top of page

Let's Live Together: Part 3 Being Romantic

Updated: Nov 2, 2021


When my wife and I retired, we decided to go ahead, bite the bullet, and live together. During the working years it often seemed we just cohabited, sharing a dwelling and a daughter, but very often pulled in different directions. Retirement changed all that. Suddenly we were together, day in and day out. Fortunately, that change has worked well for us—it doesn’t always for many retired couples. My wife and I couldn’t help but wonder why. We think three things are key: Respect, Response, and Romance. In my last post I spoke of Being Responsive.


Today’s word is Romance.


I got an email last year from a friend of mine complaining about the electricity. It seemed that a recent storm had knocked out the power at his house so he couldn’t watch the game. He couldn’t read either because there was not enough light. He ended up sitting and talking with his wife for an hour or so. He ended his email with these words, “She seems like a nice lady.”


Well, that’s what I discovered, as well. Retirement is somewhat kin to running out of electricity and being shoved into a situation where you have time for discovery.


Dave Isay, the StoryCorps guy (TED.com), reported a beautiful conversation between a man in Brooklyn named Danny Perasa and his wife Annie:


(Audio) Danny Perasa (DP): You see, the thing of it is, I always feel guilty when I say "I love you" to you. And I say it so often. I say it to remind you that as dumpy as I am, it's coming from me. It's like hearing a beautiful song from a busted old radio, and it's nice of you to keep the radio around the house.


Annie Perasa (AP): If I don't have a note on the kitchen table, I think there's something wrong. You write a love letter to me every morning.


DP: Well, the only thing that could possibly be wrong is I couldn't find a silly pen.


AP (Quoting DP’s latest): To my princess: The weather outside today is extremely rainy. I'll call you at 11:20 in the morning.


DP: It's a romantic weather report.


AP: And I love you. I love you. I love you.


DP: When a guy is happily married, no matter what happens at work, no matter what happens in the rest of the day, there's a shelter when you get home, there's a knowledge knowing that you can hug somebody without them throwing you downstairs and saying, "Get your hands off me." Being married is like having a color television set. You never want to go back to black and white. (Laughter)


Dave Isay goes on to say, “Danny was about five feet tall with crossed eyes and one single snaggletooth, but Danny Perasa had more romance in his little pinky than all of Hollywood's leading men put together.”



So, the big question of the day is what color is your television set? Are you running black and white or going all out with the new-fangled version?