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Weddings today seem to be more about showing off than about celebrating the couple's union. Enormous amounts of money are used on the decorations, and even more money is spent on the reception.

Then the charming couple makes the guests (perhaps more accurately referred to as the audience) wait while they take pictures, and wait while they take their sweet time showing up for the reception. The wedding and reception is all about them - total disregard for the "guests". They are just there to ooh and aah and bring presents it seems.

When its all said and done, no one enjoys it. The father of the bride is broke, the bride and her mother have been so stressed out over all the arrangements they nearly go nuts. The guests just can't wait until the stupid thing is over.

Recently, I've been invited to weddings but not invited to the reception. I guess that the bride wants to have an elaborate reception, but can't afford to invite to the reception all of the people she'd like to have attend the wedding. So only certain people get invited to the reception. When I'm invited to the wedding but not the reception, I do not attend either. I figure if I'm not good enough for the reception, I'm not good enough for the wedding. I don't allow myself to think that I was just invited to the wedding for the present I would bring(whoops, maybe I just had that thought).

It would be much more rational to have a reception to which she can afford to invite everyone. If it means having only cake and punch for 200, rather than a prime rib dinner for 75, then so be it. Isn't the intent of the reception to have friend and family celebrate the happy occasion, and the more celebrants the better? Apparently the real purpose so to show off to the extent they are able to afford. Pretty sick if you ask me.

I attended a wedding recently where the bride and groom had a wedding scheduled for May and then in April, decided they didn't like all the fuss they were going through. They decided on Thursday to get married on Sunday. They started calling their friends and family and got married on Sunday. It was a simple ceremony with no pretense. Once the preacher pronounced them man and wife, they turned around and the groom said, "That's it. We thank everyone for coming, especially on short notice. It really does mean a lot to us." And that was the end of it. No pretense whatsoever. It was beautiful.