Friday, October 5, 1984
THE DETROIT JEWISH NEWS
Two local women, both
Rosenbaum at left and
Claire Arm on the right,
see their dating service
for Jewish singles as
performing a mitzvah.
re there any good men — or
women — left?
For Claire Arm and Millie Rosen-
baum, the answer to that plaintive
question is a resounding "yes." The
former schoolteachers, grandmothers
both, now operate LO-LA, the only
dating service exclusively for Jewish
singles in metropolitan Detroit. So far,
in the nine months they've been in
business, they've had more than 200
people register, ranging in age from 20
to 71, and says Mrs. Rosenbaum,
"We've done very nicely. The phone
rings all the time."
The two women say they offer a
personal touch in their service. "We
meet each candidate and conduct an
hour-long personal interview," ex-
plained Mrs. Rosenbaum. "We ask
them, 'what do you like?' what are you
looking for?' and we get a feel for the
person that way. We use our intui-
They also keep track of statistics
like height, weight and age and then
try to match up a candidate with at
least one or two persons of the opposite
sex from their files. "We don't make
big promises," says the outgoing Mrs.
Rosenbaum. "Sometimes they're
happy and sometimes they're disap-
pointed. But we enjoy our work and we
feel we're really performing a
The idea for LO-LA (Hebrew for
"for him-for her") was actually an ex-
tension of the two women's informal
efforts to "fix up" Jewish singles they
knew. Mrs. Rosenbaum had already
had two shidduchim (matches) to her
credit, "one a younger couple and one
an older couple," when she and her
friend, the wife of Rabbi Milton Arm,
decided to turn pro.
They collected names, sent hun-
dreds of letters and "got a very nice
response," Mrs. Rosenbaum said,
though she noted that many singles
hear of their service either through
word-of-mouth or their ad in The
Jewish News. Those who call or write
are sent a questionnaire and informa-
tion on the service, which costs $100 a
year. (There are special rates for full-
to fan the flames
BY JULIE BROWN
Special to The Jewish News
time students and a six-month mem-
bership:for senior- citizens.) If an indi-
vidual has not been given any names
after a year, the full fee is refunded.
No one is given more _than two
names at a time, the women explained,
and the most names any one indi-
vidual has received until now is nine.
Women are slightly more well-
represented, at a rate of approx-
imately 1.3 for each man. The majority
are younger than 35 and well-
educated. The most surprising fact of
all, according to Mrs. Rosenbaum, is
that while virtually none of the par-
ticipants are observant or consider
themselves religious, they all want to
marry someone Jewish. Also, the qual-
ity of the people who have registered is
very high, the women said. "We get
doctors, lawyers, handsome men,
beautiful women," noted Mrs. Rosen-
baum. "Just last week we interviewed
three 26-year-old men, professionals.
In general, we've been more successful
working with the younger people than
the older people. But the point is that
people are looking for new ways to
meet someone. They're tired of the bar
The two women have one success
story they are particularly proud of.
One couple who met through the serv-
ice is planning a November wedding.
The bride asked us if we would
attend, and we said 'Yes' very hap-
pily," Mrs. Arm says.
Concern about the rate of inter-
marriage among young Jewish people
was a strong motivating factor for the
two women, who heard from Jewish
singles that meeting others was dif-
Susan (not her real name) is one
Detroit-area single who decided to
give LO-LA a try, after hearing about
the service from a friend. She was
hesitant at first. "But then I figured
`What the heck?' "
Susan, who is 24 and works in a
Detroit suburb, went through the
interview with Mrs. Arm and Mrs.
"They try to match you up," she
says. "I really haven't gone out with
that many guys from LO-LA. Maybe
five. Basically, I meet people through
The Detroit area is a difficult one
in which to meet new people, Susan
has found. She goes to local bars and
"Don't ask me why, but I have a
tough time meeting new people," she
says. "Working full time, it's hard to
meet new people." She grew up in met-
ropolitan Detroit, and has found it
sometimes works to her disadvantage.
"You're going to meet people who
know people you know. It's like more of
Mrs. Rosenbaum and Mrs. Arm
have heard from some customers that
Detroit is a difficult city in which to
meet people. Others, however, say it is
not a particularly tough "getting-to-
"It's hard to tell," Mrs. Arm says.
She has found that many are willing to
give LO-LA a try, rather than sitting
at home waiting to be discovered.
"I think people think differently
today than we did when we were
young. I would never have done this as
Phil (not his real name) is another
Detroit-area single who decided to try
LO-LA. Like Susan, he initially had
"It was a different step to take,"
the 31-year-old attorney says. "I was a
little apprehensive at first." He heard
about the 'service from a friend who
had used it and from a married rela-
"Overall, I've been satisfied with
the service. I'm not the type to go to
bars, so it's been helpful." He has re-
ceived eight names through LO-LA.
Phil agrees that metropolitan De-
troit can be a difficult area in which to
meet new people.
"It can be, especially if you're a
professional." Often, professionals
only come into contact with those in
their field he has found.
"This way, you can meet a differ-
ent group.of people. So in that regard, I
think it's helpful, too."
Some friends and relatives call
LO-LA on behalf of others. One
woman, for example, called about her
son and said she was certain he would
not respond to the mailing..
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