Todd gets the “Patience of Job” award after our date last night. Unforeseen circumstances beyond my control caused me to be in Layton (a town south of where I live) at the time he was arriving at my house. I gave him the option to peace out with no hard feelings, but he decided to wait for me- even though my roommates weren’t home and he had to sit in his car for an HOUR until I arrived. And when I did get there, he didn’t show any resentment or hard feelings, even though it was 8 pm and he hadn’t even had lunch that day.
On the positive side, it ended up being a great ice breaker. From the time we got together, we were able to joke around and have a lot of fun. We drove to the Formosa Grill, a Chinese restaurant near my house that neither of us had been to, and it was an amazing discovery. The waiter led us to a room with several tables in rows and asked us where we wanted to sit. I joked around and asked him to seat us at the best table in the row. Fortunately, I think he misunderstood me, and led us to another room – our own private Japanese Style Tatami Room, from when the restaurant used to be a Japanese tea house. It was awesome! We had to take off our shoes to enter the rice paper walled room decorated with Japanese art and a hanging paper lantern. I felt like I was in Karate Kid 2. Such ambiance.
The food was delicious and I really enjoyed talking with Todd. I can see why his co-workers in Texas called him “The Dos Equis Man” or “The Most Interesting Man in the World”. (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Cxhsgr9Uj4w&feature=related)
I am surprised that I haven’t met Todd before, since we were both in the BYU choirs at the same time and we shared the same major. We found out we even competed against each other in a Mormon Times music competition several months ago. Todd is the manager of a Bluegrass Southern Gospel band that he also performs in which boasts three albums and one in progress, if I’m not mistaken. He teaches Latin dance and various other types of social dance and has won gold medals in dance competitions. He even made the finals of the national dancesport ballroom competitions. He set up the computer systems for the Utah Transit Authority. He has four degrees. He’s the number one sales person in his company and gets to travel all over for his work. And that’s just scratching the surface. He was very humble, though, and was more interested in talking about me than he was in sharing all of his interesting stories.
After dinner, we headed over to a place called Studio 600, where they had dancing and karaoke. After a few dances on the main floor, we headed up to the karaoke room. I swear the awkward guy running the sound was a clone of Mike Meyer’s character Wayne from Wayne’s World, except his mullet was curly. Todd has a great voice and sang a little “In the Still of the Night”, while I tried my hand at some Pat Benitar. We wanted to find a duet, but there were a lot of people signed up, so it didn’t work out.
We headed over to the room where they played Latin music, and Todd patiently taught me a lot of fun dances. We did some samba and some mambo and then headed down to the main floor to do a little two stepping. He offered to give me lessons and invited me out to his class, which is awesome because I’ve always wanted to learn to be a dancer. After some free smoothies, we headed back home.
I had a lot of fun with Todd and found that it was really easy to talk with him. I was impressed with his humility and accomplishments. I’m glad to have the chance to meet him and I’m glad that he’s a patient person who decided to wait.