Is there a 2021 equivalent of Ann Landers and Emily Post? They were the queens of etiquette and social advice.
If you didn’t read their columns, back in the day, you had a grandma, mother, teacher or pastor to set you straight on the dos and don’ts of being polite. Hopefully, there is someone on Instagram or Twitter that offers some helpful advice in the modern age. I’m not sure too many people value manners anymore but they definitely should.
It became glaringly obvious to me recently when I received a bridal shower invitation, that a refresher course is needed.
First, it was an e-vite, which I know is all the rage but I still find impersonal.
When someone invites me to something online rather than by phone or regular mail, I never feel sure it is definite. It seems so off-handed:
“We’re having a barbecue. You can come if you want.”
It leaves me feeling not completely invited. Plus, I have no paper invite to put on my fridge with a magnet for constant reminder.
Anyway, back to this shower invitation. It was not sent by the bride or groom, obviously, but no doubt they were aware of the plan.
It went something like this:
“You are invited to the wedding shower of Jack and Jill. (I made that up as I may be unfriended otherwise)
“Please arrive ON TIME as we will be gathering outside and only have so much daylight. We kindly ask you eat dinner before you come as we will only be serving light desserts and beverages. Bring your own chair. Please keep in mind Jack and Jill have been living in a fully equipped home for years. Gift cards may be the best idea.”
Other than changing the names, I swear I didn’t make this up.
I was both insulted and entertained by it.
What I translated this to mean is:
“Listen up, we’re hosting this shindig but we don’t want you at the house for too long. So, we got a two-hour window for you to get your butt here and gone. Bring your own furniture. Don’t expect to get fed much. Eat first because we're too cheap to give you a cracker and a carrot. Pee at your own house because this is an outdoor gathering and you’re not invited inside. The bride and groom have been living together for eons and don’t want your tacky toaster or picture frame. Cash is king.”
I can already anticipate people countering my complaints by saying e-vites save paper. They will save more paper by not sending out a formal wedding invitation and postage stamp.
I will argue gift cards (as requested) are usually not recyclable as most are made of (toxic) hard plastic.
However, I will adhere to your environmentally friendly desires by neither sending the couple a paper congratulatory card nor any dirty old paper money. (COVID and all).
That way there’ll be no need for a thank-you note either.
I’ll send them a like on Facebook when they post 100 wedding pictures after the fact.
That will seem heartfelt, don’t you think?