Sunday, September 14, 2008

Going to the Crappel

I was starting to hate weddings.

Granted I haven’t been to one since I had a My Little Pony sleeping bag (don’t judge me) and I’ll probably get Osteoporosis before I myself get engaged. But having coworkers who are almost exclusively women for the last 3 years, it seemed like every single woman on the planet was either getting hitched or heavily involved in somebody else’s process.

They would talk about it every possible moment. From shoes, to venues, to vows, to unwanted family, there was no topic that didn’t bring up some manner of wedding talk.
I couldn’t handle it anymore. And it wasn’t that I didn’t care about wedding planning… wait no, that’s exactly it. I just don’t really care about wedding planning.

And this isn’t some rant from a guy who is afraid of marriage. I am not opposed to marriage; I think it’s beautiful thing. I want to get married one day. And if I ever meet a woman who I can trick into thinking I am kind of a man and not just a fairly competent English speaking chimpanzee, I too will marry.

This is actually more about what the wedding planning process in and of itself has become. Like driving a car downhill towards a cliff, it seems things only get more terrifying the further you go. Everything that is supposed to be fun about the planning process seems to become awful. Weddings have turned into these elaborate circuses filled with 3 tiered tiramisu flambé meringue cakes and 40 piece Mexican Mariachi Frank Sinatra cover bands.

I think I speak for most guys when I say that the whole wedding planning process is a turn off. When it comes to my wedding (again, pending I meet a woman with a pulse and an IQ over 65 who can stand me) I’m envisioning something simple, inexpensive, and classy.

It would take place on a beach somewhere (free location) music would be provided by an iPod connected to somebody’s suped up Honda Civic. As for dinner I would get that free sample guy from the mall food court who always hands out delicious little pieces of chicken on toothpicks. I mean that’s all you really need right?
And if you really want to show up to my wedding go ahead. There are no invitations. Since my wedding is free it doesn’t matter how many people show up. But if you show up you still have to bring a gift. No cheapskates.

OK now that I’ve written that I realize I’m probably going to be single for the rest of my life. So it’s probably a good idea then that I am NOT in charge of weddings. I think it’s also fair to say that if my future bride ever reads this, the only wedding detail I will get to be in charge of will be what time the DJ plays “Shout” (which will be 9:47 pm on the dot by the way).

Anyway, weddings were all turning me off; I was completely disgusted just hearing the word wedding. In fact, even if you said bedding I might freak out momentarily before I realized you were talking about something I loved.

But all my frustration and disinterest changed when a dear friend of mine got engaged last summer. For once it was someone I actually cared about. My friend was getting married. I was invited to a destination wedding in California! I was overwhelmed with excitement, but I also noticed a very bizarre change.

Suddenly I was interested in the wedding planning process. I was curious about the food. What would be served? Did they know what kind of music they would play? How did they compile a guest list (I mean did they seriously think it was a good idea to have me attend an event full of strangers from the Midwest whom I would most certainly shock and appall)?

I had this weird feeling of… excitement? I think I was sounding more excited than my friend. But I was skeptical. She was wayyy to cool. I honestly kept waiting for her to breakdown. She was a woman wasn’t she? Isn’t that the rule in our society? That if you are a woman getting married you need to turn into what Socrates once described as a “Bridezilla.”

I wanted tears. I wanted rants. I wanted vulgarity. I wanted fire and brimstone. Hell hath no fury like a woman engaged. I kept calling her up and asking her questions expecting her to flip out. I imagined a conversation going something like this:

“Hey how’s it going?”
“Oh… wow… Having trouble picking a vegetarian dish?”

But it never happened. She kept her cool, so much so that I began to wonder if she’d forgotten some crucial detail. Like the wedding would start and they would realize they left the flower girl at the airport. (Thankfully for everyone, the flower girl was way too precocious to be forgotten.)

But the weeks marched on and before I knew it, it was time for the wedding. I couldn’t wait to attend a wedding for someone I loved and not grown to resent in the tiniest bit.

I was stoked with excitement. My anticipation for this event was otherworldly. It was sure to be epic.
But then I got to the wedding.

To be continued….

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