So LovelyWife has decided to throw a dinner party for two of her employees and their spouses. Of course, when she told me about inviting those people over for dinner, her main concern was that I would embarrass her in front of them.
This stems from the time I met my dear friend Claude. I had the best icebreaker when I met Claude, and I have never been able to top it. I’m sure you want to know how I met Claude, right?
How I met Claude
It was 1992. I was living in Montreal with LovelyWife in a nice little apartment at the corner of Jean-Talon and DeLorimier. Now if you know anything about Montreal, you know that apartment buildings look pretty much the same. Look at these:
Aerial view of my apartment. Click to make it bigger.
Street view. Click to make it bigger.
Anyways, Claude was a friend of a friend (Patrek), and was interested to join our D&D game. I had never met him, but Patrek talked him up: He’s a really smart guy, a little on the geeky side, he loves Star Trek, etc. Claude was perfect for our group. He only had one major flaw: He was extremely shy.
Now as a little side note: Patrek didn’t lie about any of those things he said about Claude. If anything, saying that Claude was really smart, geeky, knowledgeable about Star Trek was a major understatement. Claude is now publishing stuff like “Fluctuation induced drift in a gravitationally tilted optical lattice”, “Simulations of Sisyphus cooling including multiple excited states” and “Ground state of the time-independent Gross-Pitaevskii equation”. The guy is simply brilliant. Unfortunately for him the same can be said about his shyness.
And this brings me to the famous icebreaker story.
Around the time I met Claude, I was out of work. I had a few geeky friends and we basically played D&D all night and slept all day. It was a normal thing for me to get up around 2 PM and spend the rest of the day in a bathrobe. I had long hair.
That picture was taken a few months before I met Claude. Picture the hair a tad longer, but I was wearing the exact same bathrobe.
So anyways, the day I’m to meet Claude, Patrek gets to my place around 3 PM, I wake up, put the bathrobe on, he comes in, we start shooting the shit about something or another. Normal day. About an hour later, there’s a buzz at the door. I unlock the outside door with the intercom and open my apartment door. As I’m standing in the doorway – bathroke, disheveled hair, unshaven, Claude makes his way up the stairs and stops on the landing, about 10 steps below me.
He looks at me. I look at him. A beat.
“Are you Mike?” He asks.
Being the idiot I am, my brain yelled “He’s shy! He’s shy! SHYYYYYYYYYY!” So of course I said:
“Godammit. I asked for a girl, but you’ll do. Come on in a take your clothes off.”
I could instantly tell that Claude wanted to flee. But he couldn’t move. He was stuck there, face getting redder by the second. I was doing my best not to laugh. From the kitchen, Patrek started laughing. Claude recognized his laugh. I started laughing. Claude started laughing. He came in and told us his side of the story.
“All those buildings look the same! I thought I was at the wrong place! Who knows what weirdos live in these parts!”
We laughed for hours. We’ve been friends ever since. Claude has never been shy around me after this.
Why did I tell you this story?
Like I wrote earlier, I’ve never been able to top this. This is where you come in. I need you to come up with the bestest icebreaker ever. One that I can pull on LovelyWife’s guests. 😉
At this point, I have these:
- One of the guest was presented to me as a wine enthusiast. Of course, I told LovelyWife that I was going to call him a drunk “by mistake”, or make vague references to his drinking problem.
- I told LovelyWife I was going to ask the guests to put their keys in a bowl on the counter.
So LovelyWife knows I’m joking but there’s a small part of her that still believe I have the balls the idiocy to pull those stunts. I need you to feed me some other crazy ideas. So shoot, what do you have for me?
P.S.: As I’m writing this, I just received an e-mail from Claude and Caroline. They just had their 2nd kid! Congrats buddy!