======= ======= ====== ====== ====== ===== ==== ====== ====== ===== ==== ======= ======= ====== ====== ====== ===== ==== ====== ====== ===== ====
Can you feel it in the air? It’s a sudden shift in the temperature, a buzz in the breeze, a whisper in the wind. Yeah, sure spring is coming and the personal hell that is allergy season, but more specifically, wedding season is approaching. It sure just snuck up on us, didn’t it, that sneaky bastard? Wedding season, a season of “love?” More like a season of shelling out straight cash, homey, amiright? It’s the extreme domino effect once the save-the-dates start arriving, the bridal shower invitations roll in, followed by bachelorette e-vites, and finally the wedding invitation itself.
“Why don’t you just say no?” Well, you can’t exactly do that and still be considered a decent human being… so it’s always a “can’t wait!” reply, isn’t it? I usually just sigh and check the wedding registry to purchase something in an average price range, and once the big days actually arrives, I slap on my Spanx and a smile and head out the door.
Bridal showers? Sure, I’m down to watch you open up every single gift, and I’ll even help make your ribbon bouquet hat. Bachelorette party? I’ll break out a cute little dress so we can go to whatever club you want to overpay for bottle service and to dance in a circle sipping vodka-clubs out of dick straws. And as for the actual big day? I am a fantastic wedding guest. I well up at the ceremony and the father-daughter dance, I gather large group shots for the photo booth, I mingle at the cocktail hour when it’s time to mingle, I listen and smile and laugh to the God-awful wonderful speeches, and I dance when it’s time to dance. Fucking hell, I even plop myself front and center for the bouquet toss.
The only thing that keeps me sane, that keeps me grounded, that keeps me smiling throughout all of it, is keeping little wedding season mental notes. Oh, you think this is for my own potential planning? No, no, I am not here to compete with anyone for “BEST WEDDING EVER!” I’m taking notes about who owes me what. And some people owe me BIG. I’m here to make sure that I am given my wedding season restitution.
Bridal Shower Reparations:
“They last for hours and they’re kind of shitty” is the biggest understatement of the century when it comes to bridal showers. Now, is it me, or is there always some sort of weird tension in the air at a bridal shower? Either one bridesmaid doesn’t like another or the groom’s mom is miffed that she didn’t get to invite all of her second cousins. Whatever it is, there is never enough alcohol around to subdue it, and in addition, you’re always stuck playing games to prove who knows the bride better. (Quick – what street did she grow up on? What was her childhood pet’s name? Where did she and her husband meet? You don’t know the answers; well, aren’t you a shitty friend!)
You have to stick around to the end (usually when all the booze is gone) so you can watch the bride (slowly) open all of her (ridiculously large) gifts and read every (sappy) card, while some poor bridesmaid scribbles down names and gifts. C’mon, people, we all know Bethany is Dyslexic, don’t make her do this job, just give her the bow-hat duty.
With that said, if you think that I am not having a bridal shower, you are sorely mistaken. In fact, at the top of the guest list to my bridal shower is every single bride whose shower I have gone to, and I don’t care if we haven’t spoken in seven years. There will be game after game after game to prove who knows me best — the really obnoxious ones, too. I plan on opening each present slowly and reading every goddamn word on every card at the pace of the kid from Billy Madison’s third-grade class. There will only be enough rum punch and appetizers for exactly ten people, so happy Hunger Games, friends. Can’t wait!
Bachelorette Party Quid-Pro-Quo:
Look, I love any excuse to get together with my friends and go out, but lately, some outrageous elements of bachelorette parties have now become the norm. I mean, shall I begin with the overabundance of dicks? Penis cake, penis lollipops, penis straws, penis necklaces, penis rings, penis games…Penis pretty much takes up a good portion of bachelorette parties.
Look, I’m not a prude, but there’s only so much dick one chick can take. Also, I would like to know which trust fund baby decided that destination bachelor and bachelorette parties were “the thing?” No, I am not talking, “Oh let’s hop in the car and drive three hours to _____ (destination that is fun/a decent car ride away).” I’m talking about the “Let’s hop three flights to go to St. Thomas/Vegas/France/Miami/Cabo/LA for the weekend.” First of all, no. Second, what in the actual fuck?
As honored and excited as I am to be included in the celebration, we have begun to go above and beyond here, ladies. I mean, no matter where we are, we’re going to squeal while we pop champagne and dance in a circle in our matching outfits. And that’s the last thing — why do we all have to wear the same exact fucking thing or have that one bridesmaid who dictates every aspect of an outfit? A couple of years ago, I, along with several other unsuspecting victims, was sent a bachelorette party itinerary from the maid of honor (which, yes, was planned down to the minute). It included the following details: “Pack your best little black dress, which MUST be strapless — it cannot be a halter! Also, no other heels in any color but black, skinny jeans (dark blue only), and a bathing suit in a dark color (black, dark blue, charcoal, etc).” I beg your fucking pardon? Is this recruitment week? Did I miss the memo? Why does one chick get to decide what I wear for 48 hours?
Again, you would be remiss if you think that any of the above would warrant me not having a bachelorette party. No, quite the opposite. At this rate, I am owed a trip on a luxury yacht for at least three months, so I hope everyone is saving up their PTO. We are going to dance every single night, so pack your little black dress, dark-hued bathing suit, and highest (read: sluttiest) heels. I am not paying for one single thing, and everyone must wear what is decided for them, penis jewelry (obviously) included.
I’ve been to some great weddings and then again, I’ve been to some that are just short of a catastrophe. From the invitation to the big day and the glorious hangover after, here’s what I have in mind for some people:
You will not get a plus one, and I will guilt the shit out of you for even thinking of not coming. You obviously will not be served any alcohol until cocktail hour begins, so, pack your flask, buckeroo. The ceremony will start and run fifteen minutes late, too, outside in the sun in summertime. No photos, please, only the real photographer, and I will tell my thirteen aunts to stare you down and take out your phone if needed. At the reception, you will be seated with absolutely no one that you know, while people that you do know are seated together, laughing, across the dance floor. You will sit through eight ten-minute long speeches about how wonderful I am and how much I mean to the speaker, during which the bar will be closed. The DJ will play absolutely none of the songs that you request.
Oh, and after attending my bridal shower and buying something big and expensive from my registry, and after paying for most of my bachelorette party, don’t even think about skimping on a wedding gift. I come from a large Irish family, and my dad, my uncles, and my cousins Marky, Ricky, Danny, Terry, Mikey, Davey, Timmy, Tommy, Joey, Robby, Johnny, and Brian will be told they can’t go to the bar until they’ve checked that every single person dropped a fat wedding card into the card box.
At the end of the night, there will be exactly one short bus that will serve as a shuttle, on which you will not get a seat — just awkwardly hunch over in the aisle for the duration of the ride, during which time someone around you will throw up. There will be a small after party in a hotel bar that has exactly one lazy-eyed bartender who can’t handle the crowd and takes too long to get drinks. You will lose any and all buzz you had, go to bed early, yet wake up with one of the worst hangovers of your life.
Call me spiteful, call me crazy, call me any other equivalent of either word, but after all of these years, I deserve a little reimbursement. I have four weddings to attend this year, which is more like twelve in girl years when factoring in all of the bridal showers, bachelorette parties, and actual nuptials themselves. It seems like whomever I talk to this year has a multitude of celebrations, too. So, whatever degree of distress you (and your wallet) are feeling, I would like to offer you not only my condolences but also the number one strategy that I have accrued throughout numerous seasons: take names and take notes. Also, always pack a flask..