My grandmother, Mama Louise, often reminds me that if it weren’t for her and Papa Al, me and my four sisters would never have come to be. “All of this, it’s because of US,” she says proudly.
When I first inquired into how my grandmother Louise felt about my grandfather Al back when they were young, her response was so quiveringly and overtly sexual that I was rendered speechless. I was expecting a dainty story of her sitting underneath a white armada, leaning over the banister flirtatiously while he approached her with an innocent lemonade and asked to take her to the fair on Saturday.
Rather, I got this description (and mind you, I was ten years old): “I was sitting down in a room full of people when my head slowly turned and I caught sight of this (and here she sighs and shakes her head for effect) this… handsome, handsome man. And Charlee, he had these blue eyes that just… let me tell you…(she grunts at this point) I am not kidding, they brought. me. to. my. knees.” She nodded to emphasize, waiting for me to comprehend the sheer animal force that my grandfather exuded, that she was victim to. “And even twenty years later, we’d be at a party and I’d catch eyes with him. And it would just DO things to me.” She then looked so feverish that I became frightened that my poor grandmother was under the spell of a sex God–yes, the same old man who would sit in his La-Z-Boy as I combed his single tuft of gray hair on his shiny old head, clipping it with my pink bows.
I marvel to this day that I am the product of a young man and young woman’s unbridled carnal passion for each other—even if in every other aspect of life, they seem less than compatible. It’s really something not to be underestimated, this sex appeal, this thing called chemistry. I often set up clients who find each other to be just fabulous–except they don’t feel that ‘heat’–that heat my grandmother spoke of so vividly and that embarrassed, and ultimately, shocked me, to know that it was what was ultimately responsible for my very existence.
My husband and I were talking yesterday in the car as we traveled through the desert about dating services, and he asked me if I thought whether, if I were still single, I’d ever use one. I said I didn’t know, that I’d probably just always end up dating a neighbor–I was really under the influence of the law of proximity. When I asked him, he said, “If I hadn’t found the woman of my dreams–you—then, oh definitely. Since you’ve been doing this work, I have really become more and more convinced that it as good a way as any other to meet anyone, and really, preferable and superior in many ways. Because you can still have the room to see if there is chemistry and attraction, but you don’t have to be prey to it. You have someone working on your behalf to help guide you into compatibility and health, into harmony with another person. It’s a great thing.” I would never have expected him to say that, but he is quite right. I am glad my grandmother and grandfather forged a life together, albeit based pretty much solely on sexual attraction, because otherwise I’d not be here. But I always thought it was a pity that two people should be so enslaved to each other due to this one ruthless, blind force. I always thought marriage and love should combine the best of friendship with the best of romance. And I suppose I ended up just in the right job in life to be able to see to it that there is more of that.