A Guy’s Guide To Getting Married (A Groom With A View)

A Groom With a View

Two weeks and five days ago my girlfriend Evin and I got engaged.

We both knew this would happen even though getting engaged had become of late, the elephant-in-the-relationship — infrequently discussed, occasionally joked about.  By the time I was fairly sure she was just insane enough to accept, I went out and did the prudent thing. I had Evin’s best friend take her to a jewelry store under the guise of looking for earrings, trick her into heading to the back of the store to look at engagement rings, find out exactly what she wanted, then report back to me.

The following week I went to 47th St (NYC’s diamond district) to buy a ring. When I found what I wanted, it sat buried in a bag  in the back of our closet while I waited for the exact right moment.

Late in the afternoon the following Saturday, I sat Evin down at our kitchen table — the one we built from scraps left on the curb of our neighbor (the actress) Keri Russell’s house.

Me: “So, if we went engagement ring shopping, what would you like?”

Her: “Should we even be having this discussion?  Shouldn’t you just go out and buy one?”

Me: “Do you know what you want?

Her:  “Yes, am I supposed to just tell you?”

Me: “Should we go to Zales?” (a joke) “What are you thinking, ¼ carat,  1/2 a carat?  Color V, clarity QW9?” (all jokes)

This went on for 10 or 25 minutes until I pulled the ring out and said, “should it look like this?”

I expected tears or shock or a combination of the two.  Instead, she casually waved me off, stood up from “The Keri Russell Table” and walked out of the room saying dismissively, “that’s from a gumball machine!”  I tried to convince her but she wasn’t having any of it.  “Let me see that,” she said looking at it closely, “it’s not even a good gumball machine fake diamond ring.”  So I went to the bedroom and brought out the laminated certificate.  Only then did it register on her face that I was serious and the ring was real.  “This is where you say ‘yes,’” I instructed.  And she did.

A flurry of text messages and phone calls to family and friends followed before a walk two blocks away to celebrate at our favorite neighborhood restaurant.  Looking over our menus we made a pact — “let’s enjoy being engaged for one week and NOT talk wedding plans.”  We hardly made it to dessert.

Over the next week we sat at our computers looking at web sites that supposedly helped couples plan their wedding. “How To Buy That Dress,”  “Picking The Right Bouquet,” “Who Will Be Your Maid of Honor.”  Hey!  What about me? And so I thought:  maybe I should blog about the wedding experience from the male POV.  And that’s that.

So until Evin and I get married early next summer, I will be blogging on a weekly basis how this undertaking is going for me. A Groom With A View will be an honest account of the most illogical of processes — getting married.

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  • Kevin Marsh
    08/11/12 at 01:23

    This is hysterical! Looking forward to the rest of the series.

  • Jessica Roberts
    08/11/12 at 02:20

    Cute story!

  • John Brodie
    08/11/12 at 04:44

    Love this! Looking foward to hearing about the whole wedding ordeal through the point of view of the groom! Keep ’em coming! Oh, and congrats to Mr. Schwartz and his future bride-to-be.

  • Kathy Diggins
    08/11/12 at 05:18

    This is adorable. My fiance and I are planning our wedding. My guy will enjoy these postings. He’s not alone! Ha!

  • Niki Pratt
    08/12/12 at 03:54

    My fiancé usually groans when I mention something I want to show him on the Knot (again) he LOVED this!

  • Michael Hearle
    08/13/12 at 02:10

    I look forward to the pithy commentary coming from Robert over the next year if for no other reason than I find it funny enough imagining anyone WANTING to marry him. Let the hilarity commece!

  • 08/13/12 at 08:08

    Cant wait to read more!

  • 08/13/12 at 08:10

    I can’t wait to keep up with this blog!!! This is going to be great, I know it. And I’m definitely going to share this with my bf. :)

  • 08/13/12 at 08:19

    The ring jokes could have been left out. Some people actually do shop at Zales and buy 1/4 or 1/2 carat diamonds. Don’t even feel like following your blog now because you came off as a snob.

  • 08/13/12 at 09:03

    Totally agree with you…I love my Zales Vera Wang ring! I am curious to see future blogs, but that was a turn-off for me too.

  • Bride2beNovember2012
    08/13/12 at 08:33

    I completely agree with plan2wed- I was so eager to read until I read that- sweetie lets keep it very clear people with 1/4 or 1/2 are just as happy or even happier than getting a 2 carat and ending up divorced… Moving on to the next blog, with my one carat engagement ring***

  • 08/13/12 at 08:34

    OMG, i would love to share your blogs to some of my grooms. If feel so sorry for them when i am discussing all of the planning details with their brides. A fun way to show other men that they all go through the same “deer in headlight” mode

  • IBL
    08/13/12 at 08:43

    Very clever and well written! Will definitely be following

  • 08/13/12 at 08:49

    Fantastic! Looking forward to many more updates to come.

  • Rilan
    08/13/12 at 09:28

    Agreed with the others, will be taking myself and GORGEOUS just less than 1 carat ring elsewhere… sheesh.

  • 08/14/12 at 12:49

    I think it’s a very sweet blog. Those of you off put by his mention of Zales or the size of the ring are missing the point! He is injecting an intrepid type of humor into his experience of being a fiancé. Bravo!

  • 08/14/12 at 05:42

    Looking forward to reading this!!! :)

  • 08/15/12 at 06:08

    I am so happy I stumbled upon this sweet and endearing short story. I look forward to more!

  • Sydney
    08/17/12 at 05:19

    I feel bad for all the Zales-shopping, 1/2 carat or less ring owners out there. Ouch! Appreciate the honesty, but this article serves as an early reminder of the many pitfalls couples face at the beginning of their preparation toward a marriage – not a wedding. Glad others like the column, but I’ll pass.

  • David
    08/19/12 at 05:18

    Fabulous to bring this wry and male perspective to a wedding culture in America that is all about societal pressures — and always about pleasing the woman (oddly since the bride’s family traditionally is “supposed to” pay for the shindig, something I never understood, unless it’s to balance the cost of the ring).

    As for all the employees from Zales whose rings weren’t as big as Mr. Schwartz’s fiancee’s, perhaps you are more sensitive on the topic than you told your husbands at the time? Allow the man his one grand gesture (and jokes).

  • careNfashion
    08/19/12 at 08:00

    Laughing out Loud. Robert Schwartz Sorry! I cant Help you. :) hahaha. This is exactly happens with every guy, But marriage is the disease which every man want to impose on himself at any stage of his life. So sorry

  • 08/20/12 at 04:59

    wow cute…. keep writing, i wanna see how everything goes. :)
    btw, what’s wrong with getting a ring in Zales. hahaha….

  • 08/20/12 at 07:10

    love love love reading this. Going right to my Google Reader. Enjoy and have fun. Greetings from Paraguay.

  • 08/21/12 at 04:52

    Greetings from Paraguay. That’s pretty amazing!!!!

  • Ella
    02/20/13 at 11:46

    While I do see the point of view of those with rings which are from Zales, and/or under a carat in diamond weight, I found this article overall to be charming and well-written. I should add, I have been engaged since September and have *BY MY CHOICE* not yet gotten a ring. I asked my fiance to focus our funds on deposits for vendors and use his resources towards the wedding. It turns out we were given a family heirloom three diamond ring of about 2 carats total (not sure how many as he has not taken it for appraisal yet, but that’s what it looks like)….but if he had not been offered this from his stepmother, I was perfectly happy not even to have diamonds in my ring – or to have them just as accent stones. As it happens, I prefer vividly colored gemstones in green and blue tones such as ceylon sapphires. If a man got me a diamond ring (purchased vs. these diamonds we were given) and used this to propose to me, it would mean he did not know me very well. So, everyone has their ideas of what is appropriate.

  • 04/04/13 at 01:11

    I wont forget this.

  • 07/07/13 at 08:32

    Does your website have a contact page? I’m having trouble locating it but, I’d like to send you
    an e-mail. I’ve got some ideas for your blog you might be interested in hearing. Either way, great blog and I look forward to seeing it expand over time.

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