I remember reading about a society wedding which was a cross between a Hollywood production and a Roman Orgy.
The guests were flown in on private planes, with a private plane strip designed just for such an occasion. They began to arrive several weeks before the wedding itself, so they could enjoy the various pre-wedding parties, very much in the way conference organizes entertain their attendees with trips and amusements in between the business sessions.
The wedding itself took place in the gently sloping grounds of a mansion sitting on the banks of a river with its own dock. The groom arrived on one boat. The bride on another, each boat disappearing as soon as they delivered their cargo. Stationed in the water, on some sort of hidden platform, was a whole orchestra, the music floating towards the bank were the guests chattered, while plied with champagne and nightingale tongues or whatever.
Reading about all the excesses, on one hand there might be a pang of envy of what some people can afford. Or self-righteous indignation about the starving millions, on the other.
While there are many couples who let themselves go when planning their wedding, there are others whose automatic response to the designing of their wedding day, includes the words, ‘We want it very simple’, which has a myriad of meanings – if only one could recognize them.
There’s the obvious one. We haven’t got the money. We don’t want to waste the money that we do have. We don’t want to show off in front of friends who aren’t as well off as we are. But worst off all, is the one, we’d love to do something spectacular, but we don’t know that we can pull it off.
People like Whitman and Emerson might talk about authenticity of action, and being oneself. In real life, being oneself is probably the hardest thing in the world to practice. Quite often we’re not only defeated by our fears of others, but our fears of own limitations.
If there’s one day in anyone’s life where people have the right to be authentic and as vulgarly themselves as they choose, it should be their wedding day. If there’s one time that they should try to allow themselves to be themselves, bad taste and all, it is the day that they’re vowing to trust another human being with their frailty and weaknesses. If you’d love to do something extremely bizarre, but think Auntie would have a fit, do it anyway.
Heard of a really vulgar, ostentatious, off the world wedding celebration recently? Take off your hat to people who don’t mind being their real warty selves.