Tuesday, June 6, 2017

IWSG: Before Match.com - The Real Matchmakers




                                                                       

It's time for another edition of the Insecure Writer's Support Group.  Be sure to visit Alex J. Cavanaugh and the rest of the talented writers who are always willing to lend a helping hand.

                                       Before Match.com - The Real Matchmakers


June 28, 1987
                                                               

As our 30th anniversary is approaching, it seems only fitting to tell the story of how we met. It all began when my dear friend Lily called to tell me about an upcoming dating show on cable. She said that her client was a Jewish matchmaker who offered to fix her up. When she told her that she was engaged, she asked her if she knew of anyone who might be interested. She knew that I would enjoy being on a dating show, so I thanked her for thinking of me.  A few minutes later, the matchmaker called me at work.

She started firing off personal questions, as I trembled in my cubicle.  I finally cut her off when the subject of weight came up, though I would give anything to trade my 1986 stats right now. The next step was to set up a meeting in person, and afterward she would collect her generous fee. When I asked about the cable dating show, she said that she was still working on it.  I told her to call me back when she had more information.

A few weeks later, I received another call at work. The matchmaker told me that she had several new clients who would love to meet me,  and she "desperately" needed women in my age group. I was a tall, twenty-four-year-old Jewish blond, with good child bearing hips. What's not to like?  I asked again about the dating show which was probably never going to happen in the first place. So there was no TV offer, and she admitted that she was "desperate." This was a true Seinfeld moment when I had "hand."

I offered to meet her if she sent me on a free trial date. The matchmaker said it was out of the question. Then I replied, "Since you told me that you were 'desperate,' I don't see why I should have to pay you." At the time I worked in the advertising department at a magazine, so she suggested I help her with advertising instead. Hence, we set up a meeting for the following week.

The matchmaker looked like Dr. Ruth, and was a compact powerhouse. Since many of her clients were older religious men from New York, she immediately started asking me questions about how observant I was. When she asked me if I ever ate bread during Passover, I answered her honestly.

She sternly replied, "Do you know what the bible said about what happened to people who ate bread on Passover?  It said that they were stoned." Suddenly, I wasn't so excited about my trial date. Then she took my picture to share with her partner, and sent me on my way.  

Her partner must have liked the terrified expression on my face, because I got a call a few days later. We went to a nice Chinese restaurant for dinner. He didn't laugh or try to sneak out when I started choking on the hot n sour soup. It turned out that he lived down the street from her younger partner who had been trying to fix him up for years. She bent the rules by showing him my picture, and he decided to call me. I fell in love with my trial date, and we were engaged six months later.

My friend Lily stood up in our wedding, and later ran into the matchmaker. She always came to see her during the clothing shows in search of sample sales. Though she had only met my husband briefly when she crashed our wedding she told my friend, "You know, he was much too good for her." 


Note: This is a repost from 2012, shortly before our 25th anniversary


27 comments:

  1. Loved hearing how you met your husband. What a sweet story. Congrats on your anniversary.

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  2. What a crazy way to meet. You might have been that matchmaker's only success story.
    Happy anniversary!

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  3. That's a great story! What a convoluted and frustrating way to meet, but it all worked out in the end!

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  4. Aw! I love it. I actually ended up playing matchmaker for my brother. Fun stuff, eh? 30 years... That's epic! Congrats.

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  5. You sure didn't quit, girlie, and look at the success!

    By the way, we can eat bread during DUB...when it's unleavened, of course.

    Love the photo of the happy couple!

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  6. Although it's early...HAPPY ANNIVERSARY!!!!

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  7. What a happy matchmaking story this was. Thanks for it here today.

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  8. Natalie - Thank you so much, Natalie!

    Alex - Actually there were others and someone later made a documentary out of it, but of course we were not included. Thank you Alex and thanks for hosting the IWSG!

    Debra - Yes, it was "convoluted and frustrating," but funny how I found my husband on my trial date. Thanks Debra!

    Crystal - How wonderful that you played matchmaker for your brother! I hope that he thanks you every day! Thanks Crystal!

    Julie

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  9. happy Anniversary! A match made in Chinatown :)

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  10. IB - UB right - I'm not a quitter, unless it's sports related. I try to fight battles that I have at least some chance of winning. Thank you IB!

    Chrys - Thank you for the early anniversary wishes!

    Lee - Glad you like happy endings too! Thank you, Lee!

    Carol - I never thought of it that way. Nicely put, Carol! Thank you!

    Julie

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  11. Aaaaw! So glad it worked out! Happy anniversary.

    www.jessicatherrien.com

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  12. History worthy of a movie!! Happy 30th!

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  13. Wonderful story, and I am glad you didn't pay her too much. I might have. I used one in Chicago ages ago, but never met anyone interesting that way. Happy Anniversary. Jeff and I celebrate 20 this year.

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  14. Thank you Jessica!

    Susan - Haha! Yes, that would be fun to see on the big screen! Sadly, I'm not sure that anyone else would want to see it. Thanks Susan!

    Rhonda - Maybe you went through her partner instead. It was really a fluke that we met. Thank you and an early happy 20th anniversary to you and Jeff!

    Julie

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  15. Oh my gosh, what a fun story! I loved your descriptions of the matchmaker and your interactions with her. So funny. Happy Anniversary!

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  16. Hi Julie - how extraordinary ... but way to go and no wonder you're so good at telling stories ... with a starter like that and the bank of your mother's stories from your childhood - you were ready to go and those hips ?! Well - two boys later - love the photo ... Happy Anniversary ... and here's to many more - cheers Hilary

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  17. Julie - The matchmaker was a real character and she was crazy about me! Thanks Julie!

    Hi Hilary - Yep, those hips are expanding as we speak, only now they're not alone! You always tell wonderful stories too, and yours are always entertaining and informative! Thanks Hilary!

    Julie

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  18. It was meant to be. :) Happy Anniversary! We will hit anniversary #32 in July.

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  19. Connie - I couldn't agree more! Thank you and an early happy 32nd anniversary to you!

    Julie

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  20. Wow, happy anniversary! What a cool story. You know, I've probably eaten bread on Passover countless times. It's a wonder boulders haven't fallen from the ceiling and caved in my head.

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  21. What a totally cool and unique story! (Just like you!)

    Happy anniversary, kiddo. I'm glad your trial date turned into a happy ever after for you. :)

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  22. A Beer For The Shower - Haha! You do like to live dangerously! Always good to see my favorite Beer Boys! Thank you!

    Hi Susan, Yes, it has turned into a "happily ever after!" Of course it helps that he doesn't hear too well and his vision is going! Thanks my dear friend!

    Julie

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  23. Hmmm.... How did I miss this one? Well, but I'm still in time to wish you a Happy Anniversary, GEM JULIE.

    Neat story! Ya know, over the years, I've read a number of things about how successful "matchmaking" can be, leading to happy marriages.

    I think one aspect of it that might make it work is having that objective person in the middle evaluating the potential match-ups. When WE ourselves are involved, there's an awful lot of emotions and perhaps sometimes distorted self-perception that fouls things up.

    Anyway, congratulations to you and your husband!

    ~ D-FensDogG
    Stephen T. McCarthy Reviews...

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  24. Hi Stephen, In this case, the matchmaker was trying to make me into a different person. Fortunately, her kind partner was more understanding. Thank you so much, Stephen!

    Julie

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  25. Such a cool story. Happy anniversary. The matchmaker sounds like quite a character. I think I would have run very far in the other direction. Glad you didn't.

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  26. What a story. I see advertising for matchmakers, but I've don't know if I've heard any successful stories of match first hand before. With thirty years under your belts, it sure worked out well!

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