Ann Althouse is getting married. She evidently started interacting with one of her regular commenters, and got to know him - and they are a gettin' hitched. Pretty cool if you ask me.
She is blogging about certain parts of the wedding and asks the interesting question of how you would celebrate your 2nd wedding. Both Ann and her mate have been previously married.
The comments in that post have a wide range of responses (predictably) but a few got me to thinking. The ones in particular that got my mind to dust off some memories were ones bashing modern day weddings and receptions. I couldn't agree more. Most of them are very expensive, and if the parents of the bride and groom can't puke out for some of the cost, the (un)lucky couple gets to start out their life in wedded bliss with a big fat credit card bill. Yikes.
My wife and I only had to deal with part of that bill, since we skipped the wedding. We eloped to New Orleans and had the time of our lives. We used to go back every year for our anniversary until my wife got herself pregnant (twice!). The times we had there. Whoa.
Oh yea, when we got back we found out that we weren't legally married. But how? The Louisiana marriage license required two witnesses that were not the pastor. So we had the photographer as one, and forgot to get another. Truth is, there wasn't anyone else there. So we mailed it back to the company that we procured our horse drawn carriage from, they found the driver and he signed it and sent it back! We "lubed" this process by attaching a $50 to our begging letter. In New Orleans, money talks, and bullsh1t walks.
Anyway, we had a nice party when we got back for everyone (I think the parents puked up for most of that cost) but it was still much less costly than most weddings/receptions, and we had a great time. I am fairly certain that nobody who attended could remember what we ate, the songs that were played, or any of that other crap that seems important at the time, but really isn't in the big picture.
I honestly hope that both of my daughters do the same thing as I don't want to deal with all of the theater of planning (and paying for!) weddings. Then again, I am the type of guy that will just tell everyone to leave me alone and just tell me when and where to show up...I will bring the checkbook, I promise.
To go off on a tangent, I should tell you about the very worst wedding I ever attended. It was here in Madison, and was before we had kids. It was at a house in the country, and they had their animals in the wedding party (a horse and a dog, I believe). The wedding and reception party were at this house, using the garage as the buffet area. For dinner they had set up their own buffet, all Hormel products (beenie weenie, stew, etc) simmering away in Nesco ovens. Horrific. Why the Hormel? The whole family came down from Minnesota where they worked at Hormel plants. I don't remember if I ate there or not. I probably did to be polite.
But looking back, maybe they were the smart ones - they saved a boatload of money on that little horrific bash. And there is a possibility that they or their parents just didn't have any cash. And I can't make fun of anyone for that.