Unless you’ve been living under a rock, you know that Prince William’s and Kate Middleton’s (now, Princess Kate? Lady Kate? Lady Catherine?) wedding was today.
Although I don’t want to get married again, I couldn’t help but get caught up in the spectacle of it all, from Kate’s engagement ring, inherited from Diana (which by the way, I wanted for my own engagement, but couldn’t have because it wasn’t traditional enough [yes I know: wah cry!]), to the surprisingly plain invitation (I guess if you’re royalty, there’s no need to show off), to – GASP! – Kate’s classically beautiful dress, to all the awesome-crazy hats and fascinators.
The question is why?
While I love other people’s weddings, when I imagine planning my own, I only feel stressed out. I remember the huge expense, the fighting and conflict between families, the guests who would be unhappy, demanding, and critical no matter how hard you tried to please them. But experiencing someone else’s wedding, you don’t (usually) see all that. You see only the outcome. You see only the shiny, pretty things – the ring, the flowers, the dress. You don’t see arguments, insomnia, and debt.
I noticed my Twitter friends have been both fascinated and disgusted by royal wedding fever. Why should we care? the haters argue. They’re just two rich white people. Yes, that’s true, but then why should we care about celebrities at all? Yet we do. Or at least I do. I mean, I would never go as far as to celebrate the wedding, but it HAS crossed my mind to host an Oscar party. I wouldn’t camp out for days just for a glimpse of a real live princess bride, but I’m sure once I get around to watching the wedding coverage, I’ll cry like a baby.
I was nine years old when Princess Diana got married. It was July (and a Wednesday, weird day for a wedding, come to think of it) so I wasn’t in school, and got to watch it with my mom. She was surprised I remembered it all, but of course I do. I remember how long Diana’s train was, I remember her stumbling over Charles’ name. Many little girls (and women too) dream of being princesses, and weddings are the one day they can be (without seeming crazy) – so the idea of an actual princess’ wedding makes our heads explode.
I don’t know why I’m fascinated by celebrities or care what’s going on in their lives. My ex hated this about me. “They’re just people,” he’d say. “They’re no better.” While that may be true, there is something about them – whether beauty, or talent, or a familial and historical legacy – that makes them seem special.
But like I said, I will leave all things wedding to others and will enjoy them vicariously.