The late seventies were good to me. I lived in Washington’s Dupont Circle neighborhood, a lively area of bookstores, galleries, nightclubs, restaurants, and interesting shops, within walking distance of the Mall, Georgetown, and NPR. It was the perfect place and time to be young and single. Some of my relationships were not long-lived, however. They often would end when women determined I had no interest in marriage and family. I resolved that I would set things straight right at the beginning with the next woman I dated.
Sharon Kelly was an adorable, blue-eyed blonde who worked at NPR. I took her to lunch and discovered she was also bright, well-read, an English major, and very funny. As a bonus, she even laughed at my jokes. It would be a while before she learned that I stole all my material from professional comics. Over steak and fries, I explained that I just wanted to show her a good time and not get caught up in any serious commitment. I believe the term I used was no strings. “Sounds good to me,” she replied, pointing out that she was on the rebound from a failed marriage and not ready for an encore.
This conversation took place in the spring of 1978. By June, I was no longer dating anyone else. By July, I was hardly ever in my own apartment. In October, we rented a house together. We were married the following May, and three months later we were expecting a baby. So much for no strings.