By popular demand, the story of Joe's proposal to Amy, written from the perspective of our dashing young hero, posted to the Web for your convenience:
To the surprise of exactly no one, I proposed to Amy on the night of August 28, 2002. Well, to the surprise of no one, except Amy herself...
I had picked up the ring--a very special piece called the Cartier Declaration--about a week before the 28th, which was the anniversary of our relationship. The plan came together when she suggested that instead of exchanging gifts for our anniversary, we could just exchange cards. I said that was fine, except that we'd have to make the cards ourselves... and it would be a contest to see who could make the better card.
Somehow I got the idea of doing a Flash movie, with my favorite images from the last year set to a jazzy song. Though I didn't know much about making Flash movies, with the help of my friend Ikezi I was able to cobble it all together. The movie ended dramatically with a picture of the engagement ring. Once the movie was perfected, I burned it onto a CD, which I mounted onto cardboard and sealed in a red vellum envelope. (Thanks to the miracle of modern technology, you can see how it all turned out.)
On the day of our anniversary, I had a dozen red roses delivered to Amy's office. Oddly enough, the arrangement she received only had eleven roses. Amy's coworkers noticed before she did, and at least a few of them were sure the twelfth rose would show up that night with a ring attached.
Oh, puh-leeze. ;)
When we met up that night, the first thing she said to me was that she was going to win the card contest. Her coworkers had seen her card and they quite agreed she would win. (Silly girl, silly coworkers!)
She also asked me about the missing rose and I told her quite honestly that I had no idea what she was talking about. Turns out this was a good thing because I was so nonchalant about the whole thing that she didn't think I was going to propose that night.
On that note, I surprised her with dinner at Clio. They really gave us the royal treatment, with sixteen tiny but delicious courses spread out over three and a half hours. Some of the highlights were foie gras glazed with passionfruit, bone marrow flan, marbled salmon slow-cooked at 200 degrees... pretty ridiculous, really. (No octopi were harmed in the preparing of our meal.) All in all it was just the right kind of meal to get Amy ready for the Main Event. And she later told me that I was so relaxed through it all that she really thought the proposal wasn't coming.
Finally we made it back to my apartment, where amid much glee we started the card exchange. I opened hers first; it was a great booklet with some cute pictures of us and nice quotes. After we read through it, she asked knowingly, "I won, didn't I." But once she saw that my card had a CD inside she knew I had gone over the top and said "I don't know if I can take it... you're going to make me cry, aren't you!"
Well, we put the CD in my computer, and she started crying within the first fifteen seconds. And when the final scene rolled around and the ring flashed on the screen, she turned to me in shock. I held up the real ring, asked her to marry me, and slipped it on her finger. It was a couple of sizes too big, but lucky for me she said yes anyway! Woohoo!!
So... that's the story. If at this point you still haven't clicked on one of the links to check out the movie, I suggest you do that now!