I once had a friend named Perry. He and I would bemoan the fact that we were invited to so many weddings. Granted we’re of a certain age, so that makes us grumpier about the predictable and less-than-exquisite food, the noise, the Orthodox dancing circles dominated by the friends of the couple who believe that dancing is an artistic form of rugby… well, you get the idea.
Our thought was that it would be nice to go only to the weddings where we’re still close friends with the parents and know either the bride or groom very well. But all of the parents feel they need to invite everyone they know, or anyone who’s ever invited them to an event. Meanwhile the invitees feel they have to attend, so it’s hard to say no.
What’s needed, Perry and I thought, was some kind of signal on the invitations sent to the B-Team — the people who don’t need to be there and don’t want to be there, and whom the hosts like, but don’t really need at the wedding. For example, instead of writing, “Something about Jerusalem makes us sad. With a heart full of gladness and thankfulness to <God/ Hashem/Master of the World/ The Holy One Blessed Be He>, we invite you to the wedding of…”, they could say “Jerusalem, etc. With a heart… we announce the wedding of…”. Having received that non-invitation, we breathe a sigh of relief, write a check to the young couple, and spend the evening of the wedding doing…anything else.
Sadly, we never promoted this novel and beneficial approach.
And then God, in His/Her mercy and compassion, sent us a virus. Out of respect for this divine decree, our politicians, bless their cotton socks, mismanaged the situation for many months. The end result is – smaller weddings! We’ve been to 1 (one!) during the pandemic, knew the parents and the bride, and were invited to be present for 1 (one!) hour. They served Ben and Jerry’s! And, we wrote a check.
I know this is bad news for the caterers. I care, but just a little.
So please, friends, find a way to drop a hint, so that we know whether we’re really wanted or needed at your event. The last time we saw you was when you named the bride, so probably not. We’ll still send a gift.