Chapter Nine— Oh—You ARE Going to Get Tea Towels
Plan B: not named, as one might assume, to suggest the next viable contingency, but rather named for its primary characteristic—bastard child. Palucid and I were both still firm on our stand of “no bridal showers, so wedding socials”, but we were fast realizing that our loved ones (east of the Rockies) were hell bent on celebrating our upcoming nuptials. So, my maid of honour and I started to get…creative.
At first we bounced around the idea of a “Jack and Jill Shower” which is essentially a wedding shower that did not discriminate against genders and forced the participation of the groom (and all other men within the happy couple’s sphere). I still had objections to this idea since I was still trying to avoid the whole giving-of-gifts thing. I had no objections to parties—why couldn’t we just have a party that didn’t have a cash bar and blaring music?
My maid of honour gently suggested that in the absence of alcohol, blaring music, and dancing, party guests would need something to do. She pointed out that without some kind of activity, Palucid and I would have fair number of people looking to us for entertainment. Palucid and I are a fun couple, but we are no Sonny and Cher. We needed something to carry this party. My maid of honour offered to look into a couple of things: Portable Casino services, and Over-sized Game providers. Hence our Plan B—the bastard child of a bridal shower, and wedding shower was born: The Games Night.
It would be a night of games and fun. People need not bring gifts, they could participate for prizes, and feel as if they had their chance to “celebrate” our pending nuptials. It was so novel, and so very slick. We had a venue secured, and a plan hatched. Now, when inquiring minds inquired, we had something to tell them that could just stop them from buying us a casserole dish, and set of matching tea towels. Or so we thought…
In keeping with the tradition of best laid plans, it soon became apparent that our plan was not so air-tight and gift-giving proof. Soon well intentioned individuals within my family began to inquire if we had registered anywhere yet. Being a male, and a well anointed neophyte to all things bridal, Palucid immediately thought of wedding licenses. These innocent inquiries made me I flinch a little, and formulate a series of escape routes.
Potential escape routes be damned—I was trapped. Eventually I would have to admit I would not be registering with any stores for gifts because we did not need gifts. I emphatically reminded those who inquired I had more than enough tea towels and casserole dishes. I also had a full set of silverware and china. I had flatware, cookware, a crock-pot, bedding, bathroom towels… In truth I was two boxes away from being defined as a hoarder. As is often the case with hoarding, getting out alive was much easier said than done.
Kind advice eeeked its way in: “People are going to get you tea towels whether you like it or not—more so if you are not registered anywhere. You need to start thinking about where you are going to register! People want to give you gifts—what’s so horrible about that?…” Those who had run the gambit before seemed pretty ardent that there were some tea towels in my future.
The many virtues of tea towels notwithstanding, Palucid and I were forced to reconsider and tweek our plan. There was a genuine risk that rogue family, and friends would foist upon us all kinds of household linens and cookware—more so if we didn’t address it in some way. I stood firm on registering for gifts, but amended my views on gifts slightly. I suggested to Palucid we list some stores which we either shop at regularly, or enjoy shopping at when we can afford to, and suggest to those friends and family invited to our Games Night who may be compelled or inspired to “get us something” purchase gift cards. Palucid agreed that this could help fend off those bearing tea towels and casserole dishes (at least in theory…).
I must confess, I felt a little smugly proud at this “end run” around the gregariously generous. It was genius in its simplicity and ingenuity. Most people, despite all compulsions to give gifts, really dislike figuring out what to get a couple who already has everything. For them, being encouraged to get a gift card from a list of suggested stores offered great relief to their predicament. Yet others, who hate wrapping presents, or toting around large and ungainly shaped presents, enjoyed the ergonomic genius inherent in the wrapping and transport of gift cards. This idea would be an easy sell to all those on the “couples getting married must get gifts” bandwagon. Unconventional Us: 1; Traditions: 0!