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David Squires

Do Marriage Proposals Really Require Flamenco Dancers?

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In my Editor’s Note in the June edition of INSTORE, I mentioned in passing my belief that the trend of elaborately staged proposals has already peaked and is going downhill.

A reader asked me what I meant and here is, roughly, what I answered him:

It’s impossible for me not to think that, going forward, men and women of good sense will eschew such displays.

These gestures, originally so surprising and so touching (like everybody else, I watched the early YouTube videos of such moments with a smile on my face) — today, these “events” are getting more and more expensive, showier and showier, less and less genuine.

Can you imagine the pressure it puts on both parties in what should be a private, intimate act? It must be absolutely enormous. How can a proposal of marriage, possibly the most sincere act one can ever make, handle such … such showmanship?

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&#8220 The over-the-top proposal will become as dated and gauche as big hair at a wedding or bridesmaid’s dresses in any shade of purple. &#8221

I can understand surprising the woman you love with a special proposal in a romantic place. I can even understand the desire to videotape that amazing moment when the proposal is made, so you can always remember the reaction. What I can’t understand is trying to incorporate a carriage ride, a flash mob, a rap interlude, a synchronized dance featuring three dozen family members (flown in from every corner of the country), and a guest appearance from the surviving members of the Village People, into your wedding proposal. I just can’t.

Most guys can’t compete, and in reaction, will instead end up making fun of the guys who do perform such acts. Somebody will soon create a spoof about this trend that is so acid, that makes the whole idea look so ridiculous, that no guy in his right mind will ever again consider bringing flamenco dancers and a brass band into his proposal of marriage.

(We’re already seeing it in cinema — “Zookeeper” did a funny send-up of a disastrously staged proposal, including a mariachi band and an airplane pulling a “Will you marry me?” sign.)

With a few more of these, the over-the-top proposal will become as dated and gauche as big hair at a wedding or bridesmaids’ dresses in any shade of purple.

I may be wrong. I may be very wrong. But I don’t think so.

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