The Story of Us

Today is a special day for me, partly because it’s the first day of summer (my favorite time of year, second only to Christmas) but mainly because it’s Marvin’s and my personal holiday.

Our story begins in August of 1984, in San Jose, California. I was working for a weekly advertising shopper called the “Potpourri” at the time, selling real estate ads on commission. One day my boss walked into the room, called everyone to attention, and introduced us to a new employee named Marvin. The first thought that went through my brain was: “That’s the guy I’m gonna marry!” followed by “That’s ridiculous. You don’t even know him.” I wasn’t looking for a husband or even a boyfriend, having just ended a toxic relationship.

Still, the new guy was cute. And he was funny. And he played in a band. Since Marvin worked in a different department, our interactions were limited to pleasantries in the hallway, which was fine by me. As I told my friend, Gina, “I’m done with dating. From now on I’m going to concentrate on my career.” That resolution lasted all of six weeks. As summer rolled into fall, one of my co-workers suggested a bunch of us get together and drive up to San Francisco. We could grab lunch and do some early Christmas shopping. “Count me in,” I said.

The following Saturday, I arrived at the office parking lot bright and early. Marvin and I were the only ones there. In that pre-cell phone era, we had no easy way to contact anyone, so we waited around for a while, and when it became apparent that no one else was going to show up, we climbed into Marvin’s car and headed for San Francisco for what we didn’t know at the time would be our first date.

For the rest of the day and into the night, we took turns showing each other our favorite parts of the city. We started with a walk across the Golden Gate Bridge, followed by lunch at a rotating restaurant on the top floor of the Hyatt Regency (the restaurant was circular in shape and rotated slowly, giving its patrons a panoramic view of the city over the course of an hour). Eventually we ended up in Chinatown, where we ate dinner, and then we finished the evening with a Broadway review at an historic drag club called Finocchio’s.

San Francisco, 1985

Sometime around midnight, we realized it was getting late and returned to San Jose, where we sat in the car and talked until nearly four in the morning. And the rest, as they say, is history.

After that, we were inseparable. What started as a friendship soon turned romantic (did I mention he was cute?). Since the Potpourri had a no-dating policy at the time, the two of us snuck around for six months until Marvin left the company. On his last day, he dipped me backward in front of everyone and gave me a big kiss, just like in the movies. Then he left the building.

Shortly after that I left the Potpourri and a year later, we were married. Thirty-six years, two kids, four houses, two states, and many adventures later, we’re still married. The Potpourri went out of business twenty years ago. Happy 36th anniversary to my best friend, love of my life, and most awesome husband ever.

Still cute after all these years!

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