You know that six degrees thing -- and I don't mean the recent temperature here. I am referring to the concept that everyone is within six degrees of knowing Kevin Bacon. I was at a party Friday night before the annual Bar Association revue and several of the other guests and I ended up playing six degrees from the host and hostess and me. Kevin Bacon wasn't available.
The hostess had been a client of
mine and we became friends. In a completely different life, I had met
the host and his first wife
decades before because one of his [now dead] fraternity brothers was
married to one of my longtime girlfriends, a woman I'd first met when
we worked together. She also went to the same school I did and was in
the same sorority, but at a different time. This is a recurring theme you'll discover. There's a
circle of life here somewhere.
The host is a lawyer and my family is littered with
them. Not only that, but the host's first wife and I ran into each
other at the hospital when we were both in labor -- she with her third,
me with my second. We even ended up in the recovery room together after
our kids were born. For what it's worth, my sister and I have children
who were born a week apart. I'm not sure which is more cosmic. You could say it's a matter of degrees. But I
One day the hostess, a marketing
maven who was my client at the time, called to say she was dating
someone I knew. It was, as it turned out, the host. Another cosmic
moment. But he wasn't the host then, he was a member of some
adventurer's club, while working as an attorney in real life. His hobby
as an outdoorsman had come in handy capturing some Beluga whales for
the local fish museum. My marketing friend was at the adventurer's club
celebrating the capture as a dedicated conservationist. They have been
together ever since. He kills 'em. She cooks 'em.
They were barely a degree from me when they met. Kevin Bacon eat your heart out.
Fast forward to their party on
Friday. The six degrees game began as soon as we walked in the door. I
brought along someone whose cousin turned out to be a friend the host
knew from his early years working on the bar show.
Then the first guy who ever hired me in advertising arrived with his
wife. Why was he there? He was working with the hostess on a pro bono
project. I discovered awhile ago that his wife and I were sorority
sisters from the same sorority house at the same school. See a pattern? One of us is
older so we never met when we were in college.
The ad guy knew the guy I was with because they had met at some
executive breakfast months ago and discovered they both knew me. How did that conversation go?
A couple I didn't know at all sat down and began discussing their knee
ailments, so it wasn't until later that I learned he was friends of the
host from grade school, and her best friend was married to one of the
host's fraternity brothers. That's when I asked if she also knew my
girlfriend who had been married to the dead fraternity brother.
Why yes, she did. Did I know the people who lived next door to the dead
fraternity brother and my girlfriend, when they first got married? No.
But after a phone call later to my girlfriend, I found out that the
host's first wife, who, by the way, went to law school after the
divorce and became my lawyer for a time, was now close friends with the
woman who had lived next door.
You need a scorecard.
Because the party was inhabited by a huge number of attorneys, there
were people who knew my relatives, but didn't know me, until
Friday night. I was the older sister, the granddaughter, the ex. In
fact the host introduced me as the ex to several people. Then he
tried to tell the story about how his first wife and I ran into each
other in labor at the hospital, while the husbands hung out, but he was
too many marriages, brandies and cigars into the evening to get it
Then there was the host's daughter-in-law, who is also an attorney. On
Friday night, she introduced herself to someone she had never met.
Within two minutes she discovered that his wife was a woman she had
just settled a case with. Not only that, the same woman had also been
her father-in-law's former secretary. She had put herself through law
school while working for the FIL. They are now new best friends -- the
DIL and the former secretary.
Meanwhile, it turns out the hostess' son was close friends in grade school with the
children of a couple I met, who are now, all these years later,building neighbors of the host and hostess.
I didn't have time to talk to everyone who was there because it was
time for us to all walk across the street to the theater for the show.
Which was surprisingly excellent. Those attorneys can sing and dance
and act almost as good as, well, Kevin Bacon.