoke to the New York Post about his expensive dating odyssey, wherein he spent more than $65,000 on a total of six matchmaking agencies over a dozen years. Although Greenfield ended up dating 250 eligible women, he claims they were not fitting for him, and he condemns the dating services as a total “rip-off.” In response, the matchmakers he patronized put the onus on Greenfield, contending that he is trying to obtain a woman who is above his level, given his “regular-guy” appearance and nature.
Retired from a successful career at Opus Trading in Jericho, Long Island, Greenfield says he is quite willing to give away his money in order to end up with a woman who has the full list of particular traits he is seeking – beautiful, thin, intelligent, Jewish, a sense of humor and a New Yorker.
“New York is a tough market for a guy like me. I thought I get the career, then I find the woman,” Greenfield mused. “I’d trade it all in for a white picket fence, two kids, a dog. And you can have it all! I’d take a $50,000-a-year job, work until I retire.” Proclaiming his alleged desirability as a mate, he insists, “I’m not a bad guy. I haven’t been to prison. It’s just a very frustrating thing.”
The burnt-out dater notes that the pricey Manhattan matchmaking services charge an average of $10,000 a year — Greenfield said: “You pay them up front and they don’t provide a service. They tell you how wonderful you are, whatever you want to hear.” Citing several examples of the disappointing results he says he received, Greenfield mentions Barbie Adler, a matchmaker at Selective Search who paired him up with a Knicks dancer. “Do I seem like the New York City-dancer type of guy?” he says mockingly. Greenfield argues that the women he met through VIP Life’s Lisa Clampitt were “West Village girls” who were too “artsy,” and further reveals that Long Island matchmaker Maureen Tara Nelson only set him up with five women in one year, one of whom looked “terrible.”
The dating service proprietors counter that Greenfield’s expectations are simply too high. “In the outside world, he would not be able to get a date with that girl, because she was far more attractive,” asserted Nelson, who declined to work on Greenfield’s behalf after a year. “He was too picky! I gave him exactly what he wanted multiple times . . . He would always come back with some minor, minor thing that the person wasn’t perfect.” Nelson clearly does not mince words about her former client. “He thinks since he has money that he is entitled to a beautiful woman,” she said. “He needs to realize beautiful women are beyond his reach.”
Despite his disillusionment with the matchmaking scene, Greenfield is considering signing up with Serious Matchmaking’s Janis Spindel. But the high-end matchmaker has expressed her reluctance to put her talents to work on his behalf, as she is concerned he would never be satisfied with her recommendations. “I don’t want to take his money,” Spindel said. “The target audience of what he needs is a teacher from the boroughs or a secretary. Larry can’t be with an alpha female who runs a hedge fund . . . He’s a country bumpkin.”
Reinforcing Spindel’s assessment of him, the ex-trader – who resides in rural Plainview, Long Island – avows that he is not interested in a woman who is extremely focused on her career. “I’m battling successful alphas, driven women who are very comfortable in their lives, and I get left in the dust,” Greenfield bemoaned. “My job right now is meeting a girl.”
One of the veteran dater’s official matches echoes the criticisms lodged at him by the matchmakers. Maxine Gordon, who does double duty as a business consultant and comedian, discloses that he dropped her after just one date. “I think he’s looking for something that doesn’t exist: a gorgeous, talented, Jewish woman like Natalie Portman, except ‘I stay at home; I’m here to put on your slippers and clean your room,’ ” the 44-year-old Gordon alleges.
Gordon says she was matched with Greenfield two months ago, and – given that she is thin, good-looking, Jewish, intelligent, has a sense of humor (she is a comedian, after all), a New Yorker and not a high-powered career woman – she figured he would be totally interested in pursuing a relationship with her. According to the Manhattan blonde, the two shared their common interest in travel, with Greenfield expressing his desire to take her to London and Paris; they also discussed their Jewish heritage and relatives who had recently passed away.
Despite her possessing every characteristic he says he is seeking, as well as their mutual sparks, Gordon never heard from Greenfield again. “I don’t want to say anything bad about him,” she says. “He’s a nice guy looking for a match, but he needs to give people a chance.”
Although Gordon claims the apparent rejection has not turned her off from her “match,” Greenfield does not share her optimism. “The chemistry wasn’t there,” he commented. “She’s a nice girl. I have nothing bad to say about her. We still keep in touch, I still hear from her. It’s not like I lost her number like the other girls.”
Gordon thinks her date may just be too difficult to satisfy. “I thought he was attractive enough, nice enough. I don’t see why all of these things haven’t worked out,” she said. “He’s looking for love at first sight, and everyone has imperfections. Talk to someone. Get to know them. To find a woman who wants to stay at home and lives in Manhattan, he might be looking in the wrong time period.”
Despite his apparent willingness to date women in their 40’s, Greenfield still puts a premium on females who are of optimal childbearing age. “One of these days, ask your doctor. Ask when you can have children as a woman,” he states bluntly, “if they’re capable of having children, mid-30s.”
Gordon takes umbrage at Greenfield’s insistence on getting someone much younger than she is. “It makes me sad. It’s depressing. It hurts,” she reveals. “Is it because I can’t pop out a kid? I can do it. It can be done. What I think is unfair is the double standard. He can . . . want kids and a career; but for women, no.”
Although the millionaire’s experiences with professional dating services may seem to prove that money really cannot buy you love, perhaps modern technology can do the trick. A new iPhone application entitled “Yenta” brings together Jewish singles based on their location. The free mobile dating service utilizes GPS technology to enable users to review the personality profiles of eligible Jews who live in the same area. The profile asks such questions as “How Jewish are you?” “What’s your shtick?” and “What will impress your mother?”
Only just debuted, Yenta has already attracted 10,000 users worldwide. “You can walk into a coffee shop and you can find out who’s Jewish and single around you,” marvels creator Luba Tolkachyov. “JDate is kind of the traditional model. To be able to log on to Yenta, you have to go out. There’s no need for the lengthy profile — now we can see who’s single and near us.”
The app designer notes further, “People with similar values and beliefs can find a great amount in common. That’s why we created Yenta – to enable Jewish singles to connect with each other instantaneously no matter where they may be – on a college campus, at the office, out socializing or traveling to new places.”
The bottom line of all this? One way or another, there’s always hope.