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True Scene: Rollins Band

To the list of things I have in common with Jimmy Rollins, one may add the fact that, Saturday last, we were both of us on Grand Cayman’s Seven Mile Beach: he at the Ritz Carlton, on the occasion of his wedding; I at the nearby Ocean Club, trying, vainly, to my and my dad’s chagrin, to convince the bartender to make me a milkshake. I didn’t come to know of this coincidence until two days later, when, while seated in the holding area adjacent to GCM departure gate 3, waiting to board a Charlotte-bound USAIR flight, there occurred the following:

Airline employee, via public address system: “Will USAIR passenger Melinda Schmidt1 please to be reportin’ to the check-in desk?”
Handsome black woman seated within my earshot, to an elegant black woman seated behind her: “That’s [speedy Phillies outfielder's surname]‘s wife.”
Me: “Wait. That’s [speedy Phillies outfielder's full name]‘s wife?”
Handsome black woman No. 1: “Mm-hm. You know Jimmy Rollins? He’s my nephew. Just got married here.”

Seconds later, the latter woman, the elegant one, was introduced to me as the mother of the bride. Twenty minutes later, upon our boarding the plane, she, like me, took an aisle seat in the coach section, having walked past Mr. and Mrs. [speedy Phillies outfielder] seated comfortably in first class. I all but accosted a flight attendant to ask whether some kind of mistake hadn’t been made, so surprised was I that a personage of such obvious prominence vis a vis the recent nuptials would be travelling at a level of comfort equal to mine.2

To my half-facetious question as to whether the recently acquired Roy Halladay had been invited to the wedding, she replied in the negative but allowed that “We’re all really excited about him — even though we’re all pretty sad about Cliff [Lee].” When I told her that my question owed to my living in Toronto, she graciously and gracefully segued into a brief line of questioning pertaining to the Maple Leafs — which, in spite of my loyalty to the other NHL team in Ontario, I was decorous enough to abide in good humour. After some riffing on the comical futility of the questions on the U.S. Customs Declaration Form,3 it was time to go back to the minding of my own damn business.

Through it all, the ring bearer played Nintendogs.

The Truest Scene.


  1. Name altered, artlessly.
  2. Slightly less surprising was that [speedy Phillies outfielder] flies commercial.
  3. "Like this one here — 'Are you carrying diseases or foreign agents?' If you're the kind of guy who carries guns and diseases on a plane, are you rewarded for your honesty?"