Skeptic Groom: Notes from Ballin’ Chain

The wedding blog world is severely lacking in gender diversity, with the majority of posts written by excitable brides-to-be. After reading the rant below, you will understand why. Grooms are pissed! My friend Ballin’ Chain demystifies the role of the groom, and no, he is not just the smiling prop he’s supposed to be. This post will teach wedding guests to finish that rubber chicken with gusto and raise the roof in ecstasy when “Shout” comes on, dammit all.

The following is rated R for strong language and, um, graphic imagery.

[ATTENTION, MY PARENTS: in case it is at all unclear, your future son-in-law did not write this! ]


My parents got divorced when I was seven. My mom got remarried a year and a half later. I wasn’t around for my mom’s first wedding, since I was still swimming around in my dad’s balls, but I did attend my mom’s second wedding to my new stepdad (who had also been previously married and divorced). I had seen what weddings were supposed to be like on TV, and so I was a little disappointed when my mom’s wedding was just me, my brother, a couple aunts and uncles, a pastor, and absolutely no pomp and circumstance. It took me 15 years and a proposal of marriage to my own lady friend before I finally understood why my mom and stepdad decided not to go all out. Two reasons: 1) they understood the value of money; and 2) their parents (my grandparents) had become less concerned about the happiness of their children and more concerned with whether the nursing home cafeteria would be serving applesauce or baby carrots (ie – they’re fucking senile).

Unfortunately, my lady friend and I are not funding our own wedding, and our parents are not (completely) senile (yet). This means that I am about as useless in planning this wedding as is sending Lindsay Lohan to rehab. First and foremost, the sheer cost of this behemoth (behemoth here is referring to the wedding, not my lady friend) is astronomical. It is almost exactly equal, in fact, to the amount of debt that I am inheriting from my lady friend’s student loans. It is so frustrating to know that I am going to be paying for my lady friend’s school for the next thirty years while we are blowing the equivalent of said education in a period of less than 24 hours (Priorities?? Can you please use the word in a sentence?). It has turned me so bitter in fact, that when the big day arrives, I’m going to be scouring the audience for any asshole brazen enough to dare not finish their meal. I’m then going to tie said asshole to one of our polypropylene with deluxe pad folding rental chairs using the caterer-provided embroidered taffeta napkins to restrain them. I’m then going to take the remainder of the asshole’s beef tenderloin/chicken marsala/vegetarian lasagna entrée, and cram it down their stupid asshole throat. Then, if still conscious, I’m going to force the asshole to get out on the dance floor and bust a move to the sweet jams provided by our professional talent agency-hired DJ. But so help me god, if those assholes dance straight through without eating every last sugary bite of our handmade three-tiered butter cream-covered white chocolate mousse wedding cake, I am NOT going to write them a very nice thank you note for the lovely wedding gift they purchased on our Crate & Barrel registry using our A-4 card stock reply cards…fuckers.

Because I am the metaphorical tonsils of this wedding’s anatomy, I don’t have much of a say as to what goes into it. Early on, my lady friend and I decided that it would be nice to have our friends who homebrew (quite a few, actually) to provide their homemade beer for our reception. Now most of our friends produce beer that is quite tasty, and not only were our friends more than happy to volunteer their services, but it was going to save us quite a bit of money in the process. The caterers were totally cool with serving any beer we chose, so it looked like nothing was stopping us from moving full steam ahead…except for the people who were paying for the wedding that is. That’s right, I’m talking about Mr. and Mrs. Friend (lady friend’s parents). I dunno if it’s because Mr. Friend is a retired lawyer, or if it’s because Mrs. Friend is a professional worrier, but they were too worried about one of our guests getting sick off of the home brew and suing all of us. Huzza what?

My first reaction was, “If people DON’T get sick from drinking the beer, it won’t really be a party!” Needless to say, that’s not an extremely convincing argument to your bride-to-be’s parents. My second reaction was to be more logical, “We’ll try all of the beers a couple of weeks beforehand to make sure that they are up to snuff and we won’t serve any beer that’s bad.” Not convincing enough. “Well then let’s just have a waiver that everyone has to sign if they want to drink the homebrew.” As you’d suspect, Mr. Friend noted “you can’t waive negligence!” So then I turned to my last resort – indignation, “Well we’re only inviting close friends and family; who the hell would we be inviting that would want to sue us?” But that argument too was lost on the Friend family. So I assumed the regular position of groom-bitch and shut my mouth yet again.

And so, with our wedding still four months away, I have lost all will to get married. By the time June rolls around, we’re going to have to hire yet another over-priced wedding stooge to stand behind me with their hand buried shoulder-deep in my ass in order to work my mouth so that I can say my vows, because that’s all I’ve been reduced to – a puppet.


5 Comments on “Skeptic Groom: Notes from Ballin’ Chain”

  1. Brigid says:

    This is why I’m grateful that Mr. Trout didn’t get the opportunity to blog about our wedding. But seriously, everyone makes it to the wedding, enjoys it, and lives to tell (and maybe laugh?) about the planning process afterwards.

  2. skepticbride says:

    Brigid, Special Someone still has not blogged about our wedding. Sometime soon I hope. The grooms out there have a lot to say, it turns out!

  3. Ellie says:

    Husband and I started writing our blog together, as a joint venture, but it turns out he doesn’t really like to blog and so he gave up and works mostly behind the scenes, making sure I don’t spell stuff wrong. We were very very lucky that my parents, while batshit crazy, are also very relaxed about this whole wedding thing. They required that we served a meal of some kind, and my Dad asked to wear Rockports. My mom asked to wear a colorful dress. These were easy to accommodate. Mark’s parents had some more vehement requests, like “please don’t have a chili cookoff wedding”, but overall, still pretty chill.

  4. Jo says:

    This is why we are paying for our wedding. And why we figured out everything before we told people we were engaged so we are presenting a united front.

    So when his grandma said “I have a small list of people I want to be invited (half again of our actual guest list! people we’ve never MET), and I’ll just pay for those guests.” Ummm…how about if you want to show off, you PAY FOR THE WHOLE PARTY. I’m not crossing streams.

    This made my heart hurt. We’re having homebrew that we’re making.

  5. skepticbride says:

    Ellie – I remember, didn’t your husband come up with the name for your blog? That’s really nice. My fiance wrote a great entry on my food blog, but I’m not sure what he would have to say on this site other than “That girl I’m marrying is a lunatic! What have I gotten myself into?!?” As for the parents, mine are super involved in planning the wedding (more so than I am, actually) and his are completely uninvolved. I think they know the date and that’s about it. Makes things easier, for sure.

    Jo – thanks for visiting, and I’m enjoying catching up on your blog! It’s tough negotiating with parents/grandparents/other relatives about the guest list, but it sounds like you and your fiance have done a good job of it. Far better than I have, for sure!

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