Weddings make up 90 percent of my video editing work. It seems like there isn't a week out of the year where I'm not receiving wedding footage to cut together. So I've become accustomed to the rhythm and traditions of many weddings.
And let me tell you something: Weddings are weird.
Now what's central to the wedding is not what I find weird. Committing yourself to someone for as long as you're both alive is a wonderful thing. The events around that commitment? That's what's perplexing.
This has been on my mind quite a bit since this is peak wedding season. I liken the weirdness to when you keep saying the same word over and over and it starts sounding foreign. Like, why do these mouth sounds possess this meaning? Meaning. Meaning. Meaning...Mee Ning.
There is absolutely 100 percent no judgement if your wedding had/has any of these. Heck, even my wedding had some. But seriously, how and why are these traditions still a thing?
1. The Garter Toss/ Bouquet Toss but Mostly the Garter Toss
This is by far the weirdest tradition. The groom gets in front of family and friends and does something akin to the beginning of foreplay and removes the garter from the bride’s upper thigh, shows it to everyone then flings it to a group of his single male friends. It’s reminiscent of a tame lap dance or the beginnings of a vegas bachelor party. What in the actual hell is a garter anyway? It’s like a scrunchie that fits on the thickest part of your leg. Surely there was an original purpose right?
*looks up history of garter*
Oh, oh okay cool, they were originally meant to replace the purse to hide small valuables and/or knives. I mean its out of fashion but i get it. WHY THOUGH, do we remove it publicly and throw it to a bunch of sweaty men? I always feel a bit of mild shame and guilt when i witness the tradition. Partly out of embarrassment for everyone involved, and partly because i think its a tacky tradition that we’ve blindly followed for years. The bouquet toss doesn’t make too much sense either, but at least it’s not sleazy. For the love of all that is holy, down with the garter toss.
2. The Cake Cutting Smashing in the Face Thing
Okay, so, part of the issue is making a big deal of cake cutting in general. Is it such a big deal that they're cutting cake together? Is this kind of what parents do when they're child does something for the first time and memorialize it? "Baby's First Christmas" or "Baby's First Haircut". "Couples First Cake as Marrieds." Is that what we're going for here?
In any case, the weirdest part of this tradition is that often times couples think its cute/funny to smash the cake in each others face. I won’t argue that its fun, but its so weird that everyone does it. You’re literally betraying trust of one another early in your marriage by feigning a feeding and smushing the dessert straight up their nose. Not cool. You know what it is? It's juvenile.
3. People are Terrible at Giving Toasts
I'm going to rant here for a second
I'm consistently on the receiving end of these terrible toasts because I'm listening to them over and over when I'm editing the wedding. There's a real depth to the horribleness here. Some have dead air time the size of Godzilla, some tell stories that ramble for seemingly days, and some share very inappropriate details for the occasion. It's not funny to talk about the groom/bride's sexual history. It's not cool to somehow spin the story to be about you. It's not imperative to hammer out every detail of the anecdote.
Wedding after wedding, I see these poor people, who have no public speaking ability, completely bomb in front of lots of people because they honestly had no idea what it is they wanted to say. They winged it and they paid for it. Eloquence and confidence can help, but it's no guarantee. I can recall a well spoken man rambling about a fishing trip he took with the groom for about 30 minutes. It had no punchline and no real relevance. He wasted everyone's time and though he sounded great, it ultimately meant nothing.
You know who usually had the best toasts? It was the person who planned out the speech, had notes or a script they read from, and was concise and sincere. No fluff, not showy, no improvisation. My favorite toast was about how the groom had led them to become a Christian and how that was life-changing for him, and he thanked him for being his friend. It was amazing, sincere, genuine, authentic and short.
I myself delivered a few toasts when I was young and I cringe every time I think about them. I should have prepared and should have focused on the couple. That's how it goes though, don't be like me and the other unfortunate souls who could not toast properly.
This is only half of my list. It got so big I decided to split it into two parts. I plan on releasing the next post in about a week. You can get notified through following on Facebook or Twitter. I'm on Instagram too! Thanks guys.