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The Life Lifter: Girl Meets Boy, Cheetah Meets Dog
When the hilarious, heart-warming book Unlikely Friendships came out this month—documenting a rhino and a goat that were best buddies, as well as an orangutan and a tiger cub—we were instantly reminded of very human "odd couples" we've observed at restaurants, befriended on vacation or even been in ourselves. For example, the Cheetah and the Anatolian Shepherd.
The Animal Version: "The dog—calm, loveable, adaptable—helps the cheetah relax and accept unfamiliar situations."
The Human Version: She's the head of a massive real-estate company. He's a carpenter who dabbles in guitar. During dinner at a restaurant, she gets upset about their table and asks the hostess to move them. When it's time to order, she gets the tacos without tortillas and the salad with extra, extra, extra ripe avocado. Then she requests three lemon slices in her water. Meanwhile, he sits there, humming a random tune and playing with his fork.
When her water arrives with two lemon slices, she openly fumes. He smiles very politely at the waiter but asks for the third one, plus gives her his slice from his glass. By now, you might be thinking, "This guy spends his life running around after this woman, cleaning up after her demands. He's the nice one but...maybe kind of a wimp?" Then the tacos arrive with tortillas. A look of outrage and panic crosses the woman's face. She opens her mouth, just as he pats her hand—tenderly but firmly. She shuts her mouth and smiles at him, as if nobody else exists. There it is: the comfort of being reminded that somebody knows who you are...and who you want to be.