Free bling?

courtesy of Matt Klitscher

I don’t know what it is about me, but I’m always really skeptical when I see something that should be expensive being sold for uber cheap. What’s wrong with it? Is it refurbished? It couldn’t be possible that it was actually being sold for what it really costs… could it?

Call it expensive taste, but I feel like you get what you pay for. Granted, I’m rather frugal with my own money, but if I have to lay down the cash, I want to buy something of quality.

So that’s why I have a real hard time imagining myself accept an engagement ring from my future fiance that he didn’t pay for.

Of course I’m referring to The Bachelorette. Let’s get real here: various surveys I have conducted express that men are crazy about their money. Well, not crazy, but that put a lot of emphasis on that part of life. They don’t want to be married until they’re financially stable, they want a woman that is financially stable, etc. So if he’s going to lay out some three months salary (yes, three months) for woman, she better be “the one.”

Needless to say, the men on The Bachelorette get down on bended knee with a Neil Lane engagement ring, given to them free of any cost. I don’t know how I feel about this. First off, it just seems bizarre. Like driving a Phantom and then parking it in front of the shanty you live in. Not that these guys don’t make good money, but Lord knows they’d never afford that engagement ring to begin with.

I’m all about men trying to give women things they never could have dreamed of, but this is taking it too far. Not to mention if the engagement is broken, the woman returns the ring not to the ex-fiance, but to ABC.

It’s like this: if something is free, you tend to take it, right? (Minus things like STDs which are given for free {well, your dignity is compromised} or Chick-Fil-A at the office.) So these guys are given a free ring — a nice one at that — and think they’re in love with this chick, so why wouldn’t they propose?

I would like to see the guys have to lay down the money for a ring and see what really happens when push comes to shove. I don’t think Ben F. would have proposed if he had to buy the ring himself. I don’t think he was 100% sure Ashley was the one, but given the engagement ring, he was ready to find out. I do think JP would have put down for a ring, however. He seems genuine, right? Not that Ben F. doesn’t appear that way, I just can’t see Ben and Ashley working out.

What a great twist for the finale, right? “Who will buy an engagement ring?” It’s more of a surprise, wondering if the guys will both propose.

As far as hand-me-down rings, it’s a different story. If you have a family heirloom, a la Kate Middleton and Princess Diana’s ring, I feel that has sentimental value attached to it as well. It’s an investment because of the emotional pull.

Investment. A critical word. You invest in a nice home, a car, a computer; why not invest in your marriage? I’m not saying a marriage is to be based off money — that’s the last thing I’m saying. But why not just stay boyfriend and girlfriend if you’re not ready to full invest in the relationship, both emotionally, physically and monetarily?

I’m all about freebies but marriage deserves a little more respect than that.

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