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18 August 2008

Will you...? Stealing the wedding/engagement momentum, [More:] I went to the wedding of one of my gf's best friends this weekend. She was a (smokin' hot) bridesmaid. Questions abounded. Pressure undercurrents, too.

We've known each other for over 10 years, been dating steadily for the past 7½ (and on and off for parts of the remainder), been in the same state (non-LDR) for the past 2 years, and been cohabitating for 6 months now. I'm thinking it's time to do this thing.

Please share with me your favorite proposal stories. Embarrassing, imaginative, inspiring, humbling, etc. Also your fantasy proposals; the ones that never came to be or may even be impossible with the prevailing laws of physics. Looking for ideas, heartwarming tales, funny anecdotes, and shameless self-promotion.
Aw, eid. That is so sweet. Congrats.

I don't have anything too romantic to tell. I was driving with my husband and he pulled over to buy me a dozen roses at a roadside florist. Then he drove us to the beach and proposed on one knee. He was nervous. It was sweet. I remember it fondly. I loved my ring, which surprised me because I usually don't go gaga for such things.

To me, the most romantic proposals are the ones that are most sincere and natural. NOver the top proposals aren't my thing unless the one that is proposing is over the top in real life.
posted by LoriFLA 18 August | 18:15
MuddDude and I were fairly practical, but our friends T. and H. were more romantic. On vacation in Puerto Rico, in a rented convertible, they got very, very lost on the way to their hotel. Ended up on top of some big hill with a stunning view. T. stops freaking out for a brief moment to marvel at the scenery, then H. realizes, "Duh, this is possibly the best chance I'll ever get," so he pulled out the ring. I think this story is so great because it's so them.

We joke, by the way, that when our kids ask, "How did you propose, dad?" we'll appropriate a proposal that we witnessed - a man convinced his girlfriend to sign up for a mid-inning contest at a Minor League baseball game. She had to throw a baseball through a target to win a gift certificate or something. She missed her first three throws - the fourth ball had the proposal written on it. I thought it was sweet because it was obvious they were both big baseball fans, and really in love.
posted by muddgirl 18 August | 18:45
Just want to say that having met both of you, I endorse the idea. Loverly!
posted by Miko 18 August | 20:01
!!!!#*(@#! Yay!
posted by wimpdork 18 August | 20:10
Disclaimer: this is very much my humble opinion and I hope it does not squelch your excitement and enthusiasm. I think it's very sweet.

I'm not a fan of the entire surprise proposal concept, at least how it is portrayed in movies and whatnot. To me, it removes the woman's agency in the matter - she says yes, and they get married, or she says no, and what? I kind of like the idea of starting to talk about it and seeing how both people view marriage and what it means to them and to society and what they want their marriage to be.

Or perhaps I'm biased, because that's how it happened for us. Those conversations remain some of the most precious to me. And we ring-shopped together and bought the ring out of our joint account, and the day we came home from the jeweler we sat on the couch and he told me he loved me as he put the ring on my finger.

We are getting married in 25 days. Whee! Holy shit! Whee!
posted by misskaz 18 August | 20:33
My father asked my mother to marry him multiple times (they were long distance, because he was stationed with the Marines overseas). Multiple times because she said no multiple times. "And did you mean no, not now, Mom, or no, not ever?" "I meant no, not ever". And yet here she is, still married to him 26 years later.

I'm with misskaz on not being a fan of the surprise proposal. But that could be partially because I'm a control freak who needs to plan everything myself.
posted by ThePinkSuperhero 18 August | 20:39
In terms of fantasy proposals, my friend Rob started telling me about an idea he had (he didn't have a girlfriend at the time, but was very set on the idea of having a huge dramatic proposal should he ever get married) that involved messages in multiple buildings on a city skyline and binoculars.
posted by ThePinkSuperhero 18 August | 20:40
Over the top proposals aren't my thing unless the one that is proposing is over the top in real life.

Ha ha ha. Lori, hi. I'm N@. Pleased to meet you.

It's funny, because my girl is the more down-to-earth type. You'd think she wants a more prosaic proposal. But I think she's expecting something a bit more... unexpected because hey, that's me. Maybe she likes about me that I can make ordinary life so much more magical (read: needlessly complexicated).
posted by Eideteker 18 August | 20:58
I take no position on the surprise proposal debate, but I think the public proposals are a bad idea.

A cautionary SLYT.
posted by grouse 18 August | 21:04
Aw. Yay, Eide!

I have posted our proposal story before, but I'll copy and paste it here.

We decided to get married one day while eating brunch in Federal Hill, Baltimore. Then we went to an Orioles game.

But we decided not to tell anybody until we went away for a weekend we'd been planning. So a few weeks later, we went up to Harper's Ferry, WV. I thought that we would just go up for the weekend, come back, and tell everyone that we got engaged. (I'm not so romantic.) Mr. gaspode is a little more romantic, though. So we get up there, around dinnertime-ish, get into our B&B and the room is filled with my favorite flowers (irises). So I'll all like "awwwww". Then he drags me out muttering "sunset is at [whatever time it was]" So we're driving around Harper's Ferry, which is beautiful, but he's getting all (quietly) mad because he can't find a nice hillside or whatever that's facing the sunset. I have to sit there and pretend that I don't know what's going on, and I'm cracking up because I didn't think we were going to do the whole proposal thing.

So he doesn't find a good place, so we head out for some dinner. Nothing more is said that night. Then the next day we are wandering around some old battlefields and come across one that had a lovely view out over the Shenandoah and Potomac Rivers. I'm admiring the view, taking a photo, and when I turn around, he's saying how much he loves me and wants to spend the rest of his life with me and will I marry him? Then he says "shit" and bobs down on one knee like he's genuflecting at church. I'm like "yeah" and he's all "thank god" and I'm all "what? you thought I would say no? we'd already decided?" But no, for him it didnt' count because there was no actual proposal (he didn't know that I'd already emailed my best friends in NZ telling them we were getting married, after we had that brunch).

Then we went to Antietam battlefield, because, um, love is a battlefield. Duh.
posted by gaspode 18 August | 21:16
I'm guessing that after 10 years you have a pretty good idea of what the answer will be. I see nothing wrong with the surprise approach. I second the necessity of sincerity; the fact that my guy choked up when he asked me made all the difference.

I don't think you need to make it ultra-elaborate, but do keep in mind that ALL of her friends and family (and anyone else she meets) will be asking her "So how he did he propose?" between now and the wedding (and presumably after; I haven't gotten there yet).
posted by desjardins 18 August | 21:19
Posted earlier, no doubt.
posted by plinth 18 August | 21:29
Though I'll try not to natter on about our goofy, blissed-out engagement haze, I will share one moment.

The Fella and I had previously discussed marriage and had come to a happy understanding about The Future. But still he managed to surprise me.

After he proposed, a moment passed while I silently gawped and got teary-eyed...

.. and then I noticed that he was anxiously awaiting the answer.

Full of cake and gelato and wine, and goofy from the late hour and the surprise, I started laughing. This did not calm his nerves.

In the recesses of my brain, I suppose I thought that talking about the eventual marriage would strip the moment of its magic. I was thoroughly wrong. Though we'd discussed it, and I knew he wanted to marry me, and he knew I wanted to marry him, I was still surprised by the event, and he was still nervous. Odd, sweet, and memorable.
posted by Elsa 18 August | 21:54
Or perhaps I'm biased, because that's how it happened for us.

Yeah, us too. Of course, we were in a much different place than Nat is here.
posted by muddgirl 18 August | 22:27
I got engaged over the phone.

It was cute.

I got the actual ring at a romantic setting near some old forts in Pensacola. And we had our first kiss there.
posted by bunnyfire 18 August | 22:29
I posted our engagement story on our website. I have linked it previously, but I recently changes CMS, so here is the new link.

Congrats and good luck.
posted by terrapin 19 August | 06:56
I posted my story before, too.
posted by mrmoonpie 19 August | 09:30
Yay, Eid! Go for it!

My husband took me to Chi-Chi's, because he is classy like that. Then he made me walk a million miles to watch the sunset in the park, even though I was tired and didn't want to. I was so cranky that I totally tuned him out and didn't notice that he had proposed. He had to repeat it all over again.

What was extra sweet, though, was that before this he had asked not just my father, but my mother and sisters for their blessing. Apparently, my father's reaction was to warn him that I was "a handful" and to state that there was no give-backs.
posted by jrossi4r 19 August | 10:35
Woo hoo Eideteker! Yay!

I have no constructive suggestions. :D
posted by halonine 19 August | 11:57
Mr. init's proposal included elements of the following: Christmas Eve, my favorite promontory, Irish poets, and a beautiful ring that he designed.

He had placed the ring box inside four other boxes, and every time I unwrapped a box, he produced a handmade card with an Irish symbol (St. Brigid's Cross, the Tara Brooch, etc.) and an Irish poem, and read the poem to me. Yeah, I had a pretty good idea of what was happening by the time I opened the last box.
posted by initapplette 19 August | 13:30
And I'll echo Miko: having met you both, I can sign off on this idea.
posted by initapplette 19 August | 13:31
Yay! Do it do it!

Tie the ring to a kite, go fly it, and then hand the string to her and let her reel it in. Have a bottle of champagne and a picnic in the car/on the motorcycle for after she says yes!
posted by Fuzzbean 19 August | 14:06
I'm happy you are having fun thoughts in the direction! Anything you do will be perfect.

I'll add that yes, a total surprise is very difficult to pull off. Me? I knew it was coming, but the how of it made it special. I'm sure I've told it before, but the not-yet-husband-but-eight-month-cohabitator got two cats for our animal-less home from the SPCA on Christmas Eve Eve. Christmas Morning, the friendlier cat came in with a the ring on his collar and he (the man, not the cat) said "Honey, what do you say we make these boys leagal."

(jrossi you crack me up again!)
posted by rainbaby 19 August | 15:03
You know you're a nerd when the first people to know about your proposal are:

1. MetaChat
2. Your webhost (I got 4 websites reserved for proposal/wedding info, including a

To be fair, my webhost is a friend of mine in Canadia, but still.

I'm going to build the website myself, which means I get to learn a bit of design/HTML/javascript/etc. It's not quite "buy a guitar and teach myself to play Polyester Bride or Chosen Family" (2 of our songs); but it is improving myself, which High Fidelity taught me is all it takes to get chicks to re-fall head-over-heels for you. I'm totally including the 'testimonials' in this thread (thank you who gave us your blessing) in my "reasons to marry this jerk" section on the eventual website.

We talked this weekend, and I think we've hammered out the wedding party. Only one person in the wedding party knows, and they don't know they're in the wedding party (yet), so we'll have to get around to that, too. First thing's first, though.

Now, on to the rings...
posted by Eideteker 19 August | 15:25
I told my husband we were going to get married and have children on our first date (I don't count the previous blind date no one told me about as a date). He wasn't really expecting that. I'm a pretty take-charge kind of woman so I flat out told him we would get married but I would wait for him to propose before it was "official". Less than a year later, at a friends cottage, he tried getting the letters "marry me" in scrabble without luck so he instead got down on bended knee and proposed to me while I was lying in bed, slightly stoned. Apparently, I had a really confused look on my face but I think I have that face a lot. It was awesome. No ring, because I told him no (and he was dirt poor); he promised me the new edition of the OED when it comes out (but it keeps getting delayed). We've been together over a decade.
posted by saucysault 20 August | 02:40
My county is the most idiotic. || I cannot