Saturday, February 13, 2010
May you all find your Love Match this weekend.
It's hard not to avoid thinking about love this weekend - everywhere you turn, red hearts jump out at you from shop windows, radio stations crank out love songs, boxes of chocolate in heart-shaped boxes are stacked to the rafters of every grocery and drug store. It's the Hallmark Holiday to end all Hallmark Holidays. This year in addition to the usual barrage of pink and red, the movie Valentine's Day was released yesterday. My daughter and I love nothing more than a box of buttery popcorn and a good sappy romantic comedy, so off we went to the matinee yesterday (she was off school) and tucked in for a couple of hours of escape. It did not disappoint. Cleverly pieced together, the various story-lines of the cast of characters kept you wondering and guessing and sometimes even though you could figure out where they might go, it was still fun and charming. I laughed. I cried. What more can one ask of a movie? AND.....some pretty decent eye-candy to boot - for both male, female, gay and heterosexual audiences. Director, Garry Marshall had it all covered with his all-star cast. With all that love ooozing off the big-screen, it got me to thinking about love and one partial Rumi quote that was used in the movie. "What you really want is love's confusing joy." I thought about that one, pondered it, and tucked it away in my mind until this morning. A strange thing happened to me recently. As most of you know, I play tennis. Over the years I have played with many club members, male, female, singles, doubles - truth be known, I'll play with just about anyone that can still hold a racquet, still see the lines and still connect with the ball. I have played with much younger players, much older players, and players my own age. It's all good. So when one of my winter club members started leaving phone messages to get together for a game, after ignoring his plea for several calls, I decided to call him back and set up a match. It started out innocently enough. He was someone I had played with once, and against once, in a friendly round robin. He was a decent player for an older gentleman and I knew he could give me a bit of a challenge, so I figured, "what the hell?" Much to my surprise, he apparently had more than tennis in mind. He not only wanted to play tennis with me, he told me he wanted to take me out for a drink after the match. When I told him (figuring he didn't know I was married) that my husband might not be too keen on that part, he says to me "What he doesn't know, won't hurt him." Well, I was quite taken aback by his cheeky response to say the least. It seemed he was not going to take no for an answer. To make a long story short, this man started to call me everyday. With call display, I could see who it was, so I stopped answering the phone. Eventually, he became so annoying that my husband finally had to answer one night at 10:30 (he obviously also had no phone etiquette) and tell him to stop calling. This man was not attractive. He was scrawny, hunched over, beady-eyed and apparently completely oblivious to his own appearance and yet he still managed to muster up the courage to pursue me, despite his obvious short-comings. I thought he must have figured he had nothing to lose. I had written him off as a sort of creepy old stalker until I digested that Rumi quote. After a little detective work of my own, I found out that this man was considered pretty harmless. Never married, known in tennis circles and not likely to be waiting for me in some dark alley one night. It was a relief to discover this information and I even spoke to him last Thursday at the weekly round robin, having told him the previous week, that his advances had been upsetting my husband. He seemed to have gotten the message. He may cherish the game of tennis, but what he is really craving as so succinctly put by Rumi, is "love's confusing joy." You can't really blame a guy for that. Happy Valentine's Day to all of you out there looking for love.