There is this kid from my part of the world who entered graduate school here at the same time as I did. He’s from my home town in fact, and I got to know him in my first few weeks here. We kept running into each other in the corridors of the department as we were out begging for financial support. You know, to stay in graduate school, now that we’d entered it.
I don’t usually get to talk to him very much because we lead entirely disparate lives, but I ran into him during a seminar this morning and we decided to meet a little later in the afternoon. To chat about things.
By now, you ought to be able to guess what happened next.
As is all the rage these days, he informed me he was getting married in a couple of months.
But in a strange twist of fate, this news didn’t even remotely bother me. Instead, I listened patiently as he described the situation to me in some detail.
He’d been introduced to her last August by his parents. And by introduced, I mean provided an e-mail address. He’d then proceeded to get in touch, and over the course of the e-mails, and pictures, decided by December that “She was the one.” At this point they were e-engaged, or something. He then flew down over in March (yes, like few weeks ago), got to meet her in person and “Got engaged for real.” He’ll fly back in a couple of months and “Marry her for real.”
He then went on to talk a bit about her. Her name. Where she was studying. About how she had no professional plans of her own, so she could leave at a moment’s notice and follow him anywhere his work took him. How she was “more than adequate.” You know, standard things.
Under normal circumstances, when the “Did I tell you I’m getting married?” spiel begins to drop, I break down into this hysterical mess of sappiness and fail to listen to the real story. But this time, having calmly listened to the entire tale, I have to say I am not distressed. In fact, I almost feel sorry for the guy.
It was pitiful when he began trying to convince me how e-mail and a web-cam are a valid substitute for the real thing.
It was most pitiful when I noted that it wasn’t me he was trying to convince, it was himself.
(I know your heart must’ve skipped a beat when you read the title of this post. I know, admit it!)