Our story begins in the halls of Spain Park High School. I spent most of my days as a recluse, reading sci-fi books & doing abstract art in the library. Caroline was a red-haired sophomore on the Varsity Cheerleading Squad -- super popular & loved by all. She made a bet with her friends that she could make anybody in the school popular just by dating them. 6 weeks later, I became prom king, and the rest is history...
I know what you're thinking... that sounds like the plot to a movie!
You are correct. The above is indeed an abbreviated plot of She's All That starring Freddy Prinze Jr. & Rachael Leigh Cook.
Our real story goes like this...
Caroline & I have always been very good friends. We grew up in the same neighborhood, have been going to school together since 2002, and she's been trying to make moves on me since the Great Recession. In 2011, she paid off the cheer coach to decorate my door for football games (she'll swear it was random chance, but we all know different, CB).
I graduated, left for New York, and we lost touch for about 5 years.
It wasn't until 4th of July weekend 2016 that random chance brought us together. Marty, Robbie, Luke & I were taking our annual boys trip down to Gulf Shores to try our luck at the Florabama.
Martin & I were enjoying a Miller Lite at The Beach Club pool, and out of nowhere this woman starts yelling at me from the 3rd floor balcony. Sure enough, it is Carol, down for a girls weekend, in all of her sunburnt glory. We merged groups & all had a hilarious time hanging on the beach, taking Rumple shots at Mudbugs & catching up on old times.
After this trip, we decided we would make it a priority to stay in better touch moving forward (which we did via phone occasionally), but outside of a little flirting on this trip, we still didn't really talk about or explore the idea of dating.
Fast forward to Summer of 2020: the world is in meltdown, everyone has Covid, Godzilla emerged off the coast of Japan, remote work becomes a possibility, and there was finally an opportunity to make a move back to Birmingham.
At last, we were living in the same place, and so I shot my shot, and asked her out. She said yes, and so we embarked on our first date to SoHo Social. I ordered the mini-corndogs & she got a sour beer. We laughed for hours, joked about her fear of Ketchup, and gave updates about what our friends and families were doing.
We continued seeing each other and became serious in the back-half of 2020 thanks to some help from our friends. We were semi-long distance between Houston & Birmingham for a few months, so I did want to dedicate a short paragraph to Marty Party Stone & Julianna Rodriguez-Neal for allowing me to invade their personal space while trying to court CB. Without your support, we wouldn't be here.
2021 was an unreal year of experiences with Carol: we made a home together, went on a few beach & mountain trips, I taught her how to play the slot machines in Biloxi, and we attended countless weddings.
It was in this time that I realized I wanted to marry Caroline: for her kind disposition, go-with-the-flow attitude, and because we shared the ability to be our true selves with one another.
On April 8th, 2022, I asked Caroline to be my wife while watching the sunset from the beachfront swings at The Beach Club, the same place that happenstance allowed us to reconnect about 6 years prior.