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Even 99 iPhones can't persuade this girl to marry

To avoid the pain of another Singles Day, a Chinese programmer reportedly organizes an elaborate Apple-centric proposal. Her answer is no.

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Somehow, the sight of 99 iPhone 6 boxes didn't move this Chinese woman. Weibo

Surely the love brand can buy you love.

Surely, any girl, on seeing 99 iPhones arranged in the shape of a heart, would melt into waterfalls of tears and commit her undying passion to the man who had bought them for her.

Surely a roof made of wholemeal bread will see you through a Chicago winter.

Some women, you see, aren't moved by displays of technological affection. In the telling of the Nanfang, a community site based in China's Pearl River Delta, a young Guangzhou programmer thought that committing 500,000 remnibi (around $81,700) to the purchase of 99 iPhone 6s would warm his intended's heart.

Perhaps he should have tried 99 red balloons, for he ended up with 99 problems.

The lady in question looked at his arrangement and sniffed (in my imagination): "Not in this galaxy." Or perhaps: "Only 99? What kind of woman do you take me for?" Or perhaps: "Was this your shrink's idea?"

This proposal was apparently set against the background of November 11. Or, as it's known in China, Singles Day.

Oddly, this is a day on which cheery singles are supposed to buy themselves gifts to celebrate the fact that no one has yet tethered them to a life of frustration and regret. It also seems to be an occasion to attempt to tether yourself to someone in order to achieve a life of frustration and regret.

Of course, the question ought to be asked: Even if she'd accepted this nerdy proposal, what would the lady have done with all those iPhones? Would she have set up a Web site and offered them at ten times the price because they were "lucky, loving phones"?

Would she have kept all the boxes in their marital home and, every November 11, rearranged them into a new symbol of their love? 2015: a large white flower. 2016: A white crib base for baby. 2017: A white doll's house.

It's not recorded what she felt about the programmer, rather than his brogrammery gift. However, pictures of the unhappy event were posted to Weibo.

How sad it must have been for the boy to be surrounded by all his friends and discover that he wouldn't yet be living Appley ever after. (My apologies for that line. I'm actually weeping for him.)