Is it a tale of romance gone a-rye?
"Honey, you're 300 sandwiches away from an engagement ring," said a New Yorker named Eric Schulte in 2012. He was talking to his girlfriend, Stephanie Smith. She happens to be a journalist, so of course she took him quite literally. First step: start a blog. Second step: start making sandwiches.
"Maybe I needed to show him I could cook to prove that I am wife material," Smith wrote. "If he wanted 300 sandwiches, I'd give him 300 sandwiches — and I'd blog about it."
As of Sept. 26, according to Smith's blog, she had reached sandwich number 177: a "Baked at Halftime Fried Green Tomato BLT." She includes recipes for her sandwiches, by the way.
Here's how Smith describes herself, again from her blog:
"I'm a Midwest girl living in New York, a writer and foodie who loves a good meal. I love chocolate, pork buns, and sushi more than I love a sale at Saks. I'm a woman who loves her man, but also never backs down from a challenge. If he wants three hundred sandwiches, then I'll deliver."
Smith's mission to get Schulte to put a ring on it is rubbing a lot of women the wrong way. A Huffington Post columnist sums up the sentiments of Smith's critics. Emma Gray provides six reasons why "one should never learn about love from people who trade diamond rings and lifelong commitments for sandwiches."
The New York Post, where Smith works, published her rebuttal to the haters and naysayers, and tweeted, "The #300sandwiches gal responds to critics: It's a blog, not a 'wich hunt!"
The rebuttal begins: "I met a guy. I made a sandwich. I started a blog. And I enraged feminists everywhere."
Other observers a more cynical than enraged. One woman tweeted:
"Let's all get real & acknowledge that #300sandwiches is yet another brilliant scheme to get a book/TV/movie deal and it's probably working."
Perhaps. Smith and Schulte have already appeared on "The Today Show," and the hashtag #300sandwiches has touched a chord on Twitter.
"The thing that really shocks me about 300 Sandwiches is that there's a woman in New York City willing to admit that she still eats carbs," tweeted one woman.
Whatever your opinion, the 300 sandwiches controversy has been a boon to website headline writers.
Here's a selection:
- "For Whom Would You Make 300 Sandwiches to Have Sex with Them Forever? " (Gawker)
- "B**tch, Make Me 300 Sandwiches, Orders Beautiful Woman's Boyfriend " (Celebuzz)
- "Indecent Proposal? Girlfriend Makes 300 Sandwiches, Hopes for Engagement " (ABC)
What do you think? Is Stephanie Smith a genius or desperate? Is she a betraying feminism? Please share your opinions in our comments section.