To hear the gals tell it, how a guy pops the question says a lot about his character.
Not sure I’m feelin’ that metric, however. As Neanderthal-like as men can be, very few of us are stupid enough to half-ass this event. Save for the occasional idiot who proposes at half-court of a televised Houston Rockets game (and is refused), I think nightmare proposal stories are pretty rare. And even if you do hear of the occasional “boring proposal”, it’s a good bet that one of these two extremes were in play…
- Scenario One :: The guy is the local version of George Clooney. He cooly slides the ring across the breakfast table, glistening within its Tiffany presentation box. With a wink and a smile he demands, “Marry me. …You know you wanna.”
- Scenario Two :: During a non-contact visitation at the State Women’s Correctional Facility, the guy slowly slides the engagement ring across the table towards his gal. If he actually tried to place the ring on her finger, thus touching an inmate, he’d get his fool head caved in by a nightstick.
The Clooney Proposal is bland. “Bland” in the same way the Black American Express card lacks color. If your game is as tight as Clooney’s then you can propose over messy dishes. And if your prison-tat slathered girlfriend is currently serving time in the State Pen, you also get a pass. Congrats. I’m sure she’s quite a gal.
For the rest of you bums, turn-off the TNT Law & Order marathon and put on ya thinkin’ hats. Mine looks like this.
Even the best laid plans can be thrown into chaos, and although I think most guys are too smart to show their true colors within their proposal plans, I do believe you can tell a lot about a couple when their proposal goes a tad FUBAR, which brings us to my proposal to Stefania.
Submitted for your approval, below please find a picture taken mere minutes after my proposal.
Notice how tired we look. Note our crazed yet ecstatic smiles. Note my limp sweat drenched polo shirt. Note how I clutch my fiancé as if I’m holding the woman for the police.
If you ever see a picture of couple who survived a tornado, my guess is that they would look something like this. Yet I had planned this proposal for months.
I had created a faux application for my iPhone, a guided audio tour of Milan’s, Pinacoteca Di Brera museum. We’d visit there under the guise of sketching Caravaggio’s Supper At Emmaus. After the sketching, we’d visit this incredibly romantic painting called, The Kiss, by Francesco Hayez.
It was under this painting that I would hand Stefi my iPhone, her expecting to hear a short lecture about the painting. Instead she would see and hear a Proposal Video, one that I created especially for her.
I’d pop the question. Hopefully she’d say yes. I slide the ring on her hand. Done. Easy Peasy Lemon Squeezy.
The best laid plans of mice and men…
I had been in Milan for a single day, the engagement ring burning a hole in my pocket the entire time. However relief was at hand, today was the day I would pop the question! Then I could finally relax. The next day we’d head to Venice for a romantic get away and I could chill.
Stef was driving us to the museum, completely oblivious to fact that the knuckle head to her right was going to pop the question by noon. With my plan all good to go, all was right with the world.
Thus Spoke Stefania…
“Senti! I know you want to go to the museum to sketch your Caravaggio painting, but you can do that at the end of the week on Saturday. I booked a tour of Milan today. Surprise!”
And with that sweet utterance, I was fucked.
Saturday! I was leaving Sunday morning! There was no way I was going to spend my vacation with this diamond bolder hanging over my head! I cautiously tried to get my plan back on track, but the more I pushed the issue, the more I looked like an ungrateful dick. Teetering at the brink of a full-blown argument, I had to give in. I slapped on a smile as my brain smoked.
Before I knew it, Stef and I were on a hop-off/hop-on bus tour, seeing the points of interest and history of Milan. It was an amazing tour and Milan is an amazing city. However, about mid-way, as I sat on the bus and gazed across the aisle, I came face-to-face with this old German tourist as he slept, snored and drooled on his seat. How the fuck did I get here? Damn it! I should be engaged by now!
When in Rome…
I took solace within the walls of the Santa Maria delle Grazie Church as we gazed upon Da Vinci’s The Last Supper. After seeing only copies of this work for most of my life, it was incredible to stand in the shadow of the original. It was at this moment that the image of Christ came alive and spoke to me.
“Dude, this is Italy. Lie, cheat or steal, just do what ya gotta do. Nobody follows the rules in this place. She’ll love ya for it!”
(Okay, this didn’t literally happen, but I did have the epiphany in front of the mural. How I interpret this is my business. Don’t piss on my belief system, man.)
Jesus Christ was right. Time to lie my ass off!
Lies & Consequences…
“Hey, I wanted this to be a surprise, but I called in a huge favor with an exec at News Corp. He arranged for a private tour of the Pinacoteca for us. The guide had been waiting for us all day. I spoke to him and he was incredibly cool, but I think we should at least stop by and say hello.”
Yep. I had just lied, guilted and blamed my girlfriend for ruining some good Samaritans’ day and she bought it. Funny thing about karma… It can come back to bite you in the ass immediately.
Submitted for your approval, a girlfriend with a runners build and the sun.
It was about 100 degrees in Milan that day and I now had to chase a sprinting Stefania, running through the city to make up for the horrible wrong she had done.
By the time I caught up to her, me dripping in sweat, she was already buckled in the car and revving! I barely had time to close the door before she punched the gas and sped through the streets of Milan as if we had just mugged a nun. She dodged through traffic with little concern for neither life nor limb. I was in fear for our lives. I had created a monster.
We arrived at the museum and Stefi runs up the stairs towards the ticket window as I slogged behind, certain my heart was about to explode. I purchased our tickets and asked out of breath, “Dov’è Il Bacio?” (Where’s “The Kiss?)
Please Jesus let this damn painting be in the next room. End this!
“The kiss? Oh. That’s aaaaaalllll the way at the end of the museum. It’s literally the last gallery.” The bastard actually took out a MAP and sketched a path towards out goal as if this was an Indiana effin’ Jones movie.
Stefi snatched the map and ran. I felt like I’m on Amazing Race.
I scream after her… “We’re not in a rush!” But my lie continued to bite me in the ass.
“No. Your friend is waiting! Come on! Hurry!”
I picture Jesus back at the mural, sitting around the table with his boys, all of them laughing their asses off at me.
We finally arrived at the very last gallery and there is “The Kiss.”
I bust out my iPhone and pretend to text our contact. I inform Stefi that he should be here in a few minutes, but we should start the audio tour without him.
I placed the earbuds in her ear and I hit play. She watches. I catch my breath.
Stefania didn’t get 10 seconds into the video before she began BAWLING. She snatched the buds out of her ear and tossed them away!
“WHAT ARE YOU DOING?” I asked
“I love you so much! I can do this here!” She replied.
“WHAT! Put the earbuds back in your head!”
I placed the buds back into her ears and she finished the video. She looked up to find me down on one knee with the ring in my hand. I asked her to marry me.
She bawls, louder. I couldn’t understand a word she was saying, but I’m pretty sure I detected a nod, so I went for it and put the ring on her finger before the room exploded.
Stefi and I kissed, I stood and stretched my back as if I had just finished the 400 meter, and here we are.
So… What does are Proposal Story say about us? Hell if I know. You tell me. I’m still trying to catch my damn breath.
Thanks for reading. Goodnight and good luck.
[another out of breath black man]
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