To The Woman Who Never Drinks Or Reads Here: Read This As You Wallow In Your Weirdo Wedding Depression


This is an awesome piece by Salon’s Rebecca Traister about the retardo media frenzy surrounding Chelsea Clinton’s wedding, but these are perhaps the best passages:

There are a lot of people who don’t get married. There are a lot of people who can’t get married. If Chelsea Clinton, by chance or design, had fallen into one of these two categories, would it mean that her parents had not done what they were supposed to do, that they would feel less pride in her, that her life would lack its most important moment? I wonder if those focusing so hard on her wedding would think it meant she was any less well-adjusted, or any less beautiful.

The fevered fetishization of the marital day is not just irritating, it’s destructive. It reproduces attitudes about personal — and especially female — achievement that are far past their sell date: that marrying is the goal toward which all of us strive, that our weddings are somehow the most exalted expressions of our accomplishments and of ourselves. That they are proof, validation, some sure sign that we turned out OK … You know what weddings are? They are parties.


  1. Big, expensive parties. Where you don’t even get to serve the kind of beer you want because the venue has all sorts of restrictions. And you can’t wear the dress you want, because it will make your mom cry. And you can’t plan it the way you’d like to because everyone has an opinion.

    Fuck weddings.

    • I hate them. I have been married before, and we got married in the morning and then did a garden party — no reception, no first dance, none of that traditional stuff — and even that turned into an overly expensive, bullshit ordeal.

      It’s ONE DAY. These brides who focus on the Princess Special Snowflake Party instead of the long and often difficult journey of marriage that’s ahead of them just drive me nuts.

      • First (and current) hubby and I too enjoyed a “non-traditional” wedding. It was a rush job in Houston, as we were spiriting away to NYC so he could start a new job. We had it in a really cute cottage-type place on December 24th; the post-ceremony music was “A Charlie Brown Christmas.” Fun dinner afterward at an Italian restaurant near River Oaks, I can’t remember the name.

        Believe me, the pomp and circumstance of that was enough for both of us — parents too (thank God).

      • Couldn’t possibly agree more there, Jacy! Such a tremendous waste of time, energy and money, AND the maddening sense of entitlement that makes bridezillas believe the whole world should stop and marvel at the perfect miracle that is their boring-ass puffy white dress and OMG flowers on tables.

        Which is another thing, already mentioned here – even if it all goes well and no one gets hurt (and as far as I can tell, more often than not, people DO get hurt when narcissism burns that badly), it’s still boring. About nine people out of ten do it, correct? Why should anyone other than those directly involved really care, seriously? There’s nothing SPECIAL about getting married at all.

      • People like Julia give weddings a bad name. The wedding isn’t important, but the marriage is. Julia will never understand that.

        I mostly understand the hating of the overblown, has-to-be the best day of my life, bridezilla type wedding. The most boring wedding I’ve ever been to was an expensive, over-the-top wedding in Honduras. But they are truly in love, and everyone there was so happy, so I can’t hate on it too much.

        But I love weddings. Maybe I’m just a sap, but big parties with booze and food is always a good thing in my mind. And maybe I’ve just never been to the type of wedding where everyone is pissy and the bride is a huge bitch, but I look forward to weddings.

        And I did the traditionalish wedding, although very low-key compared to most. I paid 1k for a dress I’ll wear only once, and spent nine months thinking about flowers and ceremony music, and where to sit everyone. But it was so much fun, and I would do it all over again if I could. 10 months later, I still have family and friends telling me how much fun they had. A room full of my favorite people, drinking and dancing sounds awesome to me.

      • Helen, that Onion article is hilarious! I recently fell very much in love, and/ but/ more importantly, the relationship really works well for both of us. I feel like and hope/ (and yeah sort of fear) that we will get married sometime in the next few years, and OMG the simpler the better.
        I don’t like crowds, logistics, noise, project management, my mom’s hysteria, patriarchy, consumerism, feeling overrun by others’ and agendas, or spending money on nothing. My dream wedding is so frikking low key. Like under the trees, then a barbeque and swimming in he lake for those who want it.

        If I had to ride in a limo with a bunch of screaming people right after I made the most important commitment of my life? I would FREAK OUT.
        ALSO? The most stable couples I know, like 13- 15 years and counting? Are either gay or long term cohabitators/ anti marriage.

      • Agreed, Freeloading Musketeer. I honestly just wanted to elope, but knew it would kill our parents. I got through my wedding by just focusing on the fact that it’s likely the only time in our lives when we’ll be able to get all of our favorite people in one room (even the step-families behaved!) and serve them good food and good drinks. Yeah, it was expensive, but I spent most of the money making sure the guests would have a good time. No one remembers the programs or centerpieces, so I didn’t spend money on that. But the desserts and the liquor and the ridiculously good (and plentiful) food? People still talk about it.

        It was the biggest party I’ll ever throw, and it was fun. It makes a difference when weddings are for the guests vs for the bride. People like Julia focus on the latter, and give all weddings a bad name.

      • Here, here EinsteinJulia! I’m not sure I’ll ever get married but if I do, I figure it should just be mountains of lobster and booze for the people I love. It should be a debaucherous day where no one diets or worries about anything, everyone just parties and dances. And my fuddy-duddy parents would just have to deal. 🙂

      • Lily’s 3rd Eye – congratulations! I do hope it all works out for you, and I’m sure you’ll have a cool and fun wedding.

        Didn’t mean to come across as a total wedding-hater, BTW. I do admit they can be cool (FOR WHAT THEY ARE, and if you think it’s the most important day in your life, more power to ya, we’ll just have to agree to disagree about that one), and a great time can be had by all. It’s just that the moment you borrow a significant amount of money to buy some wedding nonsense, or the moment you invite dozens of people that neither you nor your significant other ever had a 5 minute conversation with, or the moment voices tend to get raised whenever you discuss your impending wedding with your mother / father / SO / bridesmaid etc., that is the moment I know your wedding is the kind I want to stay away from.

      • Einstein, I have a cousin who eloped 5 years (and 3 kids) ago … and my family STILL talks about how hurt they were by it.

        For me, I am extremely bitter because I am 73 days away from my own wedding, and it has been a long and frustrating process. Fun, at times. But mostly just crazy-making.

        I am looking very much forward to the wedding being over and the marriage starting. Being married to my Catband is all I really care about.

      • My grandma eloped, several years after her older sister did. Now my grandma is about the most ardent big-wedding-(or-any-other-social-event)-hater you can meet, but even SHE now (like 130 years later) realizes that this was really cruel of her and her sister to their mom. They didn’t have any other siblings and I never met their mother, my great-grandmother, but I agree that’s usually an unsensitive thing to do.

        Also, congrats, Darling, or better yet, good luck. (I learned somewhere that the polite thing to do is to wish good luck to the bride and congratulate the groom. 🙂 ) At any rate, I wish you a pleasant wedding AND (Cat)marriage.

      • Melissa, sorry to hear your wedding is more stressful than fun. I hope that despite the problems leading up to it, the actual day turns out to be fun and stress free. Or do what I did when my brother’s wedding got to be too stressful, get completely wasted.

      • Muskateers: when I was meeting with the sales manager at our venue last Friday, we were working on the “order of events” (shoot me), and I actually had her add “Give bride a glass of champagne” to the “official order” several times.

      • Congratulations Darling MS! And I think adding the Relaxing Drinks was a great idea…

    • I had only 10 people at my wedding because I wanted to avoid the inevitable family drama. Even though it was small and very low-key I still didn’t like that much attention. I just wanted everyone to be normal around me like they are every day instead of “OMG, its the bride!.” Blech, I am a natural wallflower so too much attention makes me feel uncomfortable. I kept telling people, “Take more pics of the groom, he looks hot. I am tired of posing, sheesh.”

    • Can I just say that I love how so many of us lonely catladeez are actually married, engaged, or in committed relationships. If la Donk read here, I bet she would be so jealous of all of us that she’d vomit in the shower.

      • And I should clarify that I don’t actually believe that single people should be jealous of coupled people. That’s just la Donk’s bullshit mindset.

      • I was really just referring to Julia being jealous, since that’s her favorite insult to throw back at us, and because she is so desperate to be married.

    • Ha! I eloped. No drama, no fuss. I don’t regret a thing. I have a friend who has been engaged for three years, and it’s so built up in her mind by now that I fear she will be completely disappointed when the day arrives.

    • I thought the exact same thing when I saw it. I get embarrassed taking a casual self-portrait with my phone in public. These two live in crazyland and I bet the rest of that wedding party exchanged the best emails Monday morning.

    • My favorite part of that picture is it’s supposed to look very casual and airy and it is totally staged and ridiculous.

      She sucks.

    • All of Julia’s “candids” are horribly staged and forced. She’s taken many a picture where she pretends to be mid-laugh or glancing at another other subject in the picture and they all end up looking creepy and stiff… like she just stands there with her huge gaping maw hanging open waiting for someone to catch a “candid” moment. I wonder what that looks like to onlookers – her just standing there with her unhinged jaw. Freaky.

      • OMG YES. That is surely one of the weirdest things about her. Why is she so afraid to let go and just be natural? Her feelings of inadequacy are off the charts.

      • That IS a disturbing visual. I don’t think I’d ever completely get over it if I saw her pose like that, at someone else’s wedding, while her slave takes dozens of pictures until one gets JA’s approval.

        I’d probably wonder if somebody put something in my drink.

      • I’ve never seen that Webutante video… I’m sure the photographer really appreciated the donkey parking herself in front of the camera for that long.

      • OH MY GOD JP that is horrifying!! I don’t think I’ve ever seen the mania captured on video quite like that. It made my skin crawl, especially the very end when you can tell she’s gearing up to launch her raft ass into another “candid” leaping shot. SHUDDER.

  2. You know I have to say that I hope Chelsea gets the most awesome and extravagant wedding. She deserves it for all the shit she took as a kid, and she has grown up to be a beautiful and accomplished woman in her own right.

    Good for her!

    • I agree. For every other person on the planet – I don’t care about your wedding or weddings in general.

      But for Chelsea, I do hope she feels like a princess and that her wedding is the best day of her life.

      • That’s an exact perpetuation of what this article is trying to debunk. How about “I hope she has a great job she loves and a terrific apartment” or even “a satisfying relationship”?

        This feels like a princess bullshit chaps my ass. What exactly does a princess feel like? And my god I hope her wedding day isn’t the best of her life. That would be pathetic.

    • I agree. And I get the sense that the Clintons know how to party, so it should be a fun night for all involved.

      • I have a real life Clintons story about Bill, Chelsea and Bono turning up with the Secret Service at somewhere I was working after hours. Like we had to re-open the place for them and serve illegally. #truestory #Bonopaid

  3. That is awesome. I was married once and I did it at city hall because I just do not give a shit. It always struck me as odd that a wedding day is supposed to be “so special” when 99% of weddings are derivative and boring. You cut the cake, they cut the cake, the people after you will cut the cake… what is so special about doing something that everyone else fucking does too?

    • This is my dream wedding. Man + Woman + 2 witnesses + Judge.

      While affording a big wedding must be nice, I know in my heart that a wedding is not a spectacle I’m willing to spend thousands of dollars on. If I love someone, I’ll be 100% content saying “I do” in front of as few people as possible.

      Oh and because I hate my extended family but that’s neither here nor there.

      • Yeah I did this, just me and Darth Vader (as he is now referred to).
        As it turned out I should just have gone away on my own and married myself. The fewer people the better.

      • Darth Vader LOL! Yeah let’s not forget, half of all marriages end in divorce, so you have fun there spending $60,000+ on a wedding to someone you won’t be married to in 20 years. 🙂

      • Eh, at many weddings you can break even if you invite the right guests and take cash gifts. Greeks do this, and I know other cultures probably do this as well. Not that you ever want a marriage to end in divorce, but at least this way you’re not out $40k or so right out of the gate. If you’re smart, you break even… however it does put a LOT of pressure on the couple and suck a lot of time out of your life. People, especially those who arent even that close to the bride/groom, get so weird when it involves wedding planning–judging every decision, making random recommendations, trying to put their hands on everything (seating chart, invite list, who will be ring bearer).

        You could still have a traditional wedding, in a church, with all the traditional trimmings… and you don’t need to spent all that money, but society forces you (or tries to force you). Because, when you think about it, the ceremony is cheap (relatively speaking). The rehearsal dinner and the reception are what drive the cost so much higher than logic would dictate.

    • My catman and I had a civil marriage in India (which is akin to going to City Hall to wed). It was us and his dad and two of our mutual friends, photojournalists. The official who helped us tie the knot was five hours late, which prompted friends to start haranguing people in the Prime Minister’s office (leverage any connection you can!); mostly, we sat around and drank tea made by a little man in a ramshackle shanty who used a brick to crush the ginger that flavored or chai. During the “ceremony,” the official expressed shock that I had not listed my (estranged) father in the paperwork, then he argued with me about the meaning of agnosticism. And then it was done. We took everyone out for a late lunch, and then we went home.

      Two weeks later, a few of husby’s cousins got married, and his family threw us a reception. Everyone spoke Punjabi and gave me gold jewelry and fed me laddus. I was bewildered. Our five-year anniversary is coming up, and we’ve talked about having a stateside shindig, but the logistics are too mind-boggling: we live in New York, my family’s in Oregon and California, his parents have moved to Florida, his brother’s in Bombay, there are cousins in Canada and Australia and the Middle East.

      I’ve forgotten my point. But, in summation, I guess, the day? Such a little thing. If you’re hitching your wagon to someone you truly love, the details don’t matter all that much. (Incidentally, leaving for my brother’s wedding in a few hours. I’ve been informed there will be ping pong and slip-and-slide. So there’s that.)

      • I want to be your BFF. That sounds completely awesome. Why? Because THAT is a memorable day.

        I got married in July, in the morning, (unheard of here because in Joisey-land, a party isn’t a ‘party’ unless it includes big hair, lots-o’black, a 9:00 pm reception at a typical wedding factory and other crap). Perfect day. Not too hot, not too cold… reception in my parents’ back-yard – catered. My mother secretly arranged bag-pipes (sorry… love that stuff). It was all over by 6:00 pm.

        We just celebrated our 12th anniversary and TRUST when I tell you that the “WEDDING” day is only a party.
        God help anyone who believes the ‘wedding day’ is the epitome of a union.

    • ooohhh pleeasseeee let this be true. I’d love to watch the shit-fit justification posts come flying through the internetz.

    • I don;t know what’s more bizarre, that she has to tweet back to a stranger because it’s about OMG (redacted)…. or that she is selling a $20 table?

    • I feel certain that neither [Redacted] nor his mom could give two biggo BPC butt squirts about that table at this point, expensive or not ~ more importantly, they have distance between them & Donkey’s cray-cray, for which no price can be put on, right?

    • So bizarre. How does the random person know it is [redacted]’s mother’s table?? Why does Julia still have it? WTF?!

    • I am certain that when she first moved into that apartment she mentioned getting a table from a “friend”‘s mom. I can’t remember now where I saw it.

    • Also: what a bitch.

      Because Julia’s perceived valuation of the table is $20, she shouldn’t have to offer it back and instead will just trash it? Because you know she’s not going to bother selling anything worth a measly $20.

      I mean, who cares if Jakob’s mom really likes it, or just loaned it, or it holds some sentimental value of some sort to her? Julia thinks it’s worth $20, so fuck her.

  4. The article’s good, though why is Traister railing against us (people, as she seems to be calling us) — isn’t it the media that’s getting into such a frenzy and trying to shove it all down our throats? Please…redirect your candidness.

    • I think she was referring to some weird thing Bill Clinton said about giving Chelsea away — it’s a bit out of context, the way I cut and paste it.

      • I like what you put here, Jacy–and Julia should really read the entire article. I guess I think it’s more a media thing (somehow we’ve been force-fed all these crazy reality shows about bridezillas, etc. for so long now that we have to pay attention to big, fancy weddings). I don’t think most people really give that much of a fuck anyway–it’s other people’s money and lives. OK–maybe my cats…

      • I think it’s kind of about the secrecy. If you told me Chelsea Clinton was getting married this weekend, I’d be like, “oh, nice. whatever.” but when you say, “Chelsea Clinton is getting married this weekend … but it’s supposed to be this big, giant secret,” I am like, TELL ME MORE!!!

  5. I really liked this article – thanks for sharing! One of my favorite things about this site is the way it introduces me to new things. I got a kale salad recipe, a link to an awesome This American Life podcast, ideas for outfits, and now this article, which I would like to personally hand to a few women in my life who are out-of-control obsessed with their weddings. Like Julia, however, I think they would miss the point.

  6. Coolest wedding ever: two (very beautiful) gay male friends had a ceremony on a waterfall ledge where members of their archery club shot flaming arrows into the water and a band played and sang 11th century spring fertility songs. There was then a black tie ball at a nearby arboretum.

    It was all so ineffable I teared up all over my frock.

  7. The best wedding I ever went to was my co-workers. She married her husband on a boat while on vacations. Three months later we threw a huge hippie pot-luck party at a friend’s house and just drank beer all night and hung out listening to various bands play there sets. It was relaxed and casual, a celebration of them, but more about just being with your friends.

    • Exactly. That’s my dream situation, because then the bride has a chance of actually ENJOYING it also.

    • Do y’all mind if I share my story?

      When we got engaged, I started all that BS of planning a big wedding, blah blah blah. Then I started getting stressed out so I said “screw it” and we told our families we were getting married at this time on this date at this place. If you want to be there, that’s cool. I bought my dress for $99 two days before the event, and picked up my flowers myself.

      While I waited for the wedding to “start” (for everyone to show up), I drank wine and ate chocolate.

      We got married, the Justice of the Peace was lovely, and then we drank champagne and ate catered food.

      Six months later, we threw a pirate-themed wedding reception with all our friends and family (I wore my wedding dress again, just added a rhinestone eye patch and a pirate belt) and drank champagne and moonshine and partied my ass off.

      Total cost (we paid for it all ourselves): About $1500 over the course of the year.

      I wouldn’t change a single thing about it.

      But I wouldn’t mind going to someone else’s huge ass expensive wedding, as long as it isn’t in a church, and there’s an open bar.

  8. I’ve actually been dis-invited to more weddings than I’ve been invited to LULZ

  9. I’m recently married. I had quite the party with 250 people at a top venue in jersey (i’m from SI). Anyway, yes, I had the special snowflake day and wouldn’t change it for a minute. However, I would’ve been just as happy to marry my husband in a parking lot. Donkey just wants to be showy, she doesn’t care about the life and future.

    I don’t get donkey’s obsession with weddings when she can’t even land a man. So pathetic.

    • I think she’s obsessed with weddings to distract herself from the fact that she can’t keep a boyfriend..

  10. I’ve been to a total of two weddings my entire adult life. I have managed to dodge 3-4 by being “In Europe” or having a very important “work commitment”. The two I went to were close friends. They were both over the top, expensive affairs that the couples spent every god-damn waking moment planning/talking about for a year.

    To be fair, they were both really well done – but not great. Food was forgettable. Decorating was nice, but I didn’t really care. Plus, for work I used to attend $500-$1000 a plate galas every second night for almost 4 years so unless it’s in a 5 star hotel affair, I’m not all that impressed.

    By the end of the night I’d say I had the same amount of fun/memories as a night at a bar. No better, no worse. I thought they were a colossal waste of time and money. It also stressed me out as I was a best man at one, and a groomsman (defacto best man though) at the other. So I was planning and trying on tuxes etc. Pain in the ass. I love my friends that got married, but I really didn’t give a shit about their wedding in general, let alone the bullshit details.

    I’m flying across the Atlantic in a few weeks for my best friend’s wedding (best man again) and once again, I’m getting stressed out. I need to buy a new suit and figure out a speech.

    When/if I get married it’s going to be a cityhall deal with close friends and family. I would elope but I know my family would be upset. A cityhall ceremony with a big dinner at my favorite restaurant afterwards with everyone is all I want. No gifts, no dresses, no plate-settings etc. Everyone shows up and pays their own tab for the meal/booze and we all have a good time.

    My girlfriend wants the same. God I love her.

    • Totally agree with your perspective, and what you describe IS the “big” wedding in my mind. “Not big” means there are only the people required by law, and I admit that’s probably very little fun. Your outlined wedding, on the other hand, sounds great.

      Good luck with your bestmanship.

  11. I do have to agree hugely with Ms Traister’s article that it is so sad that still, knowing how shakey a concept marriage is, so many people see marriage as a barometer of success or value. It pains me that I have so many friends pushing 40, and mostly with kids, that are still all about trying to find the husband, and how much more they will do for men than they would ever do for their friends.

    Also, no-one should be allowed to get married with sitting through a month of divorce court first.

      • With cleared out bank accounts so that you can barely afford to get to the court hearings in the first place.

      • @New Year New You —

        haha, so true. because, ya, divorce is often about finances more than anything else… a bad marriage can set you back many, MANY years. worse damage than the wedding bill by far.

  12. Thaaaaaaaaank you for posting that article, JP!

    My fiance (I mean cat!) and her parents are Greek and, yes, her parents want/expect a huge wedding, a couple hundred people, a big reception at one of the 2 big places around here, and the whole traditional thing. We want to fill out paperwork at city hall, have the actual wedding in Santorini for families only, and then have a party for friends/relatives/coworkers when we get back stateside. Unfortunately, to do this, we’ve had to convince her parents that we’re “normal” and that this is a smart move. So we’re buying a house and taking care of all our financial obligations (paying off loans).

    Long story short–it’s a pain in the ass that society has these views… we are pretty private and we’re also Julia’s age, not Britt’s, which means we feel like we want other things more than the wedding. Instead of planning what color the centerpieces will be, we’d rather put down a foundation for our futures.

    This isn’t about me (or any of us cat-people), it’s about society. And yes, that article was awesome. Thanks, JP!

      • OOPS, sorry reading at work, didn’tnotice.

        THANKS JACY!!!! and love everyone else’s comments, too.

        Also, Julie (since we know you read here): No one wants to marry you, have fun with your expiry date!

  13. OT, but these musings from the Einstein of the North should carry an orange “do not drive or operate heavy machinery” label:

    lpdiane: After owning my Kindle for a year, I finally came across a book I want to read but isn’t available…do I buy the paperback!?!

    lpdiane: they had lychee’s in our office pantry today…first time i’ve ever had one not in a martini…

    • I’ve never had a lychee in a martini, gross. I’ve had tons of them at Chinese buffet restaurants though.

  14. Of course Julia wants to get married herself, and possibly have progeny someday. It’s built into our DNA.

    I think she will, too. She just needs to tone down the fame whore thing. Most men, myself included, would never want to be thrust into some semi-famous blogger limelight. She’s hot, but not hot enough to deal with random strangers poking around in my life and past just to be with her.

    She’s obviously a Type-A personality (which I normally despise), so she should be able to get a job in corporate America. She would probably be successful too in the right job. Then she could give up on this Internet fame thing and live a more healthy life.

    I wish her only the best though. And 29 is not old either. I can attest that women in their mid-30’s to early 40’s are in their prime. There’s still time for her. 🙂

    • She’s not a recent college grad, has no corporate experience, and does not have a business-related degree. Plus the little thing of actual work being beneath her and hating authority. Maybe her father’s connections can get her into a sales training program. Good luck with that.

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