Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Romance = Danger

I was informed by more than one person, after last week’s post, that I don’t sound like much of a romantic. Since this week holds the traditional day of romance, I thought it appropriate to expound on the subject just a little from a personal perspective.

While there may be a romantic soul in my body, I keep it corked up tight. Romance scares me. There. I said it. I’m not ashamed, as I have good reason to be. I’ve let Mr. Romance out a few times in my life, and nothing but physical pain and grief have resulted. 

At the tender age of eight I fell in love with the girl down the street. She played baseball as well as her brother, could ride a bike like Evil Knievel and was beautiful to boot. That was the first time Mr. Romance emerged. Sneaking up on her, with a handful of flowers freshly stolen from her mother’s flowerbed, I tapped her on the shoulder. When she turned around, I kissed her smack on the lips. Unfortunately, she was holding a plastic whiffle ball bat. She damn near beat me to death and swore if Mr. Romance ever did anything like that again her father would finish the job.

Around eight years later Mr. Romance (who is also known as Prince Valiant) snuck back out. I was smitten by a girl in my chemistry class - as were most of the other boys. She was endowed with a figure not unlike that of Kate Upton. She was also my chemistry lab partner. One day she wore a tight, pink, Angora sweater to class. While working on an experiment that involved a gas burner, she leaned over the flames to grab something. To my horror, I saw that her chest had caught fire. It wasn’t a large fire, and initially went unnoticed by the victim. Mr. Romance/Prince Valiant, however, immediately flew into action and quickly started patting out the flames. All hell broke loose.

A few years later Mr. Romance again escaped restraint, this time with the help of several beers at a party. With plenty of carbonated courage in me, it was not so intimidating to walk up to the pretty girl for a chat. My suave manner took a back seat when I opened my mouth to speak and burped. It wasn’t a polite, little burp as one might experience during a nice meal, but a reverberating belch, flecked with beer suds. The conversation ended abruptly.

 I know what you’re thinking: “Surely Mr. Romance had to come out successfully at least once. You’re married.” Indeed, Mr. Romance did emerge when Mrs. Poynor and I first dated, but it’s a miracle I survived.  

Mine wasn't this nice. Photo by Alain Morin
The first date with my future bride was a trip to the movies. I even washed and cleaned my ’65 Corvair. (At that time, Corvairs weren’t considered classics, just old. Mine had the optional dent in the driver’s door.) As soon as the car was parked next to the curb Mr. Romance jumped out of the car to run around and open the door for his date. His date, not used to being romanced, flung the low-slung door open. The edge of the door met my groin at the zenith of the door’s arc.

“Oh! I’m so sorry!” the future Mrs. Poynor exclaimed. “I’ve never had a date open my door for me. Are you okay?”

Draped over the door, two things raced through my mind: “I do believe Mr. Romance has met Ms. Romance. Too bad it will be a childless marriage.”

SHAMELESS PLUG: If you'd like to see what other mishaps romance can create, check out my book, Home is Where the Harm Is. Available for e-readers at Amazon.


  1. I'd forgotten just how UGLY those Corvairs were! :)

    1. They were cute in a warthog sort of way. Mine had the driver's door just about collapsed, but the window still worked. Couldn't afford a real muffler, so installed a glass-pack when the old muffler fell off. The car sounded like a prolonged fart when it was wound out. It was a GREAT car.