'Black Book' Editor's Hurricane Love Affair Ends In Wedding

Steve Garbarino, the sorta Jeff Daniels look-a-like editor in chief of Black Book magazine, met his new wife when on "a snowy night in March 2005, at Hudson Bar and Books, in Manhattan, [he] was holding court with friends and drinking a dark and stormy." Garbarino, says the Times, "made some ridiculous drolleries, told some tales, bragged a bit about the HBO [show]—which did not come to fruition." Really, this sort of thing works? On some women apparently.

Her name is Maddy Simpson. She's an ex-model and, although it went unmentioned in the writeup, she has been a stylist, sittings editor and photography editor for Black Book. The story of their love borders on farce, a parade of romcom clichés you swear you've seen in some movie with Andie McDowell but can't find on IMDB.

A week after their first date:

[S]he visited him at his pied-à-terre behind the Chateau Marmont hotel in West Hollywood.

"Maddy fell in love with my place as much as me," Mr. Garbarino joked.

As for his feelings, he said: "Maddy had this cool that felt right, not trendy pretensions. And she had these one-liners....."

Mr. Garbarino soon abandoned his pied-à-terre. "I decided on the Fourth of July to pack up, and move back to New York, at first to her little apartment, then to our own place," he said.

Cut to a medley of packing. Steve is in his underwear. Some styrofoam packing peanuts have gotten stuck in his virile chest hair. Maddy gingerly picks them out. They both laugh uproariously and start throwing peanuts at each other by the handful. Later they make love on a bed of them. It is ill-advised. Later Maddy develops a yeast infection from an errant piece of foam. Belle and Sebastian's "I'm A Cuckoo" plays in the background.

Later, the couple tears off to Hunt Slonem's Louisiana plantation in the wake of Hurricane Katrina.
Childhood dreams of the life of Scarlett O'Hara ran through my imagination," Ms. Simpson said. "It was our romantic respite before we had to go face the reality of what we were about to see of New Orleans." They fastened the shutters and "waited for the roof to be blown off," Mr. Garbarino said. When the electricity failed, they lighted candles and ran through the cavernous rooms, laughing....

As the storm howled, he proposed on the grand staircase. "It was love in the ruins," Mr. Garbarino said.

"Shelter From the Storm" plays as the two make love on the staircase. What the...?

Maddy Simpson and Steven Garbarino [NYT]