Countdown to Bliss

Todd Rosen and Lori Selmon

Met: Nov. 19, 2003

Engaged: Aug. 18, 2004

Projected Wedding Date: May 29, 2005

“Everyone has their thing,” said Lori Selmon, 32, senior merchandising manager at Travel & Leisure. “My thing is, I hate really whiny, nasally voices. And I like it when guys have really nice hands. I hate it when guys have really, like, girly hands.”

Wasn’t this a Seinfeld episode?

Surfing on Match.com one evening, Ms. Selmon became intrigued by a profile of Todd Rosen, a theater producer with a freshly scrubbed look and an interest in football. “I love the creative thing—but not too creative,” she said. “I wasn’t looking for ‘gay man.’”

The two of them met for beers at the Village Lantern on Bleecker Street. “He had a great voice and good hands,” Ms. Selmon said, adding. “I also have a name thing. I think the name Todd is a great name.”

Mr. Rosen, meanwhile, was quite taken with Ms. Selmon’s dirty-blond hair, high cheekbones and small-town Connecticut charms. “It wasn’t like going out with one of the girls from Sex and the Cit y—she didn’t have the New York abrasive, sarcastic, jaded sort of thing going on,” he said. “It was genuine and true and sweet.”

Several dates later, however, he blew a gasket when she ordered chicken fingers … yet again … at the Heartland Brewery. “Why do you always get the same thing?” he fumed.

“It just became this ‘you need to branch out’ conversation, and ‘you need to experience more in life,’ and I was like, ‘Who the hell are you?’” Ms. Selmon said. “We had a big argument outside Pier One. I was like, ‘You know what? I’m 31, and I am who I am and I like who I am, and if that’s not going to work for you, then that’s totally cool—but let’s either decide that or not.’”

Mr. Rosen, 34, was unfazed. “It was like, ‘I’m going to put you through your paces through the first six months of this relationship—and if you survive, we’re really lucky,’” he said.

They had just returned from visiting his folks in Miami over the July 4 weekend when Mr. Rosen told his mom that he was thinking of proposing that fall. “You know, you’re not getting any younger,” she barked. “Why don’t you speed it up a little bit?”

Mama Rosen proceeded to drop her late mother’s cushion-cut diamond into a FedEx envelope addressed to her son, ignoring the company’s “no jewelry” clause. You gotta love those moxie-filled Miami mother-in-laws!

Six weeks later, the couple could be found vacationing on a beach in Jamaica.

“Lor, this is it,” Mr. Rosen announced dramatically. Plunging to one knee, he handed over his grandma’s stone, which had been extracted from its gold 1960’s setting and reset in an antique-style platinum band.

They’ll marry in Freeport in the Bahamas at the Our Lucaya Resort—no discounts, alas, Ms. Selmon reported. In the meantime, she’s abandoned her studio on lower Fifth Avenue for Mr. Rosen’s in the “artists’ community” of Manhattan Plaza, Hell’s Kitchen.

“It’s such a challenge being single and living in this city,” the groom-to-be mused. “It sounds cliché, but when you have a partner to share your life with, it just becomes—frankly, a little easier.”

Deborah Creighton and Augustus Skinner

Met: March 2003

Engaged: June 11, 2004

Projected Wedding Date: Nov. 6, 2004

Deborah Creighton was chatting with a friend on her cell phone while waiting for her date to arrive outside the Chelsea bistro Le Singe Vert. “This guy walked up to me, and I didn’t recognize him at all,” said Ms. Creighton, 35, a dark-skinned beauty with a lovely smile who works as a journalist at The Wall Street Journal Online.

“I thought it was a bit odd,” said Augustus Skinner, also 35, in his charming (is there any other kind?) British accent. After all, two weeks earlier, Ms. Creighton and Mr. Skinner—both London-born Libras—had met through mutual friends at an art opening in Chelsea, chatting long enough to become mutually entranced and exchange numbers.

But “the gallery was bright when we met, and it was dark outside,” protested Ms. Creighton. “And he was wearing a hat!”

After the initial misunderstanding, the couple had a blast, staying out—and making out—until 4 in the morning. “People were shouting ‘Get a room!’ at us from across the street,” said the tall, green-eyed Mr. Skinner, a freelance composer of music for television commercials. Instead, they decorously retired to their respective abodes (a one-bedroom in the East Village for her, an apartment in Soho for him), meeting again in the morning for a chilly walk to Central Park and a convivial lunch at the Boathouse. “She has a great sense of humor,” Mr. Skinner said. “She can be as childish as I am.”

“All of my friends have told me how much nicer I am now that I’ve met him,” Ms. Creighton said. He makes her feel “kind and comfortable,” she added.

But after a few months of dating, Mr. Skinner applied the brakes.

“I had only just come over to New York from London when I met Deborah,” he explained. “I didn’t feel ready to jump into anything straight away.”

Ms. Creighton reacted with the calm typical of a Libra. “It was probably for the best, since if we hadn’t broken up then, we would have probably broken up later,” she said. Anyway, he soon came crawling back, like most of them do eventually if you leave them alone. “It got serious, and then it got more serious—and before I knew, it was even more serious,” she said. But “moving in together was not something I was just going to do without a commitment. I’m not in my early 20’s anymore.” Sing it, sister!

Sure enough, they’re going to get married in London. Mr. Skinner proposed at a restaurant near the B&B they visited in Warwick, N.Y., getting down on one knee and presenting Ms. Creighton with an eternity band in white gold with diamonds and sapphires.

Her one stipulation regarding his ring purchase had been “no solitaires.” “I just know I’d end up poking myself in the eye,” she said.

Countdown to Bliss