Romantic Comedy / Memoir
Date Published: March 29, 2011
If you liked When Harry Met Sally, you'll fall in love with Robb and Gertrude from Strangers on a Bus...
Robb is crushed by a failed relationship with the love of his life and finds himself unexpectedly on a long bus trip from his adopted home in the U.S. back to his native Canada.
At the first stop in NYC, a girl gets on and so begins a contemplation of life, love, and strange events that will bring tears of laughter and heartache streaming down your face.
Is this girl Robb's real true love or just a rebound? How far can they get on a bus ride anyway?
This is a true story.
Things To Do in A Bus Stop Bathroom?
The sun started to come up as we crossed into Canada, and Gertrude told me we wouldn’t be making out once it was daylight. Lip dancing on a brightly lit bus was too “tacky” for her, and besides her lessons were having a not entirely unpleasant side effect on her.
I find it best to try not to understand women at all. But, there is one phenomenon that causes me more confusion than any of the other baffling behavior women indulge in.
When you tell a woman something and she doesn’t believe you, so you tell her the opposite, and she doesn’t believe that either, I like that.
So, you tell her the first thing you said was, indeed, the truth, and she doesn’t want to believe that one either.
So am I. Here is the latest incarnation of this occurrence.
Gertrude: “All this kissing isn’t bothering you? You’ve got more restraint than any guy I’ve ever met. I thought you would have been trying to feel me up hours ago.”
Me: “Would it have worked?”
Gertrude: “Maybe, probably not. I think it’s nice. You’re a gentleman.”
Me: “Not really. Every time we stop I take care of that in the bathroom.”
Gertrude: “You’re such a pig! You washed your hands right! You’re so gross! You didn’t! Did you?”
Me: “I thought I was a gentleman! I lie! I lie! I lie! Of course I didn’t.”
Gertrude: “You’re such a pig! You did! Didn’t you? You’re so gross!”
Me: “Stop laughing at me if I’m so gross! I didn’t! I didn’t!”
Gertrude: “You did so! You’re such a pig!”
Me: “Okay. Fine. I did.”
Gertrude: “No you didn’t! You’re not that big a pig. Close. But no. You didn’t.”
Me: “I tell you I didn’t and you say I did. I tell you I did, and you say I didn’t. You’re such a weirdo.”
And then I kissed her, because the sun was rising quick, and because I couldn’t see another way to end that conversation. It is possible that debate could have gone on indefinitely, and there was no way I could prove conclusively what I had or had not done in a bus stop bathroom.
After what might be our last extended lip dancing lesson Gertrude whispered in my ear, “I was horny and wanted Dicky-bird…that is fun to say, so in the bathroom… I did.”
Robert Manary is an international playboy and man of mystery, with the charm and sophistication of James Bond shaken not stirred with a couple ounces of Cyrano de Bergerac, a dash of Rasputin, and garnished with the rapier wit of Thurston Howell the Third.
That's how he sees himself, anyway.
The truth is Robert Manary is a construct created to protect the dubious reputation of his Clark Kent like mild mannered writer/puppeteer/the man pulling the levers and breathing life into the Great and Powerful Oz (don't look too closely behind the curtain).
Robert Manary's alter ego dropped out of Radio Broadcasting College to pursue a lucrative career bartending at a seedy gentlemen's club, played around stocking shelves at a small grocery store until he screwed up badly enough to be given a promotion, and finally left the glamorous life of fighting with Parmalat representatives over the quantity of soy milk required for a small Northern Ontario town to function adequately, for the bright lights of New York.
Wow that was one long sentence!
Manary is also a master of the run-on sentence, an abuser of commas, and has no idea how to properly use this bit of punctuation: ";"
He also thinks he is much "cleverer" than he probably is.
Manary is an award winning blogger, an erotic romance novel writer, the author of a pretty decent romantic comedy, and for a brief period in the early nineties served as dictator of a small South American country.
Most of that is true.
New York, New York, if you can make it there you can make it anywhere. Manary couldn't make it there, and with only a little prompting from law enforcement agents returned to Canada, and chronicled the journey in that pretty decent romantic comedy mentioned in a paragraph above.
Manary is also an experimental artist who has no clue how to write an Author's Bio, and definitely no idea how to end one.
He has only been in love once, and that didn't work out so well, but he dreams and dreams of that girl he's loved all along. Can a taste of love be so wrong?
P.S. He is also a shameless plunderer of pop culture.