Dumb and Dumber

Recently in the news there was a story about a football player who was smitten with true and endearing love for an ex-beauty queen. So much so, that he bought an engagement ring purportedly worth $76,000 to present to her. But being a very busy athlete, he decided to wrap it up carefully, insure it, and mail it to her. Along with the said jewelry, he tape recorded a marriage proposal. That appears to have been a dumb move.

The recipient of such affection took one look at the ring, put it aside and then listened to the audio proposal. “Uh, uh.” was her answer. She kept the ring. That was dumber, but not because she kept it. What was unwise was the decision to play with the truth a little bit. When the football player asked her to return the ring, she allegedly said that she lost it.

Come again? Excuse me? Huh? It would have been better to just have said “no, not interested in getting married but thanks for the present.” Then they could have fought it out in court as to whether keeping the ring was conditional to accepting the proposal. I’m sure there have been oodles of court battles on that fine point of law. Maybe? You think?

But the former beauty queen purportedly said, “sorry, I lost it.” Naturally, the emotionally wounded athlete put in a claim to the insurance company telling them he wanted to be compensated as he was sure his ex-fiance was eager to return the diamond but it just got lost. The insurance company, being what they are, decided not to believe anybody and sent an investigator to do what they do, which is investigate.

The gumshoe determined that the hot rock was not lost but allegedly in possession of the father of the lady who jilted the football player. It was “for safekeeping”. Supposedly, the older, smarter father was willing to be an accomplice hoping that the two of them could work the whole thing out and come to a mutually agreeable conclusion to the awkward situation. He subsequently indicated that he and his daughter wished to avoid a legal battle and were now willing to return the item as long as everyone involved would let bygones be bygones.

Hey, I’m not an expert in Affairs L’Amour. As a matter of fact, I recall an incident that played largely to my naivete at the time. This goes back about 38 years ago while I was attending Northeastern Illinois University. I was taking a class in Speech and Performing Arts over again during the summer because the jerk of the professor who taught me the first time around sort of failed me unless I took the class again. He had it in for me because I was about to rat on him for being a con artist, but that’s another story. And it had nothing to do with school activity so it would not have been grounds to get him dismissed.

During the summer session, we had an assignment where we paired up with a classmate and put on a performance. I’m not sure how we got paired up, but it resulted in teaming with a girl who was not my type but apparently had an interest in me. I agreed very innocently (yes, really) to practice our routine one evening at her house due to the proximity of our presentation. I don’t remember how I got to her residence because I didn’t yet own a car and Dad was usually not willing to let me borrow it unless it was on the spur of the moment. Often he would use the family car to go visit an insurance client at night.

Somehow, I must have been able to get the transportation as the next thing I knew I was ringing the young lady’s doorbell at night. She let me in. She introduced me to her parents. Her father was all smiles and winked at me while wishing us both a ‘fine’ study session. Then the mother announced that they were leaving to go out for the evening.
My classmate asked me to come downstairs with her into the finished basement to which I did. We sat on a couch and started to rehearse our bit. After a while, she walked over to the stereo and put on some mood music. I looked at the script I was holding and didn’t see anything in there about playing music. She then started giving me those goo-goo eyes and it immediately registered that this whole thing had been a sham. I had been used!

Dear reader, let me make it clear- I have never been one to shy away from opportunities to express feelings, if you know what I mean. However, not with this chick. No way! She didn’t have the type of looks that turned my fancy.

I guess it was my first of several dumb and dumber moments. Okay, maybe it was my second. Because there was the time a year or so earlier during the summer after high school graduation that I was infatuated- briefly- with a young lady with whom I had nothing whatsoever in common. Check that- we did share one common thing- it was both our very first dates with the opposite sex. She was, I think, surprised that anyone asked her out and I was surprised that she accepted. It took me one and a half dates to realize I needed to invent a rare disease to get myself out of her grip. The only good memory of it was that she invited me to be her escort to a benefit performance at which I had the luck to see the Fifth Dimension perform in person their hot hits during the summer of 1970.

I’ve experienced many more dumb and dumber moments in searching for my Dulcinea. It just gets harder and harder with all those restraining orders and “no fly-over” rulings to various cities. But one day Sancho Panza will tap me, a modern day Don Quixote, on the shoulder and say, “look yonder” and there she will be.

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