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Did you get my e-mail about my wedding?

December 2, 2008

by dna strands in my hair

Staten Island, NEW YORK– You know you you’re not a kid anymore when you crawl into bed at 11pm with furniture catalogues to unwind on a weeknight, marking the items you plan to order online in the morning—and that’s after a full day of work, one goblet of sangria and a two-hundred-dollar dinner at your friend’s impromptu wedding. High-speed connections and wireless devices have made arduous tasks such as registering for classes, planning out the year, shopping, filing taxes, and inviting people to party over the weekend much simpler. Just update your status on your g-mail account or twitter, or send out a massive invite on Facebook.

Technology reigns supreme in even the most traditional aspects of our lives, but there are certain uses of modern communication that make even a twenty-something feel old-fashioned. In the good old days wedding invitations were sent out months in advance on fancy stationary after the bride spent hours asking, “Which do you think is better?” with a stamped postcard for the recipient to send back and RSVP, but last week my good friend sent me an e-mail with an attachment. After downloading it, I sent him a quick reply: “Shit dude. Is this spam? Cuz I totally downloaded it.” After all, some of my friends’ e-mail accounts were hacked recently. My friend did not respond fast enough and after five minutes of waiting, I re-scanned the file for viruses and opened it. I never would have imagined my first wedding invitation would arrive as a .jpg attachment sent to my g-mail one week before the Big Wednesday Wedding Day.

Another way of realizing you are not a kid anymore is when you start saying the phrase “in the good old days.”

Perhaps it is not necessary for fancy invitations when the wedding itself turns out to be a jolly good time with a lot of love, laughter and excellent food. What made the event signature of New York City was the people who attended and their stories. The groom was a hip-hop anthropologist and the bride was a Berkley-trained singer who spent the summer touring France. There was an engineer-turned-novelist, a deejay, a photographer, a Manhattan residential project manager who studied jazz with Ron Carter, and all were film buffs who sang impressively well despite the fact that they were just jokingly singing. We spent the evening playing “What movie is this line from?” Turns out the way we celebrate life’s big moments has not been corrupted by modern technology after all.

Although it is tempting to feel nostalgia for our childhood’s communication methods, such as passing notes and hand-writing invitations, today’s technological capacities create an affordable way to put together a wedding without expensive invitations.

Finally, you know you are not a kid anymore when you are conscious of your budget. Though we still expect those invitations to come in the real-life mailbox, know that it certainly does not take stationary with bows and ribbons to celebrate like a million bucks.


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