You are using an older browser version. Please use a supported version for the best MSN experience.

Why popping the question at a sporting event is the worst kind of public proposal

The Guardian logo The Guardian 07/11/2018 Martin Belam
Getty © Getty Getty

Editor’s note: The opinions in this article are the author’s, as published by our content partner, and do not represent the views of MSN or Microsoft.

Sections of the internet have been aghast at the latest example of a public proposal at an inopportune sporting moment – in this case, Jersey firefighter Dennis Galvin, who interrupted his girlfriend’s first attempt to run a marathon by leaping over the barriers and asking her to marry him just as she hit the 16-mile mark.

While Kaitlyn Curran said yes, and seemed delighted at the turn of the events, a lot of observers questioned whether Galvin had really picked the right moment for a romantic gesture. The proposal was captured on video by Galvin’s cousin Kathleen Figueroa, and has been widely shared on social media – to much derision.

             

Download the Microsoft News app for your Android or iPhone device and get news & live updates on the go.

“Wow, my girlfriend is going to accomplish something pretty remarkable, something she’s trained for months to achieve. When we talk about this day in years to come, what can I do to make it all about me?” said one online observer.

Someone else put it rather more succinctly: “I would’ve kicked him but that’s just me.”

Aside from the issue of taking away the glory of competing, others on social media questioned how easy it would be to get back into the rhythm of a marathon run to complete the last 10 miles, having been proposed to.

Replay Video

It is far from the first time that a man has decided to steal the limelight from his partner’s sporting achievement, and it doesn’t just happen at an amateur level. In 2016, at the Rio Olympics, diver He Zi was proposed to by colleague Qin Kai as she stepped down from the podium having just received the silver medal. Her face-palm in the pictures of the moment were clearly a result of emotion, but plenty of people on the internet face-palmed on her behalf at how her moment of Olympic glory had been turned into a sideshow to the proposal.

He Zi (r) of China Receives a Marriage Proposal From Chinese Diver Ki Qin (l) After Winning the Silver Medal in the Women's 3m Springboard Final of the Rio 2016 Olympic Games Diving Events at the Maria Lenk Aquatics Centre in the Olympic Park in Rio De Janeiro Brazil 14 August 2016 Brazil Rio De Janeiro © Shutterstock He Zi (r) of China Receives a Marriage Proposal From Chinese Diver Ki Qin (l) After Winning the Silver Medal in the Women's 3m Springboard Final of the Rio 2016 Olympic Games Diving Events at the Maria Lenk Aquatics Centre in the Olympic Park in Rio De Janeiro Brazil 14 August 2016 Brazil Rio De Janeiro

Of course, every couple and their relationship are different. You cannot tell from the outside whether a public proposal has come as a complete surprise, or whether a discussion of marriage and the choice of an engagement ring have already taken place in private, although observers at the New York City Marathon told CBS News that Curran had no idea the proposal was planned for during her run.

But perhaps the true hero of the public proposal at a sporting event we need is Francisco Gilabert. Gilabert was refereeing the match between Antofagasta and Everton in Chile’s Primera División last month. Antofagasta midfielder Eduard Bello opened the scoring for his side within just two minutes, grabbed something from someone in the dugout, then jumped into the stands to reveal that it was a ring, and to propose to his girlfriend.

Showing absolutely no room for sentimentality, Gilabert duly showed Bello a yellow card when he returned to the pitch for “excessive celebration”. I am sure there are plenty who think it really should have been a red.

Watch: Most popular places to pop the question [Cover Video]

AdChoices
AdChoices

More from The Guardian

image beaconimage beaconimage beacon