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Everything I ever wanted to know about life I could have learned from,“The Wizard of Oz.”

Deep, core values regarding what really matters in this world were illustrated perfectly by the loving and supportive bond between Dorothy and her three loyal companions as well as by the message, “There’s no place like home.”

All the strength and wisdom that we require is right there inside of us, often camouflaged by self- doubt as illustrated by the brilliant scarecrow in search of a brain, the exceptionally empathetic tin man lamenting for a heart, and the incredibly brave lion wishing for courage. The diplomas and medals they received at the end were really what we all yearn for; recognition and validation for who we truly are.

But what about the little man behind the curtain masquerading as “The great and powerful Wizard of Oz”? Therein lies the valuable dating lesson of today. When we linger on instant message and email communication for too long a period of time during internet dating, we are at risk for believing that our potential partner is a much greater and more impressive person than who he/she actually is. The screen between us functions as his/her curtain; behind it, Mr. or Ms. Potential can pull all the levers they like, undetected by us. Just as the little man created fire, smoke, a booming voice, and an intimidating appearance, our potential partner may be creating a sense of humor, confidence, and a personality that doesn’t really exist when we get to know each other in person. That is, IF we get to know each other in person. More likely, the man/woman behind the curtain/computer screen will keep sending us around for impossible tasks such as bringing back the witch’s broom stick or finding the perfect time, date, and place to get together. All the while the little man/woman is safe behind the curtain, knowing that he/she is asking the impossible and it is highly unlikely that even one date will occur. If you do manage to jumpstart some initial in person relationship, it is probable that you will need to continue chasing your tail, filling impossible requests, only to find that things will fizzle despite your most valiant attempts to please.

So, take a lesson from Toto. Pull the curtain aside, even if you have to use your teeth. Move rapidly onto the phone and then onto the date in order to figure out if you are a match. If the little man/woman can’t do that, stop believing in the Great and Powerful Wizard of Oz and move onto someone real, complete with flaws and strengths to potentially share your life with.


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