Unshelved by Bill Barnes and Gene Ambaum
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Friday, April 29, 2011

I did the unthinkable for an Anglophile today

I did not watch the royal wedding.

I did not DVR it.

This from someone who watched both Charles and Diana's wedding and Diana's funeral and recorded the latter on VHS. Who hung on every bit of pomp and circumstance for both.

For some reason, I've been oddly apathetic about this one. I've gathered news accidentally, not sought it out. I didn't feel like getting up so early in the morning to watch, and I frankly didn't want to erase Doctor Who episodes to make room on my DVR, which wasn't going to be a permanent copy, anyway (I don't currently have any sort of VHS or DVD recorder that works).

Don't get me wrong--I wish the couple and country well. I can understand the near orgasmic frenzy in the UK today.

Maybe I'm just apathetic about weddings in general. When I watched the wedding of Charles and Diana, it was 1981. I was 14 years old. I was just the age where fairytale weddings were really interesting and breathtaking. Girls dream about their weddings.

Now, when people talk about weddings they've gone to, I grow bored. I find I don't really care about the dress, the pomp, the circumstance. I find it appalling to see what the average person spends on a wedding, much less royalty. Many people spend the equivalent of what would make a very nice house payment. I can't imagine what could be done with the amount spent on this one.

I think I'm jaded because of my own experiences. I was married, left at six months, and was divorced three months later. Fortunately we didn't really have much money for a wedding, so we kept it very low key. The church was free, because we were members of the Unitarian Universalist Church in Lexington. We bought a cake, punch, and some flowers from Kroger's. My parents took pictures. I think total we spent maybe $75, including on clothes. It wasn't much of a ceremony, certainly not a fairytale one, but on the other hand, looking back, I didn't waste tons of money on something that fell apart shortly thereafter--and lots of people do. And the thing is, even if I got re-married, it's never the same. You can't do a big wedding for a second wedding, or wear a big white dress with train. It's just silly to have a 'do-over', whether it's to the same person ('we're renewing our vows' or to another).

The only good thing about my wedding was the vows, written by the minister when I balked at 'until death do you part'. I was cynical given my own parent's divorce, and deep down I knew the relationship was falling apart (rightly so) and I was just clinging to the tatters. The minister wrote 'as long as love shall last'. So see, I never broke my wedding vows. Most people who divorce do. YKWIA came and witnessed my wedding to see what we would vow. If I had vowed 'until death do you part' he would not have helped me leave that marriage, because he takes the vows so seriously. Ironically, he himself cannot marry because of the stupidity of the laws of our state that will not allow same-sex couples to marry. I find it ridiculous that my marriage was considered valid, lasting less than a year, and yet a couple who have been together for years cannot marry.

But I digress.

Anyway, I'm sure I'll see plenty of coverage on the royal wedding. The pictures I've seen so far were not flattering to the couple, but I'm sure there are better ones out there.

Cynicism aside, I really do wish William and Kate well. I think they're much more practical about relationships than his parents were, and Kate particularly seems to have a good head on her shoulders. I hope they make it work.

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