Saturday, February 23, 2008

A Perfectly Suited Couple

I owe my marriage to a toothache. Yes, if it weren't for my wisdom teeth, I would never have met Bill, to whom I have been happily married for almost 28 years.

It was my first semester at college and his last, and I was miserable. I wasn't homesick- although I did miss my dog- nor was I having problems with my classes. I was making friends, liked my roommate and my apartment. My homework was manageable; my professors were okay and life was generally pretty good. Except...

My wisdom teeth were coming in. All 4 of them. Two were impacted. Two were infected, and I was in pain. My throat hurt; my ears hurt. I could barely talk, could barely do much of anything. I had an appointment scheduled with my dentist but that was a week away, so I was miserable.

After class one Monday, I stopped by the Sweet Stop to get some ice cream to sooth my throat. With my chocolate shake in hand, I looked for a place to sit. Hmm, I didn't have many options. In 1978 there were a lot of Iranian students at my university, and that liked to hang out at the Sweet Stop. I had often sat and spoken with them before and found them to generally be fun to talk with. They liked talking with Americans because they were always eager to improve their English. One guy even carried around a little notepad and when he came across words that he didn't understand, he wrote them down and then showed them to the next American he came across to find out what the word meant.

But anyway, on this day my throat was sore, and I didn't want to talk to anybody. I knew that if I sat with one of the Iranians, I would have to talk to him, but I didn't have many options. All the tables were full- but wait! There was an American guy sitting at a table reading a book! If I sat down with him, maybe he would just keep on reading his book and I could sip my shake in peace. So I asked him if I could sit at his table, slid into my seat, started to open my own book, and I'll be darned if he didn't put down his book and start talking!

Unbeknownst to me, he had been sitting there wishing a beautiful girl would come and sit down across from him. Instead he got me. Oh well.
I eventually agreed to go out with him to get him to shut up. Two weeks later, after my wisdom teeth had been removed and I was feeling more romantic, he proposed to propose. ("If things keep up like this I'll be asking you to marry me.") Eighteen months later we were married.
So I owe my husband to my wisdom teeth. That and the fact that he didn't call me a "Trekkie" when he saw my Star Trek shirt when I sat down at that table. But that's a whole 'nother story for a whole 'nother day!

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