Australia’s Geekiest Marriage Proposal: Physicist Gives Scientific Report Instead of Ring to Scientist-Girlfriend

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By Vittorio Hernandez | February 28, 2013 1:33 PM EST

Romantic wedding proposals are a dime-a-dozen since they are the most common and popular ways to get a woman to say, "Yes, I will marry you."

The traditional way is to pop the question in a romantic setting such as a hotel restaurant then the man goes down on one knee, opens a tiny box, brings out the diamond-encrusted engagement ring and asks the inevitable question.

In the case of Australian physicist Brendan McMonigal, he made the same gestures, but instead gave his girlfriend, scientist Christie Nelan, a scientific report instead of a ring.

The report contained scientific jargon such as principle bodies and even a graph. It seems Ms Nelan gave the report an A grade because she accepted the unusual wedding proposal.

"I hesitated because it was only one page, which is very short for your average physics paper, and then I realized Brendan was giving me a very odd look. So I looked at the paper more carefully and realized Brendan was the author," Ms Nelan said.

Here is a digital copy of the proposal that had so far more than 1.7 million hits.

The paper, titled Two Body Interactions: A Longtitudinal Study, tracked the pair's relationship and forecast through the gap a fairy-tale ending of "And they lived happily ever after," written in a more modern term - "Happiness over time."

He made the wedding proposal at the spot at the University of Sydney where they met. The couple is advanced math and physics students. The future groom pretended that he was having some problems with a paper which he left in the university.

"I subtly got down on one knee to get the paper from my bag and hand it to her, then stood up to wait for her reaction," The Age quoted Mr McMonigal.

Like a typical physics graduate students, she just read the abstract and jumped to the conclusion part. Ms Nelan, who works as a science communicator at the Questacon Science Squad, said she thought he would propose of March 23, because he considers it their seventh year date anniversary but Ms Neale insisted they went out on their first date of May 23.

Mr McMonigal said they will not have a geeky wedding but a romantic one which would likely be held by a waterfall.

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