Public Proposals

on Posted by Rajesh J Advani
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A story I posted as a comment on the blog linked above -
Birthday Party

It's the girl's birthday. She's opening her presents. People are gathered around. As is usual on the girlfriend's birthday, the BF's present is opened last. It's this huge box, almost as tall as the girl herself.

"Did you get me a giant teddy bear?"

BF smiles.

She rips open the box, to find a whole lot of confetti, and a smaller box inside. It's around waist-high.

"Oh, it's that cute Victorian-style dressing table stool, isn't it?"

BF smiles even wider. He seems to be sweating just a little.

She rips open the box to find even more confetti, and a smaller box inside, around two feet high.

"A small TV for my room?"

BF adjusts his collar, still smiling.

She rips open the box to find yet another pile of confetti and a much smaller box.

"Ah, I know!" she says excitedly. "It's an iPod isn't it?"

BF is still smiling, but looks quite worried now.

She rips that open too, and finds confetti. She turns the box upside-down, and watches the confetti float softly to the ground. She shakes the box hoping that a smaller box will fall out.


She turns around to look at BF angrily. "What...?"

There's a collective gasp from the guests.

He's on his knees, holding a small ring with a large diamond in his hands. "Sweetheart, will you marry me?"

She's shocked.

He looks up at her expectantly.

She looks around at all the guests.

They look back at her.

The tension in the room is palpable.

A tear appears in her eyes.

He gets to his feet, and puts his arms around her. She cries against his chest.

Then he pulls back, and slips the ring onto her unresisting finger.

There is much celebration, women shrieking, guys shouting, and lots of people hugging each other.

The guests go home.

As the girl says goodbye to the last guest and shuts the door behind them, she turns around to face the BF.

"How dare you?" she asks.

"Hunh?" (Come on, he's a guy)

"How DARE you???"


"You didn't even have the common courtesy to ask me in private first?"

"Uh... umm..."

"Just assumed I'd say yes, did you?"


"No warning even!"


"In front of all those people!"


"Do you know how embarrassing it was for me?"


She slips the ring off her finger.


"You did it on purpose didn't you? You proposed in front of all those people so that I wouldn't be able to say no."


Gives ring back to him.


"And you still owe me my birthday gift."

" "

"And to make up for it, you'll get me that giant teddy bear. One with a bow. A small TV for my room. An iPod. And you'll engrave my name on the back. Not yours. Just mine. And there'll be so many bouquets of flowers, that I won't have enough place in the house to keep them. And a big box of chocolates. Make that two."

BF looks at her blankly.

"Do you understand me?"

He nods.


She walks toward the bedroom.

"Close the door when you leave. I'm going to sleep."

The End

BF = Bloody Fool

Now for the prologue. Yes, I could simply call it the background for the story, but big authors who get paid to write, call it a prologue, and I haven't given up my Pulitzer hopes yet.

The inimitable aNTi (I haven't yet figured out what he is anti, but that's the topic for a whole new blog) wrote something that caught my eye the other day. And to make it more interesting, one of the things that gave him the the idea for what he wrote, was one of my stories.

Yes, I know it's confusing. And the fact that I'm feeling particularly literarily-challenged (is that even a word?) right now, isn't helping. But anyway.

Referring to an episode of Everybody Loves Raymond where Raymond proposes to Debra (now his wife) in public, aNTi asks the following question -
In ficticious works of art, like the [Everybody Loves Raymond] episode mentioned above, I notice that a lot of protagonists getting the message across in full view of a lot other people. Does this happen in real life too? Do you guys know of any incidents where such acts have backfired, and the gal goes - "Hmmmm...., I am not so sure"?...

The short story I've reproduced above, was my attempt at describing what might happen in that case. As mentioned earlier, it can also be found as a comment to that blog post, and since I tend to collect my stories on this blog, I decided to reproduce it here (with some editing).

Not to mention that it's a good way to slightly increase my pathetic blogging frequency.

Which brings to mind the fact that I sometimes feel I've written more interesting comments on other people's blogs in the recent past, than I've written posts on my own blog.


Nimbus said...

Awwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwww :(

*offers tissue dabba to poor old BF*

Jade said...

For some reason or the other, this reminded me of that ad for Jeevan Sathi - the one where the wife treats the husband like a dog.

Words Worth said...

ha ha ha. that was really funny. If i got proposed in public, i'd slam the door on the poor hapless soul too. :D

GratisGab said...

but COME ON! that's like ASKING for trouble! but yes, after it's all done behind closed doors and you know you have cinched the deal, she might want you to do something like this for the benefit of her friends, THEN oblige :)

anantha said...

* reads the words "The inimitable aNT" and grins!
In response to your query, I am aNTi cos a college mate in my undergrad decided that the first half of my 16 letter long first name rhymed with "antenna" and that this guy soon compressed to "antii"! But thats not the most unique nickname I have been bestowed with either! Anyways, when i came here, my professors (except one who had spent a couple of years as a visiting prof in IIM-A) were seeing stars and little twittering birds soon after they attempted to pronounce my long Tam-Bram name, so I remembered this short four letter version and told them to use it. Besides I had been using "Thus spake Anti" to sign off on my emails for at least a yr before i came here. And it stuck...

Devdutt said...

Proposing in public? What could be worse? Gee...lemme see...not formally proposing at all!?

A crime that yours faithfully was guilty of. You know how people realize they have screwed up and pray that the other person doesn't notice? Tried that...failed miserably. I've been notified by my wife that I'll be made to pay for it someday.

Hemlyn Ratnam said...

Aiaiyo. Poor chap. And it seems that the majority feels that he was asking for it. Isn't there anyone who thinks that the girl should feel a li'l flattered? I know I would. :)

Rajesh, nicely done. You really made me feel sorry for the li'l guy...

Vee Cee said...

I started to write a comment on this, but it turned out to be too long. So I decided shall I put it.....pop my blog cherry with it.....and make it my 1st blog - due to be released this weekend!

Vee Cee said...

BTW Rajesh, c'mon don't tell me you are running out of steam!
Where's the guy that gave us JALS and other assorted tales from the heart....

Rajesh J Advani said...

Megha: *sniff* *sniff* *snorrrrrrrrrt*
*Looking around for a trash dabba*

Oops! I thought that was for me! :)

Everywhere I go, all I seem to see are dabbas...

Jasmine: I haven't seen that ad. But I think I can picture it :D

Words Worth: Hell hath no fury, eh? :)

GratisGab: I agree. Completely. But sometimes, if you're really sure she'll say yes, you could... hmmm. I feel another story coming... :)

aNTi: Cool history :) Have you written a blog about this? You should, if you haven't!

To clarify, though, I was wondering what you were anti, not why. :)

DevDutt: Ah! The guy with the suitcase :) Not proposing at all? Now that sounds interesting :) Have you seen The Bachelor starring Chris O'Donnell and Renée Zellweger? That guy does the worst proposals ever!

And all the best with the wife :)

a-hem: *BF feels bad about being called a li'l guy* ;)

I guess the majority think the girl needn't feel flattered about being taken for granted. But I think the guy should know his girl before making a move like that. What say? :)

VC: Cool! Me shall wait for the new blog :)

But I have a clarification. I never ran on steam. It's been Chocolate Milkshake for years! :D

anantha said...

Rja: I have a lot of other funny stories, most of which involve me as the main protagonist! Mebbe I should just create an alter-ego and start penning my biography ;)

karma said...

nice post...if women are called weaker sex then men must be stupid sex.. :-)

Rajesh J Advani said...

aNTi: You should definitely do that! "The mostly believable biography of aNTi". Or should that be unbelievable? :)

Aravind: That's one amazing idea! We shall wear the badge of stupidity with pride! And thank you!

Swathi Sambhani aka Chimera said...

my list of things wud b longer n i'd keep the diamond ring too :))

SkyLark said...

Huhhh poor chap... When she is not intrested why should he care for her.

A typical Girl.. Are all girls same in nature.

Rajesh J Advani said...

Swathi: Ah, women :) If she keeps the ring, she's gotta wear it, no? Which means she's saying 'Yes' but making it look like she's doing him a favour. Hmmm. :)

Skylark: I'm not sure what the word 'typical' means when you apply it to women :)

I think most people missed the point I was trying to make with this post. :) aNTi's post asked the question about 'what if you propose in public, and she says No?'

My take was that she wouldn't embarrass him in public. She'd let him be the hero of the moment, and then shred him to pieces later, in private. Women are like that. I hope. :)

sumandatta said...

hi.remember u voted for the coffee shop thng story on well at last the concluding part is up. do give it a visit.


Danesh said...


ioiio said...

Believe me..
I dint read this.. But an awesome template. Will visit more often in the future..

New York huh? Me2 pinch :)

Megamind said...

You sure have a way, don't you? Hugely liked the piece.

A typical story with an untypical twist!

BTW, I am still waiting for your next CC? God's gone missing??

ə said...

hiya rja, came back after a long long time. you know what? you are making it more difficult for me - now whichever idiot decides to stick by me, i will make him read your blog 5 times over, and recite each and every post with his eyes shut. if he survives, i will say, "i want all that, and more!" :)

Rajesh J Advani said...

sumandatta: Thanks! Read it!

Danesh: I know! Makes me shudder too :)

ioiio: Nice name there :) Thanks for the words! And Ouch! (Ok, bad one)

loverBoy: I like the untypical, as much as I like the typical :) So this story allowed me to combine both worlds :)

stiletto: Thanks! Of course, on the other hand, you make me realize that some non-single men out there must really hate my guts!

Taz Snow said...

Oooooh, BAD move BF! Whiles I can totally see where the poor fella was coming from, it smacks of the GF being taken for granted!

But funny post, man...and frankly, if I was the GF, it might actually be a leetle bit flattering!

Prahalathan said...

you are welcome to use excerpts of the posts, as long you have a link to this site next to them
I have used an excerpt and also have a link to your site.....
I really dont get ur problem

Aditya Bidikar said...

Wonderful post. BF totally deserved it.

Prahalathan said...

I had two links on my blog to your site... But it was your post still it wasn't worth the hassle... so I deleted ur post