Despite the attitudes of the widely-advertised diamond industry, I’ve never thought that a big engagement ring, or really any engagement ring at all, was necessary. (A girl working the checkout at Target once told me that her dream was to get an engagement dog. I doubt most women would share this sentiment, but whomever she marries will definitely save some cash.) My mom wears only a plain gold wedding band. I would have been happy with the same, but I married into a jewelry-store-owning family. So I got, as my smart-aleck friends called it at the time, the Rock. Don’t get me wrong, I love it. I wouldn’t trade my gorgeous ring for anything. This is because I love my husband so much, and it’s symbolic of my relationship with him. My wedding set is my constant sign of our commitment, so I love to wear it.
But anyway, my point is: it’s big. Not ostentatiously, but obviously. So it never fails to amaze me when men don’t notice it. Case in point:
Yesterday Michael was going to be out for the evening, so I planned to settle down with a good movie and a cup of Twining's English Breakfast Decaf. I stopped at Blockbuster after class and as I was getting out of the car, another car pulled up next to me. The driver got out and quickly followed me into the store. It went like this:
He (as I glance at Envy, a movie I’d watch only under extreme duress): That one was real good. It was so funny. Me, I don’t like many movies (thumps chest for emphasis) but I liked that one.
(He was a big guy, friendly, with messy blond hair. I would guess that his curriculum while still in high school had a lot more emphasis on PE than AP Biology. And he probably hasn’t had any schooling since then. Not my type even when I was single, but I thought it wouldn’t hurt to be nice to him.)
I: Huh? Really? Maybe I’ll try it out sometime.
(I place the case firmly back on the shelf and move on down the aisle, looking for something more my speed. He follows.)
He: Got any suggestions for good movies to watch?
I: (make a non-committal negative noise)
(He then asks a couple standing nearby the same question. I had assumed he was trying to pick me up, but now it seems he’s really just interested in finding a good movie, so I point to Love Actually, which, sap that I am, I loved. I figure if he, who most likely never reads anything but Sports Illustrated, can suggest that I watch movies starring Jack Black, then I, who have read everything Jane Austen wrote, can suggest that he watch romantic comedies starring actors with British accents.)
I: I thought that movie was wonderful.
(He nods, but I notice he doesn’t pick it up. He’s still focused on me.)
He: You got a boyfriend?
(Ah-ha! I should have gone with my first instinct about the come-ons.)
I: (somehow managing to smile sheepishly even though these situations always embarrass me horribly) Uh, actually, I’m married.
He: (good-naturedly) Damn!
He: You’re pretty as hell though, you know that?
(By this time I figure I must be bright red, so I mumble a thank you and move away. I grab my choice and manage to be out of the store by the time he’s ready to check out.)
Anyway, my point (and I had to scroll up to find it, so don’t feel badly if you’re lost) is that he could have saved me the embarrassment and himself the expletive just by glancing at my left hand. I’m not going to get a bigger ring, so those guys out there will just have to get bigger eyes.