Late last night, the graphic above found its way into my life, showing the average cost of proposing to your fiance at every MLB ballpark across America. Putting aside the travesty that is both the Marlins and Rays charging half a grand to pop the question in front of literally 73 strangers in shirsees, the real problem with the graphic is this:
It remains clear that despite my constant pleas and the countless rejections preserved in all their sad glory on YouTube, some of you still think it’s okay to propose to another functional adult at a live sporting event. It’s not. I assure you.
If you do choose to ignore the warnings, though, the least you could do is take a minute to ask yourself a few questions and maybe figure out if this is the path you really want to go down.
Should I propose to my fiancé at a sporting event?
It’s 2014 and despite progress moving at a snail’s pace, a decent chunk of society is finally ready to accept that the womenz may just love the sportz as much as the menz. That’s great!
This isn’t about the ladies, though. It’s perfectly acceptable for a woman to pop the question now, too. This is about love and dignity and mutual respect and not lighting any of those on fire because you think your proposal at a live, possibly televised event might go viral. Internet fame has a shelf life; your marriage is forever.
Are you okay with a shirtless kid dancing maniacally in the background of your big moment as it plays out on a giant screen with a Salsa Fiesta advertisement below it? Are you ready for your possible rejection to be shown ad nauseam on SportsCenter? Proposing to someone is stressful enough in the comfort of your own home. Add in thousands of crazed, drunk fans and the potential for sheer disaster and, I mean, are you sure you wanna go through with this?
Okay, then. Let’s continue.
Soooooooooooo, should I?
Do you guys have season tickets? Do the two of you wear matching jerseys to road games? Then, by all means, go ahead and propose on a Jumbotron. A marriage proposal should be unique to your relationship, so if baseball is your thing, then a proposal at the ballpark where you first held hands might just be the way to go.
Please don’t make the mistake of thinking your thing is theirs, as well. If you’re the kind of person who yells brand name cereals at Coco Crisp while your significant other plays Candy Crush and checks text messages, maybe you two aren’t exactly on the same sports fandom level. A ballpark proposal might not be in the best interest of your relationship.
But, let’s say you pass that test…
Where should I propose?
According to the aforementioned map, the cheapest MLB ballparks to pop the question are in Pittsburgh, Atlanta, Colorado and Cincinnati; if you’re within driving distance, those would obviously be the ideal spots. But, you’ve already purchased a ring worth twice your monthly salary and made it this far in the planning stages, so you’re knee-deep in the cliche-driven, cash-printing hype machine that is the wedding industry. You might as well just find a way to work this one into the budget, regardless of cost.
And if you’re the kind of person who likes to get more bang for your buck, it’s worth noting that you could probably pull off a weekend getaway with a ballpark proposal at PNC Park for roughly the same price as just the proposal at Marlins Park. Just something to consider as you make the worst decision of your life.
Should I propose on the field/court or at our seats?
This one’s tricky. The payoff to proposing on the field of play is huge. You’re front and center, so you’ve got the attention of every single person in attendance, all of whom are ready to go bananas should the answer be yes, making it one of the more memorable nights of your significant other’s life.
However… (Again with the dreaded however.)
Imagine standing in the center of a stadium or an arena, alone, a single spotlight shining down on you, as the woman of your dreams runs away, hands over her mouth, shaking her head back and forth as tears fall from her face, the deafening silence of the crowd broken only by sporadic laughs from different sections in the lower bowl. And the YouTube comments. Oh, the YouTube comments.
The proposal at your seats, on the other hand, is much safer, but let’s be honest, it’s a hedged bet. Less people are likely to notice, (I feel like I’ve actually missed a few, myself, because I’ve been busy tweeting or checking Facebook), but that also means less people are going to mock you when she throws her popcorn in your face for embarrassing her in front of all those people.
My opinion? Just go all-in. Doing it at your seats is like renting a hot-air balloon and proposing while it’s on the ground because you’re afraid of heights. If you’re going to do it, suck it up and do it big. Nobody’s gonna feel good about marrying the person who hedged on their marriage proposal.
Mascot or no mascot?
No. No, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no. The fact that you’re even asking this is a dead giveaway that you’re not ready to get married.
But, I like mascots.
Fine, but know that there’s a chance that in the the most depressing moment of your life, the person consoling you will be dressed like a giant gray bear.
You’re talking an awful lot about rejection—
I always like to be prepared for the worst.
Okay, okay, fine. So, what do I do if he/she says no?
Besides kick yourself for not listening to me and basically everyone else on the internet who warned you of what a colossally stupid idea this was?
You just walk away. Don’t try to play it off. Don’t make a big spectacle of it. Sometimes, though rare, the world inexplicably musters up a healthy amount of sympathy for undeserving suckers. In times like these, you want to be one of those suckers.
Geez, man, I’m not even sure I want to propose anymore.
Probably for the best.