MTV Is Getting Grosser

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While I’m extremely pleased I didn’t discover the below-pictured mess of a reality show casting call myself (someone on Facebook alerted me), my relief that I’m still on the outside of the wedding industry wasn’t enough to temper the recoiling disgust I felt when I read this abortion of a flier. (Seriously, how did this production team manage to find a graphic designer whose sole inspiration was the inside of a ’90s junior high school kid’s Trapper Keeper?)

ImageI mean, really, aren’t there enough of these shows on television already that propagate the worst of humanity in wedding form? Do we really need one more curly-qued dump of a series attempting to portray bad behavior as normal? No. No we don’t.

We’ve already got TLC’s Say Yes to the Dress, the sole goal of which seems to be assuring people that it’s OK to go into debt to look like a tub of Crisco-based frosting (gross) on their wedding day.

Then, of course, there’s Four Weddings, another The Learning Channel (lol…) cess pool that pits brides against each other to see whose wedding trumps them all. Who cares about the meaning of marriage, after all, let’s reward the bride who spent the most on her rhinestone centerpieces!

And I’d be remiss not to include Bridezillas, although I can’t comment on this one too much. This show’s so terrible, that even I, a snarky wedding blogger, refuse to watch it. It’s too heartbreaking to make fun of.

Alas, judging from that above Lisa-Frank-#fail flier, Music TV (aka MTV, and all its off-topic, ungrammatical glory) is hoping to get in on the action: “Are you the Maid of Honor for your BFF’s wedding and you have to do EVERYTHING including hiding issues from the bride to keep her happy and worry-free?” (Dear MTV, ever heard of setting apart a non-essential clause with a pair of commas? No? Explains a lot.)

It also explains a lot that participants in this DOCU-SERIES (which means it’ll be MOSTLY STAGED) must be under 26 years old. And probably frequent users of the phrase “BFF,” which means they’re probably gonna cast children. Which means they’re probably gonna cast children who don’t really get the meaning of marriage. Which means this show is letting the terrorists win.

When can I stop wedding blogging again? Seventeen days? Sorted. This shit is getting depressing…

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When You’re Too Busy to Blog About Wedding Planning Because You’re Too Busy Planning a Wedding

Yeah. Blogging about wedding planning > planning an actual wedding. Because worrying about your readership stats is much less intense than freaking out about—WHOOPS!—you and your fiance forgetting to APPLY FOR A MARRIAGE LICENSE.

A-derp-a-derp.

Seriously. Note to those near the beginning of their wedding planning catabasis: do the logistical shit as early as you can. Like, once you figure out what state/county/city/whatever you’re gonna wed in, don’t sleep on the paperwork. Save yourself the last minute panic.

Luckily, we’re told (by the Internet) that we can just show up at the courthouse and they can get us this document within 48 hours.

Bullet dodged.

Because, really, how embarrassing would it be to have a $25,000 wedding (yup… that’s about what we’re spendin’ because, apparently, we’re completely average) and not even be legally married at the end of it?

Other than that, we’re doing pretty well. I managed to find a printer to print 100 copies of our most righteous and spectacular wedding menu for under $30, and we had the venue walk-through with our lifesaving wedding day-of coordinator, who is more on top of things than sprinkles on a cupcake. Our caterer also made an appearance (she’s rad, if you’re wondering), and helped us finalize our table arrangements, as well as this aforementioned “most righteous and spectacular wedding menu.” See?

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I wasn’t kidding.

And the decor? Well, I went to three Goodwills and found a bunch of $1 vases and old milk jugs in which I plan to stick $5 to $7 bouquets of grocery store flowers the day before. I’ve decided that my bouquet will also be a grocery store bouquet, but paired down to something that doesn’t look obnoxiously large. I’m not into bouquets bigger than my face. Or anything that looks like it might eat me…

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And so… the countdown continues. 20 days? Pfft.

Sorry, But You Can’t Un-See This, Vol. X

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Hey girl, I found this cake that looks like a hamburger that tastes like a cake that looks like a hamburger at Whole Foods. And I bought it, obviously (and brought it to a barbecue like a boss.) Unfortunately, it was not good. It tasted like it may have been made with beef stock. Just sayin’. In any case, there goes my wedding cake plans! (JKJKJKJK. I’m not having a cake.)

Divvying Up the Duties: How the Hell to Buy the Wedding Bands

If you’ve ever planned a wedding before, you probably understand  why the job of “wedding planner” exists. This shit is a fulltime job. And not one that I—or my fiance—necessarily wants (or has time for). Alas, because our budget is tight (yes, at around $20,000, THE BUDGET IS CONSIDERED TIGHT IN WEDDINGLAND), we’re being forced to do most of the planning ourselves. Our one luxury, as I pleaded for earlier, is hiring a day-of coordinator, so we don’t have to do manual labor between our vows. (By the way, the coordinator is the best $800 we’ve spent so far.)

But whatever, wedding planners and such aren’t what this post is supposed to be about. No, after that long, rambling and, rather, unskillful introduction, what I really want to talk about are the wedding rings, and more specifically, who’s supposed to pick them out and buy them?

Engagement ring “rules,” no matter how dumb, are a little more straightforward. Tradition says the person proposing should take care of that duty (and expense). But since we kinda bucked tradition on that (we saved some bones and used an heirloom ring I already had that belonged to my grandma), we decided to scoff once again at tradition in this case.

According to my three minutes of intense Google searching, it seems you’re supposed to purchase one another’s band. I don’t really get it. Technically, I suppose, wedding bands are “gifts,” but what if you both have dramatically different bank accounts? Or taste levels? What if one of you is a Kardashian? (Worst. Wedding band. Ever.) I dunno, it just seemed to us that the easiest, most fair and straightforward solution was to each just buy ourselves what we like, whatever we could imagine wearing each day for the rest of our lives.

And, come on, who really has time to send each other multiple links about what he or she likes or worse, spend an afternoon wasting precious wedding-planning (or not) time jewelry-store hopping? That sounds like a nightmare.

So instead, we did what living in the 21st century allows us to do and purchased our baubles online, without a whole lot of consultation with one another. So, no, our rings don’t match. In fact, they barely even coordinate. But really, who cares? We don’t wear the same style and size of pants, so why would we wear the same jewelry?

He chose a pretty basic 14k white gold 4mm band with a satin finish that he found on some random site called iWeddingBand.com. It cost him somewhere around $200.

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I, on the other hand (LITERALLY, get it?!), went for something slightly less classic (and a little more expensive at $300). Unlike him, I also spent a little more time (maybe, like, 20 minutes instead of 10) Googling some options. Eventually, I scoped out an independent Brooklyn-based jeweler named Aaron Ruff, who designs under the moniker Digby & Iona. You’ll have to use your imagination to picture this in polished 14k white gold, instead of rose:

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You like? You don’t have to answer that because we really don’t care if anyone likes these or not. In fact, we barely care if each other likes them, as long as whoever’s wearing ’em likes ’em because, again, it’s not the bling that makes a wedding wonderful, it’s the sentiment. And the dranks.

Just in Case You’re Interested (I’m Not)

Mostly because I’m so over wedding planning right now.

But, for those just beginning, who haven’t become more jaded than a precious Japanese gem, Gilt is currently having a “Wedding Event,” a flash sale where you can purchase dresses (mostly ugly ones, but, yanno, it’s for a wedding), as well as…um… a whole wedding?

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Just in case you feel comfortable purchasing something sight unseen for $44,000 online. GOOD LUCK WITH THAT!

 

Sorry, But You Can’t Un-See This IX

If you like the Internet but don’t like to read, Buzzfeed is where it’s at. (This blog, obviously, is not. I LOVE WORDS!)

In any case, Buzzfeed’s latest post also happens to be its greatest, at least in this blog’s opinion anyway. Presenting: 14 Engagement Photos That Will Make You Happy You’re Single. Or if you’re not single, happy that you didn’t drop money on corny/frightening/WTF?!-y engagement photos. For realz.

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TILL DEATH DO US PART. BWAHAHAHAHAHAHA!

And that’s just the first one. There are so many more…

One Month Out. Panic.

Although I probably shouldn’t write this, knowing a surprising amount of people I know in real life read this blog, I can’t help myself. I blog. That’s what I do. And panic. Yes, I blog and I panic. Or maybe that’s the other way around.

Yes, friends, both e- and IRL, it’s crunk (<— that’s a typo, but I like it better than “crunch,” which is what I meant to type, so it stays) time and the thought of all the remaining nitty-gritty that needs to be done is literally making me physically ill. One of the biggest, albeit insignifcant-in-the-grand-scheme-of-things concerns now is figuring out how to decorate the venue we chose (a national park) that doesn’t allow nails, tape or anything else that could remotely harm the interior of structure. So… what the fuck is one to do?

Well, the easiest option, of course, is nothing. Unfortunately, that’s not the most visually appealing.

And so… I can’t believe I’m about to type this… I’m zeroing in on… seriously, I can’t believe I’m about to type this… balloons. Yes, bitches, balloons. Filled with helium and weighted down with sand, these air-filled orbs sound like a simplest solution for our decor problem. Unfortunately, at first thought, they also seem like the tackiest. I mean, look at this mess:

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May 12, 2001, was a dark day in history, indeed.

Alas, just because the medium lends itself to horrendousness, doesn’t mean it can’t be tamed. After all, television airs both “Here Comes Honey Boo Boo” and “Mad Men.” One of those things is clearly more tasteful, and less embarrassing to admit you watch than the other.

While my dream balloon decor would obviously be AN EXPLODING BALLOON WALL (the definition of elegance), I’m pretty sure in a structure that doesn’t even allow masking tape, anything with the word “exploding” in the title probably wouldn’t fly. And so, we may just have to settle for oversized hipster balloons. DON’T JUDGE ME.

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Except I won’t be buying these ones since they’re, like, $65 apiece.

JUST KIDDING. I’m totally going to get two of those. Hell, it’s under two wedding dollars. Sounds like a goddamn steal to me right now.

Wedding Dollars vs. Real Dollars

Screen shot 2013-04-19 at 11.24.29 AMWeddings are expensive. And the fact that a $10,000 wedding (I repeat, TEN THOUSAND DOLLARS) is looked at as “a challenge,” at least in the wedding industry, speaks to that. (Careful: that link will send you to an article on The Knot.)

*sigh*

Alas, there are really only two ways to get over (read: solve) this problem: 1) be rich as hell; or 2) stop caring. So, until our cat wins the lotto, my fiance and I will pretty much fall into the latter category. And while that certainly sounds irresponsible (and it certainly can be, as I’m sure we’ll find out), our reasoning goes like this:

We’re only getting married once (at least to each other… JKJKJK, I mean ever, ’cause we’ll be together till the end of time, duh), so it’s worth it to us to pay cash credit money for the things we truly want at our wedding—for those items that will meaningfully make our day better.

Our particular list includes great food and drank, a talented photographer, an officiant who can both legally marry us (I mean, really, that’s the point, right?) and also, we believe, make our ceremony enjoyable for both us and our guests, a day-of planner so I don’t have to sweat through my silk chiffon, a DJ who knows what he’s doing, and probably some other stuff that we haven’t even thought about yet.

Obviously, though, we‘re not insane we have credit limits, so we’ve put some sorta cap on our budget… or more truthfully, probably, our tastes did. I’ll admit, it really helped out our economic situation that neither of us envisioned one billion long-stemmed roses, expensive silk tapestries or anything that’s shiny and goes by the name of Swarovski at our soiree, thus, we won’t be needing to pay for those expensive things. So, when we note our decor budget is “as cheap as possible,” we actually don’t really see that as a sacrifice.

But even if we did, cutting down a decor budget or dress budget or any budget won’t make a $25,000 wedding a $5,000 wedding, especially in an East Coast urban city. Them’s just the depressing monetary breaks. And most definitely, we both experienced sticker shock. These costs are hard; they present to us several moral conundrums; they make us angry; and now they’re making us very poor.

On the bright side, once we threw down that first $10K in payments (YUP, I JUST SAID THAT), the initial shock and awe of how much everything was costing started to wear off and something very weird began to happen… Our perspective went from “ZOMFG WHAT ARE WE DOING?!” to “Meh, whatever.” I can’t even pinpoint when exactly this shift happened, but somehow our minds began to subconsciously rationalize these costs. It’s almost like we got used to talking about these gigantic sums of money that our entire perspective changed. Like, now we think about money in terms of “wedding dollars,” where $100 real dollars equals $1 wedding dollar.

Let me tell you, this is dangerous.

This shift makes me feel like a cumulonimbus cloud: all I wanna do is make it rain. Everywhere. For instance, that $100 pair of grey and neon yellow Topsiders I’ve had my eye on? That’s, like, what… one wedding dollar? Pfft. I’ll take ’em! (And I did. And I listened to Vampire Weekend immediately after the purchase.)

Or how about that extensive honeymoon we were going to put off until our first anniversary, when, you know, we paid off our debts like responsible adults. The one with the $1,200 plane tickets (a piece)?

“Oh, that’s just 24 wedding bucks. We’ll take ’em!” (Although, I think after planning a fucking wedding in America, these two dozen wedding dollars are most definitely worth it.)

Yes, be prepared for a perspective change on your cash flow once you get into the depths of wedding planning. But be careful. I’ve had to stop myself from making several frivolous purchases over the last couple of weeks, like a… $10,000 couch. (I can’t even believe I just wrote that.) I mean… it’s just 100 wedding dollars, right? That sounds like a deal to me. Thankfully, though, I still realize it’s one thing to be poor temporarily because of a wedding; it’s another to be poor for life. After all, what fun is a nice couch if you can’t afford the house you’d like to put it in? Houses are, like, thousands of wedding dollars, people.

Giving Up: The Key to Wedding Planning

Well, it’s happened. As we’re now nearing the one-month-away mark from ye olde wedding, I think I’ve reached my limit. And so, I’m giving up.

I need help.

And I mean that both physically (these fucking stupid table centerpieces aren’t going to DIY themselves) and mentally (I CAN NO LONGER TAKE IT!). Of course, in my case, considering the wedding is pretty simple, it’s not even just about that. If the wedding was the only thing I needed to worry about right now, then I feel like my life would be pretty easy. “Sure, I’ll scour every thrift shop in town to find 10 of the exact right vintage-seeming vases to arrange my sustainably grown tulips in myself, NBD!” I’d say. But alas, I managed to sign my self up for about a gazillion new life milestones at the same time as this one:

1) Bought a house like an idiot!

2) Decided to do major construction on it like a moron!

3) Shit! Gotta move into said new house now!

4) Managed to get a promotion and work like a, well, like a boss. (Is there such a thing as a bad time for a promotion?)

In any case, as of now, I feel like caring about what crap comprises my wedding decor is should be the last thing on my mind. (My mind is small and can only hold so much.)

And so, fuck it. I’m giving up. No, I’m not going to put any of the above on hold, instead, I’ll do what growing up in America’s taught me: I’ll solve my conundrum by throwing money at it. (Did you catch that life lesson, kids?) Which means I’m officially in the market for a wedding planner. Anyone know anyone who would get my aesthetic? If so, get at me via email and soon ’cause… things is gettin’ desperate and I’m about to lose mah mind. Although, thankfully, it’s not as bad as Yves Saint Laurent’s breakdown in the ’60. He went so mad he thought this condom of a wedding dress was somehow a good idea…

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On Making Sure Your Guests Have a Good Time

Weddings are kind of like graduation ceremonies. Or double dates (when you’re the double.) It’s easy to feel like you’re not doing these things for yourself, but for other people. Which is not actually a bad thing. Why not let your parents feel proud of you and think that a degree in Russian from a liberal arts college actually might mean something? Why not help a friend out and help her decide if that guy from eHarmony is actually a serial killer? And why not make sure your wedding guests, many of whom are traveling from far and wide, have a good time whilst seeing you wed your life partner?

Sure, you want to have a good time, too, but isn’t part of the joy making sure your guests are enjoying themselves?

And against all stereotypes, apparently, ex-sk8r boi lover Avril Lavigne and her future hubby, that douchey-looking dude from, um, Nickelback, also understand that.

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Phew. Guests dodged a bullet on that one!

(Happy Friday, erryone. I’ve been largely absent from the blog this week ’cause my mom was having some major surgery. But don’t worry: she’s good, out of the hospital and will be in ship-shape by the time I also decide not to sing at my wedding.)