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QUEL DÉSASTRE

An emotionally volatile supplicant offers freelance advice:

I just read on this wedding “etiquette” site that it’s not proper to bring a date to a wedding unless the invitation is addressed to you “and guest” or “plus one” or some other nonsense like that.

I must say…it’s rough enough flying solo through this crazy world.  Even rougher still force yourself to show up and celebrate someone finding what you want but have failed to acquire.  It’s like inviting a starving person to a banquet, not allowing them to eat and then looking down on them when they bust out a little granola bar.

My advice to couples getting married…suck it up, when you make your guest list assume that those poor pathetic little singles may need a little help in order to smile through all your bliss…let them have dates, lest they throw up on your shoes just as you two feed each other cake.

LISTEN:

No, no, no, no, no, no, no!  No!  Bad!

You have this all wrong and I don’t know how you even arrived at that conclusion.  Those conclusions.  Whatever.  Again –

LISTEN:

1) What’s the deal with all the quotation marks?  Etiquette isn’t something one puts in quotation marks, unless it is your take on it they’re describing.  Which is dreadful.

2) One doesn’t bring dates to a wedding.  One goes to a wedding to observe and celebrate a marriage ceremony.  It’s not a disco.  Usually.

3) “And guest” and “Plus one” do indeed belong in quotes, because it is unspeakably vulgar to invite someone to such an occasion without first being acquainted with them and learning their name.  This is not a god damned cocktail party, it’s a (frequently) God blessed marriage ceremony.  And even if it is a small, simple, civil service (say that three times), one only invites close friends and family.

And then I turn to the rest of your horror show.  I can’t fathom the unspeakable callousness and self-absorbed entitlement that makes you think that a wedding and reception should somehow take your failure to find a mate into account when setting the budget for itself.  I mean – do you hear yourself?  These people do not have unlimited funds, and they may have a huge family to take into account in the first place.  Your appalling metaphor notwithstanding, it isn’t up to you in the second to suggest that the price of your friendship and participation in this momentous event should be treated like they were handing out two-for-one tickets.

Now, we come to the heartless core of your dreadful demands – you can’t feel happy for other people getting married unless you are present with a pale simulacrum of the same thing.  You’d rather insist your friends absorb the expense of your own feelings of inadequacy as you hold hostage any celebration for their happiness.

Well, I won’t have it.  Your logic is flawed and your arguments are narcissistic.  Do you not have any friends in common with the engaged couple?  Can you not take some solace in their union by sharing your joy of it (not that you have any, clearly, but at least a false expression of it) with these friends?  Come to think of it, it wouldn’t surprise me if you were indeed friendless.

At this rate, I feel like I’m bargaining with a terrorist.  There’s no point.  You shouldn’t go to any weddings every again – you shouldn’t even be invited.  You wouldn’t know etiquette if it walked up and asked you politely for the time, so you don’t get to give the advice – I do.  So here goes.

If you receive a wedding invitation that says (shudder) “and guest” or “plus one” or whatever – fine.  Take a date.  They deserve it, and you deserve each other.

If you receive a wedding invitation that is addressed solely to you, then you must decline that invitation.  No one should have to put up with you during their wedding planning, and certainly not look at your sour face throughout the reception.  Especially at cake time.

And if you’re feeling queasy, you should just stay home.

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