How We Met

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In July 1992, The Jewish Community Center of Dallas gave rise to Profiles, a Jewish dating service, and the first of its kind in Dallas.  Larry was involved in its creation, and in 1999 the 100th couple became engaged as a result of meeting through Profiles...well, sort of.  The director of Profiles recognized our engagement as the 100th because, while we did not meet through Profiles, the dating service did play a role in how we met, and our story clearly illustrates that we were each other's beshert.  The April/May 1999 JCC newsletter featured our story.  Jenny wrote the story of how we met, and Larry wrote the story of how we became engaged.



"How we met"

by Jenny Cohen

I had just stopped seeing someone and basically convinced myself that I wasn't going to be dating for a while.  My friend Irena would hear none of it.  She told me she had been going out on dates/meeting several people through Profiles, and explained the dating service to me.  I told her point blank, "I'm not joining any dating service!"  However, she convinced me that I didn't have to meet Mr. Right:  "Just think of it as a way to make new friends and meet people."  After a week of debating this with her, she brought me into the JCC to sign up.  I clearly remember the date: January 12, 1997.  I filled out the forms, which I felt took me an eternity to do!

After I turned in all the necessary paperwork and paid my dues, I began looking through the notebooks.  The very first photo I opened to was LA19189.  Something just struck me about his photos; he had a very genuine, compassionate look about him.  Originally, I told Irena that he'd be perfect for HER!  After all, Larry and Irena are both techies. She told me, "No, I think you should pick him!"

I read further through his profile, and loved how well rounded he seemed to be. He loved sports, symphonies, the outdoors and books.  Larry came across as highly intelligent, good-natured, funny and some things he wrote really touched me. And then I came to the short term goal: "To finish this profile which has taken me six eternities to complete!" I just had to meet this guy!

I thumbed through other guys' profiles, and kept returning to Larry's.  There was just something about him.  After discussing everything with Irena, I decided that I would wait until Tuesday to pick anyone.  This way, all my paperwork would be processed (I wanted to make sure my profile would be in the notebooks by the time the guys I chose would have to respond).  Also, to increase my odds of getting a "Yes" response, I would pick two men.  Of course, LA19189 was one of them.

Tuesday, January 14 came along, and, instead of going to Rabbi Dubrawsky's lecture, I went to the Profiles desk.  I walked into the room with the notebooks to make sure I had written down the correct numbers, filled out the form, and was about to turn it in, when I realized it would cost $3 per pick.  I don't typically carry cash on me, and I thought it would be ridiculous to put $6 on my credit card.  So I thought I'd just wait until Thursday, the next day they'd be open, to pick my two gentlemen.  I put the form, which I still have, in my purse.

That night I was planning to meet up with some friends after the Rabbi's lecture at the Magic Time Machine. My friend Reinaldo had a friend in from out of town, and we were going to celebrate her birthday. I met up with my friend Robin, and we sat at the end of the long table in the back of the restaurant.  Then Mark Paley arrived.  At that time he was an acquaintance of mine.  He sat across from Robin and saved the seat next to him for a friend who would be joining us as well.  I was close to the doorway, so I could see everyone as they came in.

The friend Mark was waiting for, who immediately began walking over to me, was Larry!

My heart immediately jumped into my throat! So many things ran through my mind in a millisecond:  "I can't believe this! He looks so sweet!  He's coming up to me!" etc., etc.

Then I heard, "Hi. My name's Larry.  I don't remember seeing you at the Rabbi's tonight." My heart was still racing like you wouldn't believe!  I couldn't remember a thing I had read from his profile.  From that sentence, we talked almost the entire duration of the party - except for the 10 minute break I took to run to the pay phone and call Irena to tell her what had happened!

I think the only thing that struck him as odd was when he left the party; we had already exchanged numbers, and he told me he was going on a vacation to visit his mom for a week.  "Since it will be a while, will you remember who I am when I call you when I get back?"

My response was, "Oh yeah...I'll remember you!"

After Larry came back from his trip to Kansas City, we had a long phone conversation and decided to make plans to get together.  We decided to play racquetball at the JCC, on Thursday, January 30.  After we had played four games, Larry asked me if I wanted to go out to dinner.  We wound up eating pizza at Olympic Pizza on Greenville.  While we talked and ate, I just couldn't keep it inside any longer that I had read his profile.  So I told him, "There's something I have to admit to you."

"OK," he said.

"I joined Profiles the Sunday before we met.  When I opened the books, the very first profile I turned to and read, was yours...I was going to pick you in Profiles.  I had planned on going back to Profiles the following Thursday and pick you, but then you walked into the Magic Time Machine that Tuesday night!"

Larry soon had this huge grin on his face. He looked half amused, half surprised. Then we started talking again, and he interrupted with, "Yes."  I wondered what he was saying yes to, after all, we were in the middle of a discussion.

"What?" I asked.

"Yes, I'll go out with you."

Thus began the two years that would lead up to our engagement.

This picture was taken during our rehearsal dinner at The Magic Time Machine on January 22, 2000.  It was at this table, on January 14, 1997 that we met.

To learn how we became engaged click on the link.