Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Weddings: "I Do" For The Couple, Think Twice For All Others.

June and weddings will always be intertwined. June is indeed the month with the most weddings. Almost 11% of the annual weddings in the US occur in June. The June bride is such an iconic concept there is even a June Bride movie. So apparently June is a good month for a bride at a wedding. What about the rest of us?

There are 178 guests at a US wedding on average. Deducting the bride, groom and officiant leaves 175 people.  Some of these 175 have strong connections with the couple (parents, attendants, relatives, good friends). Many of these 175 have minimal connections with the couple (business associates, distant relatives, +1 of invitees).  All of these 175 have too much free time with little to do at a wedding.

Of those with strong conections to the couple, some will be asked to give a toast. Others may bring something to enrich the celebration with either meaning or humor. Be it toast or other, everyone will want their addition to be memorable. Most will succeed at making their add-on memorable, many for the wrong reason. Better to be forgotten than remembered for as a fool, jerk or other social misfit. Most of the wedding ceremonies and receptions are now videoed. There will be evidence. Rule of thumb:  If you have to consider the appropriateness of your words or actions, the answer is no. The day is about the BRIDE and groom, don't make it about you.

For those with minimal connections to the wedding couple, act as though you are the designated driver for everyone else at the wedding. Yes, it's boring but you will be happier tomorrow and the rest of your life. Really.

An addendum on the urban/apocryphal wisdom regarding the confluence of alcohol, bridesmaid and taffeta. Adults are responsible for their consumption and no one will blame you for assisting someone out of an overpriced, hideous dress. Remember to be compassionate. Even if she can't remember your name, make sure the rest is worth remembering. Also, if she doesn't remind you of the occasion, reciprocate the kindness.

Go to the wedding and have a great time. It's the beginning of a new life together for the married couple. Make sure people are willing to invite you out in public in the future.

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