Her Ladyship

Notes from the gutter.

Tuesday, April 25, 2006

Two degrees of separation

DC is such a small and incestuous town that I used to think that six degrees of separation was too much, that maybe two degrees would be more accurate. Now I'm starting to think that it may be true for the world in general.

To whit: Friday, The Texan and I were sitting in his favorite bar, Applebee's (what? it's the burbs)(and due to weird zoning restrictions, it's one of the few places where you can smoke and enjoy fried concoctions at the same time). I got up to use the facilities and came back to find that he'd started chatting with the guys sitting on the barstools next to us. Somehow, school came up, and the older gentleman to my left volunteered that he'd gone to college in Schenectady, NY. My ears perked up because I've been there, as it's not too far from my mom's wee little hometown in the middle of the Catskill Mountains.

So I asked if he'd ever been there. Turns out that not only had he lived there until he was 10, but he'd been good friends with my uncle, my grandparents were his godparents, and his parents were my uncle's godparents.

I think "flabbergasted" just about describes how I felt when we made that connection. And he was able to give me some good gossip about various people we knew in common (or, more accurately, people who had featured widely in my mom's stories). What are the chances that two people with that kind of weird connection would a) end up in SA? b) sit next to each other in bar? and c) talk long enough to be able to figure out there was a connection? It really makes me wonder what I'm missing out on and if I talked to random strangers all the time (and I kind of already do), who I would run into.

Anyways, the best part was knowing I knew how thrilled my mom would be to hear of this connection. Most of her family is gone now and she has no one to reminisce about ye olde tymes with. I ended up chatting with the guy for a couple of hours and got his contact information to give to my mom. I think my dad was feeling a bit left out, as he emailed me to say that if I ever ran into anyone from *his* hometown to let him know. Sure thing.


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