We love all our couples who’ve met on transit, but this year’s Metromance couple is extra special to us: They met while working as Metro operators!
The year was 1981. Paul Schwartz and Debra Revere were both assigned to our Ryerson Base in Seattle. Paul had begun driving for Metro in 1979 and Debra in 1980. In a truly perfect Metro moment, the two met in the base bullpen (the lobby for operators). Their first conversation: Discussing Paul’s selection as Operator of the Month.
In May of 1981, the couple had their first date, dancing at the iconic G Note Tavern in Greenwood, followed by a Frank Zappa midnight movie at the classic Seattle cinema The Neptune.
In July of 1982, Debra sent a request to the popular live NPR radio program “A Prairie Home Companion” to have Paul wished a happy birthday during the broadcast.
“The instructions for these requests at the time were to send a postcard just with the name of the person–but I embellished my request, asking that the following would be read on the program: ‘Roses are red, violets are blue, I’m grateful to Metro for having met you,’ ” Debra recalled, adding she put a note on the card mentioning the couple had met while driving buses in Seattle.
During the broadcast, she was initially disappointed that the radio program didn’t wish Paul a happy birthday during that segment of the program. But then came a happy shock: Prairie Home Companion musicians wrote and performed an original song celebrating the couple. “We managed to get most of the song on an audio cassette that happened to be inside a boom box,” Debra said.
Well, their relationship obviously was meant to be—they got married on Sept. 7, 1985.
The pair had a daughter, Malaika, born in 1987. Paul continued as a part-time operator until about 1995. Debra drove her last bus around 1990. Though their bus-driving days are long over, their Metro marriage endures. Happy Valentine’s Day, Debra and Paul!
The Ballad of Debra and Paul
Written by Stevie Beck and performed by Greg Brown, on the Prairie Home Companion, July 8, 1982
Paul drove the 17 Crosstown
Debra, the 25 Q
They happened to meet down at Metro
When their afternoon bus shifts were through.
He was brought to a stop by her beauty
So fair as to make a man weep
He gave her a token of friendship:
His daily route schedule to keep.
They drove off into the sunset
And though it sounds reckless and strange
They didn’t know where they were going
They didn’t have exact change.
It is said that love knows no reason
It may be a mystery to us
But they had everything that they needed
Their love and an 80-foot bus.
So if you want to find a true sweetheart
Don’t leave the meeting to chance.
Don’t take a cruise on the Love Boat.
Don’t go to the Country Club dance.
Don’t put an ad in the paper.
Don’t try computers at all.
Don’t join a club for young singles.
Don’t write your name on a wall.
Let Cupid’s darts give you a shove
It pays to talk to the driver
Just ask Debra, and Paul, her true love.