Friday, January 11, 2008

What a Pleasant Surprise!

I had a most unexpected and delightful lunch today. But it requires a bit of background.

I married for the first time in May of 1987. SuzyQ and I both started work for the same company in July of 1985 and met in the orientation/training class for new employees. SuzyQ was dating a male model at the time who had had his sweat glands removed so as not to interfere with his modeling career. I remember wondering at the time if he had to pant like a dog on hot days to keep cool. But I digress.

I always refer to this as my "starter marriage". Ya know, like that first starter home you bought.

We lived like room mates. We kept everything separate. No joint accounts, no entanglements other than the marriage itself. No demon seed was spawned. In fact, we used to joke that if she ever did get pregnant she would require an epidural from the time the test came back positive until the kid had graduated from college.

I think that on some deep level, we both knew it wouldn't last. I have no doubt that I loved her and I'm sure she loved me. I mean, c'mon! Who doesn't? Right? I am one irresistible and charming sonofabitch!

But she got promoted before I did, she was more ambitious than I was. She was offered and accepted a job at company HQ in New Jersey. I became a very unhappy trailing spouse. I didn't want to move to NJ. I never liked living in NJ. I'm a midwestern kinda guy.

My unhappiness created problems in the marriage. We divorced in July of 1991. It was the textbook model of an amicable divorce. All of the finances were already separate. There were no children. There was no real hostility or animosity. It was as painless as it could possibly be.

Actually, in retrospect, I was just an immature, whiney little bitch. Fact of the matter is, that time spent in NJ launched my professional career. I was just a loser before that. Now, some 20 years later, I'm a loser with SKILLZ!! I would not be where I am today without that first marriage and that time in NJ. Thanks, SuzyQ!!

By February of 1992 I had bullshitted my way into a previously non-existent job that I totally made up and got myself transferred back home.

SuzyQ and I drifted apart and mostly lost contact. But we shared a mutual friend, Sonja, who had worked with us.

In fact, Sonja is the only person (other than me) who was in attendance at both of my weddings.

Both marriages ended in divorce.

I blame Sonja. I think Sonja is a fucking jinx.

The last time I saw SuzyQ was probably in 1994. I had remarried and my daughter, young Galadriel Tanqueray Onassis, was born in February of that year. SuzyQ and Sonja came out and had dinner with me, TED and GTO.

Over the years of the second marriage, I mostly lost touch with both Sonja and SuzyQ.

Then, shortly before last Christmas, Sonja sent me a Christmas greeting. I found out later that she was cleaning up her email list. If she didn't get a response from me, she was deleting me. Luckily, I did respond and we got all caught up.

A bit later, Sonja said that SuzyQ wanted to know if it would be OK for her to email me. Sure! No problem!

She did and we exchanged some very pleasant emails reminiscing about good times and fond memories. There was talk about me, Sonja and SuzyQ getting together for lunch. They kinda left the ball in my court.

I was a little bit hesitant because of the weight I've put on since quitting smoking. Seeing an ex after many years is like going to your class reunion. You want to make an impression.

But after talking on the phone with the ex last night for the first time in over a decade, I decided "Ah, what the fuck!" It's not like I'm trying to get into her pants. What the fuck do I care? So I suggested lunch on Friday at Niecies.

I'd heard wonderful things about it for years, but had never eaten there.

Because of the short notice, she wasn't sure. She'd let me know today.

This morning I get an email letting me know that not only was lunch a go, but she was bringing her parents, Carlito and Venezuela, my former in-laws who I hadn't seen in probably 20 years!

So out of the blue, I find myself sitting in a restaurant booth at 59th and Prospect having lunch with my first wife and my first in-laws. It was surreal.

If you had tried to tell me 6 months ago that I would be doing this I'd have thrown you up against the wall and frisked you for crack pipes.

Turns out it was one of the most pleasant, enjoyable and relaxed lunches I have had in a long time. I think I was more relaxed around her folks today than I ever remember being when we were married.

We had a delicious lunch. Me, Carlito and SuzyQ had tenderloin sandwiches with fries. I'm of the opinion that you can judge a diner pretty quickly by trying the tenderloins. Ours were great! The MIL had a pancake, eggs and grits.

No one ordered the Pig Ear Sandwich.

Maybe next time.

We talked, we laughed, we remembered. It was just a really, really nice get together. It didn't feel like it had been decades since we had seen each other. It didn't feel awkward at all. It felt like we just get together every Friday and have lunch together.

Very cool.


Stinkbait Boucher said...

Nice story - always good to be surprised by the things we know are going to suck.

I would like to follow up on the sweat gland thing. You just can't throw something like that out there and move along.

mainstream said...

Which sweat glands? If he had all of them removed he wouldn't have any skin left.

Or maybe that's just me. I know I sweat all over. Doesn't everybody?

Maybe that's why I've never been married.

Spyder said...

Never met my 1st in laws.

Joe said...

My second marriage was like yours in the sense of separate accounts and stuff. It worked for us as we never ever argued about money. Our split was amicable as well, in fact I still have communication with her.
As for in laws, its taken three marriages to get decent ones.

travelingal said...

This is XO at his best. The story of his life is so dang interesting. It's not necessarily jaw dropping suspense but somehow he's able to draw us all in to his soul.

travelingal said...

A couple of years ago I had a call from the husband of the "first woman" my now deceased husband had an affair with nearly 30 years ago. After I picked the phone up off the floor, I decided not to accept his "lunch invitation." I doubt it would have been as enjoyable a lunch date as XO had.

SmedRock said...

Sad thing is, my in-laws think I walk on water. Am I good or what?

Xavier Onassis said...

stink and main - As I recall, it was just the sweat glands in his armpits so that he wouldn't get big wet spots there during photo shoots under the hot lights.

spyder - that's just wierd.

Thanks travel!

Stinkbait Boucher said...

I wonder if they have that sweat gland thing for feet. I may just be able to salvage my career as a foot model after all...

meesha.v said...

XO is like Chuck Norris of local blogosphere. I wonder if his tears cure cancer.(That's if he ever cried)

Poodles said...

My inlaws think I'm the antichrist.