We are rolling up to Friday and it has me thinking about how much I dread answering a few basic questions. All three are relatively harmless, in theory, but my anxiety increases exponentially at the moment of questioning (or worse at the anticipation of the moment of questioning example: Friday). Here’s why:
Dreaded Question #1 // What are you doing this weekend?
Ugh. More often than not I have absolutely no plans what-so-ever. Isn’t that what the weekends are all about anyway? Why do I have to be doing something all the time? My mind goes into a whirr as I desperately fish for something that sounds cool and realistic yet obscure enough to discourage further questioning. This is my #1 least favorite question because it comes around every freaking week. The ONLY good thing about working in retail was that everyone had such painfully inconsistent hours that the concept of a weekend was much like the concept of faith- the belief in something you can’t see or experience. In retail, you could just not show up on a Tuesday and nobody would care. Now I have, what some would deem, a ‘grown-up job’ and I have to show up to work at the same time during the week and then go live my crazy life to the fullest on the weekends. Well, hey Friday, between you and me, here is what I am doing over the next two days – it’s none of your damn business*
* code for nothing
Dreaded Question #2 // Don’t you just love wedding planning?
Here is the reality of wedding planning in 10 easy-to-understand steps:
1. Congratulations, you’re engaged. You are probably excited and want to tell the whole world! Facebook here you come… STOP. Little did you know that the order in which you tell people that you are engaged is a direct reflection of how much you love them. It doesn’t matter that your family lives across the country and it’s 2 in the morning there, you better just keep your lips buttoned until the sun rises. But I have roommates and they are going to want to know about the whole thing! Nope. It’s a slippery slope , my friend. Before you know it your taking photos and videos and advertising it to the whole damn planet. Long story short, the next morning your parents wake up to a ton of messages from everyone but you congratulating them for something they didn’t even know about. They have spent half their lives funding your existence and they sure as hell better hear it from your lips first. Period.
2. In your post-engagement bliss you are perusing websites to design your dream wedding and then it dawns on you, weddings are expensive! You look over at your new fiancé and realize that the cost of a slightly below average wedding would cost the sum total of your yearly income. Combined. Before taxes. Now, not only have your parents funded your existence this far, they also have to fork over another small fortune to pass you off to someone else.
3. Great! You have made it past the first money talk (yes, I said first). Now on to the next delicate and highly emotional topic: where should we do this thing? I want to get married barefoot on a tropical island! Wrong answer. Even if you followed the protocol thus far, unless you and your entire family live in Costa Rica, a destination wedding is the PC way to say, ‘we hope you can’t make it’!
4. Are we having fun yet? It’s dress time! You are going to spend approximately 10 hours as the center of attention in a heavy white dress. Here are the things you must ask yourself at the time of dress shopping:
Can I breathe in this?
Can I move in this?
Do I look fat in this?
Does this cover up the tattoo that I haven’t told anyone about?
Am I going to spend the entire evening pulling it up to my chin to prevent an unsightly marital nip-slip
Will anyone believe I am a virgin in this?
In photos, will I resemble a sophisticated and mature supermodel or an overinflated marshmallow?
If I were to hand this down to my imaginary children, would they actually want it?
You found the one that passes all these tests? Congratulations…….it’s $3,000.
5. You’re halfway there peach! You deserve a beer! Actually, better make that a water – you have to lose 10 lbs. to squeeze into your $3000 dress.
6. How many people do you care about in the world? Great, now triple that. This will be your guest list. FYI, EVERYONE will come.
7. Now it’s time to decide whether you want to make this a real party or a beer + wine kiddie hour. I’m sorry to be so brutally honest but people come for the booze. Trust me, everyone will be WAY happier for you both if they’re flying high on a healthy whiskey buzz. Still on the fence about a full bar? Let me put it this way: You are going to be in a room with your entire family for 6-10 hours straight. This isn’t like Thanksgiving where you can keep deferring the topic of conversation to Uncle Billy’s latest DUI scandal. This night is all about YOU and, trust me, everyone will want to talk to you about it.
8. Registry time! In the olden days, wedding gifts were intended to set the happy couple up for their long life together. The two would be moving in together after the wedding and sleeping(among other things) in the same bed for the very first time. Ok. Time to fast forward to the 21st century —> You have been living with your significant other and sharing a bed for years now (sorry Dad). You look around your studio apartment and realize that there is no room for any real furniture or appliances. No one in their right mind would come over to your hovel for a holiday meal and the prospect of a family is so far in the distant future that you cannot even fathom the idea. What do you do? Two words: honeymoon fund. Interpret that as you will.
9. Now that we are on the subject of gift giving, here is another shocking surprise. You have to give gifts to your guests! All of them? You ask. Yep. And none of that homemade terrarium crap. Your parents have important people coming.
10. If you have reached this 10th step without calling the whole thing off, yippie! You both might actually survive this marriage thing! Last, but certainly not least, you have to sum up the way you feel about your fiancé in a series of words that you must speak in front of everybody. Here is the criteria for a decent set of vows:
A good set of vows must be:
The perfect length: Too long= no one cares they just want cocktail hour // Too short= that’s it? (everyone silently judges the strength of your bond)
Funny … but not too funny: We get it, you guys are adorably in love, enough already.
Your own words: Don’t even think about reading a passage from Psalms. If we wanted to hear someone regurgitate someone else’s ideas we would have gone back to college.
Realistic: Everybody can tell if your brilliant friend wrote your vows for you. Remember, you are in front of your whole family – they know you don’t know what ‘ebullient’ means.
Final Dreaded Question // Want to split something?
I am wrestling with how to start this one. I can already feel the sad sandwich welling up in my chest. Ok, I live to eat. The whole idea of splitting something goes against everything I believe in. When splitting an item with someone, you not only get less food but also cut the variety of your culinary experience in half. Do I want to pasta carbonara or the filet? Doesn’t matter because whatever I get will be the other (less satisfying) half of the thing you get. There will be none of the playful tasting of each other’s dishes. I know what yours tastes like. It tastes exactly like mine. The best case scenario is that you get to leave moderately less hungry than when you came in. I don’t think of myself as a particularly selfish person, but when it comes to my food, I turn into the three year old at the grocery store stamping her feet and screaming through a mask of salty tears, “ I want the whole thing! I don’t want to share with anybody!” There is no need to cause a scene, dear friend that I am sharing a meal with, let’s just split the check.