A chance encounter; a fated beginning; a supernatural love connection infused with sweat and Top 40 pop hits. It’s not often that two lovebirds meet under these enchanting auspices and forget each other’s names almost instantly. Yet such was the case in the tale of Skip McDod and Allie Wick, who are to be married Saturday at a small church in Bethesda, Maryland.
“I noticed Allie from the minute I saw her de-foaming her beer in the T.I. (Tiger Inn) tap room,” Skip remarked. A self-proclaimed wallflower throughout his Princeton career, Skip explained that he immediately headed over to the tap where Allie was standing to chug a few beers before introducing himself. “She was the popular, bubbly type,” Skip remarked. “I definitely needed to get blacked if I wanted to make a move.”
Indeed it wasn’t love at first grind—but grind they did. The result? An extended dance floor make-out. He proceeded to forget her name and she to vomit on him on the walk to the Wa(wa convenience store). No phone numbers were exchanged, no Wa-dogs purchased. Almighty Fate did not look favorably on the pair.
As freshman year progressed, Allie grew restless. Her friends attempted to console her in Marquand Library each evening as she stared at blank Microsoft Word documents and furtively sucked down F’real milkshakes purchased at the C-Store. But their calming words were to no avail. In reflecting on her passion-less year—save that one pre-vomit night on the dance floor with her mystery boy—Allie explained: “I sulked that I wouldn’t find love at Princeton. I stalked Princeton Facebook repeatedly in hopes of determining the name of the one boy with whom I swayed to Avicii.”
Lest their first meeting “Fade into Darkness,” Skip, too, pursued Allie, albeit in his own way. Skip’s friends described him as the “total go-getter, over-achiever type,” evidenced only in part by his devotion to the Varsity Crew team while at Princeton. They recalled the way that Skip would stand outside of McCosh Hall, the nexus of Princeton’s classes in the humanities, and, in hopes that he would find Allie, assault any girl with strawberry blond hair. “He would chase after them, even if it meant climbing three flights of stairs to McCosh 10 (lecture hall). It was creepy,” his best man and former lightweight crew teammate remarked.
It wasn’t until their junior year that the star-crossed lovers would meet again. This time, their interaction would prove vomit-free. Skip and Allie, both majors in Princeton’s Woodrow Wilson School, unknowingly selected the same semester-long task force, entitled, “The Tanzanian Child and Me: Education Through the Pen Pal.” A weighty topic, no doubt, one that would reignite a weighty passion between Skip and Allie.
“I looked up at our first task force meeting and there she was,” Skip announced with a sigh. “Well, I wasn’t able to see her initially, because she had 10 books about the development of the Tanzanian child stacked in front of her. But I just knew it was her.” One name game confirmed all. Her name was Allie; she was a junior from Bethesda, Maryland and a Bent Spoon cupcake enthusiast. He was Skip, a junior from San Diego, California with a weakness—almost immediately discernible—for words like “thrust,” “crux,” and “gist.” Neither Allie nor Skip could recount any of the information taught during that first task force. “Admittedly, I hadn’t had any coffee that morning,” Allie said. “But I also couldn’t focus on my Tanzanian pen pal when Skip, my American life partner to be, was sitting right across the table.”
Skip chased Allie out of class—a habit to which he had grown accustomed during his two-year long search (now complete)—and stopped her just short of the Woody Woo fountain. Having finally found her, he wasted no time. He kissed her and mumbled, “I like Bent Spoon cupcakes too!” Skip and Allie would never spend a day apart until their graduation.
Allie and Skip pursued their passions in post-graduate life; for three years, these respective passions brought them far apart. “We knew we had to go our separate ways—to do the things we always wanted to do on our own—in order to come back together,” Allie remarked. Allie travelled to Tanzania through the Peace Corps, where she applied her task force knowledge to real-life Tanzanians. Meanwhile, Skip moved to New York to work for a large investment bank. “We both put in long, grueling hours of work doing the things we love,” Skip remarked. “It was worth it in the end.”
Skip knew he had to make things official the first night Allie returned from Tanzania. “Skip picked me up at Newark Airport and, to my surprise, drove me to Princeton,” Allie said. They ate chicken gyros at Zorba’s Grill and recounted their time apart. Midway through the meal, the waitress brought out an order of hummus and pita slices. At the bottom of thehummus dish was a ring. Without delay, Allie said yes and wept; her tears made the pita soggy.
In planning the wedding, Skip and Allie were struck by their good fortune. “Most nights at T.I. don’t result in a marriage—maybe a shared slice of Frist (Campus Center) pizza, at best,” Allie explained. Skip agreed sincerely. “I may have forgotten her name that first night,” he said, “but I haven’t been able to get her out of my mind since.”
The wedding guests, which include Allie and Skip’s task force professor, Skip’s former teammates, and Allie’s Tanzanian “family,” should look forward to a reception rife with Princeton-related touches. “We got Olives to cater the event,” said Allie with delight. “And we attached our place cards to Princeton lanyards!” From Tiger Inn to Tanzania, their love for Princeton—and for one another—has only grown deeper.