A few Sundays ago, my friends Regina, Joseph, and I went to a bridal show. None of us have a wedding on the books. We went strictly for the free cake samples.
In order to go to a bridal show you have to sign up in advance. You can sign up as a bride, or a friend of a bride, or a groom, or a mother of a bride—lots of options. I chose bride-to-be, because, why not? Be free to be who you wanna be. Je suis bride-to-be!
I invented a persona, i.e. a fake name: Annetti Vanetti, and one for my "fiance" as well. For Annetti's beloved, I chose Gustavus Toh, or Gus Toh. Gus is the man-bun wearing free spirit to Annetti's 9-to-5 serious trial lawyer Miranda Hobbes/Sigourney Weaver in the movie Working Girl-type. Annetti never thought she'd get married, let alone to a yurt-dwelling vegan adventurer who believes in healing crystals. But Gus has opened Annetti's cynical Type A heart and shown her how to love by showing her how he lives: with passion and open arms and dare I say...gusto!
Gus couldn't make it to the bridal show. That scene's a little too conventional for him. And, he's actually, at this moment, halfway across the world at a meditation retreat in Thailand, which he subsidizes with royalties he received from singing background vocals on Yanni's 2010 album Mexicanisimo, and by renting standup paddle boards on the beaches of Phuket, with Chaow, his young Thai friend who grew up on the streets of Bangkok and now caters to western tourists.
Gus told Annetti to tell him the wedding date and time, and when that day comes he'll depart Thailand and Chaow, and meet her, barefoot, wearing a burlap suit and holding a turquoise ring from the Navajo culture that he has adopted as his own. And that he received from an aura balancer/singer-songwriter at a "Burning Man-like" event outside of Austin, Texas in exchange for a small amount of weed and two bottles of coconut water.
It's important to have a back story.
After the bridal show I uploaded some photos to Facebook and immediately heard a collective sigh of relief from high school classmates, ex-employers, and conservative relatives. SHE WON'T END UP A SPINSTER AFTER ALL. "Congratulations! You're beautiful! When's the date? Who's the lucky fella?" they posted.
People who have never clicked a like on anything I ever posted before, people I haven't talked to in person in 10 years, couldn't keep themselves from showering me with virtual Facebook hugs at the idea of a wedding.
And that's because getting married is truly the only important thing in life.
These are most of my photos. There's a whole series of wedding DJs, one of whom really looked like he was masturbating, that I did not include out of respect for the privacy of wedding DJs, who are so discriminated against in our society. I am a woman of integrity, after all!