Friends of our were telling us how they met and how their courtship developed. I was charmed to hear that the moment they began falling in love was when they realized how much they both had loved one particular book: Winnie the Pooh. It seems so sweet to fall in love over a book. I wonder how their mothers feel when they hear this story—how amazed they must be that their own choice of what book to read to their children would influence their children’s future choice of spouses!
Several relationships in my own life have become closer because of a shared passion for a particular book—or music. I remember the day I looked up at the bookshelf of my brand new, previously unknown freshman roommate at BYU, and saw Salinger’s Franny and Zooey. That’s when I knew we would be kindred spirits. And we were, and we went on to share many more cultural experiences together, passing books back and forth or discovering new passions together, such as International Cinema and live jazz.
I made another discovery of a kindred spirit when Cheri led a book group discussion on one of her favorite authors, Anne Tyler. Any active LDS woman who loves Anne Tyler is going to be someone I want to hang with.
There was the time my friend Kathy referred in one of our many discussions about trying to live right to a book that has influenced me so much that I regularly re-read it: Terry Warner’s The Bonds that Make Us Free. Our friendship grew deeper because of that than many days of conversation could have caused. She gave it to me for a gift later that year.
Music, too, brings people together. In college I had a good friend, Justin, who entered my life when I stood behind him in line for dinner at the ward dinner party. He was softly singing to himself the da-da’s from U2’s “Surrender.” This was in the late 80’s, when everybody claimed to be fans of U2 because of Joshua Tree. But here was a guy who knew War. I joined in on the da-da’s, and we were instant friends.
My old high school buddy, Paul, endeared himself to me when we found that both of us were equally skilled at quoting The Sound of Music. And knew all the choreography to the “Sixteen Going on Seventeen.” We acted it out over and over (sans kiss).
And, most importantly of all, my relationship with my husband moved to a relationship instead of just a date when, on our first date, I told him we would be watching What’s Up, Doc? (a test of his sense of humor, of course) and he responded with lit eyes, a huge grin, and several quotes from the movie. Done deal.
Has this happened to you? What books or songs or movies have helped you grow closer to someone?