Countdown to Bliss

Kambri Crews and Christian Finnegan

Met: Jan. 3, 2003

Engaged: Nov. 18, 2005

Projected Wedding Date: Aug. 12, 2006

Christian Finnegan, 33, a comedian, panelist on VH1’s Best Week Ever and the host of Game Time, a game show on TVLand, plans to wed Kambri Crews, 35, his publicist, at Galapagos Art Space in Williamsburg. This will be the second time down the aisle for Ms. Crews, who married a sailor when she was 17, a union that lasted six years. “I gave it a good ol’ college try,” she said.

The couple met at a comedy show at the Gershwin Hotel. The blue-eyed and baby-faced Mr. Finnegan was doing his stand-up routine there, while Ms. Crews, a striking 5-foot-10 Texas blonde, was in the audience with some friends she’d met on the Internet. They first noticed each other while he was setting up chairs before the show. Later, they repaired for drinks at Limerick House, followed by a cab ride to Astoria, where they both lived—Ms. Crews with an actor boyfriend, though she said the relationship was on the rocks. “It put me at ease,” said Mr. Finnegan, “because there didn’t seem to be an opening.” Besides, “it’s great to have a hot chick as a friend, because she has other friends.”

Later in the week, this particular hot chick e-mailed Mr. Finnegan to invite him to a friendly brunch, which led, inevitably, to another comedy show at the now-defunct Ye Olde Tripple Inn. This time the cab ride ended in a walk to her doorstep, where he announced: “O.K., I’m going to leave now, before I try to make out with you.”

“It was kind of one of those, ‘Hey, if you take this serious, then I’m being serious, but if you’re totally weirded out, it’s just a big joke,’” Mr. Finnegan told the Love Beat, who knew exactly what he meant.

Ms. Crews’ demure Southern response: “Oh, you’re making me blush.”

Several days later, the two of them met at Café Bar, which is what passes for a hotspot in Astoria, and where it soon became apparent that this was … yes … a date. “Tell me about your parents,” Ms. Crews ventured. Mr. Finnegan got a “look on his face that I recognized right away,” she said. Her father, who is deaf, is currently incarcerated for attempted murder. “I thought I had family issues until I met her,” said Mr. Finnegan (who refused to elaborate). “I was like, ‘O.K., a big potential land mine has just been lifted out of the way.”

Another potential land mine: Mr. Finnegan’s line of work calls him away to dark and sometimes seedy bars most Friday and Saturday nights. “I dated women before—civilians, as we call them—where it was an issue,” he said. But Ms. Crews was unperturbed. “For me, it was an opportunity to socialize,” she said. “I want to meet people and go out and see shows. I love seeing shows.”

After about a month of these shenanigans, Mr. Finnegan got an irate call from Ms. Crews’ roommate, now officially an ex—“Really, I don’t blame the guy,” he said—and another month later, she moved into her own place. A year later, she left her job as a personal assistant with an entertainment lawyer to launch her own P.R. firm, Ballyhoo Promotions. Mr. Finnegan was one of her first clients. “Working with Kambri makes so many things so much easier,” he said. “We’re on the same page a lot.” (Though, he conceded, “a regular publicist wouldn’t know I’m sitting on the couch playing Madden 2006 instead of writing my newsletter.”)

When Ms. Crews’ lease ended, they moved into a nearby three-bedroom. “It was the only way we stood a fighting chance,” she said. They considered eloping while at a comedy festival in Vegas, but “it stopped feeling kitschy-lame and just started feeling lame-lame,” Mr. Finnegan said.

Instead, they went to one of the shops in Caesar’s Palace and bought a gold anniversary band encrusted with pavé diamonds (though Ms. Crews stopped wearing it after a loose diamond fell into her shag carpet and almost fell victim to the vacuum).

Theirs will be a low-key ceremony, with a sign-language interpreter for the many members of the Crews family who are deaf (her dad has sent a letter to be read at the service) and a barbecue to follow. “I wanted to preserve all the parts of a marriage that people actually enjoy and chuck everything else,” Mr. Finnegan said. “And for me, the parts that people enjoy is the open bar.”

Warren Hershkowitz and Robin Saide

Met: Sept. 29, 2004

Engaged: Oct. 7, 2005

Projected Wedding Date: Sept. 9, 2006

Warren Hershkowitz had grown weary of J-Date and had decided to let his subscription slide. “I figured, ‘Enough free dinners and free rides,’” said Mr. Hershkowitz, 33, a beefy Bronx native who’s V.P. of operations at Prudential Douglas Elliman, the real-estate firm, and lives in a two-bedroom apartment near Gramercy Park.

Then he stumbled upon the profile of Robin Saide, a foxy, full-lipped social worker with bouncy brown hair. “Her profile was genuine and sincere,” Mr. Hershkowitz said. “It was just real. She said she liked reading the newspaper on the couch, and that her favorite TV show was Law & Order.”

Ms. Saide is also a chronic call-screener, so when Mr. Hershkowitz called, he got her voice mail. “I’m calling just because I want to talk to you,” he said. “Right from the start, I knew he was a nice guy,” she said.

They met for sushi at Haru on the Upper East Side, near the modest hospital housing granted her by New York Presbyterian. Two hours “just blew by,” he said. “We were able to talk about anything and everything.” Then they went to a wine bar, and a nicely mellowed Mr. Hershkowitz invited Ms. Saide to Per Se. “I didn’t even know what Per Se was,” she admitted.

Fortunately, her gay uncles Steve and Steve were able to set her straight. “How did you get in?” they howled over speakerphone the next day.

Mr. Hershkowitz showed up for the monumental meal in a jacket … and thong sandals. “It’s Sunday brunch,” he said defensively. “You can wear flip-flops!” He told their waiter that his name was Winston. Ms. Saide called herself Roxanne. They also said it was their five-year anniversary. The four-hour food parade that followed revealed them to be as compatible as Jack and Mrs. Sprat: Mr. Hershkowitz avoided the vegetables and Ms. Saide eschewed the heavy meats.

Afterward, they drove to Central Park, where they read the Sunday papers, watched two men duel with samurai swords on the green and listened to the distant sound of polka music. “It was very New York,” Ms. Saide said.

Soon they were taking turns sleeping over, which presented a problem for Mr. Hershkowitz only because Ms. Saide has a strict 5 a.m. gym regimen. “There was no other option but to drive her home,” he said. Six months into the relationship, she moved in—but not before he declared his honorable intentions to her mother.

One day not long after their anniversary, Mr. Hershkowitz insisted on picking Ms. Saide up from work (using a high terror alert as an excuse—ah, romance in 21st-century New York!) and brought her back to Haru, where he presented her with a photo album chronicling their relationship.

“Robin, I love you madly,” read the last page. “Will you marry me?”

“Oh my God,” she said, looking up to find Mr. Hershkowitz on his knee, triumphantly proffering a two-carat modified cushion-cut diamond set in a platinum, pavé-encrusted band with pavé-encrusted prongs—a setting he designed himself.

They’re eagerly anticipating their wedding at Ms. Saide’s uncles’ house in Sagaponack. “My mom got that ridiculous clock that counts down the seconds,” said the bride-to-be, “so it makes your anxiety really work well for you.” Countdown to Bliss