This picture was taken at a NYC hotel in 1965.
I'm on the left.
The year was 1965 and I was dating a girl named Beryl Paddor. Beryl was a senior at New Trier High School and her family owned Paddors Women's Wear that appeared in most of the Chicago area malls. Beryl played the guitar and fancied herself a good hippie guitarist and whipped out her guitar and sang wherever there was a crowd. I had quit school and was involved in the men's wear business with a business partner named Mike Luckman. We carried a men's slack line that was terribly unsuccessful. We didn't care that we didn't make very much money because we both lived with our parents and had no overhead. Mike had man-boobs, unknown to me and when he went to Skokie Valley hospital for a bilateral mastectomy, Beryl and I went to visit him. She was probably the only person in history to be asked to leave the lobby of a hospital for singing and playing her guitar!
I heard about a menswear line that was available in my area for a company that had a great following called Gaslight Slacks. So they flew me to New York for an interview. They were looking for someone in their mid twenties to carry their youth oriented line of slacks, so I lied and said I was 26. Although they considered me as not having any experience, they thought I was bright enough to be taught and decided to hire me, but I would have to stay in NYC for 6 weeks for training. I was great with that, as it was going to be an adventure!
Now remember, I was only 18 and on the way up to my reserved room at the Holiday Inn on 57th Street, I asked the bell hop to send a prostitute up to my room. I thought I was "big time". He told me it would cost me $50 and I was ready to hand over that amount. I waited in my room and paced the floor waiting for this movie star type 20 something to arrive. Suddenly there was knock at the door and there stood this broken down 50ish drug addict asking if I was the gentleman that ordered company. I slammed the door and screamed, "No, wrong room"! I learned my lesson early on, that reality is what it is and $50 won't buy a young 18 year old a movie star! Even in 1965!
I began my training period where I was sent out everyday with one of their local salesmen. On the weekends, I was told I could go home if wanted to, at the companies expense. I took that to mean I could buy a plane ticket to anywhere and the company allowed it. They did. I went to visit friends I'd met in Florida who lived in PA and another weekend I went to Florida, but paid for my hotel myself. I was allowed $20 per day for a food allowance but bought a loaf of bread and peanut butter and jelly and pocketed the money. By the time I got home, 6 weeks later, I had enough for a down payment on a 65 Catalina convertible, for $1500 brand new. I financed the balance of $1500.
Getting to my stalker. I was walking in the lobby of the hotel one day when I saw a cute girl with her girlfriend and her girlfriend's parents. They were in NYC for the World's Fair in 65. I moseyed over and said hello. Her name was Adrienne Cohen and she was from a place called Morton Grove, the neighboring town from Skokie. I took her phone number and promised to call when I got home and I did.
She was 17 and really cute back then and we dated for a few weeks. At some point she became less than desirable when I realized she was not as bright as I needed in a girlfriend. I told her how I felt, leaving out the intelligence part, so as not to hurt her feelings, but did tell her I couldn't continue to see her. There was a long pause and finally she said she was going to ignore the last conversation that we'd had and everything would stay the same. With my mouth agape, she left. Was she serious? Could I not get rid of this genius? The following day she called just like nothing had happened. She did drive by's and would scream something out the window of her car, professing her love..
Eventually I figured out a plan. I arranged for her to meet me at my buddy, Dave Levee's house, only I didn't show up on time. I waited until she would have had plenty of time to have slept with him and when I did walk in, I pretended to be shocked at what I had found. She was all, I'm sorry, it's not how it looks. I was the betrayed lover and she was the adulteress. It worked. I didn't find out until many years later that she did indeed sleep with Dave! That was the end of Adrienne.
Many years had passed and it was 1998 and I was married to my 3rd wife Debra, when I came home from work one day and found a message from an Adrienne Cohen. My mother's maiden name was Cohen and my father had just passed away, so I figured it was someone from my mother's family offering condolences. I called the number and to my surprise, it was my stalker, Adrienne. She had attended my father's funeral in hopes of seeing me, but when she didn't, she asked my brother for my info. He was happy to give it her or anyone else that wanted it. I couldn't believe she had tracked me all the way to Arizona! We talked awhile and we caught up and she was at the end of her only marriage, had 2 daughters, one of which lived right here in AZ. That scared me. The first thing I did was tell my wife about her. She smiled and didn't care. Not a good sign in a good marriage. Then Adrienne sent me a picture and I saw her ample size of 5' 1" and 300 plus LBS and worst of all, guess what? She didn't get any smarter!
To be continued....