They fell in love with each other and then fell in love with Key West, both at first sight. Jimmy and Joanna Cooper still act like newlyweds after 30 years together, and that’s what Valentine’s Day is all about: love, commitment and lots of humor. It was as simple as a 22-year-old deejay walking into a bar and seeing a 21-year-old cocktail waitress –a well, her behind at least – and spending late nights after their shifts at Dunkin’ Donuts. Jimmy proposed to Joanna three months later on a hot air balloon and said, “Our love can’t go any higher, will you marry me?” That’s how it’s done, folks. After a trip to Key West, the couple decided to take the deejay show on the road, moved here in 1993 and started their company Soundwave together, a premier deejay and videography company. The Coopers raised their two children here but also have been raising the roofs at party after party with Jimmy deejaying, Joanna taking video, for just about every gig in town. They are partners in life, business and parenting but mostly, in love. Hallmark, eat your heart out.
Note: Jim and Joanna answered separately and did not see the other’s answers … until now.
Was it love at first sight?
Joanna: Love was far from my heart. My boyfriend cheated on me with my best friend the night before I met Jim. Then, “when you least expect it,” bam, I met my forever love.
Jimmy: As I walked into the restaurant one night to load in for my DJ shift, Joanna was standing on a chair writing on a blackboard with her back to me, her butt at eye level. So, yeah, it was love at first sight for me.
Three words to describe your partner…
Joanna: Adventurous, generous, supportive.
Jimmy: Giving, sharing, fun.
What’s your motto for a happy/long marriage?
Joanna: “WHY…because we can.”
Jimmy: “Why? Because we can!”
What’s his favorite meal? And yours?
Joanna: Mine is sushi, his at the moment is buffalo chicken with eggs and avocado and my green goddess juice.
Jimmy: Dinner out? Sushi for both of us!
Name some of his/her quirks…
Joanna: He has a backup of backups. Which has served him well with his career. He will have the first dance for a wedding on his hard drive, his phone, his iPod and access to the internet. It also helps me because we never run out of anything at home.
Jimmy: Joanna is actually dyslexic so her texts can be an adventure …
Who do the kids think is a better cook?
Joanna: Definitely me … but boy can he create a great dance mix.
Jimmy: Uh, Mom.
What was the best present he/she ever gave you?
Jimmy: Her hand in marriage.
If you compared yourself to any celebrity couple, who would it be?’
Joanna: Will and Jada Smith. They are solid and fun and put family first. ….and Will grew up in Philly like us.
Jimmy: Besides us? David and Victoria Beckham.
What are you most likely to argue about?
Joanna: Who hit the “easy button” more. We have an “easy button” in our office and on our kitchen counter. We use it as often as we can to remind ourselves how easy life really is.
Jimmy: Argue? Who argues?
What household chore does the other avoid that drives you crazy?|
Joanna: This is a hard question, as Jim over the years offered and learned how to do more chores like the laundry and always helps with making the lists and menus and does all the school planning with our kids.
Jimmy: Chores? That’s what our teenage son is for…
Who could talk their way out of a speeding ticket?
Joanna: Definitely me.
Jimmy: Joanna… several times.
Who would win a dance-off?
Joanna: It’s a tie.
Jimmy: In my mind, I am undefeated.
Who thinks they are the funnier one?
Joanna: Definitely Jim, you will be able to tell from his answers to these questions.
Jimmy: I find myself to be hilarious.
Who’s more likely to keep a secret?
Jim: If I told you, it wouldn’t be a secret.
Advise you give your kids for a happy marriage?
Joanna: Communication is the Key. Talk it over. We are blessed enough to be together 24/7, so we can discuss things as they come up, keeping the lines of communication open and healthy is so important. Feelings are neither right or wrong … they just are.
Jimmy: The best gift you can give your kids is a happy marriage.
If invisible what do you think the other would do?
Joanna: Random acts of kindness.
Jimmy: If Joanna were invisible she would run around performing random acts of kindness.
Who swears more and who is more polite?
Joanna: Our motto is “it’s better to be kind than right” and has brought us years of great communication. Neither swears, but both of us are very polite.
Jimmy: F*%k if I know…
Finish these sentences…
Our biopic movie would be called…
Joanna: “Follow your heart by saying ‘Yes’ as often as possible.”
Jimmy: “Walk With Me.”
I can never refuse his/her….
Joanna: Offer to practice yoga.
Jimmy: Sexual advances.
(Is this the same answer? Ed.)
If I could give him/her one thing for Valentine’s Day, it would be….
Joanna: A love letter.
Jimmy: A two-seater electric car to replace the one that died.
Lastly ….If I had to do it all over again….
Joanna: I would have had a destination wedding. I see how fun the weddings we do are and how they bring family and friends together.
Jimmy: I would have met her sooner so we could do more together. (Mic drop.)