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Current Day Wedding Protocols
Old 08-05-2014, 09:47 AM   #1
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Current Day Wedding Protocols

I just went to my nephew's wedding. They are educated, smart, beautiful, and have what appears to be plenty of money. I gave them a substantial check and some Vanguard advice, a Joy of Cooking cookbook (she wants to learn to cook), and a used copy of The Millionaire Next Door, of which I am an example.

Two things struck me at the wedding: 1 - They are awash in plenty compared to my wife and me at that age (38 happy years have zipped past for us). We literally had nothing at all when we got married. My grandparents gave us ten dollars as a wedding present in 1976. We were grateful.

And 2 - The loudness of the dance music and the "dancing," which was pretty much bobbing up and down and jumping in unison to '80s music, including some of the cultural desert called Rap music. I prefer '60s and '70s music but I suspect that people like what they grow up with.

My ears are still ringing extra loud (I already had some tinnitus).

I also went to my friend's wedding last month (he married an audiologist) and we had to leave due to the volume being turned to 11 on the music. So much for conversation.

Mike D.

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Old 08-05-2014, 09:56 AM   #2
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I'm paying for two weddings (both of my DD's) in the next 6 months. I'll have to check on the loudness factor. I've had absolutly no say in anything about their wedding planning which has been fine with me. But I would not want to put up with music played at a volume that prevented decent conversation with guests. Hopefully my wife and daughters agree or its probably a moot point for me to raise. But I think they will agree.

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Old 08-05-2014, 10:18 AM   #3
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Yep, this is one of those areas where we show our age ! My wedding (in 1984) was probably much like yours. We had a 5 piece band, you could have conversations at the tables that weren't washed out by the music, people danced (tangos, cha-chas, "ballroom"). And we too had nearly nothing. We paid for our wedding (200 guests !) ourselves. We were 21 and 25 years old but had diligently saved for 3 years. Once all payments were made (but before the gifts were in) we had about $2k in the bank. We appreciated every gift we got - from the popcorn popper (which I still use at least once a week) to the checks.
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Old 08-05-2014, 10:36 AM   #4
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We can't expect kids to play only the music we like, times change.

But my biggest issue with weddings today is that most hire a DJ, and they play non-stop, and usually at high volume, and usually louder than what their sound system can handle w/o high distortion. The distortion hurts my ears, I don't care for most of the music, and I really don't care much for dancing. But I do like to visit with friends and family.

But the combination of loud and non-stop turn what should be a social event to a dance party for deaf-mutes. No one can carry on a conversation. At a recent wedding, a group of us went out to the lobby and talked there. I suppose others thought we were being anti-social, but I felt the opposite - that they were the anti-social ones.

And while I said we can't expect them to only play music we like, there should be some accommodation to guests and at least play (especially early on), some music that appeals to a broader range of tastes and ages. That doesn't mean nothing but Lawrence Welk and Perry Como either, there are plenty of classics that don't sound dated, and plenty of current artists who play stuff that can appeal to us old timers.

I was happy to hear that my niece is going to have a band at her wedding, and then she added excitedly "and a DJ is going to play when the band takes breaks". I mentioned that people like a break in the music to have time to talk and visit, but I'm not counting on any changes. Oh well.

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Old 08-05-2014, 10:54 AM   #5
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When we got married at age 27, we already had plenty of money. A couple of young, college-educated people with marketable skills can easily earn in the 6 figures nowadays. It was the case for us - our annual income topped $120K. And with no student loan debt, no mortgage, and no kids, we had some decent disposable income. Enough to pay for a nice wedding. Of course, what the guests did not see was that our parents picked up a significant portion of the tab for the wedding, as is often the case. So perhaps the lavishness of the wedding is perhaps a reflection of the parents' wealth rather than the newlyweds'.
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Old 08-05-2014, 10:58 AM   #6
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At least you could attend without paying a fortune.

"Destination Weddings" are becoming too common. Couples have weddings in exotic places and expect close friends and relatives to come along, at their own expense.

Bah humbug. Get off my lawn!
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Old 08-05-2014, 11:02 AM   #7
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DW and I got married three years ago next month. The only complaint we had was that the music at our reception might have been too loud, but in general we had a great party! I'd estimate 1/3rd of the folks were out on the dance floor for the majority of the evening, and if someone wanted to have a conversation, there was a lovely patio outside (September on Coronado!) by the water. Best of both worlds!

From the "young kids'" perspective, the thing we liked best about our reception was that it was more of a celebration/party and less of a formal dinner, and the DJ was a big part of that. (The open bar also helped!) We've been to weddings where we sat and had conversation and then people left about 10 minutes after the cake. Our little rager went on for a solid four hours... we had busses running all night so if people wanted to leave early, they could. If they wanted to hang out outside and talk, they could. But we found that most people stayed until the lights came on, and our closest friends walked across the street to the Hotel Del and had a drink at the bar with my wife and I... she wanted to hang out in her wedding dress.

Our DJ did play some slow stuff early on, and did a good job of adjusting as the dance crowd turned more, uh, "boisterous."

Best day of my life, and I doubt anything will ever top it! But yeah, he could've turned the volume down a touch...

I think more and more people are doing what my wife and I did: getting married in their 30s. We're both established in our careers, both have some money to ourselves, now merged. We may or may not have kids, but if we do, we have a pretty good sized nest egg started, which is a great advantage.

There are a lot of advantages to marrying later. The biggest challenge I see is that if we do have kids, they'll still be in the house when I'm in my 50s. Fortunately, I will probably be retired by then, and have plenty of time to spend with them as they grow up!
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Old 08-05-2014, 12:12 PM   #8
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Nephew is getting married at Disney World (he lives in the mid-Atlantic) this fall, which was fiancee's idea, not his. They are paying for the guests' admission but since they can only afford a limited number of guests they made it clear it would be OK for me to turn them down. Fine with me - I think they were almost as relieved as I was when I declined.

The last wedding I endured also had a too-loud DJ at the reception. DW and I were extremely annoyed, but looking at my dear old Dad in his 80s, it was clearly just torture for him.

I've read that another issue with modern weddings can be a forest of iPhones held high above the audience in an attempt to record every second. Never mind that there's a professional photographer and the pics will be made available for all to see on the intertubes.
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Old 08-05-2014, 12:20 PM   #9
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You'll probably get a lot of support here for the "less loud, more talk" idea. Pensive LBYM types rarely overlap a lot with the loud-party spender set.
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Old 08-05-2014, 01:07 PM   #10
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Weddings are all over the place today, from none to destination to courthouse to full scale gala. Sort of nice imho.

Those young kids' hearing is already shot so they probably can't hear less than full frontal amplification.
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Old 08-05-2014, 01:43 PM   #11
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I hope my kids (or more likely, my kids' spouses-to-be's parents) don't follow the normal Wedding Industrial Complex planning guide.

Destination weddings are confusing (unless the bridal couple really just want some solitude and their closest friends and family).

I'm helping a good friend figure out if he can game some free tickets from frequent flyer miles to get from East Coast, USA to Hawaii this winter. His wife wants them to attend a good friend's destination wedding but they aren't sure if they want to pony up the many thousands for flights, hotel, car, and meals.
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Old 08-05-2014, 01:54 PM   #12
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Volume is a big deal for us, too. DH is 76 and has tinnitus. The last wedding we went to, we ended up out in the hall with the groom's grandparents, who were also suffering because the music was too loud. My hearing is normal but I find myself working harder to make my voice project and after awhile I feel out of breath.

We have two more weddings coming up, a niece and a nephew, and my parents will be there. Dad has hearing aids that are supposed to sort out background noise but he still can't hear in rooms with loud background noise. I hope both places have quiet areas where we can retreat and have conversations with our fellow refugees.
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Old 08-05-2014, 02:18 PM   #13
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I carry ear plugs in my purse at all times. It is way too loud. at many venues including the movie theater.

I fail to understand how the whole population isn't deaf.

I don't care if people look at me funny, I won't be the 80 year old sitting in a silent world.
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Old 08-05-2014, 02:33 PM   #14
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Interesting; this must be something new.

I went to a wedding in March and the music was soooo loud, many of us had to go outside for the rest of the reception. It vibrated my innards. Literally!

I'm not an old fogey...raised on AC/DC and the Who,! this was outright unpleasant.
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Old 08-05-2014, 02:39 PM   #15
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Thankfully, we're not involved in weddings any more. We marvel at the wedding events of today. While no less emotional or meaningful, the scope of the planning and cost is almost beyond our comprehension.
Going back 56 years (plus 12 days) a good time to recall the "big event" of our life, marriage, in July 1958, in Rhode Island.
DW was not poor, but even as today... born frugal, so she planned our wedding with her mom, sister and brother. Her dad had passed away two months before. Had he lived, we're certain it would have been an extravaganza, but she knew how to squeeze a penny, so...
A borrowed wedding dress from the recently married daughter of DW's dad's business partner, and a veil from aunt Nelly.

We filled the church, and the balcony choir was led by Mrs. Annon, my neighbor.
DW and her family were driven to the Church by shiny new Lincolns provided by our mutual friends, the Williamson's sons, who owned the local funeral parlor. I arrived by way of my best man-best-friend's new (for him) '53 TBird (opera window).

Rice and then back home for a half hour while the neighbors finished prepping the Lodge room at the Scottish Lawn Bowling Association... Best place in the world for a reception.. $25, plus $10 for using the kitchen. Big hall, and outside the beautifully kept grass bowling lanes with a walk around the outside, and benches. A beautiful night and a nice place to break up dancing and inside activities..

Food was sandwiches... lobster, chicken, and ham salad. Cousins Bobby and Marianne did the honors, and the entire food bill, including the cake, came to $200. Another $150 for the booze that my dad bought from Stanley's... (at a discount)... provided an open bar all evening and into the morning hours for all of the guests... about 250 people.

Marianne and my mom were the official photographers.

Pete Winarski provided the music...for free. My dad and mom's forever friend who had his own very popular Polish Polka Orchestra... (7 guys) from Central Falls... Mostly regular music that night. Everyone danced.

Wedding gifts were mostly mixers, coffee pots, or envelopes with $5 or sometimes $10. ...except for DW's dad's business partner who presented us with a magnificent mahogany bedroom suite, that my kids still have... and cherish.

We hated to leave, but drove off at midnight in the 1953 Nash Rambler that was our parents' combined wedding present... tin cans attached and all. Two days of Honeymoon on the way back to Maine, where I was waterfront director at the YMCA Camp on Lake Cobbeseconte. For the rest of the summer, we shared breakfast, dinner (what we called it then) and supper, with 250 kids and counselors.

Thanks for a chance to bring back old memories...

Beside the births of our four sons... the happiest day of our life.
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50 things I learned when my daughter got married
Old 08-05-2014, 02:40 PM   #16
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50 things I learned when my daughter got married

Schutzie is compelled to share his lessons learned from his daughter's wedding.See, my daughter got married to a real LIVE NAVY PILOT.....a real HERO.......the real DEAL!

I was so happy for her, and so damn glad someone else was willing to be in charge of her that I told her I'd gladly pay for the wedding. Being the father of the bride is both the proudest and most frustrating experience I had as a father. This is primarily caused by the whole affair being about the bride, and the mother of the bride forgoing any and all common sense from the date the engagement is announced until the happy couple escape on their honeymoon.

1. There are 4,347,902,538 shades of purple.
2. Only one of them is called "purple"
3. It is incorrect to suggest that "purple" is the name of the color selected by the bride.
4. The specific shade of purple suitable for a wedding must be custom ordered. For everything. Everything.
5. The more unusual the name for "purple" the more expensive it is to order.
6. The father of the bride has two key responsibilities in a wedding. Shut up. Pay for **** without question or comment.
7. Logic is irrelevant in wedding planning
8. Bridesmaids are not suitable chaperons at bachelorette parties
9. You can find a bail bondsman 2 hours before a Sunday morning wedding, but see rule 24.
10. Saying no is bad for marital relations
11. The two most expensive materials in the world are wedding satin and wedding cake.
12. Bridesmaids dresses must match the wedding color of "purple" selected by the bride. Exactly. No matter that there is no material of that color anywhere in the civilized world and it must be ordered special from a little old lady in Luxembourg who only makes custom colored material in 1/2 yard batches. Once a week.
13. As father of the bride do not, ever, for any reason, under any circumstance, offer an opinion.
14. Especially a negative opinion.
15. The bride will not, under any circumstance, like her future in laws.
16. One of the bride's key responsibilities is to find subtle ways to insult the future in laws.
17. The future in laws are never as dumb as the bride thinks they are.
18. In laws carry grudges.
19. The cost of the wedding dress is in inverse proportion to the cut of the neckline. A lower neckline means a higher price.
20. Wedding satin is especially designed to wrinkle and attract dirt.
21. Cleaning wedding satin properly must be done only by specially trained chemists making more in an hour than the father of the bride makes in a month.
22. Beer and sausage is NOT suitable food for a reception where the bride has selected "purple" as one of her colors.
23. The brides family is required to pay for a day at the spa for the entire wedding party.
24. As soon as it is discovered that what you want is for a wedding the price triples, the availability drops to zero, and there are no substitutions.
25. Caterers assume that you are dumb enough to think sausage is Pate and beer is champagne.
26. SPAS know all about rule 24. In fact, they invented it.
27. Soda water will not get beer stains out of wedding satin.
28. Photographers hired for weddings are not reliable. Especially if the in laws recommended them.
29. If the minister hired to conduct the ceremony is a friend of the grooms family the bride will not like him.
30. If the in laws do not like the future daughter in law the minister will not like the parents of the bride.
31. The mother of the bride will always agree with the bride.
32. The mother of the bride will never agree with the father of the bride.
33. Even when the father of the bride agrees with the bride the mother of the bride will disagree with the father of the bride. See rule 7.
34. Anything that can go wrong, will go wrong, and it will be the father of the brides fault.
35. Saying "I told you so" will start a fight. Always.
36. Giving the groom alcohol 24 hours before a wedding is not a good idea.
37. The bride will resent any time the groom and the father of the bride spend together.
38. Brides do not have a sense of humor.
39. The mother of the bride does not have a sense of humor.
40. The father of the bride is expected to keep his sense of humor to himself.
41. The primary mission of aunts and uncles is to test rules 36, 38 and 39.
42. Rule 41 is the primary cause of rules 38 and 39.
43. An open bar at the reception is a very bad idea.
44. The bride will not appreciate pictures of her under the age of 18 being given to the groom.
45. Do not tell the DJ cute stories about the bride when she was a kid. At least not until she has left the building.
46. The tuxedo worn by the father of the bride will not fit.
47. The shoes provided with the father of the brides Tuxedo will both be for the left foot.
48. It is possible to walk without visibly limping while wearing two left shoes.
49. It is impossible to dance with two left shoes.
50. The proudest day of the father of the brides life will be the day of the wedding.
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Old 08-05-2014, 02:59 PM   #17
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My daughter married in Oregon in 2009, at age 30.

She arranged the playlist for the music at the reception, and it was mostly songs I was not too familiar with from the 80's and 90's, but appropriate to the occasion and actually quite beautiful and touching. The volume was just right, and we were able to talk and hear one another easily. There was an open bar, and some drank more than others so some of the dancing got a little bit exuberant. Nothing that I disapproved of, though. Just worth a little smile or laugh sometimes and it was great to see all her young friends having fun and blowing off steam.

All in all, it was a perfect wedding.

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Old 08-05-2014, 03:29 PM   #18
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Originally Posted by Schutzie View Post
[FONT=&quot]Schutzie is compelled to share his lessons learned from his daughter's wedding.See, my daughter got married to a real LIVE NAVY PILOT.....a real HERO.......the real DEAL!


If you're not Jenny's dad (DD's good friend Jenny also married a Navy pilot) then it must be something required by the Navy for the FIL to suspend all fiscal sanity for the wedding. DD reported that Jenny wore an alternate wedding dress/shoes/jewelry for the reception than she wore for the ceremony.
“Would you like an adventure now, or would you like to have your tea first?” J.M. Barrie, Peter Pan
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Old 08-05-2014, 03:29 PM   #19
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I completely agree about excessively loud music, at any event. When it comes to musical taste, it seems we are hard wired to prefer the music we grew up with:

Cultural nostalgia is a human experience - The Globe and Mail
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Old 08-05-2014, 03:47 PM   #20
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Originally Posted by Bestwifeever View Post
If you're not Jenny's dad (DD's good friend Jenny also married a Navy pilot) then it must be something required by the Navy for the FIL to suspend all fiscal sanity for the wedding. DD reported that Jenny wore an alternate wedding dress/shoes/jewelry for the reception than she wore for the ceremony.
Not Jenny's dad, but suspend..........sanity.............yes.
Actually, daughter did a good job holding the line on costs; might have had something to do with giving her a credit card with a $10K limit and telling her; when the card is rejected, we're through paying.
Wife's idea.
As noted, my job was to shut up and write checks.

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