They both sometimes wear black. (Getty Images) She's 23. He's 37. She's 5 foot 1. He's 6 foot 6. The first time they met at a party she said "You're huge." And he said "You're tiny." And so began the greatest love story of our time. No joke. Hayden Panettiere, "Nashville" star and Lifetime movie regular is very possibly engaged to Wladimir Klitschko, the Ukrainian professional heavyweight champion whose bloody head was once silk-screened onto an opponent's t-shirt. I probably wouldn't have set the two up on a blind date, but what do I know.
"We've been friends for five years - we've never not been close," Hayden says in latest issue of Glamour. These two crazy kids have been off-and-on for a couple of years, and now they're maybe going to marry and have kids and take more beach vacations like the one they've been tweeting about this week. So it works. Maybe it's because opposites attract (according a famous cat) or maybe it's because they really have more in common than we realize. For example: They both were human kids once. Hayden was born in a New York suburb. Her mom worked long hours as a soap actress. Wladimir, was born in Ukraine. His dad worked really long hours as part of Chernobyl's toxic clean-up crew. Here's her memory of childhood: "I was raised very well. I had great parents who instilled great morals in me and taught me how to treat people well." Here's his: "'I was shooting AK-47s. I was learning how to throw hand-grenades. We were running into underground shelters with gas marks, there were explosions.'" They both have siblings who work in their fields.
They both have nicknames. Hayden's fans call her 'Mushroom' because she is short. Wlad's fans call him 'Dr. Steelhammer', because he has a Phd in Sports Science and because his body is much like the materials used to build skyscrapers. This is something they do together. (Kate York/Instagram) They both travel. She goes to Nashville to film "Nashville." He goes to a remote, secret training camp in Austria for six weeks to become a human fist. They both have strong beliefs that sometimes get lost in translation. Hayden has a tattoo that's supposed to say "Live with no regrets" in Italian, but it's spelled incorrectly. Wladimir, who speaks four languages, once explained fighting this way: "The man without a chin, no stamina, dead man, broken man, whatever." They're both famous. I mean really famous. Both of them. Not so much in the States, but elsewhere. He's a legend in Germany where he used to live with his brother. And she's pretty much Japan's Debbie Gibson. They both eat food. Before a fight Wlad does "major carb-loading for the final week by eating a lot of oatmeal, pasta, and red meat for iron." Hayden, a vegetarian who dabbles in chicken and fish when her energy is low, pretty much subsists on the food people the size of her boyfriend leave behind. In this way they appear to be on different spectrums of the food chain.
But really, who cares about food when you're in love? And they are clearly in love. Now someone give them a bed and breakfast to open on reality TV so we can really put their differences to the test. Oxygen, I'm looking at you.