After thanking his publisher and various bosses in the acknowledgements at the end of The Ottoman Hotel, first time novelist Christopher Currie thanked his girlfriend.
"If it's possible to fall more in love with someone every day, then that's what I do. To my favorite, to the reason I live my life, Leesa Wockner, who, if she reads this, I hope will agree to marry me, despite the number of commas in this sentence."
That’s right. He asked her to marry him in the acknowledgements.
And I thought my engagement story was good.
My immediate reaction was the story was this:
How do I top it?
What can I include in the acknowledgements of my next book, or perhaps in the book itself, that can one-up a wedding proposal?
I guess I could also propose marriage to someone, which would be even more noteworthy considering that I’m happily married already.
But that would feel like copying.
So what else?
I could reveal one of my deepest, darkest secrets in the acknowledgements, except I think I’ve revealed most of my deepest, darkest secrets on this blog already.
I could announce the pregnancy of my wife, if she were pregnant, and if we could time the pregnancy to the publication date of the next book, and if my wife was patient enough to wait until next May to get pregnant, and if she could keep the pregnancy secret for more than twelve seconds, which she was not able to do the first time.
So I guess that isn’t going to happen.
For a moment I thought about seeking revenge upon someone in the acknowledgements. Acknowledging them as a poopy pants or a cowardly, backstabbing evildoer. Goodness knows I have more than a few people in my life who are deserving. But I’ve already written an unpublished manuscript that serves this purpose nicely and is much more subtle about the whole thing.
And someday it’ll be published.
So what other big moments in life compare to a marriage proposal and the birth of children?
Landing on the best seller list? Finding the perfect grilled cheese recipe? Shooting under 90 in a round of golf?
Probably. But none of these conform well to an acknowledgements page, and none are likely to happen anytime soon.
Especially the golfing one.
Perhaps I could use my acknowledgements as a shout-out to someone I’ve always wanted to meet. Express my appreciation to Derek Jeter or David Sedaris or Bill Bryson or Paula Poundstone, even though none of them have nothing to do with the book, in hopes that one of them might reach out and give me a call.
Maybe even offer to meet me for dinner.
Or maybe step outside the box a little more and acknowledge the people who know the truth behind the JFK shooting or the fine folks working on that crashed spaceship that the US government has hidden away in Area 51.
Imagine getting that call.
“Hi, I’m one of the astrophysicists working on the crashed alien ship in Area 51. I just wanted to thank you for acknowledging our work on your Acknowledgements page. As you can imagine, we don’t get a lot of attention or fanfare here. Everything is always Top Secret this and Top Secret that. We’ll execute you if you tell anyone about the alien bodies we have in the freezer. So thanks for remember us down here. You made my day.”
Now that might top a silly little marriage proposal.