I don’t honestly remember when I met Megan the first time. Certainly it was back in the booze-soaked, couch-surfing days at the end of the Grimey Studios. Almost certainly at a party, because that’s what we did. She was Liz’s friend from the bio department, and in that context I’ve known Megan (or, at least, of her) for quite a few years now.
But, for the past two, she’s been a considerably larger part of my life. What started as an interest finally pursued after Liz’s wedding rapidly became her practically living at my apartment. Then it was actually living there. Then there were cats. Total elapsed time? A few months, tops. It happened fast, when it finally happened. Which isn’t really the interesting part. I’ve done fast before. I went from never being kissed to losing my virginity in three days, fast isn’t new.
What was new was the way everything immediately felt familiar and comfortable. A few weeks felt more like having known her a month, and rapidly we began to joke that each next month was like having been together another year. We watched Avatar: The Last Airbender, and I made cavatappi and meatballs. We went for walks in the various parks nearby, and drank coffee.
Over the course of the next 23 months, we’d deal with everything you could ask a couple to. After dating for four months, we had to drive Megan out to Texas on a broke budget so she could do some field research. She was gone all summer. We used video chat a lot.
We’ve dealt with unemployment, and moving to a new apartment. The death of a cat. Getting her first full-time job in her field. Me joining EclecticPond, and the time commitment that came with that. More field research, more weekends away. A vacation to New Orleans where my car died in Meridian, Mississippi some nine hours from home.
It was in her second field season, actually, that I realized I wasn’t bothered by the notion of marrying Megan. It took me only a drive home to decide how I would like to propose, and three months to pull it off. If I, as legendarily vocal about the nature of marriage as I am, was going to get engaged, I wanted my friends to witness it. I wanted them to be a part, and I wanted it to be a very public affirmation. I was going to need an excuse to have a lot of people around.
So I did what it is I do best. I put on a show, and was able to use it as my excuse for all my planning, worrying, and guests. Jennifer Spurgin got me a connection with Tia, who runs New Day Meadery in Fountain Square. She loved my idea and just happened to have a spare two weeks at the end of November following an auction I could use. Then the auction canceled and my little smokescreen became a full-fledged First Friday show.
I made it a retrospective, and hung thirty pieces. One for each year of my life. On the sly, I painted a thirty-first piece, the culmination to my green man series. Halfway into the show, I unveiled it. Thanks to a bit of fussing by Nick, the ring was on it. And, to end my speech, I showed everyone what I really meant by life in flux.
Fortunately, she said yes. Thank you, Megan,for deciding to commit your life to me. I love you so much. Here’s to the next thirty years, and the next thirty after that.
Thanks to the joys of the modern world, you can watch the thing itself right here, if you’re into that.