Only joking, everything actually went perfectly to plan!
With the possible exception of not doing it on the Staten Island Ferry. (Though not for want of trying…)
I feel I’ve cheated a little here. We’ve been going out long enough I was ninety-nine percent sure she’d say yes. As long as I didn’t do something awful like trick her into thinking I was dead before proposing. Unlike in Friends™, this is the one where everyone was ready.
I think the only person who was surprised was her. Thankfully! Me proposing in New York seemed so obvious, what with the Friends™ connection, and going there being a long held dream for both of us, that she managed to convince herself I would baulk at the thought of being so cliche.
Sometimes it’s good to embrace a little cliché.
It is a bit of a shame so many of my friends knew in advance. Thanks to Rachel Number One, David the Science Guy, and my own loose lips, in the end every man and his dog seemed to know. And her mother.
As a modern 21st Century man I didn’t “ask permission” per se, but my partner always said her mother would want to know. Fortunately she was a good enough liar to cement the surprise by not giving the game away when my partner, sneakily, asked if I’d said anything before we left!
But yes, a shame so many knew, Cannibal Boss helped with the ring shopping in the end so half of work knew too. I got a great deal of pleasure from saying, in every shop we went into, “I want to buy an engagement ring” before adding “not for her”.
Judging from my partner’s reaction, I reckon I’d quite like being proposed to. Hopefully the next time I’m proposed to it’ll be a surprise! Hah, “next time…”
“The One With the Declaration of Co dependence”
It seems fitting that such a momentous moment is matched by one of the all time great episodes.
This, simple story, of the Friends™ getting ready for Ross’s big academic speech, is the 24™ of the show. Occurring in real time, and playing to all the character strengths, but with less terrorists and torture. There’s a highly strung Ross, Monica being neurotic, Rachel being flakey, and Chandler and Joey’s Bromance descending into childish one up-man-ship.
I haven’t been able to find out if T.O.W.N.O.R was shot in one go (answers on a postcard?) but there would have been a lot of quick changes if it was! Particularly for Matt Le Blanc, as he dons the legendary suit of ALL of Chandlers clothes. I wonder if he was as hot as I was? Honestly, sometimes I think the writers are just getting all their ideas from me…
Speaking of style, I love phoebes style of being the only one ready so she can just chill and be sarcastic. That’s normally my strategy when paying in restaurants. Work out how much I need to pay, chuck in the cash, and watch the other’s fight over the rest of the bill. Like Joey and Chandler and their chair. The great idiots.
Weirdly I almost had my own fight over a chair this week. (Two years in these coincidences almost feel like friends in themselves.) We were enjoying the last bit of sun over lunch at work, when a homeless person came over, sat down, and asked to have some of our food. We, of course, gave them some and continued. Until I noticed they’d sat in my chair!
Unlike Chandler and Joey I managed to remain calm in the face of their cheek and let it go. Not to be a snob but I didn’t much fancy wearing all their clothes.
What with our near miss with homelessness, I have a great deal of sympathy for the homeless. Though I don’t give them money, obviously! There’s always that lingering suspicion they’ll only go out and spend it on… arts and crafts.
Perhaps for that joke, I myself should drink some fat in penance…
To be fair I did once do something similar! Many years back, whilst living in a house share with Ross Number One, one of my fellow students got their nose pierced. Unfortunately, this required regular cleaning with salt water. One morning I came into the kitchen, immensely hung-over, gagging for some water and, well, you can probably guess the rest.
Real Live Sitcom Moment:
So, just as Ross is nervous about his speech, I had to face my nerves and pop the question. I felt eerily calm in the days coming up to it, and enjoyed the first few days of our holiday hugely. Despite the huge pressure coming upon me. Turning ME to diamond!
The plan had always been, go on a backstage tour of a Broadway theatre and propose at the part we’re on the stage. Simple, unique, and encapsulating our lives and interests in one go! But as the moment approached it started to hit me. How was I going to get a second to say what I wanted to say, just us?
And then my heart sank as we waited outside and I double checked, whilst desperately trying not to give the game away, that everything was going to plan.
“We get to go on the stage right?”
“Oh, I’m afraid not, Sir. They have to do some work on the stage today.”
My dreams slipping away, like Monica as she realises she’s accidentally replaced Richards answer phone message. Think quick, what would the Friends™ do? How was I to know!? None of them have proposed yet… They’re too busy fighting over chairs to contemplate eternal happiness.
And then the day was saved, as another usher came in:
“Actually, they’ve just finished in there so you can go on!”
Well, as they say, the show must go on! And I’m delighted to say it ended with her saying yes. Well, first she said “are you serious?!” which I was relieved sounded excited and not incredulous.
I was less delighted and relieved to find, just as we were finishing the tour, that the theatre was home to a resident ghost. COME ON! As if I managed to propose in a place that was cursed!
If I’d known that I would have picked somewhere much more appropriate, like in Philadelphia when we saw the room where they signed the Declaration of Independence!