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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 1 – Beginner)
Topic: Write in the ROMANCE genre (04/19/07)

TITLE: Computer Nerd and Romance
By Martha Helton


Your adornment must not be merely external--braiding the hair, and wearing gold jewelry, or putting on dresses; but let it be the hidden person of the heart, with the imperishable quality of a gentle and quiet spirit, which is precious in the sight of God. I Peter 3:3 (NAS)
I carefully touched up my lipstick, put on a last coat of mascara and breathed one last, “I put this evening in Your hands, Lord” prayer. I wasn’t sure what to think. I had received a call a few days earlier from a man I hadn’t met before. One thing we did have in common was that we both knew a woman who had “matched” us together. Mind you, this is way before match.com or eharmony had revolutionized the dating scene.
I quickly made my way to the door of my apartment to open it. There, to my pleasant surprise, was a tall, nicely dressed man with brown hair and glasses. He was wearing white pants and a blue shirt, if my memory hasn’t failed me. On the phone, our brief conversation revealed that he was a software engineer and I believe he was playing on the computer during our conversation (potential nerd qualities? Ugh).

“Whew,” I breathed. At least he didn’t look like a stereotypical computer nerd (overweight, greasy, unkempt hair, polyester plaid pants with the waist extending just below the breast line). We exchanged some niceties and made our way to his car. One glimpse revealed that his car was definitely not a chick magnet. It appeared to be a rather well-worn blue Toyota hatchback. I envisioned seeing computer manuals on the floor. Spark of romance was thick in the air—yeah right. But then he gallantly opened the door for me, a definite non-nerd quality.

We made our way to the restaurant, sharing some tentative conversation with each other.
We shared about our backgrounds and about our Christian testimonies. It seemed pleasant
enough. One habit I notice is that he likes to remove his plastic-framed glasses
frequently, rubbing the bridge of the glasses with his napkin and putting them back
on his face. I think this is his solution to keep his glasses from creeping down his
nose (perhaps he should try winding masking tape around the bridge of the glasses?). Okay, okay, but the piece de resistance of the whole evening is when he pulls out his two-for-one coupon. Wow. He’s pulling out all the stops.

Fast forward a few weeks and I actually moved through my “romantic” observations
about this “computer nerd” of a man and saw the inner qualities that are “imperishable”. His gentle, thoughtful, loyal spirit began to draw me to him, melting away my rigid walls. I felt safe to invite him into my life.

It has been twenty years and three incredible sons since the day I first met my love, my husband. We have weathered through the storms of life, including clinical depression and unemployment.
And we’ve entered the “middle ages” with bulges and bifocals. Yet I am thankful
we have clung to God’s definition of romance: not to look merely at outward appearances,
but to see and embrace, through God’s grace, the inner person in ourselves and each other.
Computer nerds and romance—yes, it is definitely possible!

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This article has been read 494 times
Member Comments
Member Date
LaNaye Perkins04/26/07
Such a sweet story. I like how you saw past the computer nerd to the man beneath. Great story!
Jacquelyn Horne04/28/07
Beauty is in the eye of the beholder. Romance, too, I think. Nice story. Good writing.
Mo 04/29/07
I liked this. I would've liked to hear more of the couple's getting to know you stage & some of the specific things that made you keep seeing him. (& I can definitely relate!)
Brenda Welc04/29/07
This story gave me the warm fuzzies! I love the "geeky" twist. Well written story telling.
Donna Powers 04/30/07
A very real and wonderful romance. I liked it very much. Well done!