“C’mere, young man.”
“Yeah, c’mon over here. Let us talk to you a minute.”
Griffey, a volunteer at the Misty Valley Retirement Home, approached the two residents. “Mr. Pedersen, Mr. Sanchez, can I help you with something?”
“Sit down here next to me, son. We need to have a talk,” said Mr. Pedersen, patting the seat next to his.
“We understand this is your first Valentine’s Day with your young lady,” said Mr. Sanchez.
“Well, I don’t know…” said Griffey, blushing.
“Don’t worry now, son. We’re here to help you,” said Mr. Sanchez.
“You need to get this right, and we’re gonna bless you with the overwhelming riches of our experience,” said Mr. Pedersen.
“That’s right,” added Mr. Sanchez.
“What kind of advice?” asked Griffey, as he sat down between the two old timers.
“Ah, well. As you may or may not know, what you do on this one special day can go along way to cementing yourself in the heart of your young love,” said Mr. Pedersen.
“How do I do that?” asked Griffey.
Sanchez laughed. “It’s a process that begins with a way of thinking.”
“I don’t understand,” said Griffey.
“Let me ask you, how much do you trust this girl? ‘Cause you see, it’s not about love. It’s about trust,” said Mr. Sanchez.
“Yes, son. Trust. As in ‘I trust you enough to buy you steak knives’,” said Mr. Pedersen.
Mr. Sanchez laughed. “If you trust a woman enough to buy her sharp objects, then you need to keep her for the long haul.”
“Uh huh,” Mr. Pedersen chimed in.
“Sharp objects? So if, like, she’s mad at you, she won’t use them on you?” asked Griffey.
Mr. Sanchez looked over and Mr. Pedersen and said, “I think the boy is sharper than he looks.”
“Very good, son,” said Mr. Pedersen.
“So are you saying I should get my girlfriend steak knives for Valentine’s Day?” asked Griffey.
Mr. Sanchez cringed and turned to Mr. Pedersen. “He was so close. No, son. We’re saying you need to find a young woman you can trust enough to buy steak knives.”
“But what if she’s a vegetarian?” asked Griffey.
“Listen, son. It’s not about steak knives. It’s about trust,” said Mr. Pedersen.
“So,” said Griffey, his brow furled in deep thought, “steak knives equals trust.”
“Exactly,” said Mr. Sanchez. He slapped Griffey on the leg. “You had me worried there for a moment, son.”
“What about love? Isn’t that more important?” asked Griffey.
“No, no, no. You can’t love someone to can’t trust, can you?” asked Mr. Pedersen.
“Of course you can’t. Trust in our experience,” said Mr. Pedersen.
“Our invaluable experience,” added Mr. Sanchez.
“Definitely invaluable,” said Mr. Pedersen.
“Uh huh,” said Mr. Sanchez.
Griffey listened patiently as the old men rambled on. “I sure do appreciate your help.”
“Well son, we should know a thing or two about women,” said Mr. Sanchez. “Mr. Pedersen’s been married five times and I’ve been married seven.”