JulieLeung.com: a life told in tidepools

pictures and stories from the water’s edge

JulieLeung.com: a life told in tidepools header image 2

How I got a geek boyfriend

February 21st, 2004 · 2 Comments

and who played Dave Winer’s role….

Last week I posted some of the story how Anita Rowland and Jack Bell met, through what Dave Winer wrote about “Geek Boyfriends “.

Their story got me thinking about our own story, how Ted and I met. To write it all would be lengthy so I’ll share a snippet here, a shortened version. Ted and I had a number of friends in common although we didn’t really know each other. I would see Ted on Friday nights at a student group meeting we both attended on campus, during my first year as an undergraduate and his first year in graduate school.

I don’t remember the first time we met. No love at first sight for us. At least not me. Ted says he came up to me after a meeting where I had spoken before the group. But I don’t remember him. He wasn’t anywhere on my radar at the time. I was literally praying that another guy, “Fred”, would notice me.

I do have a photograph of Ted in my room at a party I had for a friend that fall. In the picture he is watching others limbo under blue streamer stretched across the doorway. But I don’t remember him being there either.

So where do I remember Ted? It begins with a concert. If there’s a role in this story like the one Dave Winer played for Anita and Jack: if there’s someone we would go to see if they ever came to town, someone who helped bring us together, it would be a musical group: Glad . A friend had loaned me some of their tapes and so I was curious when Ted stood up at a meeting one night and said that he was coordinating tickets for a Glad concert: to get a ticket, call him.

So I did. I called and talked to Ted’s machine. And as I was leaving my message, I thought, hey, he’s a friend of a friend but we’ve never spent time together ourselves. Might be nice to do something just to get to know each other. So I rambled on a bit at the end, saying “maybe we could get together sometime”. I wasn’t serious about it.

Immediately Ted called me, taking me up on my offer, and wanted to get together after our group meeting the following Friday night. We planned to go to Ben & Jerry’s.

That night, after the meeting ended, I suddenly felt a bit nervous going out with Ted by myself to ice cream (note: yes, at this point Ted was still eating the stuff!) So I asked a few friends to come along. By the time we got to B&J’s, there were six or so of us in the group. We spent the time eating ice cream and discussing that night’s meeting, stuffed into a booth. I hardly talked to Ted and I felt guilty about what I’d done.

So I tried to make up for it: I asked Ted if he would walk me home. Talk about sending strange signals! He walked me back to my dorm room where I think, a while later, my roommate discovered us still talking.

We went to the concert – along with a few other people – and ate some more ice cream then too. At Toscanini’s that night we discovered we had each chosen the same two flavors: Grapenut Raisin and Banana Orange. So it seemed clear we were destined to be together….

It was another six months or so before we started dating and then years until we married….and if anyone had told me right then and there that Ted was the One I probably would have run. Run right out of the ice cream shop, Toscanini’s or not. Getting married wasn’t on my mind or in my agenda, not even in my Five Year Plan (Well I didn’t have one of those, but Ted did, in his planner, and I’d tease him, when we were dating, if I was in there, scribbled on a page in the future…)

But boy am I grateful and Glad (ha!) – I got a Geek Boyfriend and Husband. I think about that concert whenever we play their albums. It’s simple music that reminds me of multiple memories. We have the poster from that original concert rolled up in a tube inside our closet. I have a fantasy of some day going to see Glad and being able to tell the guys in the group our story, thanking them for the part they played. Maybe they could even autograph their old pictures on the poster. I’m sure the girls would get enjoy it too.

But until then, I’ll just have to thank Someone Else who was looking out for us 😉

Tags: marriage

2 responses so far ↓

  • 1 Don Park // Feb 21, 2004 at 7:08 am

    Thanks for the wonderful story, Julie. I came from Dave’s blog thinking “Leung? That’s a familiar name” and your mention of Ted clicked. A couple blogging! Heh. Say hello to Ted for me. Ted is a true geek.

  • 2 KH // Feb 21, 2004 at 1:42 pm

    I once picked the same ice cream flavors as another guy. Does that mean I have to be gay now? (Look out, San Francisco!)