The Ring Count

The Ring Count, not to be confused with the 1998 thriller Body Count featuring Ving Rhames, David Caruso, John Leguizamo, and Forest Whitaker. Selected quote from movie: “The toes you step on today may be attached to the ass you’ll be kissing tomorrow.”

Each day I keep count how many people ask about my engagement ring. Or, rather ask about its whereabouts as if it is possibly on sabbatical and traveling the continent for the summer. I rather like the idea of telling people that pleasant fiction.

“Oh, The Ring is on a whirlwind tour of eastern Europe until the 5th of August. It will be touring the nuclear bunkers of Prague, remnants of the Cold War era located five miles below ground, while also working on its dissertation on the use of graffiti to portray popular culture, obviously making a stop at the Lennon Wall. Additionally, The Ring mentioned that it was excited to pick up a bit of lead crystal on its journeys, as only the ‘Rolls Royce of Bohemian Glass’ could possibly compete with The Ring’s own luster.”

And, then I will just smile politely and stare them down until they turn away in confusion.

Except from The Ring’s travel journal: “Today I imagined, (ha ha, get it?) a time when I would return to the idea of ‘all you need is love.’ Alas, four tourists from Bolivia approached me as I was leaving the Lennon Wall, and upon finding out I was engaged, quickly asked about where my bride was.”

I get asked on average about two to three times a day about The Ring’s existence, whereabouts, plans, future endeavors. I feel like a groupie to The Ring at this point, filling in outsiders on its itinerary and future special engagements. “Oh, The Ring will be making an appearance soon, likely in August at a small venue. We will tweet out a password no less than 18 hours prior to its arrival so you can gain access to The Ring’s full unveiling. Very hush, hush for limited audiences, you know.”

Little does everyone know that The Ring in question does not even exist yet.

Pastry had a plan. He had a plan involving his grandmother’s gaudy but “I’m pretty sure Cucumber will love it actually” sapphire cocktail ring. One night when we had a bit too much wine by our outdoor fireplace (second best purchase after our memory foam mattress topper which we lovingly refer to as “The Blue Marshmallow of Awesome”), we got to talking about the whole marriage thing and he spilled the beans on the plan. Then, lo, the vintage ring was no place to be found. So, Pastry asked for some help in terms of what might work for me ring-wise.

And, dear god, that was way more difficult than I ever thought it might be. And, I was suddenly struck by how many feelings I had about the symbol of the ring, what the ring represented, of what material it should be made, how it should be made, and how I felt about wearing one symbolic item for the rest of my life.

“Two carrots, no less!” Know thy homonyms.

After I did some scouting, which I will talk about at some other point as it was a super interesting and bizarre process, we ended up going to a custom jeweler together to look at options. Ring shopping with Pastry was super fun, trying on tons of rings, making jokes about how some should come with an elaborate cape, pool boy, and a piano show in Vegas.

I want this one, and this one, and this one, and this one. Too much? Nope. Load on another! I want to feel FANCY!

We decided the diamond was not important, but the ring should be built to last decades, limiting the materials and center stone to a few options. We looked at center stones somewhat unenthusiastically until we found one that made us both go, “OOOOH, SO SPARKLY.” (It was so sparkly!) We chatted about it and the timeline, and moved on with our lives, content to lounge upon the Blue Marshmallow of Awesome until a later date.

Then Pastry surprised me.

I’m one of those annoying people who know the plot twist before it happens. I can be unbelievably absentminded sometimes, especially when given the opportunity to knock over fragile things, but it’s hard to surprise me. So, Pastry moved up the whole engagement timeline by about six months. And, thus, after an entirely sweet photo booth proposal because “I figured I should actually officially ask you if you wanted to get married,” this whole wedding thing began in earnest. And, The Ring became more of an active project than a sparkly idea.

So, The Ring, like the Holiday Inn Express in your hometown or yet another poorly constructed Adam Sandler movie, is coming soon. Date still to be determined. Besides my snark about the constant questions about the ring, I sincerely do not mind explaining to people about The Ring’s design, process, and future debut. Like many things for which it is worth waiting, The Ring is worth it because The Pastry is worth it.

However, I make no promises that I will refrain from making up elaborate tales about The Ring’s summer plans.  After all, The Ring may have to unexpectedly visit the whimsical Dr. Seuss House in Willow, Alaska or go to the Wisconsin State Cow Chip Throw Festival. The Ring has plans until it arrives. But, when it arrives, it will stay.