Before we begin this post, I should probably disclose to the 2 people who don’t already know that I’m single. I’ve been single for a little while now, possibly because cute girls keep rejecting my awkward advances. I have to shave my palms more often than I shave my face. Hell, I can’t even get pity dates. You know those old single ladies? Well, they feel sorry for me. So, married people, keep in mind that this post is from the perspective of a single guy, and a somewhat cynical one at that. So, you know, don’t get too excited in the comments.

I’m almost resigned to the fact I’ll get married. I’m not saying that I don’t want to end up with a woman – of course I do. Somebody’s gotta make me dinner and do my laundry, and we all know it isn’t going to be me. (Sexist jokes are fun!) There’s also that whole true love thing, which is something that everyone looks for, no matter how tough their outside exterior may seem. There are certain advantages to pairing off. I understand that. I just think a traditional wedding is a pretty horrible way to celebrate this union.

I’m thinking back to the last few weddings I’ve been to. The bride wears a dress that she’ll only wear for about 8 hours, often at a price of (at least) several hundred dollars. Each of the bridesmaids wears a dress that’s worth a couple hundred bucks, which they have to buy, that they’ll probably only wear once. Each of the groomsmen is forced to rent a tux, which costs a couple hundred bucks, for an event that’ll only last a day. The cost of clothing alone reaches several thousand dollars, with each member of the bridal party shelling out a few hundred bucks for the privilege of being part of the entourage.

But wait, there’s more. Each guest invited to the wedding is expected to give a gift. Sure, if you don’t have the means to buy something nice, the couple will understand, and probably appreciate your thoughtful or homemade gift. But if you do have the means? It’ll never be said to your face, but you’ll be labeled a cheap you-know-what if you’re not buying a gift of at least $100. Hey, the new couple totally needs a top of the line fondue set, even though they’ve been living together for 2 years before they got married.

As a single guy, I’m tired of this, and I’m calling for all other single people out there to join in the revolution! Join me, and rise up against the evil that weddings have become! Together, we can fight this, and change the status quo! Who’s with me?

(Crickets chirping)

Nobody, huh? Well, that’s okay, I’m going to keep going. It’s time to take the traditional wedding and make it a little more sensible. Here are my ideas how we can.

Don’t Bother

My parents have been together for more than 30 years, and they’re still going strong. Guess what? They never bothered to get married, which was kind of a big deal back when they made the decision. It’s worked out pretty well for them, along with the millions of other couples who chose to simply shack up. These couples have avoided spending thousands of dollars on a wedding, money that can be put to better use elsewhere. They also avoided the stress that inevitably comes with planning the big day.

Elope

If you insist on getting married, say for religious reasons, then keep it small. Great aunt Hortense is going to be a little bummed out that she missed your big day, but she’ll get over it. By keeping the guest list small, you’ll cut down on the costs, the headaches and the logistics of the whole event. Hey, you can even go to Vegas if that rattles your cage.

Insist on No Gifts

You’re a grown up once you get married, right? With people putting school, careers and travel ahead of getting married on their priority lists, they’ve given themselves plenty of time to acquire the necessities of life. You might want a garlic crimper, but you sure don’t need one. Have you seen the amount of stuff the average newlyweds haul away from their wedding?

Why not use your big day as an excuse to do something for the better good? If you have a favorite charity or three, insist that, in lieu of gifts, donations will be accepted. If you’re an animal lover, help out the humane society. If you’re into reading, help out the library. You get the idea.

At their worst, weddings become a simple exchange. I’m a firm believer that one of the main reasons weddings have grown in size is simply because the bride and groom want more stuff. Since they often don’t even pay for their big day, it becomes a pretty sweet gig for them. Plus, if you’re a lady, you’ve got to go to the bridal shower, which is another gift. When will the madness stop?

Readers, how do you feel about travelling to a wedding, and then having to spend money for a gift on top of that? Do you think it’s great, or do you secretly cringe whenever you get a wedding invitation in the mail?

Tell everyone, yo!