Real Weddings : A Celebration of Life
Real Weddings : A Celebration of Life Real Weddings : A Celebration of Life

Decent Proposal
By Larry Pellizzari
Vol. 2, Issue 1, No. 2 May 2002

From a ringbox quietly passed across a candlelit table for two, to a mariachi band serenading the bride-to-be on her balcony, marriage proposals take many forms.

But rarely, if ever, does a groom spend $20,000 to pop the question. As a result Julie Lee may look at newspaper advertising in a whole new light. Her boyfriend Jesse Rasch, who runs a Toronto-based venture capital firm, had considered the traditional drop-down-on-one-knee marriage proposal, but opted for a more memorable approach—one that would be both comic and romantic.

On Friday, March 22nd, the 26-year old Jesse took out a full-page newspaper ad in the National Post. The ad, which ran in the Toronto edition of the newspaper, asked the question: “Julie! Will you marry me? JR”

Julie went about her day, unaware of the proposal until returning home from a yoga class early in the afternoon. She walked into a scene of pandemonium: parents screaming, sisters crying, dogs barking.

Meanwhile, Jesse was waiting anxiously for word from Julie. Ever the techie, Jesse created a Web site called where he kept a running log of that eventful Friday. By 11:10 that morning, the site had received 21,000 visitors, but still no word from Julie. At 12:15PM he wrote “Have been told she is on her way over to see me...why is she taking so long!” The good news was posted at 1:30: “She said YES! Was stopped for speeding on her way to see me, hence delay... She is now my fiancee!”

Incidentally, if Julie had declined, Jesse says he received about 30 emails to the site from other women named Julie, offering their addresses and phone numbers in case the answer was “No.”

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