November 30, 2011

Don’t go to the Ozarks for romance …


“The Fallback Plan” is a weekly column at written by Leigh Stein, author of the forthcoming novel The Fallback Plan. It offers illustrated advice on any number of life’s questions. For an illustrated fallback plan of your own, write to [email protected]. If you write to Leigh and she answers your question you will win a signed copy of The Fallback Plan. 

Joey Ramone


Dear Leigh,

I recently bought a gaudy cocktail ring for $8 at a flea market. My boyfriend thinks it looks like an engagement ring and that wearing it is my psychotic way of hinting that he should propose. I don’t want him to propose. I don’t even know which finger an engagement ring is supposed to go on. How can I convince him that I just really like giant sparkly things?


Dear Esme,

For the record: left hand ring finger.

Off the record: I have a friend who once spent Valentine’s Day driving through the state of Missouri with her boyfriend. They stopped at a souvenir shop somewhere in the Ozarks, and he told her to pick something out and he would buy it for her. She picked a faux turquoise ring that cost ninety-nine cents. They broke up the next day.

Moral of the story: Don’t ever go to the Ozarks.

See also: When a man sees a ring on his girlfriend’s hand, he has a small stroke and while his brain is under temporary paralysis, visions of fat red babies and tuna noodle casserole dance in his head.

How to convince him you just like giant sparkly things: Wrap yourself up in a big glittery box and when he unwraps it say, I don’t want to be your wife, I just wanna be your Joey Ramone. And then smash a guitar over his head.

Yours in solidarity,

Illustration by Grace Do