Belfast Telegraph

Tuesday 23 September 2014

Bridezillas, I now pronounce you the bane of my life

A newlywed Canadian couple have slammed one of their guests for giving them a hamper filled with fun treats, rather than cash as their wedding gift.

They texted their now former friend to say: “I'm not sure if it's the first wedding you have been to, but for your next wedding... People give envelopes [of cash]. I lost out on $200 covering you and your date’s plate... And got fluffy whip and sour patch kids in return. Just a heads-up for the future.”

The bride-monster then states: “Weddings are to make money for your future. Not to pay for people’s meals. You were the talk and laugh of the whole wedding. Worst gift ever story is being passed along to everyone.”

Weddings are to make money for your future? The hell they are. I understand the couple in question are originally from Italy and Croatia. Envelopes of money are the custom in a number of countries around the world.

But the same kind of foul, cynical, greedy expectation can be found — if in a more subtle guise — at weddings here. The mistake too many brides make is to think that their wedding is a gift to all those invited and, therefore, they deserve remuneration.

Their addled brains think their finely-tuned bonanza of self-indulgence is every bit as meaningful and exciting for her guests as it is for herself. She forgets that most of those attending are only there because it would be rude not to turn up.

Brides must remember that their wedding day is essentially a groundhog day-like repetition of tired cliches.

The crazy white dress, the giggle when the vicar asks that question, the photographs where family and friends are split up in an absurd apartheid. None of this is orchestrated for the benefit of the guests.

The whole day — and rightly so — is designed around the bride and groom. Mostly the bride. But the danger comes when the couple forget that fact.

If you want a day to revolve around your every whim and caprice, then don’t expect me to pay for it.

It begins before the big day has even kicked off. If the stag decides he wants to throw a party in Las Vegas, then everyone is expected to go. And if they want to get married in Spain, they’ll get married in Spain.

You get a holiday (which you would never have booked and which you must pay for). But, ah, it’s their wedding day, so we must all go along with their maniacal demands on our finances.

The worst example of wedding greed comes in the form of the wedding gift list, which is a smart name for begging. You’re basically no better than a child running around a shop screaming, “I want, I want, I want.”

If I am coming to your wedding, then I will buy you an appropriate gift of my choosing. In fact, since it’s probably cost me quite a wodge to get there in the first place, I shall probably get you nothing. My mere attendance is your gift.

The smiling mask I wear as you drag your princess costume around the parquet to Don’t Wanna Miss A Thing is also a gift which comes at great personal expense.

I think the Canadian woman who gave her ungrateful friend the hamper spells it out perfectly in her reply to the crazed bride’s text: “It's obvious you have the etiquette of a twig. I couldn't care less what you think about the gift you received — ‘normal’ people would welcome anything given. You wanna have a party, you pay for it. Don’t expect me to”.

Exactly. It’s your party and your wedding — not my holiday and not a free shopping trip.

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