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Blake Lively’s wedding ring! Now THAT’S a ring I’m happy to discuss.

A couple of days ago, one of my best friends approached me with a dilemma. She’s pretty serious with her boyfriend, who is from Canada, and they finally had the talk about what to do after graduation. It’s a chat no college sweethearts ever want to have — whether they’re undergrads or pursuing a higher degree of some sort — but a necessary one at that. If they’re still serious in a couple years, she may move to his hometown with him, although neither of us really know what that means. At any rate, it’s kind of a scary thought for me — not just the notion of my best friend living in another country, but the fact that I’m so far behind her in comparison.

Several weeks ago, I was fascinated by a seemingly exotic guy I met at a bar. The desire has since fizzled (gorgeous, intellectual, well-groomed European stops calling, shocker of the century), but I thought I was hooked at the beginning of the month. The first time I mentioned him to the aforementioned BFF, she said, “Was he wearing a wedding band?”

I laughed and responded, “Why in God’s name would I look for that?”

Then it dawned on me: maybe I’m the weird one for not even thinking to search for rings when interacting with people. I mean, I’m 24 and this is NYC. No one ties the knot that young here, and call me naive, but it’s not my first instinct to assume guys are cheating on their wives. That said, I’ve known enough vulnerable young women who have made out with attached men and hated themselves afterward to understand that it’s more common than one would hope, especially here in New York.

Really, though, when does the ring-searching habit kick in? Am I a late bloomer or merely someone who doesn’t hang around people who are ready to think seriously about marriage?

Sorry to get all Carrie Bradshaw on you, but I’m genuinely curious as to when all of this begins. Clearly, I haven’t reached that point yet, so enlighten me, sages.