The Song That Changed Everything

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Viacom, of course, wasn’t the only company with offices in that building. As it happened, one of the other companies at that address was an entertainment industry law firm. I happened to be working at that law firm, managing their file room to pay the rent while I sang in clubs in the evenings and on weekends.

One of the lawyers asked me to run an errand outside of the building. I was happy to comply; it was a chance to get out on a lovely September day. I rode down in the elevator, and as I exited the lobby and walked across the plaza in front of the building I saw a remarkable sight; one of the tallest women I’d ever seen-a beautiful woman besides-was locking her bicycle to a park bench. Being 6’4″ tall myself, and recently having been through a long dry spell in the dating arena, this was potentially manna from heaven.

She had her back to me as she stood at the far end of the bench, tying up the bike. So, I walked over quietly and sat down on the bench, totally unnoticed. “Do you always ride your bike?” I asked. I had always been told I should be on the radio myself, thanks to a mellifluous deep voice, and the sound of my voice got her attention. She turned around, smiling, to see who was speaking to her. Now that I had her attention, I stood up, and — as she later described it — I “kept getting taller and taller!” Being almost the same height, we ended up smiling eye to eye.

Since no one had yet arrived for the protest rally, Lynn was free to talk for a few minutes, and I figured I also had a few minutes to spare. So, we took a seat in front of the building and introduced ourselves. It was immediately obvious that there was chemistry between us, and we soon discovered we had many shared interests. Not the least of those was music: I was a singer-songwriter; she was a classically-trained former concert harpist (turned graphic artist).

After ten or fifteen minutes of chatting, I told her I would love to sing her a song of mine; I offered to sing it acapella (without accompaniment). She immediately held up her hand and said, “Oh no, that’s okay.” So, we continued talking instead. By then, other protesters began arriving, and I had to get on with my errand.

“I can come out again later when I take a coffee break,” I said.

“That sounds great,” she replied, still smiling. So, she walked over to join the growd that was organizing, and I went on my way.

An hour or two later, after I’d been back on the job for a while, I took my coffee break and headed down to the lobby again. Outside, the protesters had been marching in a circle for over an hour, and they were taking a brief break. I flagged Lynn down again, and we continued our conversation. Just as before, we were hitting it off like two people who’d been best friends for years.

After a few minutes I made a second offer to sing her a song. I had the perfect song in mind. I had written it for the love of my life — the catch was that I hadn’t actually met the person the song was written for yet! To be honest, I wasn’t absolutely sure that this tall, lovely woman would turn out to be the love of my life, but I was willing to take that chance.

Once again, Lynn put me off with a smile. “That’s okay,” she said. I had no way of knowing it at the time, but the reason she didn’t want to hear me sing was that she really liked me. As a classically-trained musician she had very high standards for music, and she was worried that I wouldn’t be very good. That, she thought, would spoil what seemed like a lovely potential match!

We decided we should meet for dinner. Because she was a good cook, she invited me to her house for that Friday night. Then, still smiling, we said goodbye to return to filing and protesting, respectively.

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