Why the key to being unforgettable is to do the unexpected


“Go to the central square at 2 o’clock!”

“What?! Why?” I asked.

“I can’t tell you – just go, okay? It’ll be fun,” my wife replied.

“Will I be back in time for my class at 3?”

“No – but Lorraine and I will take care of your class. Don’t worry about it!”

“Wait… when will I be back? And will you be there?”

“You’ll be back tonight, I promise. No, I won’t – I’ll be at your class, remember? Just go!”

It was a set-up

I had no idea what to expect.  That’s all my wife said to me!

“Have fun. And here’s some spending money. Bye!” she said as she pushed a few bills into my hand on Saturday.

I was five minutes late and I jumped off the bus in a hurry. To my surprise, there, at the square, were a couple friends of mine – whose wives had told them the exact same thing!

It dawned on us that the following day, Sunday, was February 23rd. Here, in the former Soviet Union, the 23rd of February is a holiday known to many locals as Men’s Day* – and in the spirit of the holiday, our wives were setting us up for a surprise. But what kind of surprise?

We waited. A student of mine came by to say hi. We chatted idly for a couple minutes.

Then, unexpectedly, he said, “Actually, I’ve been waiting for you guys. I have something for you.”

In his bag was an envelope.
In the envelope was a letter.
In the letter was a mission – and a puzzle to solve.

When we finished the puzzle, we found a destination!
We were off on an adventure!

Our wives made us a game that would take the whole afternoon to play – and it would take us to a bowling alley, a paintball club, and finally to a delicious dinner at a Japanese cafe – where we met our lovely, creative, wonderful wives!

It was unforgettable.


 “WHOA! I totally didn’t see that coming!”

Often, the things that make the deepest impression on us are the unexpected. Think about it for a moment:

– Do you love surprise endings in movies?

– On the same note, do you love when a movie is far better than you expected? Or a book? Or an album?

– Do you love artists and bands that do unexpected things with their medium?

– Do you love when the quality of a product is unexpectedly awesome? Or when you find unexpectedly cool special features?

– Do you love when people throw you a surprise party? Or when you come home and find an unexpected gift?

– Do you love when someone is unexpectedly thoughtful and kind to you?

– Do you love when a class you thought was going to be boring turns out to be vastly interesting?
The unexpected is often unforgettable.
It’s the unforgettable things make a life worth living.

But here’s the clincher: These things must be planned – like my wife’s adventure for me, or the time I covered our living room ceiling with a couple hundred red paper hearts – but they are worth it.

Now it’s your turn.
What’s something unexpected that you can do today?
 In your home? In your work? For a friend? For your wife or husband? Tell me about it in the comments below!

photo credits: Gatto mimo and Shardayyy


4 thoughts on “Why the key to being unforgettable is to do the unexpected

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