One of the greatest marriage proposal pics you'll ever see was never supposed to happen.
The image above (click for full-res) was not planned, as gorgeous as it may be. Its backdrop and lighting were not specifically selected, despite many professional photographers spending days or weeks trying to orchestrate a setting as stunning.
Nope. All of this was an accident. A perfect, priceless accident.
Patrick Lu was hanging out near Texas' capital building last week when he saw a man drop to the ground and take a knee. As the future groom prepared his proposal, Lu prepared to capture it. He stepped a little closer, framed the shot, snapped his pics and, very quietly, forever preserved the spine-tingling moment of the anonymous couple's engagement.
But even better than the couple's private moment is how it went public.
The next day, Lu went on Reddit and posted a thread titled, "Did any of you propose at the capital last night?"
"Austin is actually a growing haven for tech companies and startups, and I had a gut feeling that the couple worked somewhere in that space," Lu told Mashable. "With a lot of techies, you have a lot of Redditors. I figured someone would have recognized them eventually."
"Eventually" arrived pretty quickly. As the photo gained steam on the social sharing site, it soon found its way to the screen of some guy named Joel Bush. Who had just gotten engaged. Outside the state capital. He found himself staring at a photo of himself.
"WHAT THE WHAT!" he tweeted, with a link to the Reddit thread. A moment he believed to be private had in fact already been viewed thousands of times on computers and phones around the world.
"Someone captured that moment, it's pretty amazing," the future Mrs. Bush, Jenn Orr, told KHOU. "We are just so grateful those few seconds in time were captured when we thought we were totally alone."
The couple also accidentally managed to solve one of the greatest dilemmas of the Digital Age: how to capture a special moment while also remaining wholly in that moment. "We now enjoy the best of both worlds in a sense," Bush told the Austin Statesman. "We enjoyed a natural private moment and we also have a perfect record of it for safekeeping."
Lu, Bush, and Orr all met up at a coffee house this weekend and even snapped a few new photos -- posed this time.
And the remarkable forces that brought them all together were not lost on Bush, who co-founded an e-commerce site. "Internets are awesome," he tweeted Friday night.
Indeed they are. Internets are very awesome.
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