Wednesday, July 16, 2008

The Industry of Wedded Bliss

Allright, this is going to piss some people off, and I'm ok with that. I want to talk about modern weddings and why I think they're not only a horrible idea, but flat-out dumb. Our society has always had an industry based on making money from them, but it seems like the past few years they've really been shoving it down our throats. The average cost of a wedding in 2005?

27,000 dollars.

I'm sorry, but doesn't anyone else find that fucking insane? Not to sound cheesy, but couldn't a celebration of "true love" be What's wrong with having a backyard reception with a potluck provided by guests? You know, instead of asking for 500$ sheets or something equally selfish that's going to put more financial burden on your guests. Do the prices of gifts on the registry directly correlate to the cost of the reception? That's pretty selfish too actually, sort of the mentality that "If I'm spending 30 grand on a wedding to entertain people (40% of which probably don't even want to be there), I should get something out of it".

So that's just the cost of weddings, I haven't even gotten into the physically superficial aspect of it. How many women do you know have attempted to lose weight to fit an overpriced dress they definitely didn't need? I don't think as individuals they can be blamed, not with the onslaught of cable shows focusing on this very aspect. As anyone who knows me might understand, I have a very, very high tolerance for trashy TV. In fact, I sort of thrive on it, but there are a few shows that have me frantically scrambling for the remote every time they come on. Ever heard of the program "Bulging Brides"?

Well, here is a synopsis directly from the show's website:

"Bulging Brides is a fast-paced, action-packed television series that exposes a bride’s desperate struggle to drop unwanted inches so that she can look picture perfect on her wedding day... Racked by tension from the bridal arrangements and petrified by the thought of looking chunky on her big day, the bride-to-be has turned to the Dream Team as a last resort to lose her flab and look breathtaking in her gown."

If you think that's sad, just wait for the screencap of the "fattie" in question:

Oh my eyes! Her non-existent flub is making me nauseated. Instead of being so focused on looking "picture perfect" on her wedding day (Hello photoshop?) you'd think they'd be more focused on actually staying married (insert commonly used rising divorce rate statistic here).

This just makes me so sad, for like, the world. Or feminism. Or whatever.

One of my favorite sites, Jezebel, linked to a video series called Target Women, done by the very funny Sarah Haskins. She takes on media and advertisements focused at woman in general. Specifically: Botox, yogurt that makes you poop (cuz you're fat silly ladies, yogurt is the new laxative!) and wedding shows like the infamous "Bulging Brides".

Maybe I'm not buying into this because I don't actually want to get married, like ever. Or maybe I'm not buying into it because I'm so sick of images and messages regarding womens never-good-enough appearances, wedding-related or not. I realize I'm not alone in this, but I can't help that notice how many smart, educated and confident women not only buying into it, but loving it.

Case in point; Wedding Movies.

Just a few listed below. Most of which I've actually never seen, so if the movie is actually good and is not made to make single gals feel desperate, married gals feel lonely and normal gals feel fat, please let me know.

27 Dresses

Tagline: This January, always a bridesmaid, never a bride.

The Wedding Date

Tagline: Love doesn't come cheap.

The Wedding Planner

Tagline: His big day is her big problem.

My Best Friends Wedding

Tagline: A comedy about finding your heart and losing your head.

Allright I'm going to stop there because I'm actually boring myself, and yes, I've left off Wedding Singer because it's an awesome movie. Now I'm going to go eat some yogurt and dream of someday acheiving happiness via debt-laden weddings, a smooth wrinkle free face and predictable rom-com wedding movies.


Jackie Neher said...

Aw yes... the wedding debate. Not only is the money completely ridiculous... but the divorce rate itself is enough for people to shy away... the fact that so many people now come from so-called "broken homes" also contributes to a major reason for the non-marriage types... I agree with you on so many levels about the ridiculousness of it...

But being recently married I just want to share my views on marriage and such.... I'm extremely lucky to come from a family that has parents that have been HAPPILY married for 30 years. This is a feat in itself... I have seen very hard times and I saw fighting, but they always make it through. I believe marriage is a very special thing in this absolutely crazy sad world now that has so much hate, fear, and chaos. If two people want to vow to love each other for the rest of their lives, I think that is such a wonderful thing, and it should be given everyone's FULL Love and support. Why are so many people scoffing at the idea of marriage when it represents so many wonderful morals and values that seem to be so severely lacking in society today...

But as for the wedding industry... as a wedding planner I'm hoping to capitalize on people's ridiculous spending sprees that they seem to feel they need to do in order to show off their big day... and I am a victim to it as well... I will defend that nothing is fricking cheap anymore either... but I did "need" the chair covers, beautiful flowers, elegant room... I didn't think I'd want to have all of that... but I did... I got sucked in by the industry... do I regret my day at all though - NO. I was happy to have celebrated my marriage with our friends and families and to have a great party that we'll remember forever.

Yes I am a sappy hopeless romantic...