Friday, June 23, 2006

An Ode to Zuppie Sue

The next best thing to seeing my old friend Marilyn was having dinner with her husband last night. We met him at Raku in Bethesda since he is taking a week-long course at IBM in Gaithersburg. They live in San Francisco so we don’t see each other often.

Marilyn and I met when I was a freshman in college (and she was a grad student) because we both liked the same guy. He was the one who gave her the awful nickname of Zuppie Sue. We ended up liking each other better than either of us liked him. Since she was 4 years older than I was, she turned out to be a good life mentor for a naive only child.

I remember distinctly living with her the summer after my freshman year in a dump called Seminole Plaza. Memories of that summer include:
– Learning how to cook since my mother had done all the cooking and never taught me. This included basics like potato salad and spaghetti sauce.
– Listening to Dionne Warwick belt out “Do You Know the Way to San Jose?” and Herb Alpert and the Tiajuana Brass all summer long.
– Learning how to drink and not get (too) smashed.
– Making out with my neighbor at a drive-in theater (the one I convinced to quit smoking before I would go out with him).
– Corrupting my boss's 16-year-old son.
– Watching Marilyn learn Cobol one lesson ahead of those of us who were in her class. She was a great teacher and fortunately for her a quick study.
– Having my 3-speed bike stolen.
– Hating to move back into a dorm in the fall.

Marilyn shared her car with me and treated me like I was her age. I knew I could always stay at her apartment if I needed a place.

Marilyn lived with her boyfriend Brian (the one I had dinner with) for years before they got married. My mother made a big deal about letting them share a bed in their unmarried state when they came to visit in PC. For heaven’s sake, she was so screwed up when it came to sex. Marilyn and Brian and I spent a lot of time together, especially in that summer of 1969 so long ago. I miss her.

When she was in town a few years ago, we contacted Joe, the guy we both liked who also lives here, and the three of us had lunch together. He was still the same old know-it-all and we both decided we had done a lot better in choosing a life partner. But thank you Joe for introducing Marilyn and me!


Blogger RennyBA said...

Hello Barbara! Just wanna say Happy St. Hans (Mid Summer day) from Norway:-)

6:45 PM  
Blogger Barbara said...

Renny -- I hope you are relishing the long summer days. You Norwegians are so passionate about the sun!

8:35 PM  
Blogger Mother of Invention said...

It is neat when you stay connected long after the initial connection time is over. I do that with quite a few still from high school as wellas the summer camp I worked at for so long.

And, I too, never really had to learn to cook since both my parents did the cooking and never actually asked us to do much. I'm the youngest of 3 oldest sister married a farmer so she did learn how to cook well! My other sister married a musician who does all the cooking and baking!
My husband can cook but really never has the time schedule or inclination so it's pretty simple fare for us!

8:59 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

True Life Friends are a blessing. I treasure that you are one of mine. FL

10:18 PM  
Blogger Barbara said...

MOI -- I've always thought the sign of a good friend was one you could pick up with right where you left off. I'll bet we would have been good friends had we grown up together.

FL -- I've missed seeing you on my StatCounter recently. I'm glad you are back. Do you remember the night we drove to Tallahassee and all told our parents that we were spending the night at Elinor's house? The next day before we came home, you bought each of us a little book at the FSU student union. Mine was called "I Like You." I still have it and I treasure it along with your friendship. Hugs across the miles to you!

10:53 PM  
Blogger Mother of Invention said...

Thanks, Barbara! I think that we probably would have been great friends too! I think it is so important to try to keep up with people, and because we don't have kids, that has allowed us to be successful in that endeavour to be sure! I am so glad of that! Sometimes I think that is part of my real purpose in this life; to be there for others in a giving and supportive way. I like that role and do it well. (Think I actually said that in , "Look To My Inukshuk" post.)

9:24 AM  

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