Countdown to Bliss

Glenn Harris and Alison O’Gorman

Met: December 2001

Engaged: Dec. 31, 2003

Projected Wedding Date: Fall 2004

Neighbor nookie! Ali O’Gorman, 29, and Glenn Harris, 31, first met in the elevator of their prewar east midtown building. Ms. O’Gorman had been renting an apartment on the ninth floor for a year; Mr. Harris, an associate at the Russell Investment Group, had owned a studio apartment down the hall for five months.

Swiftly noting her raven hair and fair skin, he asked her if she knew of a good dry cleaner. “I was like, ‘Uh, five months without going to a dry cleaner? You must have a lot of clothing,'” said Ms. O’Gorman, a programming assistant for the Food Network. “It was kind of bitchy of me.”

Mr. Harris ascertained that she was single from the doorman-but then decided not to act. “I mean, I thought she was really pretty, but I’m not an aggressive person,” he said. “I’m more passive. I didn’t want to invade her privacy. And I didn’t want her to think she had to worry about me being some crazy neighbor. What if things didn’t work out? I wasn’t going to move .”

This being New York, it took them a whole year to run into each other again in the elevator. This time he pounced, coaxing her back to his place to look at the millennium’s answer to etchings: his kitchen renovation. “We definitely had a good time hanging out, and he seemed normal,” she said of the lanky, blond, blue-eyed fella. “But, you know, it’s a big risk-because so many people in this city aren’t.”

They went on a few dates. “At the end, he’d just go to his door and I’d go to mine and we’d be like, ‘Um … O.K. See you later,'” she said. “I’m like, ‘Is he ever going to kiss me, or what?'” The clinch finally came on New Year’s Eve at Martell’s.

The affair inevitably took on slightly adolescent undertones, with notes passed through the doormen and walks of shame past the neighbors. “I’d stay in his apartment, and then in the morning I’d look through the peephole to make sure no one was looking,” Ms. O’Gorman said. “Then I’d run to my apartment in my pajamas.”

A year later, she had something of a quarter-life crisis, gave up her apartment and moved in with her parents on Long Island so that she could afford to pursue a master’s in nutrition full-time.

Mr. Harris proposed at a fancy hotel outside Phoenix, Ariz., during a trip to hike the Grand Canyon in the snow. (Ms. O’Gorman is a marathon runner; she calls her fiancé “Grampy” since he has trouble keeping up.) Grampy forked over a platinum ring with a brilliant one-carat diamond, flanked by sapphires. “We just connect at the same level and are always having the same thoughts and feelings,” he said. “She makes me so happy.”

Their wedding will be organically catered (is Bobby Flay available?) at an as-yet-to-be-determined venue, after which she’ll move into his apartment, and the sniggering of the building staff can finally cease. “One of the elevator guys claims he set us up,” Mr. Harris said. “He’s like, ‘Oh, I knew all along. I’ve set up lots of people in this building.’ He likes to think he’s the matchmaker.”

 

Alison Friedberg and Jeremy Teres

Met: Feb. 9, 2001

Engaged: Nov. 29, 2003

Projected Wedding Date: Oct. 16, 2004

Alison Friedberg and Jeremy Teres had just returned from a trip to the slopes near Cold Spring, N.Y., and were enjoying a bit of candlelit après -ski in his West Village kitchen. “She kicked my ass on the slope,” Mr. Teres said. They were preparing some special gourmet hot cocoa she’d brought over when they suddenly realized that the room was crawling with little insects. Screaming, stomping-it was the lobster scene from Annie Hall all over again.

“The bugs were in the microwave, they were everywhere ,” Ms. Friedberg said. “Horrific.”

They quickly fingered the chocolate (stored in her apartment a bit too long, perhaps) as the culprit. “I was mortified,” she said. “Here I’d brought it to impress him …. But, you know, it was a terrific moment. We came together as a team.”

“I think it was the first time we both were like, ‘Hey, this could be something pretty cool,'” Mr. Teres said.

They had first met and exchanged digits at a dull dinner party on the Upper West Side. “Neither of us felt like we belonged there,” said Ms. Friedberg. “I remember afterward feeling like, ‘O.K., the party was a bust-but I met a cute boy!'” Mr. Teres, 33, is 5-foot-8 and bespectacled, a marketing director for an Internet telecommunications company called delta3.

On their first date, they went to hear jazz at the Museum of Natural History. “She didn’t seem like your average girl. She seemed like she had a lot of spark,” he said. “She was into music and art and was hip to the cultural aspects of the city, and I don’t have a clue .”

“I later found out he didn’t even like museums,” said Ms. Friedberg, 27, a marketing manager at Travel and Leisure and amateur photographer with green eyes and dark blond hair (both “cute and elegant,” Mr. Teres bragged). “He kept trying to impress me, but not in a flamboyant or superficial way. He was genuine. He just seemed like a good guy.”

In time, she discovered his mischievous side as well. “He knows how to push people’s buttons, including mine,” she said. “But he also knows how to not go too far, and I love that. He can get people riled up in a way that they kind of enjoy. He doesn’t go over the top.”

Mr. Teres proposed on a Cape Cod beach where Ms. Friedberg has spent every summer since childhood, and where she enjoys gathering shells and sea glass and rocks. “You know, while I was running this morning, I found a really great rock I wanted to show you,” he told her. The rock turned out to be a two-carat princess-cut solitaire diamond.

Their wedding will be near that beach, at the New Seabury Cape Cod Resort. The bride will wear the shantung ivory silk gown with beading that her grandmother wore to her mother’s wedding, and has ordered a cake from one of her Vassar pals, Upper East Side baker Elisa Strauss.

Last spring the couple moved into a one-bedroom uptown, where Mr. Teres has been trying out little cooking experiments, like a latke omelet-one more reason to stay out of his kitchen.

Jonathan Scott Chinn and Katie Irish

Met: March 14, 1997

Engaged: March 27, 2002

Projected Wedding Date: May 29, 2004

With his shaved head, square-framed glasses and gig at the local NPR affiliate, Scott Chinn was one of the “edgier” recent grads from the University of Tulsa in Oklahoma. But his girlfriend, Katie Irish, was from Memphis, so when it came time for Mr. Chinn to propose marriage, he decided to run it by her pop first.

“We’d rather you didn’t,” Mr. Irish told him curtly on the phone.

Mr. Chinn was stunned-he’d spent lots of holidays with the family, and they’d appeared to accept him-but undaunted. “That’s very disappointing,” he replied. “But we’ll have plenty of time to talk about it in the coming days.”

He bravely forged ahead, taking Ms. Irish on a “Scott and Katie’s Greatest Hits” tour of Tulsa, stopping at the city’s famous clock tower and handing over his grandmother’s half-carat engagement diamond from World War II, which he’d had reset in super-modern platinum. “I just giggled,” said its recipient.

She was even more aflutter several weeks later, when her future mother-in-law presented her with a matching six-diamond antique wedding band. Hey, at least somebody’s parents were happy.

The couple currently lives in an East Village one-bedroom. Mr. Chinn, 25, is an assistant producer at the Greenwich Village advertising firm Merkley Newman Harty Partners-though he’s working hard to keep his “edge,” filing a weekly column called “New York City Diaries” to KWGS-FM in Tulsa and working on a thinly disguised roman à clef about a kid who grew up in Oklahoma and moved to New York City with his fiancée.

Ms. Irish, 24, is studying costume design at Tisch.

They first met when she was investigating the U. of T.’s theater department and stopped by a rehearsal of Much Ado About Nothing . Mr. Chinn, a tall, pale thespian playing Seacoal the clown in a paper hat, spied the green-eyed, rosy-cheeked Southern belle right away. “I was immediately intrigued,” he said. “I’m going to have a future with that girl!” he proclaimed to a friend.

By the time Ms. Irish came to matriculate a year later, however, he had changed his tune. “She was a little bit insufferable,” he said. “Headstrong, stubborn, brash, brisk. We were sworn enemies.”

“He flat-out told me he hated me,” Ms. Irish said. But after Mr. Chinn returned from a loveless summer-stock experience in rural Nebraska, the pendulum had swung back. “Something shifted,” she said. “It became very flirtatious.”

Fish and ducks and geese better scurry: The young bride-to-be is planning a ceremony for 50 at St. Mark’s Church-in-the-Bowery-pissing off her mother, who despite that initial reluctance would’ve preferred a Southern-fried hoedown with about 300 more guests. “We didn’t speak for two months,” Ms. Irish said, smiling. “I enjoy visiting, but Memphis is backward.”

-Ronda Kaysen

Born Yesterday

Miranda Blythe Hausman

Nov. 10, 2003 7 pounds, 2 ounces New York -Presbyterian

Hospital

Velvetropes would have come in handy in the delivery room when power publicist Liz Cohen, co-owner of Cohen-Raines Public Relations, went into labor. “There wasahuge crowd-like 60 people,” said Ms. Cohen, wife of real-estate lawyer Jimmy Hausman since November 2002 (both are 33). “The hospital said they’d never had so many people in one room waiting to get in to see a baby.” The invitation-only event came off without a hitch. “I imagined being in seclusion for 10 hours, screaming-but my friends and family were there to distract me the whole time,” she said. Baby Miranda has thick black hair, like both parents, and her mother’s sociable tendencies. “She’s happiest when there’s noise,” Ms. Cohen said. “She likes it when the phones are ringing.”

Countdown to Bliss