The Elopment Debate; or, Why have a wedding?

16 Apr

On a quick side note, PLEASE read this post from the Bowie Bride.  SO FREAKIN’ TRUE.

I wanted to elope.  Oh my GOD I wanted to elope.  Planning a wedding gives me HIVES.  (Not really, no hives, but you catch my drift).  When the fiance was just a prospective boyfriend and we talked about weddings, he mentioned how he really wanted to have a wedding.  I thought Costa Rica or Italy or our local Justice of the Peace would be nice.  Here I am, talking to a rather nontraditional man who doesn’t really like his family (because they’re jerks, so it is valid) and he wanted a regular wedding.  A TRADITIONAL wedding.  I, seriously, wanted to elope.

Why?  See the Bowie Bride’s post.  Well, not entirely, but, yeah, along those lines.  See, I am the youngest of four, my parents have been going to a 400+ member church for 35+ years, my dad has colleagues and friends all over, my mom is a social butterfly…see where this is headed?  I was the Maid of Honor at my sister’s wedding, where the invited list topped 300, but an announcement was put in the church bulletin for all to read.  Just SHOW UP!

You.  Must.  Be.   Kidding.

Then it seemed that every wedding I went to was 300+ people and I saw the bride and groom for 3 minutes and then everyone hit the dance floor.  I am pretty sure in that bevy of brides and grooms over the years, no one remembers I was there.  Except I AM in the picture of my table, so I guess someone remembers (even that is not entirely true – I was once relegated to what my table dubbed as the “people the bride didn’t want to invite but her groom made her” and they a) never took a photo of our table and b) never came by to say hello…so that couple has no clue).  I get to a wedding and they’re all the same, simply change out the bride and groom and attendants.  Really, it just like a play: same plot line, just switch in the understudies. And, before the Bowie Bride kicks my ass, I am not complaining, I am just saying that this was my experience of weddings.  I hated it and I knew no other way.

The fiance really wants a wedding.  He’ll capitulate to elopement, but he fundamentally disagrees.  Then my dad, of all people, says that he thinks we should have a wedding.  “It’s for your friends and family” he says.  He is not saying how or why, but that we should have one.

But my second argument (did I even number my first?) is that my parents are too old to be putting out that kind of cash.  And if they’re gonna pay, its gonna be in Fl at the huge church which means a) no booze, b) crappy food and c) one of those weddings where I remember no one and you can just switch us out for the understudies.  Fiance makes pretty good bank.  So we can pay.

Fine, let’s have a wedding, I say.  But let’s have a VARIETY SHOW TOO!  Huh?  Well, just because I won’t date my actor friends doesn’t mean they’re not talented.  I know musicians and dancers and singers and actors…OHMYGODWECOULDTOTALLYHAVEAVARIETYSHOW!

He gave me the LOOK.  The “you must be crazy” look.  Well, damnit, I don’t want anything traditional at all.  I really really don’t.  I don’t want the cost associated with gross consumerism and catering to the “Wedding Industrial Complex” as it is referred to.  I don’t want to kill trees, waste water and spend shit tons of money we could be, oh I dunno, adopting an orphan with or donating to Habitat for Humanity.

We decide to have a wedding (which he wants) with a number of restrictions (which I want).  No fresh flowers.  Our registry is for charity (more on that later).  Few, if any, attendants.  No shitty first dance crap, no lame DJs.  Paper invites with electronic responses, no paper wasted on RSVP cards.  And a VERY slimmed down guest list.

We have one major thing going for us: a good friend owns two very good restaurants, and he will cater it as a wedding gift.  YAY!  Food taken care of and the food will be GOOD.

So we finally get to the point where I have no excuses.  We can do it fairly green, we can create a wedding registry for charity,  we can cover the cost because the catering is paid for, we can do it in New York…and, we get a variety show!  Tune in Monday for THOSE details.


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