7 Real NYC Love Stories That Rival Rom-Coms

unnamed-1Illustrated by Christina de la Cruz.
Romance in New York isn't all orgasms at Katz's Deli and affairs to remember, but thanks to people like Nora Ephron, that's what we always thought it would be. ABC's new sitcom, Manhattan Love Story, which premieres tonight at 8:30 p.m., is just the latest in the long line of movies and TV shows that romanticize dating in the city. Dana (Analeigh Tipton) moves to New York and is set up with Peter (Jake McDorman). Even though they have the worst first date ever (seriously, spontaneous tears are involved), we know that they'll end up together in the end. We've already seen this story play out a million times before.
So what does a real-life meet-cute look like in NYC? We asked a few R29 staffers to give us their true stories about falling in love. While there are no blue French horns or Empire State Building rendezvous ahead, we think a chance meeting at Topshop or a run-in at the laundromat is every bit as romantic — and a lot more interesting.
"We met on Tinder, so I didn't think much was going to come of it, even though we had four dates during the first week we met. The night before I was going back to London for Christmas, he gave me a gift, so I wouldn’t forget him while I was gone. It was a piece of 4.5 billion-year-old meteorite; I had told him earlier I was obsessed with the stars and space. We just moved in together, and he is now known by my friends as 'space rocks.'"
—Ellie Stephens, Book Launch Marketing Manager
"My boyfriend and I met on the line for the bathroom at a floating party called the Urban Gypsy Circus. I was trying to avoid my college dorm, so I went home with him, rather drunkenly thinking it was a one-night stand. Now, eight years later, we're getting married."
—Ben Reininga, Senior Editor, Features & Contributors
"My husband and I were introduced by mutual friends at free beer night, at the classiest establishment on the Upper East Side: The Big Easy. (It is now closed, RIP.) He was VERY generous in ensuring my beer cup was always full. We were 23, so no judgments please!"
—Caitlin Engler, Fashion Sales Director
"My fiancé proposed to me this past May inside the photobooth at The Smith in the East Village — our favorite restaurant. Our pictures capture the overwhelming moment, ugly cry and all!"
—Annie Kim, Senior Campaign Manager
unnamed-1Illustrated by Christina de la Cruz.
"Four years ago, while recovering from a breakup, I decided to get back on the horse again. I went to Topshop in Soho to find a new outfit on a Friday night. There I saw a striking, gorgeous man who had a very 'Billy Idol' look to him come up the escalator. He noticed me, and I noticed him.
"Being the pansy that I am sober, I left the store without talking to this mystery man. On my way to the train, I had a moment of courage. I pulled out my business card (lame, I know), walked back to Topshop, and searched for him — to no avail. He'd left.
"Later that night, while on the JMZ train into Manhattan, I told my friends about 'Billy Idol.' Low and behold, when we arrived at Boiler Room, our first stop of the night, he was standing directly outside. Flabbergasted, I mentioned to my friends that this was the guy I had just been talking about minutes ago. They went up to him, so I jetted to the bathroom. When I returned, they left me no choice — I had to talk to him. We've been together ever since that night and got engaged last fall. It was very meant to be."
—Jeremy Jankowski, Director, Key Accounts
"I met my boyfriend walking to the laundromat around midnight one night. He offered to carry my giant bag of laundry, but I said no because I did not know this man. Then, when I was leaving the laundromat, I ran into him again. It turns out that we lived one block away from each other. There was a little dumpling shop right next door, and he asked me if I wanted to eat there with him. I said yes. It was the holiday season, and the next day he invited me to go see the Macy's Christmas tree with him."
—Kelly Bourdet, Health and Wellness Director
"I met my wife at the long since defunct Market Hotel in Bushwick. As soon as she walked in the door, our eyes locked. I inched my way towards where she was standing in the crowd and tried to think of something to say. By the time I got to her, I hadn't come up with anything, but she turned to me and asked which band was playing next. I told her I didn't know, but if she let me buy her a drink, we could ask the people at the bar. That was almost seven years ago, and we're celebrating our second wedding anniversary on October 11."
—Matt O'Connor, Automation Engineer

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