COFFEE SHOP TALK ⎯ Romance without Logic Sheila Horne

Because of social distancing, I’m not in Coffee Shop. I’m in my writing room, looking out my window to the empty street, thinking about matchmakers. I once thought of myself as a matchmaker. The first time in the early seventies in the Windjammer in Wasaga Beach, I tried fixing up my friend with the guy sitting at the table next to ours. I saw them as a couple – both short, cute, the same colour brown hair cut in the same shag style with bangs. In fact, they could have been identical twins. She took one look at him and shook her head. I was disappointed. The second time I told a guy who asked me on a date about a friend of mine. She went out with him for a while, then realized what I knew about him; he liked to party too much. I assumed she did too. I was wrong. The night I met the person who would become my hubby, I suggested to the man who asked me to dance that the friend I was with might be a better dance partner for him. They ended up dating for two months until she realized she was lesbian. Or she lied to him. I’m not sure since she disappeared out of my life. Probably made a vow never to speak to me again. Then I tried to fix up someone with one of my hubby’s friends. After that disaster, I gave up. But contemplating Matchmakers makes me wonder if there is still such a thing. The Hallmark channel feels there is since I watched two movies last night about Matchmakers. As my research tells me, they are an alternative to online dating. Years ago I worked with a woman in her forties who talked about a mediator, a go-between negotiating with a man she was dating. I thought it strange. But it makes sense now. Perhaps she used a Matchmaker. They meet clients, interview potential matches, and give dating advice. They also perform background checks, administer personality tests, and build psychological profiles of their clients. The cost? $5,000.00 to $10,000.00. Makes me wish I hadn’t given up matchmaking. I might have gotten better at it. But, in a way Matchmakers are a lot like writers: always on the job, always have eyes and ears peeled to their surroundings. And they know how to ask questions. The difference is, Matchmakers are not afraid to approach people to ask if they are single. Something I am not comfortable with. But here’s my question about Matchmakers. What happens if they fall in love with the person they matched their client with? What happens if the client falls in love with the matchmaker? It happened in both movies. Since they were Hallmark movies, it wasn’t a problem. Turns out the clients bumped into the men of their dreams and fell in love – just like that. Everyone hugged and kissed. Even the dogs they adopted cheered. Hubby says I shouldn’t trust anything on a television channel with a W on it. Is he right? Is a television channel with a W on it all about romance and no logic? 

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Sheila Horne graduated from George Brown’s Creative Writing Program and is the author of three novels: Sunshine Girls, Paper Sun, and Place in the Sun. She is also the co-author of Temple of Light, a book of poems inspired by the Sharon Temple. Her poems and short stories have been published in various magazines and anthologies. To read more, visit, author or

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