Weddings are good.
The actual planning of a wedding, not so much at least if you are a guy like me.
Before I go on my little tirade I need to make one thing clear: I am absolutely thrilled to be getting married in June. Somehow I have convinced a woman far above my standards to spend the rest of her life with me. It was an absolute magic act on my part and I still have a couple months to screw it up (can you hear me knocking on wood)?
That being said, there are a few problems with the event itself.
Most women spend a large portion of their young lives dreaming of and planning for their special day. And while they are dressing up Barbie for her nuptials with Ken, us boys are outside dropping atomic elbows on each other in the dirt.
There is a bit of a disconnect there.
To me, a wedding is a $20,000 excuse for a woman to play dress up and be the center of attention for 12 hours. If you think about it rationally for five minutes, it does not make a lot of sense.
If two people really love each other and want to get married, dropping 20 grand on a tea party is not going to make or break that union. I would rather go to the courthouse, sign a piece of paper and be done with it.
And do we really need to spend $300 on
invitations? Wouldn't a mass e-mail work just the same? Or a won't-you-please-come-to-our-wedding text message?
And is it absolutely necessary to spend hours and hours analyzing which vegetable side - green beans or broccoli - will go best with the chicken marsala?
These are the things I think about when I am sitting in a florist's office, listening to my fiancee debate the merits of using lilies over orchids.
It is not that I don't care about the details of our wedding, because I do. I just did not grow up fantasizing about what color scheme I would use for my groom's men's tuxedos.
And while the gifts are fantastic, I was bummed when my fiancee told me I could not register for a Playstation 3. Registering for a $300 knife set and a $70 toaster is OK, but heaven forbid I ask for Killzone 2.
My other gripe deals with the minuscule amount of weight my opinion carries when choosing what goes into our wedding. In other words, I have an opinion, but it does not matter.
For instance, I remember sitting beside my fiancee some months ago in the office of a place we were considering for our reception. To the right of my fiancee sat her mother and two sisters, all of whom had opinions and expressed them with an intensity and enthusiasm I was entirely unable to match.
Meanwhile, I was quietly trying to stay engaged in the conversation, but was struggling to understand the finer details of what constitutes an acceptable centerpiece.
Eventually, my fiancee turned to me and asked, "what do you think about the seat covers?"
The blank stare on my face gave away the fact that I did not know the difference between a cloth chair cover and a satin one (other than the satin ones would cost around $150 more).
Price is the detail I focused on when I revealed my answer: the cloth one.
My fiancee said, "interesting idea," then turned around and said, "we'll go with the satin."
This, more or less, is how all of the meetings went.
Now can you see why I hold the view I do about weddings?
Again, I am thrilled to be getting married. The end result is exactly what I want to be legally linked to the woman I love and want to spend the rest of my life with. I just wonder why the planning part can't be more enjoyable for the man.
Then again, I am an idiot. Please forgive me.
(Craig Haupert is a sports writer for The Minot Daily News. He can be reached by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org)