New to Singapore, lonely and homesick, Jimenez was ready to move to a new job in Madrid when he met his wife-to-be at a friend’s party in December 2008.
“We were talking about comics. She was wearing glasses. I was a nerd. I wanted to be with a nerd,” he says.
“I decided almost immediately upon meeting her that I would be staying in Singapore for quite some time and abandoned plans to leave. My life changed dramatically that day and it’s all thanks to her.”
An American citizen, he moved around for much of his life before settling in Singapore and becoming a permanent resident in 2013.
His parents were originally from Mexico and moved around orchards in the California area, picking fruit.
Later, the family settled in Porterville – he has a younger brother – where his mother worked as a secretary in the school system and his father with a landscaping company.
Jimenez did a degree in British and American literature at New York University.
Wanting to expand his horizons, he tried living in Hong Kong for a while but found Cantonese a challenge. In 2008, he relocated to Singapore, which he had visited after making friends with Singaporeans in university.
First, he worked for Popular Holdings’ Harris bookstore chain, which no longer has stores here. He had a job in Madrid next, but me this future wife.
“I was quickly taken with her and asked her out the following week. Later, I realised that on the first couple of dates, she didn’t realise we were going out,” he says.
“I thought he was kind of lonely and sad in Singapore,” she says, explaining why she planned their outings around comics-related exhibitions and even a church mass. Both are Catholic.
Books, comics, science-fiction TV shows and movies have always been his passion and he enjoys having someone who can share these interests. They have twice been to geekdom’s biggest event, the San Diego Comics Convention, during which they rummaged through bargain bins for back issues of their favourite comics.
At the convention this year, they posed in a Tardis, the travelling time machine featured in the British TV show Doctor Who.
“Whenever there’s a new show, she geeks out over it,” he says, smiling. “She’ll tell me, ‘Don’t watch the trailer at work, wait until we both get home.’ We have to watch the trailers together. We don’t TV-cheat.”