I am a regular reader of The Bloggess, who is way better at everything in life than most people will ever be at anything, and who owns a giant metal chicken named Beyonce. I once sent my boyfriend a link to the story where Jenny first procured Beyonce, because i thought it was a funny example of the kind of thing that would happen in our household one day. He immediately responded that i was never allowed to have a giant metal chicken. It escalated into a Facebook debate involving two of our other friends. This fight, by the way? Happened on the weekend we were celebrating my birthday. And Christmas. (Rude, John. Rude.)
And THEN!!! Jenny bought another, less giant metal chicken, and offered it up as a prize in this post. Obviously, the chicken in question was named Hector Elizondo, but some other people disagreed with me and i did not win it, despite the flawless argument in my comment to Jenny:
My boyfriend and i had a fight on my birthday about whether or not i was allowed to have a Beyonce of my very own. If i win this one, it’s free, which means that it’s like a gift, which means that i HAVE to keep it. Because it would be rude not to. But maybe he’ll make me keep it in the attic and only bring it out when Jenny visits. But Jenny will probably NEVER visit, John, because we live in Massachusetts and she lives in Texas and we have never met! So it’s just going to be in the attic all the time? What’s the point of that?! I can’t believe how he tries to suppress my decorating instincts. Rude. I am so mad at him right now!
Anyway, once i had entered the contest, i waited until John and i were snuggling in bed one night to spring the ultimate bargaining chip: i would wear a wedding dress on our wedding day if he would let me have a giant metal chicken.
Let me give you some background: when i was fifteen or sixteen, a friend of mine got married. I was a bridesmaid. The stress and politics and bullshit involved in a wedding seemed unthinkably absurd to me. American wedding culture makes this "the bride's day", which makes me viscerally angry; the whole point of a wedding is that TWO people are in a RELATIONSHIP. I don't like to be the center of attention, and i especially don't want to be the center of attention on a day that is supposed to be about me and my HUSBAND. Furthermore, i hate planning, and big events, and spending unnecessary money, and pretty much everything about weddings. Don't get me wrong: i like marriage, and want to be married one day, and i am that girl that has been dreaming about big fancy beautiful weddings since i was three. But so much of the crap that goes along with weddings is just that: crap.
The solution seemed obvious: a near-elopement, where the only people invited are the ones who are so important to your lives, both as individuals and as a couple, that you couldn’t imagine your wedding day without them. Have a casual ceremony in someone’s back yard. Don't announce the date before-hand. Wear t-shirts and jeans. Carry a bouquet of wildflowers harvested from the side of the road. Have an open-house reception after the honeymoon for all the people who weren't invited.
I’m totally serious about the t-shirt and jeans thing, by the way. I imagined myself in a white t-shirt (to keep up the “bridal” appearance), blue jeans (something blue) my mother’s pearls (something borrowed), and white Old Navy flip-flops (brand new, of course). Agelseb insisted that i had to wear a veil, so i considered something simple and no more than elbow-length. Or maybe just fresh flowers in my hair and screw her.
But John was not happy with this. He really wanted me to wear a wedding gown.
What he doesn’t know (or won't until he reads this) is that i had already decided to wear a dress. I stumbled across THE dress one day, totally by accident, and knew instantly that i would be married in that gown. But i continued to tease John with casual dress ideas.
“Maybe i’ll wear the dress i wore on our first date. That was white.”
“Yeah, but it was also kind of . . . short. And tight.”
“Yeah. Sexy! You loved it, remember? You thought i looked totally hot.”
“Yeah, but for your wedding, you don’t really want to be . . . hot. You're supposed to be more elegant and -- you can still be casual! -- but it's more about, like, purity and love. Not just sexiness.”
“Well, i have that white sundress, too. It's longer and not so tight. Maybe i’ll just wear that.”
But Hector Elizondo proved John's undoing. In an attempt to butter John up to the inevitability of me one day owning a metal chicken of a yet-to-be-determined size, i promised him that i would wear a wedding dress if he would allow me to have a metal chicken. He agreed, and then became very proud of himself for having made a deal that did not require him to display said metal chicken (just as i had predicted he would). Little did he know that he had actually lost the battle, since i had already found THE dress and planned to buy it without telling him.
Now all i need is Hector Elizondo and my victory will be complete! And the thing that sweetens the victory? John is so determined for me to wear a wedding dress that he is now committed to helping me find a metal chicken, just so that i will be "forced" to hold up my end of the deal, which i was already going to anyway. Basically, i manipulated my boyfriend into doing something that i wanted in exchange for a promise that i would do something else i wanted to do.
This is going to be the best marriage ever.