Man sparks debate over social etiquette with TikTok of his proposal being interrupted by woman taking photos

‘Why would you propose in a public place and then get mad people are around?’ one viewer asked

Chelsea Ritschel
New York
Friday 07 May 2021 17:33

A man has people divided over “acceptable social interactions” after sharing a TikTok of his proposal video, which includes an interruption from a woman who wanted to take photos against the backdrop.

Last month, Javier Maldonado, who lives in Houston, Texas, proposed to his partner in front of the water fountains in Gerald D Hines Waterwall Park in Houston, according to the DailyDot.

However, during the proposal, a woman began posing behind the couple against the backdrop of the fountains, as seen in a video of the couple’s engagement shared by Maldonado on TikTok. 

In the clip, Maldonado, who goes by the username @pinkbellabean, can be standing in the centre of the park with his now-fiance Anthony Rodriguez, with the waterwall in the backdrop.

“A random lady decided to take pictures on my proposal video,” Maldonado captioned the beginning of the clip, as the woman poses. “I wait for my turn to do the video but the lady didn’t want to wait.”

Maldonado then narrated the woman as she moved even closer to the couple to continue taking photos, writing: “Right here, it’s a good spot.”

As the woman can be seen standing almost directly behind the couple, Maldonado included captions of what he was telling Rodriguez.

“You are the man that I want. I want to live the rest of my life with you,” Maldonado said, before getting down on one knee and asking Rodriguez to marry him.

At that point, the proposal seems to capture the attention of the woman, who begins to look at the couple, with Maldonado claiming that it was then that she “realised she made a mistake”.

After a few more seconds, the woman slowly walks out of the shot while continuing to glance at the couple.

The clip, which Maldonado captioned: “Watch my beautiful proposal and a random lady,” has since been viewed more than 3m times.

However, in the comments, viewers were divided over the situation, with some angry on the couple’s behalf while others defended the bystander, as the park is public property.

“The fact that she has the audacity to look at them like she didn’t see them when she walked up,” one person commented, while another said: “This made me so mad omg.”

“She has to pay for your wedding now. She wanted to be part of the engagement,” someone else joked.

However, others pointed out that the park is often busy with people, and that the couple should have picked a more private location if they didn’t want others around or interrupting their special moment.

“OK, but I’m sorry, the world is not stopping because you want to propose,” one person wrote. “Find an appropriate place and time to do it, don’t be mad other people exist.”

Another person said: “It’s a public space and how was she supposed to know she was in frame?”

“Why would you propose in public and then get mad that there are other people around?” someone else asked.

However, according to Maldonado, there were more than 20 people at the park when they arrived, and everyone had formed a line to wait for the opportunity to take photos - except for the woman in the background.

“There were more than 20 people, everyone waited for their turn,” he wrote in response to one comment.

While the interaction was met with mixed reactions, the video also prompted offers from viewers willing to edit the stranger out of the clip for the couple, which they accepted.


Here’s the video with NO RANDOM LADY! Thanks to all that that try to helped me to fix it ##gaypropsal ##gaylovestory ##lovewins @antooqiiee

♬ Runaway - AURORA

In a new video posted by Maldonado to TikTok, the proposal was edited to show just the couple, which he captioned: “Here’s the video with NO RANDOM LADY! Thanks to all that tried to help me to fix it.”

“This is so awesome. Love that there was a way to fix it. Congratulations on your engagement!” one viewer wrote, while another commented: “Congratulations! I’m so glad you have this, now it’s flawless.”

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