Mason County News
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Popping the Question
Wednesday, February 29, 2012 • Posted February 29, 2012

Popping the Question is exactly what I did to Gerry Gamel, the editor of our local newspaper, The Mason County News. Four years ago on February 29, 2008, it was mid afternoon and I realized that it was Sadie Hawkins Day, Leap Year, the one day that occurs every 1,461 days when I, a female can officially pop the question of marriage. “What the hey”, life is short, so I jumped into DAISY, my 1979 pickup and headed for the Square. I had only lived in Mason for about six months and at the time I didn’t put together that most people might have seen my face; but most did not know my name, and especially my sense of fun and adventure. But regardless of all this, it was LEAP YEAR and I had never proposed to anyone. If this was my last Leap Year, if my life suddenly ended, would have missed my chance of proposing to someone on the Day of Leap Year?Entering the square from south Hwy87, I saw Gerry Gamel walking back to the Mason County News Office. I jumped out of the truck, grabbed a handful of Daisies that were displayed across the dash of the truck and headed for Gerry. “Hello”, Gerry greeted me in his usual cheerful way. Hi, I replied and immediately directed the conversation to something like….today is Leap Year…it’s Sadie Hawkins Day…it’s almost three o’clock…so I was wondering has any one proposed to you yet? And I shoved the elegant bouquet of plastic Daisies into his chest.Gerry’s eyes went wide, but his composure was steady, his voice controlled and his words VERY and cautiously selected. It went something like this: Well, no I haven’t had a marriage proposal today. But……..I ……..very…..honored….that you would extend such an offer to me. Because of the ….ah…..importance……and….sincerity of this type of question………ah…..that you have extended to me……I will need some time to think it over. Thank you. And he pushed the flowers back toward me.By now it has dawned on me that he wasn’t thinking this was a joke and was taking ‘popping the question” in a direction that was now making me uncomfortable. I confirmed that getting back with me would be fine, but I insisted that the flowers were for him to keep and gave them back to him.I have lived another four years and February 29 is approaching. I marked the adventure of proposing marriage off my list, so I won’t be proposing marriage to anyone this year. But all you single ladies out there, just know that this is the “acceptable” day for a woman to get down on one knee and pop the question. It is said to be the work of Queen Margaret of Scotland, who decreed - in the 13th century - that a woman could ask any single man for his hand in marriage and if he declines, she can claim a dress in compensation.Hey, Gerry, want to go shopping for that dress?

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