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Pink Martinis and the Hollywood Bowl – the best date ever

Once upon a time: a tale of two cities and the perfect date with music and martinis

He told her to be his house in San Francisco at 7:00 a.m. with running shoes and to be prepared for a surprise involving an airplane jaunt, a saber tooth tiger and a pink martini- and to bring a dress for dinner and a show.

The first surprise was when Super Shuttle arrived at 7:30 a.m. and whisked them away to SFO. She happily agreed to be open to a day of surprises. He called it their ‘Cinderella day.’ He alluded to a full 12 hours of fun and new adventures.
Timing is Everything

Jan and Mike met on JDate three months earlier and clicked instantly. Ironically, both were ‘lapsed Lutherans’ who were “looking for love in all the wrong places” until they each enrolled on JDate. Both struck out on Eharmony and decided to try a new tribe. Serendipitously, on the very same day, they decided to check out the new dating site, they met on line.

They shared a passion for Zydeco music, Greece, photography and every book written by Pat Conroy. If nothing else, JDate is the master marketing machine for dating and connecting. The two admit to wading through a few so-called “perfect matches” then, bingo, they connected and clicked. Three months and many dates later, they were blissfully flying to Los Angeles together.

He got ridiculously cheap airline tickets to LA and arranged to have his brother, Gary, the out of work actor, to pick them up and play chauffeur and tour guide. She packed her camera, an arsenal of Trader Joe’s snacks, and bejeweled ballet slippers and a crinkly, little black dress that folded up to the size of a CD.

The piece d résistance, Mike revealed he had won two tickets to Pink Martini at the Hollywood Bowl. Earlier that summer, while at the Shakespeare Festival in Ashland, he won a drawing for two free tickets to the concert and Backstage passes from KOBI TV in Medford. Life is good.

Get Me to the Getty on Time

First stop: the Getty Museum for the highly touted ‘Engaged Observers: Documentary Photography since the Sixties’ exhibit. They spent a quick two hours at the vast museum, and had to tear themselves away from the impressive photography.

Gary, never met an audience he didn’t like, was delighted to play chauffeur for his brother and date. Their next surprise stop was the famed La Brea Tar Pits. When she was 12, Jan’s family had explored the magic kingdom, Disneyland and the dreary Tar Pits. Jan was amazed by the new  museum, the excellent displays and the wall of hundreds of saber tooth tiger skulls.

Gary took them to his favorite hole-in-the-wall Thai restaurant in Hollywood where they feasted and changed into dress clothes and excitedly drove to the famous and awesome Hollywood Bowl. Gary said he knew some people at the Bowl, would park the car, hike back and see if he could score SRO ticket.

As Smooth as a Pink Martini

Jan, a very big big fan of Pink Martini, had always loved “Sunday Table” a romantic song written by China Forbes and Thomas Lauderdale about that moment where you pass a stranger on the street have a split second love affair. Bonus, that night the “special guests” were Rufus Wainwright, Jane Powell, Air Shapiro and  the original cast of Sesame Street.

The concert was beyond their expectations. Jan and Mike loved every moment and every song. After the  best concert ever, they were like kids going backstage to mingle and ogle. Jan was thrilled to talk to handsome and debonair, Emilio Delgado – Luis from Sesame Street. Her college-aged daughters would swoon over the photo of her and their all-time, very favorite Sesame Street denizen. All too soon, Gary whisked the two back to the airport and before they knew it, Jan and Mike were on Super Shuttle and back in the City. Jan told Mike she did feel like Cinderella and he really was a prince and charming.

Tell me about your perfect date.
San Francisco Dating@50 Examiner, Page Larkin
, welcomes your feedback, questions and queries at

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