By now you may have heard of Romeo Rose, the Austin-based wedding photographer who became a viral sensation after his website/personal ad, SleeplessInAustin.com, helped put the "hopeless" in "hopeless romantic."
Rose's ad caught the attention of the Internet because it hits a triple-threat of things people love: The man himself is kind of pathetic, offering a cash finder's fee to anyone who can help him meet a girlfriend; but he inspires no sympathy for his situation, because his criteria is, um, horribly racist, sexist, and insulting (brief and fully representative example: "I would NEVER, EVER, EVER date a woman if I found out she had EVER been sexually active with a Black man"); and yet there is theoretically $1,500 on the line, if you happen to know a bigoted Aryan dreamgirl who might find him charming. Combine laughing at a person who seems to deserve it with a potential cash reward, and you're in business.
(In fact, early fears—and hopes—were that Rose was perhaps a Horse eBooks-style viral marketing hoax, but that seems increasingly unlikely for reasons outlined below.)
In any case, this will all be forgotten in a few days, when someone posts a video of their cat falling off the refrigerator (Kitty! How did you get up there??), but while we're all still enjoying Romeo Rose, here are some things that you should know about the man, just in case you're considering dating him.
This is not his first attempt at finding love by building a website.
Shortly after moving to Austin in 2009, Rose launched his first website aimed at finding him a mate, AloneInAustin.com. We can assume from the fact that he's back at it that, despite offering concessions to the prospective dream girl like, "It really dosen't matter to me if my hair is long or short, so if the hair would be a dealbreaker to you, I would be willing to cut and style it any way that you would prefer, that is if we click and things look like we may click well enough to be boyfriend and girlfriend." (No word on whether he would be willing to stop dressing like the Count of Monte Cristo for the lady of his dreams.)
You can perhaps conclude from this that Romeo Rose is such a steadfast believer in the concept of true love that he will let nothing dissuade him from his quest to find it, if you are feeling very charitable.
He is not particularly self-aware.
From his website's FAQ: "It is my firm belief that most women on dating sites are so unattractive they just don’t have many options in real life so they hide behind a screen."
He may have rage issues.
A discussion on an online forum a few years ago involving Romeo turned ugly when he posted a link to a Ukranian snuff film and told the fella he was sparring with, "You really shoulda been the victim in this video. I hope you are someday, you deserve to have your intestines ripped out, and a screwdriver in your brain and knife in your eyes while you are still breathing choking on your own blood like the guy you will see in this video, for that is how I feel towards you, you are less than zero to me."
Sure, that may be cute when you read it today, but unless you're prepared to hear that after you and Romeo have a fight because he saw you talking to a black dude, you may want to reassess your presumably growing interest.
He once wrote a song "to help spread the word that 9/11 was an inside job."
Sadly, Romeo's Alex Jones-inspired blues jam has been lost to YouTube history, but perhaps if, after a dream date with Romeo Rose, you asked him in your nicest, least-promiscuous-sounding voice, he would pick up his guitar (which he had custom made and has christened "Juliet") and strum you a verse or two.
If you date him, be aware: he's "used to fame," and so are some of his friends.
Rose describes himself as "a bluesman," and he also claims some rock and roll pals, some of whom have written about him in books. During his Reddit AMA session, he explained, "I'm in a book called You Can't Stop A Comet written by Stevie Ray Vaughans road manager Cutter Brandenberg my lyrics to my song Soul Brother are in it. Kelly Garni the bass guitar player of Quiet Riot wrote a book about growing up with Ozzys guitar player Randy Rhoads, a autobiography, called Angels With Dirty Faces, and he wrote 2 pages about me in it. If you type Romeo Rose Quiet Riot in you tibe [sic] you will seem me & Kelly Garni in a video together, we are good friends."
If you wanted true love and the chance to meet Quiet Riot bassist Kellly Garni, in other words, Romeo might be something of a two-fer.
He has black friends.
Here's a quandary: While statements like "when a woman has been with a black man, in my book that is ALMOST the same thing as beastiality" are likely to attract Rose a woman who perhaps has a little Swastika tattooed on her back somewhere, that woman will also have to be comfortable with the fact that Romeo digs hanging out and jamming with black dudes.
"Tracey Clark is my friend, and he's Black, and he plays bass for the Bells of Joy gospel band and you can see a video of him performing with me on youtube search The Muse Romeo Rose we are up North at Bikinis," Rose explains at one point during his Reddit AMA.
He once had an 11 year relationship.
Any woman considering dating Romeo Rose presumably has her own list of dealbreaker criteria. Hopefully having a little piece of his heart tied to "a beautiful woman" he was in an 11-year relationship with isn't on it, because Romeo brought her up with very little prodding in his AMA.
One can only wonder what she thinks of all of this.
- 1 week