In my post, Unbelievable, in the Wheel of Fortune category Weird things that happen, I asked readers to send me their freaky stories. I got one from Lawrence Kessenich—the same Lawrence who wrote Unaccepted Grace—that I’d like to share.
I found out that my daughter’s boyfriend’s grandfather is a poet, as I am, and that he’d published both a full-length book and chapbook called Hottentot Venus—a title one is not likely to forget. Then I had my first chapbook published and, lo and behold, it turns out that the grandfather and I had the same publisher.
But that’s not the big coincidence. A couple days after I learned this, I was at lunch with a friend, to whom I had recommended the novel Vanity Fair by Thackery. When we first sat down, I told him the coincidence about having the same publisher as the grandfather. He thought that was pretty cool. Then he insisted on reading me a couple passages from Vanity Fair, just because he was enjoying it so much.
He started reading a scene in which a man is trying to convince his son to marry a West Indian princess because she has lots of money.
The young man’s response was, “I’m not going to marry some Hottentot Venus!”
Wow, that is one weird story. I verified with Larry that he did not mention the name of the chapbook before his friend starting reading to him.
I love stories that make me say, “What?? What???” Like this:
Here’s another little one. I was meeting my new neighbors for the first time. They had a daughter named Jenna who had a gorgeous head of red hair. Neither the mom or the dad had red hair, so I asked where it might have come from, if there was a relative in the family with red hair.
There was, as it turns out, which they found out sometime after Jenna was born when they made inquiries on both sides of the families. Jenna’s father’s Scottish great-grandmother was a redhead, the only redhead anyone knew of in the family tree.
And her name was Jenny.
Have a great weekend. Send me your freaky stories! It’s going to be a great week next week—a fun Sex in the Suburbs essay and a wonderful guest columnist on Wednesday.