Saturday, September 18, 2010

Say Yes to the Dress and Other BS

Recently my husband and I went on vacation. We traveled through Massachusetts and New Hampshire visiting various places of interest. It was a beautiful time for us to just relax and reconnect with each other.
On our way home, we stopped to have lunch at a place called Scupper Jack's in Massachusetts. It was a very nice place with great food and a very snobby clientel. We had the unfortunate circumstance to be seated next to two older ladies and a gentlemen who clearly thought a lot about themselves and their money. Nouveau riche is what my grandmother would have called them. At any rate, as we sat and enjoyed our lunch and some quiet conversation, it quickly became impossible to avoid their discussion, which got progressively louder and louder. Their son is getting married and the two women are on the hunt to help his fiance ( and the daughter of one of the women) find the perfect wedding dress. The figure they were discussing for a "designer" dress was absolutely mind boggling - $50,000. Yes, you heard that right.
Now, let's talk about marriage. Research conducted by Bramlett (2002) suggests that first marriages have a 50-50 chance and most end within the first couple of years. Now, can you imagine having laid down $50,000 for your little princess to get married, only to have to shell out another $50,000 three years later? OUCH.
This brings me to the ridiculous show "Say Yes to the Dress". I know that many people enjoy this show, but I find it to be absurd. Why are we getting married ladies? Is it because we have found our life partner, our twin flame? Or is it because we want to get all dolled up in a fancy white dress and have all the attention on us for one day?
I think that at one point or another all girls want to be a princess. But when the dress appears to supercede the man standing next to you, there's a problem. Does a women need to spend thousands of dollars on a dress that they presumably will wear one time? I mean $50,000 is a sizable down payment on a house! Or the out right purchase of many cars. And some people sink that into a bunch of fabric worn at a marriage that many not last three years. That's my impression of insanity, right there.
I got my dress at a consignment shop. Not because I couldn't afford to go to a bridal studio but because WHY? My husband and I had a very simple wedding. Candle light - 30 people - and us. I wouldn't have had it any other way. I spent $30 on my dress and I have been blissfully happy for 14 years now.
I don't know ladies and gentlemen, tell me, do you disagree? Is there some other purpose to shows like Say Yes to the Dress which I think just elevates the suerficial and tells us to want what is sometimes beyond our means?


Ken said...

Intelligent post. I knew of a successful lawyer who would sometimes talk to radio news about high profile cases, and he was spending $50,000 just on the flowers for his daughter's wedding, and this was about ten years ago.

Good for you on the wedding dress. My wife and i got married more recently, but she found a beautiful and very traditional dress (veil over the face and everything) for $500.

What makes these TV wedding shows more ridiculous is most of these couples have been shacking up for many years. The wedding is about having a huge narcissistic party, not about joining two people so that they can love each other by caring for each other.

Moonaroo said...

I love this post. It is so true! The marriage is what counts. My wedding dress belonged to my aunt. I found it when it fell out of its box and onto my head when we were cleaning out my grandmother's house. A few alterations here and there and it was made to fit for free.