When planning your wedding, did anyone ever say to you? “It’s YOUR day. Do what YOU want.” How about? “Don’t let anyone else tell YOU how to celebrate YOUR day.” If these admonitions were given to you and you are continuing to perpetuate this reckless the-bride-is-the-center-of-the-universe advice, I am begging you to please, STOP! Don’t you know that this indulgent do-what-YOU-want attitude is what causes brides to choose red or (worse) navy blue color schemes in the middle of the summer? It is also the reason why weddings are now performed at all hours of the day with no regard for long distance travelers and other busy guests. It may even be the driving force behind that tacky basket filled with computer generated thank yous which often accompany the requisite wedding mint. You know the one. It sits near the door and the notes inside say something like: Thank you for sharing OUR day. We know you spent forty dollars on a gift, but we will not be sending bona fide thank yous because we will be too busy basking in our newly-found, selfish marital bliss. Enjoy this three cent mint!
Sincerely, The Bride and Groom.
Now, I really don’t mean to be critical of others (except for newlyweds who don’t send real thank yous—they're fair game...), but I do want to spare all future brides from experiencing my same wedding day regrets.
I was married in June of 1992. And while my original color scheme involved shades of deep raspberry with black accents, I somehow ended up with hot pink bridesmaid dresses which donned one-inch black polka-dots. Yes, you read that correctly. I won’t take the time to explain the mis-communications which led to this decision, but to help you visualize my wedding line, just imagine Minnie Mouse at a bad eighties prom and that pretty much sums things up. Now, I know my original plan of raspberry and black didn’t exactly jive with a June wedding, but I was told, “It’s YOUR day. Do what YOU want.” What people failed to tell me was, “You have terrible taste and are stuck in a time warp with Michael Jackson and Cindy Lauper! Get help.”
I wish someone would have cared enough to intervene. Maybe they could have explained to me that my idea of an elegant, sophisticated evening reception, dinner and dance was not conducive to an event held in a church gymnasium which hosted the blaring June sun and two basketball hoops. Perhaps a sports theme or a beach party would have been more appropriate. Someone could have also let me in on a secret to which I was not yet privy by sitting me down and clearly stating, “Chris, even though you and your soon-to-be hubby like to dance, no other Mormons do. And, the fact you are not serving alcohol at the event, screams “dance inhibition!”
Oh well, in spite of my obnoxiously loud bridesmaid dresses, and our feeble attempt at a dance, my mother managed to save the day by making me the most beautiful wedding gown ever created. It had magnificent sleeves, a delicate, flowing skirt and intricate bodice detail. It was truly a labor of love. Unfortunately, the first time I watched Napoleon Dynamite and saw Lafonda wearing that same “labor of love” my mother had created for me, it only reinforced my claim that soon-to-be brides need honest, candid feedback, not empty validation and appeasement when planning the big day. Otherwise, decades of embarrassment may ensue.
So, if you or someone you love, is planning a wedding, please do everything in your power to keep the bride’s creative license in check. And remember! If polka-dots or pre-written thank yous become part of the plan, please, please, please seek the proper intervention! Both are equally tacky, and are sure to give your generous guests a headache. Good luck, and, oh...Happy Marital Bliss!