As the wedding invitations continue to roll in, and your bank account continues to go ass up, you have to start trimming the fat on your social calendar. You can’t just drop a grand every weekend from March until November — you just can’t. Unless you’re actually in the wedding, the excursions to Jackson Hole and the Bahamas probably aren’t in the cards for you. There’s another couple getting married somewhere in Europe. Zero chance you’re gonna make that one. That cheese dick couple invited 300+ to a wedding that’s a 15 hour one-way flight? Go to hell.
Of course, if that couple was partly comprised of your brother, sister, or best friend, you’d have to be there as punishment for having unfortunate genetic material or awful taste in friends. Let’s focus on the weddings that are completely up to your discretion to attend. When you’re on the fence about attending the wedding of someone who just isn’t that damn important, you may need help making the right call. When it comes to your time and money, no evaluation is too thorough. Remember, one dollar saved this weekend is one dollar you can foolishly piss away next weekend because you’re a fucking moron who can’t say no to weddings you have no business attending. Below are some guidelines to help you pull your head out of your ass and accept that you can’t attend every wedding with an invitation plastered on your fridge.
1. Do you know the person your friend is marrying?
The absolute last thing a bride wants to do on the biggest day of her life is meet another one of her husband’s shitty high school friends and his weirdo girlfriend of 3 weeks. No, Connor, the bride doesn’t care that you tore your ACL blocking downfield for the groom. You didn’t win State that year. You didn’t even make the playoffs. Such a horrible icebreaker for a 28-year-old. Also, it looks like your date is trying to eat her own face. Get your shit together, man.
The wedding is never the place for an introduction to the bride or groom, because that means they just paid $200 each for strangers to eat and get plastered. A date is one thing, but the person who gets the invitation needs to know both people getting married. If you don’t know both of them, save them from themselves and RSVP “No.” If you haven’t met the bride or groom before the wedding, you’re not nearly important enough to bogart any of their time on the big day.
2. Have you seen this person in the last year?
With a minor exception for long distances, if you haven’t seen each other in over a year, let’s just face it: you don’t give a shit about each other anymore. There may have been a time when you and Jared were inseparable like Favre and the Packers, but you’ve fallen gradually down each other’s respective depth charts and are close to being waived altogether. Hey, it was a good run. Rumor has it he’s been hanging out with Cory and, like the Jets, Cory will sign damn near anybody. Jared has been a decent role player friend that showed flashes of brilliance, but he lacks the consistency you’d like to see from your everyday friends. So let Cory sign Jared to the long-term deal. You know it’s gonna end up biting him in the ass.
3. Did you invite this friend to your wedding?
This is the Gold Standard. You didn’t invite Scott to your wedding, but now he’s inviting you to his? Fuck that. By virtue of being the first to marry, you became the trendsetter who defines the terms and legitimacy of this friendship. Now Scott wants to turn the tables and run a power play on you? I don’t think so. Your wedding invitations decided the fate of this friendship, and Scott flat out didn’t make the cut. Scott was never a real sociable guy, so he’s probably just trying to fill the seats to avoid looking like a massive tool that has no friends. Nice try. Learn the rules, Scott, you asshole.
4. Have you been in an overly dangerous or sketchy situation with this friend?
Usually originating in New Orleans or some other hellish, soul-sucking city, this moment is the one that defines the friendship and has allowed it to endure where others (fuck you, Scott) have simply faded. You’re not as close as you once were, but that one encounter has left a lasting impression on both of you.
This might be the guy with whom you scoured the Crescent City looking for illicit substances, only to be sold a bag of goddamn baking soda. You may have then nearly escalated the situation into a stabbing by voicing your displeasure to an individual who professed it “ain’t no thang” to stick his knife in your lungs. Get off the tracks, bitch, the Real Talk Express is coming through. Instead of critiquing his shoddy customer service, you two got the hell outta there and are now eternally bonded.
Or, this might be the guy you persuaded to stop leaving 3 a.m. voicemails to an immigration attorney to begin naturalization paperwork for “Bianca,” the Estonian stripper whose visa was about to expire. This was way beyond, “Dude, that’s probably not even her real name.” Never mind that Bianca looks like she’s been gnawing on a cinderblock since she was eight, this would even be a bad decision for Miss Ukraine 2012.
5. Cost-Benefit Analysis
If the wedding is local, there are worse things to do on a Saturday night than pound free J&B, bet on which bridesmaid will puke, then take a ten dollar Uber home and puke yourself. Personally, I would attend that kind of night for someone I hated. But if it’s in some brutally inconvenient place like Seattle, or some place with the tourist appeal of Afghanistan (like Tucson), the decision becomes more complicated. Just kidding, that makes it much simpler: don’t go. You can still send a gift if you’re feeling charitable. Hell, make it a nice one, because it’s still ten times cheaper than dragging your ass to the wedding. I wouldn’t walk across the street for some slapdick like Scott, much less interstate travel. But if a solid B Team friend is getting married in Destin, and you have airline points, why not? .
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