All children like to hear the stories of their parents’ courtship — where they met and how they fell in love and got married. And I think that when the marriage ultimately ends in divorce, those family tales become even more important to the children born of the union. At least that’s the way it was for me.
In honor of Valentine’s Day, I’m going to share with you one of my favorite stories from my parents’ early years together. Daddy wrote about it in one of his newspaper columns (“read by a million readers,” remember, so I don’t think I’m breaking any confidences). Here is how Jest Among Us of September 29, 1949, described the event:
A young man and a young lady of my acquaintance had been “going steady” for some time and the young lady was expecting momentarily to hear the all-important question. At last the young man spoke. “Will you — I mean, would you — say yes,” he stammered, “if I asked you to make me a chocolate pie?” It seems that he was fond of chocolate pie. So they went on a picnic, just the two of them, at High Bridge Park, and the young lady took along a nice picnic lunch, including a beautiful chocolate pie. As she started to remove the wax paper from it, however, the pie slipped from her grasp and fell to the ground with an awful splush. The young lady burst into tears, whereupon the young man gallantly got down on his knees and ate the gooey mess, dirt, grass, bugs and all, and told her how delicious it was. Months later, after they were married, she confessed that she hadn’t even made the pie.
Oh, the things we do for love!