When the universe knocks twice

I had lunch with photographer Lisa Cohen this week. We’d never met–I was responding to an ask from an old friend who wanted to help Lisa get more notice for her photography.  At heart, I am a storyteller. For many years, my day job has consisted of telling stories for clients, about clients. In the commercial world, it’s called PR, marketing. I call it storytelling.  I digress. Lisa is an artist, trying to get her particular brand of dog art photography launched. I empathize because I am hard at work getting October Run out there in the world.  After I agreed to meet her for lunch, something tickled the far side of my brain. That ancient reptile corner.  I shuffled through the pile of business cards on my desk and found hers. I’d picked it up at Strip T’s — odd name, great food — a few weeks prior. I’d liked her dog art.

Two knocks on my door. We had a great lunch in Watertown at La Case de Pedros, outside in the sun under an umbrella table. I shared PR tips, we got to know each other. Lovely.

Oprah, in her 10th Anniversary issue of O magazine, did an interview where she became the subject. She talked about thoroughly believing that when the universe knocks twice …. Answer. I agree.  Call it mindfulness. Maybe it is just a way to prioritize.  One knock. Wait. Two knocks. Get in gear.

My delightful marriage to Art Campbell falls under the two-knock rule.  We had met online, like many other modern couples.  We had both made brief forays in e-harmony, with no great expectations. The matches were sparse and odd. I had finally changed my profile to declare I was “very blue” as matches with men of very dissimilar belief systems kept popping into my list.  Then a straight-on hit.  Former journalist (check); loves family (check); loves french roast coffee (check); pets (check check check); Celtic music (check).  On our first phone call, we compared favorite musicians.  Arlo Guthrie was an immediate match.

“I saw him at a really great concert recently, great venue.”

“Me too. Where?”

“Passim’s in Cambridge.”

“You’re kidding! Me too.  When?”

“It was a weekend in November …”

“Friday or Saturday night?”


“I was THERE. I was sitting a few rows back.”

“I was at a table right in front.”

My head buzzed. I scrunched my eyes closed.  That night. I’d driven up from New Haven to Cambridge after work. Rallied with friends from Jamaica Plain and we raced to the venerable folk music venue in Cambridge. The most fabulous concert. Arlo relaxed, funny as always.  At the end, crowd stands.  Cool guy with shaved head and his date stand up in front of us. Peripheral info. It would be nice to meet someone like that who enjoyed the same things as me….

Knock knock.

Leave a Reply