Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Us and Them(es)

This is not a thing we're doing for at least three distinct reasons.

As I said in my wedding FAQ's, I've been asked this question more than once:

Q: You're getting married? Congratulations! What's your theme?

A: Oh, you know, marriage.

More detailed A: Our wedding will be straight from the Book of Common Prayer, hopefully with a little music by friends, and there will be snacks. By the end of it, we'll be married.

People* who haven't recently spent time flipping through wedding magazines and blogs** might be unaware, but all the cool weddings these days have themes. Not explorations of timeless ideas and universal questions, like in literature; more like pervasive motifs, like in amusement parks and children's birthday parties.

Some people manage to have a theme in an un-obnoxious way. Here are an Amelie wedding and an Up wedding that pull it off sweetly. My brother and sister-in-law also rocked an Alice in Wonderland theme for their reception (after a BCP ceremony). Those are fun to go to, but they don't suit Blade and me. Also, these weddings are unusually labor-intensive, and, as Lisa puts it, I react to wedding chores the way Harry Potter characters react to Dementors.

And let's not forget that wedding themes often veer into crazy: How about a Star Wars wedding? Or a pirate theatrical classic rock wedding? (Both of these weddings were recently posted on Offbeat Bride, where a staggering number of weddings feature a TARDIS.)

People obviously put loads of care into themed weddings, but, at least from the pictures, many of these events seem less about sacrament and more about entertainment.

I wonder if this trend toward themes is a reaction against being told What Is Expected for a Proper Wedding over and over by (mostly) well-meaning friends and family from the moment you get engaged. I respond to that pressure by delegating to someone more useful than I am, just before I curl into a fetal position. I'm lucky that the people whose opinions matter most to me also like laid back, simple things.

*This is most people, right? I hope and pray that it is most people.
**Most of which are designed to make you insane.


rhondak said...

Thomas,Amanda and I think that a Muppet theme is still a viable option. Miss Piggy is the maid of honor (sorry Lauren and Sharayah), Kermit is the best man (sorry Steve and Duke), Swedish Chef or Beaker is the priest and Animal is your musician. And of course Statler and Waldorf will object at the appropriate time! It would be fun!

thehindenburg said...

I completely agree with all of your reasonings and fully support it. However, that cake is still awesome.

Sarah said...

Thanks for putting into words what's been vaguely troubling to me for a while.

I admire your determination to resist the strong temptation to have a TARDIS at your wedding.