New York -- Flora Find-a-man (shown here at work), 32, got the shock of her life last week when she hooked up with an orangutan on an online dating website. Flora, a stand-up comedienne (as opposed to a sit-down one), met with a Spoof reporter last week and told her story.
"I was just so taken with this one guy, Otto O., recommended to me by the dating service," she said. "His profile really impressed me." Flora explained it wasn't just that he had red hair and that his favorite food was fruit, although she happens to be a fan of both. She said that he actually expressed an interest in continuing the species. "I should have known," Flora groaned. "What guy says he wants kids before you've even started dating?" With a sigh, Flora admitted that once she had read Otto's profile, she had been dreaming of a brood of little red-haired kids.
But it was more than just the kids factor, Flora said. She found it appealing and romantic that he described himself as a "man of the forest." Screwing up her face in disgust, Flora asked, "How was I to know that the word orangutan means 'man of the forest' in the Malay language?" Another feature that appealed to her was Otto's creativity; his profile said that he enjoyed making umbrellas and cups out of leaves. "An inventor, can you imagine?" she asked.
Everything fell apart when Flora finally saw Otto's picture. She said that all she can remember is shouting a huge "EEK!" She has since discovered that, in an effort to prevent orangutans from becoming extinct, zookeepers are hooking up Dutch and Indonesian orangutans on the Internet, hoping that they may find suitable mates for the apes. Their handlers at the zoos were fooling around writing profiles; the first thing you know, according to Flora, "one of the profiles slipped onto a so-called HUMAN website."
Flora is philosophical about the whole episode. "Believe me," she said. "Otto isn't the only ape in the dating pool. It's a jungle out there, trust me." In addition, she feels her 'Otto incident' is something she can one day tell her grandchildren about. She was, however, quick to add, "IF I ever have a kid to produce grandchildren, that is."
Meanwhile, all's well that ends well. Flora's been in touch with Joris, Otto's Dutch handler, who just happens to be visiting New York this winter. They plan to meet for a day at the Bronx Zoo. "Seems like a nice guy," she said smiling. "Single, smart, a year older than me." Flora did, however, add wistfully, "He's not a redhead, though."