RECORD STORE TALES PART 111: The Girl In the Sam Roberts Shirt
Saturday, Sept. 17, 2005. I had a rare Saturday off, and I wasn’t wasting it.
I was single, and interested in a couple different girls. First there was Mel. She was a nice but just always in a hurry. She drove like a maniac and for her it was all rush-rush-rush. We had a “date” that Saturday morning. We were heading to St. Jacobs to go to the market.
Well, this wasn’t the kind of market excursion I was used to. She was rushing from vendor to vendor, getting what she needed, with no time to look around! I had a couple things I wanted to buy and she paced and tapped her toes waiting as I looked. It wasn’t comfortable. I ended up buying some T-shirts (Bob Marley and Slash) and a Lego set. The Lego set, the Ultimate Collector’s Series Y-Wing fighter, was $200. She wanted to pay for it. That creeped me out a bit, considering I barely knew this girl. I said no. And that was basically it. She drove me home, and that was all. No sparks, just the creeps.
Before I went on my date with Mel, I was up all night talking to Jen. Jen was from Brampton. She was a hockey loving Christian who also liked Johnny Cash and Nirvana. I didn’t even sleep that night, we were on the phone until daylight. I said to Jen, “I have this date with this Mel girl in a few hours. But I don’t even really want to go.” In a way I was relieved that the “date” didn’t go well. I wasn’t into it, and even though she was a hockey-loving Christian, and I hadn’t been to church in almost 20 years, I had a much better connection with Jen.
I spent Saturday putting together my Lego set. It actually took me all week to finish. It was massive.
Sunday the 18th I had to work. I grew to hate working Sundays. I don’t remember anything about that work day at all — maybe I’ve blocked it out? Jen recalls a little bit. She remembers me telling her that I was having a shitty day at the store. Sundays were usually pretty busy right from the get-go, and Sundays we were usually inundated with jerk knobs and dipsticks. It wasn’t a great part of town to work in. We attracted a high ratio of customers that did not carry any kind of currency, but needed to kill time listening to music at a CD store.
“Hey!” she said. “Are you doing anything tonight?”
“Well, nothing I can’t cancel,” I said. “Why?”
“Do you want to come down to Brampton and hang out?”
Sure! I was down for that. She gave me the directions, and I hopped in my green Dodge Neon and hit the highway.
I pulled into the driveway, and a blonde girl wearing a Sam Roberts T-shirt, with the bluest eyes I’d ever seen was waiting for me. She smiled a smile that lit up the whole day. I was wearing the Marley shirt that I bought the day before. The night flew by. We went to a park and played on the swings. We went to Sonny’s, and had some of their legendary poutine, and probably the best cheeseburger I’ve ever had in my life. The night flew by.
I had to work Monday morning, as usual. I left Brampton around 9 so I could get home and get to bed at a decent hour. As I drove down Dixie Road towards Highway 401, I said to myself, “That girl is special. Whatever you do, you have to make sure she doesn’t get hurt. She’s different than the others you’ve met.”
And she was. And 3 years later, Jen became Mrs. LeBrain.