Just over a year ago I planned to propose to my girlfriend, Jenny.
I wanted to do it in a modern, progressive way. Like on a spaceship or something. But it’s tricky to do in such a way – marriage is heavily rooted in tradition. And I’m not qualified to fly any form of aircraft.
Traditionally there are four things you need to do: buy the ring; ask for the permission; plan how you’ll do it; get down on one knee.
These ideals are all quite archaic and sexist. And not in a fun way like Game of Thrones.
So how do you propose in a modern way? I suggest doing the exact opposite.
Don’t Buy A Ring
One day, out of the blue, just say the words ‘will you marry me?’ Your partner will say ‘What?’ and you’ll say ‘Nothing’ and carry on watching Narcos.
Congratulations! You’re engaged!
Don’t Ask For Permission
Why do you need her family’s blessing? You hate those guys. They’re the worst. Remember that time your partner’s Mum said “you were like the son she never had”? Eugh. What a weapon.
Don’t Plan How You’ll Do It
Just wing it! You don’t have a ring, so no need to carry it around. This frees you up.
Cheese aisle in the supermarket? “Will you marry me?” Yes please!
On Snapchat with a dog-filter selfie: “Will you marry me?” For suresies!
Fast asleep at 3am. Just scream “will you marry me?” I guarantee she’ll be surprised.
These are all great, progressive suggestions that I in no way endorse.
Don’t Go Down On One Knee
Going down on to one knee is supposed to indicate that you are presenting yourself to your But you don’t need to go down on one knee to do that! Just fire up Powerpoint, and create a nice little slideshow.
Add some whirring WordArt, a few GIFs are you’re pretty much there.
They. Will. Love. It.
But if you do fancy dropping down – don’t do one knee. Do both! Have a big old plead. A pathetic look of fear is an incredibly attractive quality, I’m told.
In the interest of full disclosure: I only followed one piece of my own advice.
I bought the ring, planned to propose on holiday when we were in New York. I asked her Mum for permission. On our first night there, we were looking up at Manhattan, all lit up, I had the ring in my pocket, my speech prepared, and I turned to Jen. All I hoped was that she’d say yes.
That didn’t happen.
Come and see the show to find out what did.
Aug 4-28: Robin Morgan: Free Man Just the Tonic Caves (Just the Wee One), 8pm / more info