Some women look for Mr. Right at work or school, in church or synagogue. Others enlist help from friends or relatives. They search online, or at bars, gyms, grocery stores or ATMs - anywhere singles usually meet.
Amy Borkowsky believes she has a better idea.
The never-married 40-something New Yorker hopes to take out the world's most expensive personal ad, announcing her availability over the air during the country's most relentlessly hyped and heavily watched sporting event.
A comedian and former advertising copy writer, Borkowsky is trying to raise $3-million to buy a 30-second Super Bowl commercial in which she would unabashedly tell the world she's looking for a ring.
And not a Super Bowl ring.
She wants a husband.
"I live in Manhattan," Borkowsky says from her East Side apartment. "People think of Manhattan and they think of Sex and the City and love around every corner. But according to the latest census, single women in Manhattan outnumber single men by more than 100,000, so it's not that easy to meet someone."
The Super Bowl, which is at Raymond James Stadium in Tampa on Feb. 1, can attract all kinds of kooks and publicity seekers, but Borkowsky says her quest is from the heart.
Because people are living longer, she notes, "It's more important to meet the right guy. You have to decide, is this the person whose wheelchair you want to push when you're 93? Is he going to be a good shuffleboard partner? Can I see myself on the porch when I'm 90 having a prune-juice martini with this guy?
"It's a bigger, longer commitment than it ever was before, and I just want to make sure I get the largest pool of guys to choose from."
Not everyone approves.
Shortly after Borkowsky launched her SuperBowlSingleGirl.com Web site this month, blogger Debbie Schussel wrote, "Wow, what a way to advertise desperation. Better name for her site: IHaveADumbIdeaAndNeedAttention.com."
"I have a background in advertising," she notes, "and I thought I could put myself out there like a product, like a cola or SUV. Dating is a numbers game, so if you're going to run a personal ad, why not put it where the most guys will see it?"
Though Borkowsky notes cheerfully, "I have some football shirts because I like the colors," she says she is not a sports fan and knows nothing about football.
What she does know is that men enjoy watching football. The Super Bowl is expected to attract more than 60-million male viewers 18 and older.
Borkowsky, who has released two comedy albums, says she hatched her idea for a championship-game personal ad several years ago. "But I'm an optimist," she adds, "and I didn't want to say, 'Next Super Bowl, I'm still going to be single, I'm going to be at another singles party watching the game, looking for a guy.' So each year, I'd think, 'Nah, I'm not going to do that. I'm going to have someone by next year.' Finally, it hit me: Super Bowls have come and gone and I'm still single."
Then, last summer, she and her most recent boyfriend broke up - via e-mail - and last month she read in the Wall Street Journal that, despite the economic downturn, Super Bowl spots were selling out faster than ever this year.
That sealed it, Borkowsky says. It was time to act.
"I feel like I have a decent product," she says, "and I want to get it out there in the best way possible."
Her window of opportunity is closing fast. NBC says fewer than 10 commercial spots remain.
"It's the most-watched program on TV all year," NBC spokesman Brian Walker says, "so whether you're a company or, in this case, an individual person, it's a great way to call attention to what you want to do." Of Borkowsky, Walker says, "If she can raise the $3-million, we'll be happy to take a look at her spot. We wish her all the best."
As of Sunday, Borkowsky had raised only $1,790, but she hopes an advertiser already on board might let her appear in its ad to make her pitch for love. In that case, she says, the money raised would go to charity.
Borkowsky is not shy about putting herself out there. She has been featured on NBC's Today show and Extra and this week will tape an appearance onthe Tyra Banks Show. Several radio outlets have called, she says.
A member of Mensa, the high-IQ society, Borkowsky notes, "I'm trim, I'm in shape. I have a good heart. I got a lot of love from my mother, maybe too much, but how you learn to love is from your mother, and she taught me well."
Her ideal man?
"Someone with a good head on his shoulders," she says. "A good heart, hopefully, a sense of humor. And a name shorter than Borkowsky would be a nice bonus."