Sunday, February 14, 2010

Wedding Rant: The Waiting Game

Hands down my biggest pet peeve when attending weddings is waiting. I don't necessarily mind waiting for the wedding to start if it kicks off on time. My rant is about the waiting time between the wedding and reception. Part of the problem for me is that, under ordinary circumstances, there is no reason why a newlywed couple should cause their guests to wait longer than ten minutes.

The biggest cause for waiting is photography. For some antiquated reason, couples believe that the groom should not see the bride before the wedding. Some people want the groom to get all teary while at the altar when he sees his virginal bride come forth, face shrouded and arm chained to her father. For even the most conservative couples today, the idea of the groom not seeing the bride at any point before the wedding is ridiculous. Any of the reasons for the tradition are thoroughly void. The woman isn't a piece of property to be given by her "owning" father, and in many cases, isn't a virgin on her wedding day (not judging on that regard, just observing). For the sake of not having to rush through photography, capture photos earlier before the ceremony. Those few people needing pictures with the couple can wait until the reception when the couple has relaxed a bit.

Wedding guests often travel some distance between buildings or even locations. The bride and groom can be the last to enter a particular room, but to make guests wait more than ten minutes shows incredible narcissism. Guests understand receiving lines taking a while, sure, but hours of additional photography or meeting and greeting shouldn't be tolerated. The couple should make sure bathrooms and food are available if they force guests to wait.

And please, for the love of weddings everywhere, guests should not be forced to watch videos or look at pictures rotating on TVs or computer monitors of the couple as children. Nothing says "thanks for sharing in our day" like being surrounded by pictures of the people making guests wait. These slide shows are more appropriate off to one side where guests have the option to view them.

To correct this horrible tradition, guests should give the couple a reasonable amount of time to emerge from the church and join them. If more than half an hour has passed and no food has been served, it's time to stop waiting and simply leave.

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