Hindustan Times ST (Mumbai) - Brunch
Staging the perfect proposal
Going down on bended knee is almost a pre-nup ritual amongst millennials. Is it fun, or a farce? “It’s playacting in place of something candid” “What’s wrong with a little bit of romance?”
So, you’ve bought your trousseau, booked the venue, the flower arrangements, and the best Rahul Vaidya imitation you could find for your YPP... all just to say no?
You’re getting married. What’s a proposal to do now? Elaborate proposals staged for photo-shoots are just another quirk of social media culture, where artificial exhibitionism supersedes the telos of the act itself.
A staged proposal is not even a proposal. By its very definition the proposal is over the instant the agreement to marry is formalised. This is just the act of using what is supposed to be a special personal moment as a cloak for external validation.
Perhaps it is indicative of a society caught between worlds, where most marriages are still arranged, yet where true romance is still considered enviable. This dissonance leads to play-acting in place of something candid. Combined with the undeniable influence of a world where the easiest supply of dopamine comes from upvotes on heavily filtered and edited selfies, this pantomiming of ideas gleaned from movies to socially signal one’s apparent happiness is unsurprising!
When you look back, years later, what joyous memory do you associate with this little social media skit you’ve put on?
Dhruv M Seoni is a marketing consultant, an avid MMA fan, and a keen cultural observer with an odd obsession with the history of words.
Sure, proposals are largely pointless when you know you’re getting married, but what’s wrong with a little bit of romance?
It has long been custom in our country for those who speak better English than you to tell you what to do. Making them only very slightly different than those they hold candlelight vigils against at India Gate or Jantar Mantar. How to ‘properly’ manage and stage your love life and marriage is just one of the commandments in their ‘how to live your life’ bible. They will sneer and pass judgement at your staged proposal.
Deem it farcical over a round of IPA to make themselves feel better about their life choices. Whereas all you wanted to do was commemorate a sliver of a moment in your romantic journey. To feel the rush of being in the spotlight and a moment where it was only the two of you—not your parents, extended family, nor any ‘middlemen’—just two people in love asking for forever. A simple act made complicated and confusing by the labyrinth of modern love.
It’s a personal choice. How you want to feel on your day and in the moment is only for you to decide. Anddon’tlet anyone tell you otherwise.
“ELABORATE PROPOSALS STAGED FOR PHOTO-SHOOTS ARE JUST ANOTHER QUIRK OF SOCIAL MEDIA CULTURE.” —DHRUV M SEONI
“ALL YOU WANT TO DO IS TO COMMEMORATE A SLIVER OF A MOMENT IN YOUR ROMANTIC JOURNEY.” —IKSHIT ARORA
Ikshit Arora is a strategic design consultant who has co-founded multiple new age start-ups across different sectors.