Lori and Jeff have a unique story, that may be one of the cutest and funniest stories we’ve ever heard. It all started about twenty years ago at Benny the Bum’s…
On December 22, 1994 Lori began her waitressing career at Benny the Bum’s (Northeast Philly) training with fellow waiter, Jeff. Lori dutifully shadowed Jeff for a few days before taking to Benny’s diners on her own, never looking back. That was until a couple of weeks later when restaurant owner, Rhoda, intervened. Rhoda quietly called Lori over, informing her that Jeff “liked” her, and she should call him. What’s there to lose, right? So she picked up the phone and agreed to go out with Jeff later that night. Low and behold, Ms. Rhoda also told Jeff that Lori “liked” him as well, and as you can guess the first date got off to a rocky start leaving much to be desired, since neither really liked the other (that way).
Lori tried to cancel unsuccessfully and Jeff arrived 45 minutes late to pick her up, but in the spirit of finding love when you least expect it, they ventured out to a nearby bar. It turns out that they made the right move and Rhoda had known something they didn’t, they did in fact “like” each other! Over the coming months Lori and Jeff continued to date and work at Benny’s, but they kept their relationship discrete using the old fashion, rustic decor of the restaurant to their advantage.
There was a little old fashion wagon on the porch that the Mad Magazine guy used to sit in. Lori often worked a lot of lunch shifts, while Jeff worked a mix of lunch and dinner shifts; however, whenever they worked opposite shifts they would secretly leave little notes for one another hidden in the old wagon.
[box] “When Jeff would work at night and he knew I worked a lunch the next day, he would leave me a note written on a guest check hidden in that wagon. I would read it as soon as I got to work! I would re-write a note on that same guest check and hide it in the wagon for Jeff to pick up. We continued that for a really long time.” -Lori[/box]
Does it get any cuter or romantic than that? Their romance continued for a while like that, secretly ducking out after work together so no one would know that anything was going on. Lori recalls psychics being all the rage back then, although her and Jeff weren’t big believers they decided to go see a local psychic, however, they planned to really test the mediums psychic abilities. They went in separately, pretending not to know one another, participated in private readings and afterward reporedt what each of them had been told. Jeff went first, then Lori.
“When I (Lori) came out- I asked Jeff “What did he tell you?”. He said nothing much- I asked, “Did he say who you were going to marry or how many kids you’d have?” Jeff said, “No”. I said, “Oh, because he told me I was going to marry you and we’d have two kids.” Jeff then said, “Well, he told me that too, but I figured he was crazy so I wasn’t going to tell you.” Lori says, after all these years later we still laugh about that!
Jeff and Lori officially became boyfriend and girlfriend on May 14, 1993 when Jeff asked her to be his girlfriend after her graduation from PSU. They happily dated until November 19, 1993 when Jeff, so romantically, popped the question.
Below, Lori tells us just how Jeff proposed-
My favorite movie at the time was Aladdin and I had a feeling that Jeff was going to propose to me. I tried to make it as difficult as possible for him, so when he was asking me where I wanted to go for dinner this one night I told him- nothing fancy, just pizza. So he decided on Angelo’s in Philmont Shopping Center. They had a Pizza shop on one side and an Italian restaurant on the other side. Jeff reserved a table on the Restaurant side – and set up the table with dolls of Aladdin and Jasmine. He had Aladdin set up next to Jasmine on one knee with the diamond ring box open next to them. The craziest thing is – he set the table up with the ring and all and left it at the restaurant on the table while he came to pick me up. Fortunately for us- it was still there when we got back. And of course, I said, YES.
Today, almost 20 years later, with a beautiful family, Lori and Jeff can’t thank Rhoda enough for playing match maker and helping they realize they did in fact “like” each other.
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