Peter Gabriel once said, “The book of love is long and boring.” If the engagement pictures that show up in my Facebook feed at an ever increasing rate are any indication, that book sucks starting on page one. That increasing rate would also be alarming, but thankfully I’m a man, which means I don’t have a biological clock. I take great pride in the fact that I could get someone pregnant on my deathbed, and all you nursing home attendants who are currently unborn but will one day be surrounding said deathbed be forewarned: stand back, because I WILL be fapping. Either that or the alien hooker I pay to ride me into the grave better wear a space condom…I have a very specific vision of my future. Thankfully if the alien hooker and I give anal a go, Astroglide will have been aptly named for over a century. Alien hookers have five anuses WHY AM I STILL CONTINUING WITH THIS!?!?
Anyway, engagements are BORING. You proposed in a park? OMG! You proposed in a field? ROMANTIC! You proposed in a hot air balloon? I WISH I HAD A STINGER MISSILE AND A SHADY PAWN SHOP TO SELL YOUR RING TO AFTER I DIG THROUGH THE BURNING RAINBOW CANVAS AND PICK THAT RING FROM BETWIXT YOUR BONES!
At this point it’s all been done when it comes to engagements, and no one aside from your family, 90% of whom you are NOT friends with on Facebook, is impressed. Engagement photos sometimes, though not always, will reenact how the engagement went down, or if the future groom is a good enough planner, someone was there to sneakily photograph/film the actual engagement. Reenactments, nor candidness, make these pictures or anything about the engagement any less boring though, even if you’re happy for the couple. I get that it’s a private moment, meant to be special and specific to two people, so what I consider interesting about the moment is irrelevant. Truth be told what I consider interesting should be irrelevant, even I know that. Still, these people insist on sharing that moment with us, their friends, and whether we deserve to or even want to, we’re going to have opinions about these aforementioned special and private moments. My opinion? You didn’t film that special and private moment that was the first time you two banged and post THAT to Facebook, so what the hell? This is why someone needs to invent (or popularize? It could be invented already) the (drunk proof) cell phone tripod. Leaning an iPhone up against a half full, condensating 32oz Taco Bell cup rarely results in a sexy video.
I write this knowing that I am a long way from being engaged. Hell, unless I get a conservative girl pregnant (I do live in Texas) I’m optimistically three years from marriage, realistically six to never, and there might be a divorce or two in there even if the optimist or less pessimistic side of me is right. Regardless of the romantic reality that would be crushing if I chose to accept it *takes a long pull of whiskey…okay beer…FINE WHITE WINE* I still have my hypothetical engagement intricately planned. What is it, you ask? I call it “The Diamond Thief Marriage Proposal” and it is nothing short of brilliant. Well, it’s not boring at least. The girl will probably say no, but at least it’s original. I’m going to die alone. Whatever, this is how I’m proposing, and it’s not negotiable.
The Diamond Thief Marriage Proposal
Then, an unmarked van will screech to a halt directly next to us in the street. The side door will slide open. Several men carrying automatic weapons and wearing ski masks will pour out.
“DON’T FUCKING MOVE!” one of the men will scream violently, pointing the barrel of his machine gun at my girlfriend.
My girlfriend, no doubt, will scream in fear. I of course will attempt to defend us from these attackers. However, I am unarmed and a quick rifle butt to the jaw will put down whatever meager defense I can muster against a cadre of criminals armed with assault weapons.
“Try that shit again and we will waste this bitch you motherfucker,” another of the armed men would scream as he grabs my crying girlfriend.
“So you thought you could double cross us, nigga? Fuck no,” the third armed man says as he leans into my broken and bleeding face, even though I am white. I cannot see into his ski mask, but I presume, nay hope, that he is African-American, otherwise what he said was totally racist, even though it sounds awesome and tough. Truth be told, I can’t remember if I hired a black actor to play one of the armed men or not. Part of me thought it would be inappropriate to cast a minority as a criminal, but then I decided that it was even more inappropriate to judge an actor on anything other than their acting ability. Needless to say this casting session was weeks ago, and I have totally forgotten who I had cast. Suffice it to say the N-word would throw me off. If he turns out to be a white guy, we are going to have to have a talk. If he’s Latino, I’ll let it slide, but internally I’ll definitely not be cool with it, I just won’t know what to say, because it’s sort of a weird in-between thing that I’d rather not even deal with, really.
The armed men drag my horrified girlfriend and I into the van. Once inside her cries fill the back compartment.
“SHUT THAT BITCH UP I’M TRYING TO DRIVE!” the focused driver demands.
“Why are you doing this!?!” my girlfriend shouts desperately to our captors.
“Ask your two-timing boyfriend,” one of the men insists.
My girlfriend will ask me what they are talking about. Of course I exclaim that I have no idea. As far as she knows we’ve been kidnapped by psychopaths who intend to eat our skin. It will probably take all my strength to not let out a knowing giggle about the fact that I am soon to propose. I tell my girlfriend to start screaming as loudly and shrilly as she can, in the hopes that other drivers on the road will hear us. I do the same, and we both scream in a high pitch, hers natural, mine shamefully falsetto, like a terrified eunuch. Unfortunately, only moments pass before our kidnappers slap ether rags on our mouths to silence our desperate attempt at rescue. My girlfriend and I slip into blackness, uncertain of our future, uncertain if we will ever even wake. Except for me, obviously I know what’s up — it’s my engagement.
We awake in a dingy basement, chained to stools that we’re sitting on top of, which is WAY more uncomfortable than being tied to chairs that you’re sitting in. These guys are hardcore. I’ve actually been awake for like twenty minutes, but I wait for my girlfriend to make the first sound. She coughs herself into consciousness and whispers my name in haste and despair. I feign fogginess and “come to” at the sound of her voice. She asks where we are and why the men blamed me for our abduction. I claim complete ignorance. At the sound of our voices the armed men storm downstairs, now unmasked.
The first man asks, “Know why you’re here NOW, you motherfucker?”
I can’t hold back my secrets any longer.
“I TOLD YOU I WAS OUTTA THIS LIFE,” I shout through angry tears.
“Yeah, maybe you woulda been, if you handn’t’uh fucked us before you left,” another man, clearly the leader, states calmly.
The leader and I stare each other down as my girlfriend’s eyes dart back and forth, confused and frightened by this new development.
“Baby,” my girlfriend asks desperately, “what’s he talking about!?”
“I don’t know,” I lie, now wanting to backtrack.
“You know GODDAMN well what the fuck you’re doing here,” the leader barks before giving me a solid shot to the jaw.
I rebut the leader’s violent gesture with a defiant stare. I glance around the room, shooting each member of the gang a knowing look.
“You gonna tell her?” the leader asks as he leans close into my face, “or do I gotta let this bitch know what the fuck’s up?”
We lock eyes as my girlfriend watches, her eyes filled with confusion and horror. My teeth clench. His eyes close slowly with disappointment.
“Fine,” he shrugs, “you won’t admit what you already owe, then you pay more.”
The leader pulls out a gun and puts it to my fiancée’s head.
“NO!” I scream.
My girlfriend begins to cry hysterically, legitimately believing she is about to die. I watch her make her peace with God as I hold out a moment longer.
“ADMIT IT! ADMIT IT YOU FUCK!” the leader shouts back before cocking the hammer.
“FINE!” I cry, “FINE!”
The leader lowers his weapon and smirks. My girlfriend sighs, though she is far from relieved. Her tears are a heartbreaking mixture of happiness and fear.
“Why don’t you tell your pretty little girl why you’re here,” the leader demands.
“What is he talking about, sweetie?” my girlfriend chokes out.
“You bastard,” I curse at the leader before looking over to my girl. “Baby, I gotta tell you something. Something I never wanted to tell you. I guess I got no choice now. You see, I’m an international jewel thief. The best there ever was. This is my crew. I’ve been with ‘em for a long time. Way before I met you. Once me and you got together though, you showed me what it was like to be a GOOD MAN. After I met you, I wanted to get out of the life. But we had one more score.”
“The biggest score there ever was!” one of the armed men shouts.
“Shut your GODDAMN mouth Raul,” I bark back. I turn back to my girlfriend, “We had one more score, baby. I couldn’t back out. It was the most valuable diamond in South America. Appraisers nicknamed it the ‘Caracas Crown Jewel,’ what the natives said it translated roughly to ‘The Christ Eyeball of Heaven Stars.’ Needless to say, the name alone clued us into the fact that the diamond was worth a lot. It was, and it was glorious. I won’t bore you with the details of how we stole it, but suffice it to say thirty dead Venezuelan police officers, two hijacked planes, and a sprained ankle later, and we had stolen the most valuable diamond in the world.”
My girlfriend looks beyond confused. The leader then starts to laugh.
“Yeah, ‘we,’ until we became you,” he snarls.
I tell him I didn’t want any trouble. I just wanted to get out of the jewel thief life. He isn’t buying it. His short temper has reached its limit. He shoves his gun in my mouth and demands to know where the diamond is hidden. My girlfriend once again starts weeping uncontrollably.
“I WILL PAINT THE WALL WITH YOUR FUCKIN’ SPINE!” he roars.
I try to explain around the cold gun barrel violating my face. Finally he pulls the gun out of my mouth and asks once more where I put the diamond. To his surprise, I, finally fearing for my life (at least that’s how I’m acting), tell him the diamond is in my pocket. He reaches in and pulls out a ring adorned with the most beautiful diamond
that any given three months of my salary between now and my death could purchase in the history of Earth. Even my girlfriend is stunned, despite the fact that she is literally convinced she will be murdered within the next few hours. The ring’s beauty is stunning.
“The fuck is this!?!” the leader asks.
“I’m sorry,” I plead. “I wasn’t trying to steal the diamond to fuck anyone. I just…I was in love. I took the diamond, the most valuable diamond in the history of Earth, and put it on a ring, because that’s how much I loved my girl. I wanna marry her, and I knew a lowlife jewel thief like me could only land a girl as unbelievable as her with a diamond like that. I guess it doesn’t matter now,” I say, resigning myself to death, and then leaning over to my girlfriend and instructing her to resign herself to death as well.
“You were going to propose?” my girlfriend asks, suddenly forgetting that she is about to get capped in the dome as soon as the interrogation is over.
“Yes, baby. I love you. I’ve always loved you. Like I said before, every moment with you is the best moment of my life. I can’t imagine not sharing my life with you — the good, the bad, I just want you to be there, for me and with me. I will be there for and with you, no matter what. I love you. You’re perfect. You really are. I know you, and you know me, and I want you to be with me, forever, even if forever is just until this asshole blows our brains out and tosses us in the Mississippi in like twenty minutes.”
Then, overcome by the emotion of the moment, the leader will lower his weapon, turn to my girlfriend and ask, softly and curious, “So?”
My girlfriend will be confused at first, and the leader will ask again.
“So?” he repeats. “He proposed, with the most beautiful diamond that ever existed. Are you going to marry him? What’s your answer?”
My girlfriend will look from the leader, with his gun and the crazy intimidating scar on his face that was probably from a knife slashing during a bar fight, to me. Her eyes will well up, and without knowing whether she will live to see the next day, let alone grow old with me and watch our grandchildren post pictures of themselves with alien hookers on Moon Vegas to Spacebook, she will say, with total certainty, and full of happiness, “Yes, Rob, I will marry you. I love you, too.”
With that, the ruse will end. We’ll be unchained from our stools, her parents will run down into the torture dungeon and hug us, and we’ll all go to the engagement party at Ramono’s Macaroni Grill.
That, my friends, is the greatest engagement of all time. Plus, all the other jewel thieves will be wearing GoPro cameras so there will be a sick video to watch at the rehearsal dinner, which will also be at Ramono’s Macaroni Grill. If you can’t top that engagement, don’t even bother.
Is Ramono’s Macaroni Grill a deal breaker? Honestly I just like crayons, we can go somewhere else…but we’re bringing crayons.
Also, it turns out that actor playing the criminal who said the N-word is black after all, but I still feel awkward about the whole thing so I try to discreetly pay him extra, but he asks why in front of the other actors, and I act like it was a mistake, but then I feel awkward and don’t want to take money away from anyone, so I pay the other actors more, too. I end up losing an extra $600.
Then, in a final bit of victory, my fiancée and I get nearly twice as many Facebook likes on our engagement photos and video as another couple who got engaged the same weekend.