Tuesday, December 06, 2005

The TMI Files. Hell's (Wedding) Bells!

My best friend's daughter got married on Sunday. The weather was gloriously bright and breezy. Maybe a bit too breezy for the bride and her coterie of attendants, but it was hot, sunny, and we were all at a winery in the country.

The service was lovely, the couple happy and glowing. All of which you would expect.

But, as often happens, there is someone who didn't necessarily come with the couple's nuptials in mind.

In this case, the bride's father.

He would easily be classed as a 'deadbeat dad'.

He and my best friend (hereafter known as BF) separated and divorced when the bride was a little tacker - around the same age that Magilla is now, actually - and he's never made much of an effort since then. He paid almost no maintenance for the child (was in arrears of thousands of dollars until BF and he came to an agreement a few years back to write it off. Peace of mind is more important in the long run, and he was never going to pay up.

He missed birthdays, rarely made any effort to visit with his daughter. BF was the one who kept in touch with his side of the family tree to ensure that the girl knew all of her family. You know the story. Needless to say, there's more to it, but the bare bones are enough here.

So Dad hasn't been a large part of her life, and she's getting married. Who gives away the bride in cases like this?

Her grandfather. The one who brought up her own mother, who supported her and loved her unconditionally, was there through all the tough times in the single-parent family.

You see where this is going, don't you? Yup. Dad had a hissy fit, took his wife and son (half-brother of the bride and page boy), and went home. After the ceremony and a few free drinks, but before the entree at the reception. And after the bride was reduced to tears.

I hope he's proud of himself - his daughter has now disowned him.

A man in his 40s throwing a tantrum at his daughter's wedding.

The saddest thing of all? Nobody was surprised. The general feeling was that if he hed stayed for the night he would have picked a fight with someone and it would have been on for young and old. Just as well he left.

Bloody Ballarat Bogan.


At 9:46 AM, Blogger Caz said...

What a complete busted arse. I can't believe how selfish parents can be. Mine only divorced a few years ago - haven't been in the same room since 2001 (after 25 odd years of marriage) and both are threatening not to come to my wedding if the other one is there. I just don't understand how in times like this adults can't just get overthemselves, swallow their pride and behave for a few lousy hours.

Oh and no-one is giving me away. I told my dad that if he gets married again I'd like to be the one to give HIM away.

At 6:36 PM, Blogger Nilk said...

Hehe. Caz, I've been a bridesmaid 6 times. 3 of those were as chief bridesmaid. None of those 6 couples are still married, so these days I decline any invitation to be part of the wedding party. :)

There's also a part of me that finds the history of the rituals involved in the ceremony offensive on principal.

The giving of the bride - references when women were property. Their fathers or (male) guardians handed them over to their husbands.

Let's see... the veil - used way back in the old days when girls had no say in who they married, it was often the case that the eldest daughter would ideally get foisted off first. In the event that a younger girl was contracted to be married, the veil prevented the new groom seeing which girl he had married until after the priest had finished the service. After all, they were married in the sight of God, so it didn't matter what name was on the paper, the groom was stuck with whoever was standing next to him.

Those are my two faves.

The giving makes me feel uncomfortable, because I'm my own person. Nobody owns me, therefore no-one can parcel me off.

I'm not very romantic, I know. :)

I guess I'd just have to kidnap a priest and a groom and elope if I were ever silly enough to get married. Plus with the family politicking that goes on.

At 10:43 PM, Blogger Caz said...

Total fucking selfish arsehole prick. Know the type too well.

Nilk - you are a jinx on the weddings of others. That's, well, a claim to fame, of sorts, isn't it. Now, just be very sure you do NOT invite any of them to your wedding if you should ever take such a step. Promise me?

And if you ever do get married: nothing wrong with a quick trip to a registry office, and the new location in Melb CBD has lovely little garden setting, I believe. We'll expect lots of pics though.

At 6:51 PM, Blogger Jai Normosone said...

I've always believed that the length of time a marriage lasts is inversely proportional to the cost of the wedding. So.... my plan is (as if it would ever happen anyway) would be on top of a cliff (for the bride's benefit if she changes her mind at the last minute :) looking over a violent ocean with maybe 6 or so people as witnesses.
I'm not known for being religious but sitting on a cliff seeing the ocean work puts one's life in perspective as to how insignificant we are as humans when compared to the earth and the forces of nature. If only the bride's father had realised that he wasn't the centre of the goddamn universe, he wouldn't have ruined his daughter's wedding day.
Just for that, I hope someone does dropkick his pathetic arse from one side of the road to the other.

I like the way you think about the giving away thing. I don't really have an opinion on a bloke giving away the bride thing but I could say that rather than her being seen as property being handed to the new owner, maybe one could say that her champion and protector is taking part in the changing of the guard. Yes - it does form a stereotype of women being weak and needing protecting but I suppose I like the idea of being a champion for the right woman :)

At 9:40 PM, Blogger Caz said...

Jai - what a really lovely way to reinterpret & reinvent the traditional reason why women were "given away". I like your suggestion very much. I'll use that if my daughter and son-in-law ever actually get married - I'll be giving my daughter away.


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