Thursday, January 11, 2018

STILL POPULAR WITH OLDER MEN (me!) sandra, tvgp

SPEAKING of being POPULAR WITH OLDER MEN.. that reminds (me!), sandra, tvgp


original post titled HE THOUGHT ~ SHE THOUGHT written in 2008.   trigger/cerebral hyperlink for re-post this morning, is in the current title.


***

i've so much i want to say and write about the poetry, prose & art festival, but first i must tell you about THE NIGHT BEFORE THE FESTIVAL.. (that would have made a better title, huh.. anyway..),


went down like this: i had just finished hanging signs and putting up displays here n' there for the festival and it was time to go home. i was tired. very tired. but on my way through the parking lot to my car i was approached by one of the elderly men from the senior center


"i have an extra ticket to see the music man tonight, wanna be my date?" he asked (and quite innocently, i might add)

thoughts raced through my mind... the kids are with their dad tonight... i'm available.. it's friday night.. i love the theatre.. it's more fun to go places with people than alone... there's no reason not to go really... i can rally for the cause.. i should say



"yes!"




and next thing you know i'm on the wheels bus with 25 seniors, sitting next to my new friend ron, on our way to the bankhead theatre (where i just performed a week ago) to see the music man, presented by the pleasanton playhouse


and in retelling this story to my workshop leader, martha alderson and classmates at the poetry, prose n' art festival, this is the part where everyone went like,

"oh, how sweet.. how nice of you"

"BUT NO! ..." i warned them, 'cuz guess what...

here i was thinkin' i was just good company.. maybe like a surrogate granddaughter or something.. or maybe (at age 42) a surrogate daughter


but ron was seein' things a whole different way.


when he said, "date" -he meant DATE.


and i want you to know i had to bat that man's hands off my shoulder, then my leg!

he was no innocent elderly senior citizen in need of company... he was a four-handed flirty non-stop frisky type disguised in a mr. rogers sweater!

a couple other seniors on the bus were laughing... "how do you do it ron? go out to your car for a sweater and bring back a date?"

"i have my secrets," he smiled back, trying to hold my hand.



~what have i gotten myself into?~




i tried engaging ron in conversation to distract him from the thoughts that came more naturally


i learned he'd worked in the lumber yards for many years; was from canada originally, had seven children,


learned about how he'd prayed to the lord in his early twenties to be freed from alcoholism, and it worked. learned his wife of many years had been sick for some time and was recently moved into a nursing home in livermore.

and while we were en route he pointed out the window to a middle aged man in a plaid shirt walking with a bit of a stumble


"that's my son," he said, "can't stop drinking" -and he went on to share that his son had recently been released from jail

and my thoughts then went to my maternal grandma (my mom-ma) who passed in april a number of years ago -what a conversation with her might be like, if you were sitting next to her on the greyhound bus (she refused to fly and didn't like trains). six children.. two of her boys alcoholics, in and out of jail their whole adult lives..


" i think the advances they're making in neuroscience are gonna help alcoholics one day... within the next ten years," i said. and ron gave me the same look everyone does when i say that..

overwhelming doubt.

every opportunity he could, ron would put his arms around my waist... to help me out of my seat, to help me off the bus, to help me to my seat...

and every opportunity i could, i removed his hands from my body.

the performance was outstanding. the props were magnificent, the lighting fantastic, the cast excellent, the singing, the orchestra... the story...

"i paid a lot of money for that ticket," ron told me, "i'm glad it didn't have to go to waste"

"it's not going to waste with me," i assured him, "i love the theatre. thank you for inviting me"

and then he took that opportunity to invite me on a cruise in florida -for a week!

"i'm not going on any dates until my kids are in college," i told him, as i placed his hands back on his own lap.

and i mixed n' mingled with the other seniors, 80% women, during the intermission and after the show on our way back to pleasanton. -none of them quite sure what to make of me

(and i was acutely aware if i did not get my hair painted every 3 weeks, i would have blended write in.)

"i'm writing my first play write now," i told them, "for the firehouse art center.. when it opens a couple years from now. i hope you'll come"

and i promised ron a free ticket to my first play as a thank you. -got his address/contact info-

threw him my "and that's all you're gettin'" look. -gave him a quick hug and said good-bye.

but i've got in my head that i'll send ron two free tickets, -just to see who else falls for that mr. roger's sweater trick that worked on me.


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