I read a news story tonight about people who sent "anti-invites" to people to tell them they are NOT invited to their wedding. WTF? Have we really come to this? People need to be informed they didn't make the cut? Oh, and another new "trend" is to be on the "B" list for a wedding - meaning you ARE invited but only if someone on the "A" list cancels. Hmm. Do me a favor. If you feel the need to do this for your wedding, please don't invite me OR un-invite me. In fact, do us ALL a favor and elope. For crying out loud, it's a wedding! It's a celebration of love and the unity of two people (50% of whom will get divorced anyway, but I digress).
Weddings have really gone over the top. I blame YouTube and Pinterest. For one thing, after that couple did that awesome wedding entrance dance and posted it on YouTube, everyone tried to top it. Here is the epic wedding entrance dance: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1RgMrf6Dhhs. Don't even bother watching any of the others because everything else is just an imitation.
Then, there is Pinterest, where people "pin" virtual weddings that may or may not ever happen. Even I got sucked in and I'm not planning on getting married again. But I do have daughters. So I created a board, aptly titled "Someday Their Prince Will Come." And, seriously? You can find millions of things to wear, do, decorate with, and eat at your dream wedding on Pinterest. Because, of course, everything must be perfect.
But the thing is, weddings are usually far from perfect. My first wedding consisted of handmade bridesmaids dresses, a wedding dress off the "bargain" rack (but still beautiful), and food mostly prepared by my mom, served in the church basement because it was easier and cheaper than renting out a separate venue. Even though we were budget-conscious, it was still several thousand dollars. We invited everyone and I didn't make my bridesmaids pay for their own dresses (also rude!). We never got to taste the food because we were too busy talking to our guests and it rained.
My second wedding was much different! We decided, literally, two weeks before the wedding to have it the same weekend as a big family party. That way, most everyone would already be there, including the majority of our families. We paid one price for the venue, the preacher, the flowers, cake, food and hotel. It was so easy! I bought my dress for $200, the girls' bridesmaids dresses for $50 each and the flower girl dress for $30 - all off the rack at department stores. While the wedding still ran us a few thousand dollars, it was "bargain" by today's standards, and we certainly didn't have an "A" list or a "B" list. But my son's tuxedo was a men's size small and he was seven years old, we had way too much food leftover, and I got my period. Very romantic.
I get it - weddings are expensive and you can't invite everyone. Or you CAN, and adjust your show-off party. I would much rather have everyone I love invited to my wedding than have to pick and choose. If that means hearty appetizers rather than a sit-down dinner, bring it on! The more the merrier, I say, and no one is going to remember the paper lanterns, or the table favors or your vows. If it's important to you, and you can afford it, you should certainly have the wedding of your dreams. But since when is it ok to let people know they are not invited? What happened to old-fashioned etiquette?
It seems like today weddings are more about playing a game - a chance to show-off or show-up the last person - and less about the union of two people who fell in love. If I want extravagance and a big show, I can get tickets to the circus. In the meantime, I'll choose the "C" list - cut me out!