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Not-So-Newlywed Game keeps seniors laughing

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Not-So-Newlywed Game keeps seniors laughing

Manteca Police Chief Nick Obligacion answers a question onstage with his wife Sally.

HIME ROMERO/The Bulletin


POSTED February 15, 2013 1:01 a.m.

“Roses are red, Violets are blue – on our wedding night my husband and I…”

Welcome to the world of the Not-So-Newlywed Game.

In front of a packed house at the Manteca Senior Center Thursday afternoon, four local couples – which included Manteca Police Chief Nick Obligacion and his wife of 27-years, Sally – braved the humiliation for what is becoming a Valentine’s Day tradition.

It involved answering embarrassing questions while people in the audience laugh at you.

Whether it was a question about which corresponding base the men got to on their first date or an inquiry to the women about the strangest place that they’ve ever got “romantic,” those who participated didn’t hold back.

And it was therapeutic for the contestants knowing that those in the crowd that don’t have somebody to share the special day with will have something to smile about.

“It was fun and a good reason to laugh,” said Manteca Police Department SHARP Captain Marty Maldonado – who took first place with her husband Lee. “It was particularly good to see the seniors that might not have anybody at home – not family that they can go and see today.

“Seeing them laugh is great. It was a great experience but it was embarrassing. Fortunately we didn’t elaborate.”

Four couples married for varying lengths of time – 35-years for the Maldonados, the longest of anybody, and eight-years for Pat and Steven Thompson, the relative newcomers – competed in the roughly hour-long event that had to end in a tie-breaker.

Angie and Ron Williams kept the crowd laughing with their hilarious – and at times risqué – responses to questions that other couples at times toned down.

While it was the women that ultimately decided the game, it was the questions posed to the men – “What baseball term describes the action that you got on your first date?” – that had the audience in stitches and added a little bit of raciness to the proceedings.

It might not have been the most conventional way for Obligacion to build a profile among people in the community, but as the Chief of Police he believes getting involved shows that he’s just like any other member of the community.

“You want to be approachable just like anybody else,” he said. “I volunteer here when I can because I’m part of this community. We’re all part of this community,” he said. “It’s not just the Chief – it’s the officers or detectives or anybody else and I want people to feel like they can walk up and talk to me or anybody in the department. I don’t want anybody to think that they’re not good enough because every person is important – especially our kids and our seniors.”

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