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Begging in the Street for Love

There's a man standing at a market in London waiting for you to propose to him.

Joshua Haddow

On February 29, which happens once every four years (duh!), it is traditional for straight women to ask straight men to marry them. This is different from the other 365 days of the year, when custom dictates that those same, petrified straight men are the ones who, in the panic following an argument, should be the ones to make the biggest mistake of their lives and ask the woman to get married. Know what I mean, fellas? Am I right or what? She's the old ball and chain, isn't she? Don't worry, I'm here all week.

Anyway, one man in London decided to exploit this wormhole in tradition to promote himself and the love he has to offer the world. Andrew Thomas, or @Andrew29th,  made a video (above) of himself explaining how he'd be standing beneath a statue of a goat in London's Spitalfields Market dressed like a groom waiting for women to propose to him. I went to have a look at him.

And there he was, looking like a one-man flashmob advertising nothing.

His sales pitch was attracting a lot of giggling women, but I figured he wasn't getting lucky, otherwise why would he still be standing there? So I thought I'd go up to him and talk to him myself.

VICE: Andrew, how many women have you attracted today?

Andrew: So far, about seven or eight. It's been all good responses.

Has anyone asked you to marry them?

Nobody's asked me to marry them yet, but there is hope. It's early still. Maybe after the pubs and a few nice white wines some of the girls will, you know...

I know. Is that your idea of romance?

Well, the surprise of this whole thing is that I want to take a girl to Paris for a day.

Wow, all seven of them?

No, just one. I will make a decision.

What's the point of this? Are you OK?

Well, I don't really like going up to girls so I thought it would be good if I did this and they came up to me. I made a video and have been tweeting. I have about seven or eight hundred followers on Twitter.

So that's about a one percent response rate so far.

Yes. I'm hoping for more.

How long have you been here?

Since 8 AM.

Jesus. Do you have supplies? Where are you pissing?

I've got some supplies and people who've seen me online have brought me things. A girl gave me these gloves. I have lollipops as well. Someone brought me a hot cup of tea because I looked cold. A man who works in that building said I could use his office for the toilet, but to be honest, I've just been using the one in Costa Coffee.

I don't blame you. Why are there paramedics nearby?

I don't know, actually. Maybe they're expecting a massive cat fight later on?

Have you had any men proposition you?

No, it's a little disappointing, actually.

How likely do you think it is that someone will propose?

That was just a thing to get girls to talk to me. If someone proposes of course I'm not going to say yes, but I will ask them out on a date.

So what is your main motivation? Loneliness?

No no no! I'm just a single guy in London.

Promiscuity, then?

I just find it hard to go up to girls in bars and stuff. I work in advertising, and I thought: "If I can't market myself, then..." You know?

You work in advertising?

Yeah.

Are you sure this isn't a stealth marketing campaign for Match.com or something?

No. Is it a campaign? Yes. Is it a marketing ploy? Yes. But it's just me, and I think I've gained popularity from saying that. It is genuine. Yes I am a creative, I do work in advertising, I'm just...

Using the tools in your box?

Exactly.

Well good luck with it, mate.

If you're in London, Andrew will be at Spitalfields Market until 8 PM this evening, so any young (or old) women (or men) who fancy Andrew (or a laugh), why not take your chance?

Follow Josh on Twitter: @joshuahaddow

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