10/26/2006

When I am King: Wedding Time

When I am King...

Marriage cermonies will be 2 minutes, tops.

I never understand why most weddings are so long; nobody is actually learning anything new in the process (except those new to the experience, who are learning that they don't want to do this again). Chances are, everyone knows that the couple is going to get married; the wedding invitation is a dead giveaway. So it's not like there's a surprise ending in store. There may be some that go to weddings with the same morbid desire that drives them to watch long car races; for the fiery crashes. But the odds are pretty poor that anything unpredictable will happen in most weddings.

The happy couple is changing their entire life (for better or worse), they have all of their friends and family in the world gathered around, they've got a party waiting on them to start ... and they opt for spending an hour listening to speeches by people in robes. And these aren't new speeches; these are the same words used in every Sunday sermon, for the last, oh, 2,000 years.

I've been working on a template for faster weddings. It goes something like this:

Marriage-Performer [looks at bride]: You?
Bride: Yes
Marriage-Performer [looks at groom]: And you?
Groom: Sure
Marriage-Performer [looks at both]: Done


(Rings, kisses, fond looks, and recriminations can be exchanged later)

So why do people have weddings that take so darned long?

Is it revenge for all the weddings they've had to attend?

Or just bad scheduling? I can picture the groom saying, “Dang! The Vet's hall doesn't open until 5:00. Let's hang out here a while and see what that guy in white has to say.”

Or maybe it's a money thing, like they need to justify the enormous volume of cash they've just poured down the drain of their love life. They just want to spread the cost out over more time. But that's like a wanting some horribly painful terminal disease to last longer to justify the exhorbitant treatment costs.

It's okay to spread the celebration out. But that's what the party is for. Don't waste the time sitting in the flowery room of heart-felt guilt. Or at least make attendance optional:

“Marriage will be from 2:00 - 3:00. Party will start at 2:03.”


Until my imminent ascension, weddings will probably continue to be too long. I would suggest,
then, that instead of calling the whole middle section a Mass, we should call it a Wake. This will handle the situation where someone in the audience has died waiting for the thing to end.
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