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A Valentine’s Pizza
Dr. Larry making his Valentine’s Day pizza
Dr. Larry’s Annual Tradition
to do, although this was much more fun then any class I ever took.
When I first met my wife, it was clear to me that she was unique. For one thing, she had studied karate and was seriously into kung-fu. For another, she loved science and was studying engineering at the Rochester Institute of Technology. While these interests were fascinating to a guy like me, they also displayed a level of focus and dedication I admired. At the church youth group where we originally met as college kids, I was intrigued from the start. I made it a priority to find out more about her. Of course, that meant that I needed to do some serious listening — something I would learn a lot more about later in my career. Sometimes, this led me to unusual approaches. She likes to remind me of one of our first dates at a park, when I showed up with clipboard and pen in hand, ready to ask her a list of questions I prepared. Call it a result of my academic training in psychology – or just my enthusiasm. When she saw me with that clipboard, she started chuckling, but to her credit, she answered all my questions thoughtfully and as clearly and with good humor. Then she asked me some questions of her own. I took careful notes, as my academic training taught me ENTER TO WIN $10 Visa Gift Card Find the misspelled word in this newsletter and CALL 1.888.700.0633 Or e-mail info@ hearingcenterofli.com
With each new layer of her personality revealed, she reinforced and deepened my understanding of those qualities that had piqued my curiosity at the beginning of our relationship. She was indeed a woman of focus and dedication, passionate and driven to accomplish anything — even if it was difficult or if she did not succeed at first. Her spirituality and her humor impressed me. And, to my surprise, she seemed to care about what I had to say and offer. Before long I was writing her songs that I played for her on the guitar, and she was teaching me kung-fu. Since she was so much better at kung-fu than me that I used to joke that I needed her around for protection. Now, every Valentine’s Day, we make a homemade pizza together from scratch, a tradition that’s been running for almost 10 years. It’s a fun, delicious way to celebrate our relationship. The whole time, we try to accommodate one another. She is a mechanical engineer so I suppose it is not surprising that she starts the process by making an itemized list of everything we need, calculated down to the smallest unit, optimizing for balance of taste and color and how it will fit on the pie. Whereas I, more of the creative type, may throw toppings on as the feeling inspires me, trying to make it good by instinct. We negotiate with each other about which toppings we will
use. She may let me include mushrooms that she doesn’t like much, and I may give in and let her include the anchovies I would rather not have, but that she loves. I trust her when she tells me how long the whole wheat dough needs to rise, and she trusts me to say when it is time to take the pie out of the oven. We never make the same pizza twice. Each year we try new things to keep it interesting and vibrant. In the end, the pizza always turns out delicious. It is deeply gratifying to reap the rewards of something you’ve worked hard to build together — by listening to each other — just like our relationship. I cannot imagine having anybody else by my side throughout my life. My wife not only allows me to be myself, but makes me a better man.
We’re listening to you.®
–Lawrence Cardano, Au.D.
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