It was in Israel. I met a girl. An American girl. A New Yorker. I think my older sister, the one who lives in Israel, hooked us up, but we could have met on the beach in Tel Aviv.
Her name was not Hazel but I'll call her that for purposes of this discussion. Hazel had a huge crush on me. Her biological clock was wound up tight and she needed to be married yesterday. Or last year, whichever came first. She was staying at a friend's apartment, I was staying with my sister and her family, and hotel room prices in the area were out of our price range. We had some fun dates, but nothing past second base.
This was a time of limbo for me, all I was sure of was I was going to fly back to NYC Real Soon Now, stay for maybe a week with relatives, then go back to Seattle and look for work. Hazel was either going to be going home just before me, or just after me. Same situation - neither of us had a place we could be alone in NYC. I wasn't all that attracted to her That Way, but at that age I wasn't going to turn down a Sure Thing™.
She managed to talk a friend into lending us her apartment for a day. Friend has a copy of the original Broadway cast album of Annie, which Hazel was in love with, and played it for me. At the time the only cut I liked at all was Little Girls and made the mistake of telling Hazel this. Strike one.
It was time, she said, for a typical New York dinner. We went to Nathan's. We both got the basic hot dog. At the condiment stand, I put the sauerkraut on and then spread the mustard on top. Hazel actually slapped me and said something about the cave I grew up in, and demonstrated how the proper way to prepare a hot dog is to spread the mustard inside the bun, center the hot dog in the bun, and add the sauerkraut on top. Strike two.
We got back to the apartment, did The Deed, and went our separate ways because the apartment owner was due back that evening. The earth did not move for me. Apparently it did for her, about a 7.6, I think she said. No wait, I'm making that up, New Yorkers don't know from Richter scales.
We talked on the phone a couple of times, but since I had no idea where I would be working or living once I got back to Seattle, the best I could do was give her my parents' address. Long distance calling was prohibitive back then, and time zones made it impractical.
After a couple of letters where she was asking when the wedding would be I made it clear that I was not interested. Strike three. She wrote me a nastygram in which she called me a "garden variety shit" for leading her on, doing The Deed with her and then abandoning her. But I had not done the leading, and it was not like she had been saving herself for marriage.
Ironically, I later performed in a production of Annie, and Little Girls was one of the two numbers in the show I grew to hate. Loved all the rest. Still do.
So anyway, that's why mustard on top of the sauerkraut in a hot dog is a FAIL