When you hear the word Matchmaker, what image comes to mind? For me, it is the famous character from Fiddler on the Roof who comes to mind. Perhaps you think in more modern terms, and see the Millionaire Matchmaker?
Either way, if you could picture the complete opposite, who would it be? Could you imagine a former Israeli air force commander in his mid-50s? Not what you would expect? Me neither. What if I told you this matchmaker also happened to be the superintendent of my New York apartment building? Living in the city just got that much more interesting, right?
When the management company drastically increased my rent for the next year’s lease, I went straight to the super to complain. He lacked much empathy in his response to my frustration. Instead, his solution half amused, half insulted me.
“So, find a husband!” the super said.
“Why don’t you find me one?” I retorted.
Then, his eyes lit up: the secret matchmaker inside the brusque exterior revealed itself immediately.
“I have just the guy. He is a nice boy, lives on the first floor, works in finance, comes from a good family,” he tells me.
Normally I would have hesitated, reluctant to even begin dating someone in the building where I lived. If anything did not go well, I would have to see him every day. However, instead, I agreed. No matter what, in four months or less, I would be moving out because of the increase in rent. What did I have to loose?
That week, I received a call from a number I did not recognize. I picked up, and had just as awkward as expected a conversation with the mysterious blind date in my building. We agreed to meet up the following week. I wondered if I had ever seen him in the building.
Later that week, I stopped to check the mail, and recognized a familiar voice behind me. He was on the phone, and the more I listened, the more I tried to place who he could be. Then, it hit me, it was the set up guy! I kept looking down, and made a beeline for the elevator. Just as he put his keys in the door directly across from the elevator, we made eye contact. The mystery guy had been exactly who I feared, and not who I wanted to date.
A few days later, he called again to set a time to meet. I ignored the call, and never called back. That week was the last time I checked the mail until I moved out of the apartment. Every time I walked past his door to the elevator, I was terrified I would see him.
Matchmaker, matchmaker, make me a match, but please don’t let my super find the catch.