Nearly three years ago, I went on a date with a man named A.
The bar we agreed to meet at was closed for a private party, so we went to the bar next door and paid an $8 cover charge to see a band we’d never heard of (and didn’t want to hear of…)
As the legend goes, A paid the cover charge and bought the first round of drinks. But as we finished our drinks, I said, “you got the first round, so let me get the second.” And A replied, “I’ve never had a woman offer to buy me a drink before on a first date.” And I said, “then you’ve been dating the wrong kind of woman.”*
Needless to say, it was love.
In the years since, we’ve talked a lot about that night – we laugh about how we wasted $16 on a cover charge for a crappy show, a small fortune on watered down drinks, how A tried to pay for everything as a way to impress me, not realized that he was terrifying me with his un-frugal ways.
Our first date has come to represent how much we’ve changed in the last few years – with money, with our spending habits,with our budgeting, and, more importantly, with our values. In the process of downsizing, buying a rental property, and saving 50-70% of our income, we have shifted our focus from “stuff” to “people” and started to put energy into our most important relationships.
So we’ve decided to get married.
After much discussion + analysis (the certified Emma way), we realized the tax breaks, insurance benefits, legal rights, oh yeah, and lifelong commitment, just couldn’t be beat.
Marriage = 1
Emma and A = 0
In true frugal fashion, it was about as simple as an engagement could be. We woke up one Sunday morning, one of us said “I think I want to get married.” The other one said, “okay.” And it was settled. The only bling we saw was on the crest toothpaste tube when we got up to brush our teeth.
So what’s next?
Well, that’s the exciting (and terrifying) question, isn’t it?
There’s a lot of big decisions to be made – weddings, prenups, honeymoons, etc.
And perhaps the biggest question of all: is it possible to get married without getting sucked into the soulless vortex of consumerism and bridal magazines?
We shall see folks. We shall see.
*due to severe levels of intoxication, it is unclear whether any of these statements actually happened. That’s why it’s a legend, I guess…