On occasion, Kohlsaat said, the situations he captures in "Single Slices" may require first-hand experience to be fully appreciated: "For instance: living with the opposite sex and having to deal with your parents. When I lived with a woman, my mom would never call me at our apartment. And then she'd tell me, 'I can never get ahold of you.'
"I'd say, 'Well, call me.' If someone is 21 and has never been through that, they might not have the foggiest idea what I'm talking about
"Or somebody who's never been on the tough side of a break-up might not relate to some of my cartoons. Some people are always in the driver's seat, it seems. They don't know how awful it can be to have a girlfriend or boyfriend break up with you, how vindictive you can get."
Even with all his inner and outside stimuli, Kohlsaat said he often panics at the 11th hour before deadline. "I'll go out and buy a few women's magazines for ideas," he reluctantly confessed.
"Those magazines are full of stupid advice--how to spot a certain kind of guy, how to be independent. I believe those articles confuse women more than they help them.
"Then you look at men's magazines like Playboy or Esquire. They don't have articles on how men should enter relationships and how they should get out of relationships. Men's magazines talk about race cars and how to invest your money. They don't confuse people."
Kohlsaat said he scans women's magazines in his never-ending attempt to understand the female mind--entirely for professional reasons, of course.
"I haven't got women figured out," he said. "I don't know how they think."
In most of his cartoons, Kohlsaat makes men the brunt of the joke. A recent "Single Slices" portrays a woman barking at her male friend: "Did it ever occur to you that I might just be the Perfect Woman--and you're just a geek?"
Does his approach, perhaps, border on reverse sexism? Might Kohlsaat at times go to extremes in his determination to avoid coming off as a chauvinist? Would that same cartoon somehow seem offensive rather than insightful were it a man saying to a woman, "I am the Perfect Man and you're just a geek"?
"You mean, am I overcompensating? Maybe so. But this is the kind of thing where I'm at a loss. Do women talk about the Perfect Man?" he asked with perfect innocence.
Certainly, he was reassured.
"Like, 'Oh my gosh, I discovered he has a flaw, so I'm dumping him'? Yeah, I guess women do that too," Kohlsaat said.
Until the mythical day that he has "got women figured out," Kohlsaat said he would just as soon take the more brutal potshots at his own sex. "If I'm going to poke fun at somebody, I'd much rather poke fun at me."
Kohlsaat's concern about his marital status differs somewhat from the average single's; he frets that he might just find Ms. Right.
"If I were to get married, what would become of my cartoon?" Kohlsaat wondered, half-seriously. "What would happen if I were to meet the Perfect Woman?"