I love the word serendipity; it kind of just rolls off the tongue, doesn’t it? It means making a wonderful discovery by accident, and that’s how I found my Brenda… by accident.
When asked by others how we met, I sometimes tell the truth; we met in a pool hall. It was Harold Shanos’ academy of fine billiards and foul language to be exact. There she taught me the intricate art of masse and playing shape…since my shape at that time was unappealing while her shape was simply spectacular.
The fact I met my wife in a pool hall should be shocking but really it’s not ‘cause it’s a lie. …a little lie that both amuses and endears me to my long suffering wife.
To correct the record, I bought her from the president of a local motor cycle club (the Hilltop Howlers) for a cigarette. Apparently she had a problem following presidential orders and was very high-spirited and bossy to boot…in fact she was downright obstreperous (unruly) to say the least. I tell her that she’s still obstreperous and can get away with it…’cause she doesn’t know what in hell obstreperous means.
Anyway, that story is another lie…I made it up because people from Hespeler are supposed to be colourful and that includes me; especially when I’m painting.
Seriously, I met her at the old ‘Leisure Lodge’ in April 1970….of course if she edited this script she’s need to correct the month and year on principle. Women can’t seem to let their hubbies spin an interesting yarn without oodles of necessary corrections, interruptions and interjections…it’s their nature….and they’ll possibly burn in hell or do hard time in purgatory for that fault…I hope.
Anyway, Thursday night was denoted as ‘Stag Night’ by the proprietors of that leisurely lodge. I was contacted by cousin Dave to see if we should check out the ‘Lodge’ and its potential deluge of drunken randy single girls…consumed in burning lustful desire for working class men from sophisticated Hespeler. I told him in a deep voice and in an alluringly heterosexual way that ‘it was a date!’
Dave and I got to the dancehall at about 11.00 pm. We went late because most guys at that time would prefer ‘water-boarding’ or being tortured with dull instruments to our nether regions than the prospect of fast dancing. You see when slow dancing, guys moved little meaning little ridicule…but when fast dancing we looked like idiots and new it. Hence NO FAST DANCING!
We sipped on a beer as we methodically scoped the joint like hunters stalking big game. Our goal was to net two girls to dance with us when the slow dancing started (just before closing.) The beer was to muster courage and eloquence
“There are two blonde foxes over there Dave but they’re probably too unapproachable and snobby to dance with us.”
“Hags there’re three to the right at 4 o’clock but they’re pretty ugly!”
“Well they can be ‘Plan B’ I muttered, you know in case we’re desperate.” We always were.
“Holy S###! there’s a whole table of chicks to our left and some of them are decent…surely one of them will pity us”.
So we drank another bottle of courage and then approached the table of hotties… as band Lee Ashford started a slow ballad. Our plan was that I’d take the one on the right and Dave would take the one beside her.
I tapped my future bride on the shoulder, introduced myself and asked if she’s like to dance. Much to my surprise she did.
In hindsight, how stupid was it of me to ask a girl to dance who had her back to me? I mean she could have been one of the ursine Butt sisters…Bertha to be exact.
Anyway, it worked out great, in a year and a half we were married; and a year and a half after that we consummated our marriage. Boy was I relieved!
So, was it fate that allowed me to tap my future soul mate on the shoulder that night? Serendipity I believe…pure serendipity.