Crazy things guys have done for love?
May 13, 2008 10:29 AM   Subscribe

What are some crazy and/or impressive things guys have done for love, or to win a woman's hand?

I'm looking for real examples like Edward VIII abdicating the throne to marry Wallace Simpson, extreme things like that. Not just leave-his-first-family, move-cross-country kind of stuff. A romantic gestures, not stalker-y.

Epic examples: walking across a desert, giving up a fortune, converting to or leaving a religion, things like that. Historic or recent. Ideally true, or at least mythological.
posted by gottabefunky to Human Relations (29 answers total) 10 users marked this as a favorite
 
There's always Abelard and Heloise.
posted by cerebus19 at 10:45 AM on May 13, 2008 [1 favorite]



I have two problems with this:

1) Edward the VIII - giving into your Dominatrix is romantic?
2) You can win womans' hands?
posted by munchbunch at 10:48 AM on May 13, 2008


giving into your Dominatrix is romantic?

Extremely.

Thousands of women have given up their careers. Some don't regret it later. Does that count?
posted by rokusan at 10:53 AM on May 13, 2008 [3 favorites]


Different kind of love, but I flew across the country ostensibly to hang out with my best friend, but really, because I didn't want to come out of the closet to him over the phone. He was pretty blown away, I think, that I'd come that far - indeed, orchestrated the whole thing - just to tell him in person. It was really scary for me to take that kind of risk, but I'm glad I did it and we're as close as ever (I just flew across an ocean and a continent to be at his wedding).
posted by mdonley at 10:54 AM on May 13, 2008 [2 favorites]


Van Gogh is kind of a classic example.
posted by nanojath at 10:55 AM on May 13, 2008


Abelard and Heloise, Van Gogh - perfect. Any recent examples?
posted by gottabefunky at 10:58 AM on May 13, 2008


I'm thinking the fine line between crazy and romantic...
posted by gottabefunky at 10:59 AM on May 13, 2008


It isn't a story about something done to win a woman's love, but this is still one of the most romantic true stories I've read.
posted by cerebus19 at 11:03 AM on May 13, 2008 [6 favorites]


In the Meatloaf mythos, which echoes the Persephone story, Meat goes into hell, battling demons, to rescue his loved one. Then in the sequel LP he goes back into hell.

"I have traveled across the universe through the years to find her," he declares in the video for I Would Do Anything For Love (But I Wouldn't Do That). "Sometimes going all the way is just the start."
posted by johngoren at 11:03 AM on May 13, 2008 [1 favorite]


Well, there was that wild, impetuous thing John Hinkley did to catch Jodie Foster's eye.
posted by Thorzdad at 11:11 AM on May 13, 2008 [4 favorites]


Boldt Castle in the 1000 Islands Region of the St. Lawrence River stands as a remembrance of the magnificence of a bygone era . . . a monument of love on Heart Island of George C. Boldt for his wife Louise.

That she died before it was completed also makes it one of the saddest love stories around.
posted by pixlboi at 11:12 AM on May 13, 2008


A romantic might read Henry VIII's break with Rome in order to marry Anne Boleyn as a romantic gesture, I guess...but aside from how complicated it really was, we all know how that turned out.
posted by peachfuzz at 11:22 AM on May 13, 2008


Henry Huntington built the amazing mansion and created the beginnings of the estate known today as the Huntington Gardens in Pasadena, California, for his wife Arabella Huntington so she would consider giving up her home on the east coast to come live with him in California.
posted by arnicae at 11:27 AM on May 13, 2008


I once started a relationship by writing a withdrawal slip for a hot bank teller.
posted by weapons-grade pandemonium at 11:32 AM on May 13, 2008


Being a loving caring friend for 8 1/2 years? Or maybe that's just pathetic.
posted by Free word order! at 12:18 PM on May 13, 2008 [1 favorite]


The Taj Mahal is supposed to have been built as a symbol of love.
posted by srah at 12:29 PM on May 13, 2008 [1 favorite]


I once said that I too loved the music of female singer songwriters.

The heroic part is that I have lived that lie for the last fifteen years.
posted by LarryC at 12:48 PM on May 13, 2008 [12 favorites]


I just read the Abelard and Heloise story--how is that romantic? He seduces her, occasionally beats and rapes her (he admitted to this in later letters, apparently), and offers to marry her--but only in secret so it won't ruin his career. The guy sounds like a real asshole.
posted by schroedinger at 12:59 PM on May 13, 2008 [1 favorite]


I thought that this crossed the line between aww romantic and crazy.
posted by defenestratedego at 12:59 PM on May 13, 2008


Coral Castle was built for love.

By one small man.

At night.

Using construction equipment he built out of parts scavenged from a junkyard.
posted by cmyk at 12:59 PM on May 13, 2008


What are some crazy and/or impressive things guys have done for love, or to win a woman's hand?

I'm surprised nobody has mentioned "start a war" yet.
posted by Avenger at 1:08 PM on May 13, 2008


Tristan and Iseult.

Hero and Leander.

Pyramus and Thisbe. (the origin, I would believe, of the Romeo and Juliet story)

Eros and Psyche.

Orpheus and Eurydice.

Orestes and Electra. (maybe a bit of an incestuous stretch, but he did kill their mother because of his love for her)

Hades and Persephone. (more stalkerish than romantic, but hey, it's all a matter of perspective!)

Apollo and Daphne.
posted by nonmerci at 1:31 PM on May 13, 2008


How about the Coral Castle?
posted by breakfast_yeti at 3:07 PM on May 13, 2008


I can't find the reference now but I remember reading somewhere (maybe in Raleigh Trevelyan's biography?) that Sir Walter Ralegh once faked illness by drinking poison to get himself back into Elizabeth I's good graces. Unfortunately it didn't work.
posted by media_itoku at 3:44 PM on May 13, 2008


On the advice of my sister, I once drove from Phoenix AZ to Amherst MA in 36 hours, to live with a girl I was seeing at the time.
posted by ihope at 6:38 PM on May 13, 2008


John Hinckley, Jr.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 7:00 PM on May 13, 2008


converting to or leaving a religion

Do these need to be famous people, or are you interested in personal anecdotes? In Malaysia, a guy must convert to Islam to marry a muslim, and so this goes on all the time. Considering this frequently involves circumcision and a name change, at minimum, I'd say it qualifies as crazy and/or impressive.
posted by BinGregory at 9:44 PM on May 13, 2008


This is hardly epic, but in my mind certainly qualifies as impressive.
posted by sleep_walker at 2:24 AM on May 14, 2008


This is hardly epic, but in my mind certainly qualifies as impressive.
I vote epic. :)
posted by DWRoelands at 7:19 AM on May 14, 2008


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