Men, do not attempt to adjust or regain your influence. You no longer have the power of command. You do not control the questions; you do not have the answers. You are in the grip of a transition between cause and result. You are ushering in a unique range of new discoveries. Gravity is secondary. Shopping mandatory. Wills indomitable. Caution advised. You have just entered “The Bridal Zone.”
The time frame where you cross over the mid-life between proposal and wedding has arrived, and whether it was the result of a beautifully arranged and romantic scenario or the result of a romantic scenario ending six weeks later in “You sure?,” those wedding bells are about to toll for the two of thee. Okay, don’t panic, they are sweet bells I promise you. But as a man, the trick is not your wedding day but lies instead in that point of every pre-marriage where the laws of physics cease to apply; once again we are discussing “The Bridal Zone.”
Let’s start with the basics, the foundation, and the part that will make the rest of the bridal structure earthquake-proof. Understand the following, memorize it, learn it, live it; have you spent your entire life dreaming of your wedding day? Well, she has. Don’t ask questions. It’s like puberty, it happens, it’s nature. Accept that, and you are on a smooth glide slope to a gentle touch-down in the aisle.
Okay gentleman, stay calm and perhaps latch yourself to something sturdy because, like the initial shake of a large earthquake, the first is the worst. You are about to discover “Bridal Magazines.” Discover like the Egyptians discovered the pyramids. They have always been there, and your fiancée always knew about them, and now you do too. Yes, they are as big as a phone book, and yes she wants to go through all twelve issues with you a page at a time. And in case you are wondering, yes they are all exactly the same but with different covers and no, she will never see that. Some advice: Never, never, never fail to be excited about the 50th veil she will show you, or not see the value in detailed lace vs. detailed trim on every page. Just see how excited she gets, and let that be your guide. Oh, and no jokes about white. Just don’t.
This naturally leads to the root of every wedding, the dress. It has to be perfect. Naturally “perfect” is open to debate and snippy comparisons are a must for her to make… you don’t. It’s a good place to just nod unless asked a direct question. Price is no object; just budget like you were buying a new Hyundai. Sure, she will only wear it once, but don’t underestimate its future worth in photos. Just remember, if it’s perfect, so is she. Don’t try to change that.
Shoes. I know they can’t be seen under the dress, so why a pair that costs more than the down payment for a home in 1955, and what’s wrong with the 75 pairs she already owns? She’s a woman, they’re shoes, it’s all you need to know, and yes, she will remove them to dance because they hurt her feet. Let it go.
The invitations. She’ll want one in the front of the album so better check the spelling.
The caterer. Better check with her parents.
The seating arrangements. Better check with Henry Kissinger.
Flowers are another area where caution is advised. She has them picked out already so just nod. They are the frame around her day, and never underestimate the right frame for a picture perfect day.
Now what about the bouquet you say? This has to be the most perfect of all the floral arrangements, and it has to match the dress, the shoes, the invitations and if there is room, her parents, the food and Henry Kissinger as well. Okay, maybe not her parents. Just remember it has to historically be the most perfect bouquet of all time, and she will toss it over her shoulder like a three point attempt with seconds to go. Yes she loves it, and she loves you too. Let that be a warning.
Okay, now some notes on the wedding cake. This is a place of negotiation. She has been on a diet (needed or not — be smart, stress not) for a year now, so what is inside the cake is secondary to her day. It‘s what’s on top that tops her list. Yes, the top; it’s the part that is the make-or-break of a perfect cake. You just can’t stick any Bride and Groom thing up there. It has to be the two of you, be it Cinderella and Prince Charming, a couple of cats or dog thingies or Sally and Lightning McQueen from the movie “Cars,” in case you met at the track. Just remember, the inside may be negotiable, but the outside is your private love letter to one another. Thus is the natural order of cake.
There is so much more to know then we have space to talk about. So know this from the top to the bottom of my heart, Bride and Groom. Anything might happen no matter the prep. Just think of the couple who planned their wedding on the same day that Alfred Hitchcock’s “The Birds” was being filmed just next door. But no reason for feathers to get ruffled. There is only one part of that special day that matters and that is the part that takes place at the end of that aisle. It’s where you walk up separately but walk away inseparable. The rest is so much schmaltz. Never let that little detail get away from you and no matter what, you will have the perfect day you have both dreamed of and from your first kiss as man and wife, be off to the perfect start.
Lloyd E. Flyer is a freelance writer and may be contacted through the “Tolucan Times” or at Alternateangle@pacbell.net.