Imagine for a moment that you are shopping in town, or walking in the park, and a man runs up to you.
“Oh my God! It’s really you!”, he shouts, while you awkwardly try to remember who on earth he was. His Canadian accent gives away that you probably didn’t go to school with him and, try as you might, you have no idea who he is.
He starts to explain that, 12 months ago, he asked you for directions in a cafe. Ever since then, he had been completely obsessed with you – unable to date anyone else, or talk about anyone else – and he had flown back across the Atlantic purely to try to track you down. He explains that bookies are taking bets on whether he would marry you, or whether you were already married (as if these are the only two possible outcomes in this scenario).
Would you see this as the ultimate in romantic stories and fall into his arms? Or would you be freaked out and, frankly, scared by the level of obsession shown by this man who is, to all intents and purposes, a complete stranger?
I know which one it would be for me.
[The image is an antique map of the world, made available by Rosario Fiore under a Creative Commons Licence]