About a month or so ago, my boyfriend of 9 years decided to go all official on me and asked me to marry him. And thus began my weird life as an Officially Engaged Person.
Let me start by saying this: I am not a wedding person. While I understand that for many people, a wedding day is a huge deal and a big celebration that they are willing to spend a lot of time and money on, and if that's your thing, good on you, I have never, in my life, dreamed about my wedding day. I may have dreamed about a giant Carvel Fudgie the Whale cake with "A Whale of a Wedding" scrawled on it, but that's about it.
Popular culture is currently filled with Wedding Mania: on any given Saturday, you can probably find at least 800 wedding shows dealing with everything from finding the perfect dress to throwing the perfect reception. Weddings have become a serious business: the average American couple spends at least $28,082 on a single day of celebrating, though one wonders if the economy tanking will finally put an end to such spending. But perhaps the worst part of Wedding Mania is that the true meaning of getting married gets lost.
For example: as soon as I started telling people I was engaged, they had two reactions: 1. "Let me see the ring!" and 2. "Have you set a date yet?!" I understand that these are the standard responses, though my boyfriend, er, fiance, was greeted by "Oh hey, awesome. Congrats," by comparison. For being an Officially Engaged Person of female variety, apparently, means that you're suddenly a walking date book and advertisement for a jewelry store. No longer are you Hortense, girl on the go! No! You're "bride-to-be, who has a big party to plan!" To which I say this: Fuck. That. Noise.
You heard me! Fuck that noise! For one thing, my engagement ring was a Cherry Ring Pop, which, btw, was what I said I wanted nine years ago in a random conversation with my now fiance, who remembered. No, he didn't go to Jared, ok? He went to the candy store. And for that, he rules your face.
Secondly, we DON'T have a date. Because we are busy, and we have lives, and we have only been engaged for a month and we don't feel like planning anything yet. And if we don't end up eloping, which we may, due to this insane pressure to plan plan plan that has suddenly been placed upon us by previously sane friends and family, we're going to throw a wedding/party our way. There will not be fancy invitations. There won't be Save the Date magnets. We're not posing for a couple's portrait at Sears, Mom, because we would NEVER pose for a couple's portrait, EVER, so please stop asking.
All I'm saying is, world, for some Officially Engaged People, the world does not revolve around our upcoming nuptials. Yes, we're excited. And we're happy that you're excited too. But some of us just want to do things our way. We go to your weddings and enjoy the open bar and celebrate your love in the way you've planned it out, so just let us do our own thing, okay? I know that weddings are mass-marketed, and there are expectations placed upon us that society thinks we need to meet, and I am not dumping on people who are really in love and celebrate it in the traditional way, like my older sister did and my younger sister plans to do because that's your thing and it's awesome, and your weddings were and will be fun and beautiful, but for fuck's sake, universe, some of us just don't feel like picking out table settings or touring country clubs or meeting with florists. What is an exciting time of planning and sharing for some couples is a total drag for others, dig?
I am still a go for that Fudgie the Whale cake though. Because that's just classy.