BRIDESMAIDS AND BEASTMEN
The "tortured" and the "torturees"
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Many year ago, my FFIL, who is a professional wedding
photographer, and my FH, were doing a wedding. Everything was apparently lovely,
until the time for the speeches came around. The Best Man, who was proposing a
toast to the Bride and Groom had a bottle of champagne with which he was going
to toast the B&G. But what did he do? He shook it up, and sprayed it all
over them instead!
The bride was apparently VERY unamused! And his excuse? That's
what you're supposed to do with champagne... It was all caught on camera too!
When we got married, Groom asked his brother-in-law
"Bill" to be his best man, because he had known him longer than the
other 3 groomsmen, though they did not have as close a relationship. Bill flaked
on all the best man duties leading up to the wedding, including throwing a
bachelor party. He called two of the other groomsmen the Saturday before the
wedding near noon to tell them the party was that night, but at that short of
notice, neither one could make it, nor could the father of the bride. All three
of them were really upset over it, because they really didn't want to let Groom
down. The "party" turned out to be Bill, Groom and Groom's dad going
to the go-kart track, and Groom's dad had to pay because Bill didn't bring money
for anyone but himself. Bill didn't even invite the fourth groomsman, because
the two of them were fighting. They were still fighting the day of the wedding a
week later and refused to speak to each other, to stand next to each other for
photos, or to sit anywhere near each other at the head table. The only best man
duty Bill ended up doing was decorating the getaway car, after his wife (Groom's
sister) handed him the stuff to do it. It turned out she was also the one who
told him he had to have SOME kind of party for her brother. To this day Groom
regrets not asking the groomsman he was closest to, who also happens to be the
most considerate, to be best man, rather than "having" to ask the only
one he was related to at the time.
I could probably write a novel about my experience with my
friends’ wedding. To give you an idea of what it was like – well, I’m a
lifelong atheist, but I nevertheless found myself thinking this, five minutes
before the ceremony.
Jesus, Mary, Mohammed, and/or Vishnu:
Bless this couple and their union. Let it be a lovely
wedding. Let everyone be so enraptured with how beautiful the bride is they
don’t notice how drunk the ushers are.
Let the guests’ awareness be filled by the couple’s
obvious love for one another, and not the fact that half the wedding party
can’t stand the other half.
Grant the drama-queen bridesmaid the maturity to let the
bride have the spotlight instead of demanding it for herself for once; the
groomsmen the decency not to hit on the groom’s underaged cousins; and the
photographer the common sense to show up, preferably not reeking of pot this
Guide my steps, for I think if you had meant me to wear high
heels, you would not have made me five feet ten inches tall.
Remind us that what matters is that the flowers are
gorgeous, and not that the mother of the groom and the florist nearly came to
blows over them; that people who live on the West Coast should expect it to
pour rain from time to time; and that even the itchiest crinoline is not
In your bounty, let there be love, laughter, forgiveness,
and enough food at the reception; but in your prudence, let there not be too
Most of all, Jesus/Mary/Mohammed/Vishnu, deliver us from
insanity and preserve us from nervous breakdowns, but keep our memory of this
day clear – so we will never be tempted to try something like it ever again.
My maid of honor (my best friend my entire life) was so
excited when she found out I was engaged! Of course I asked her to be my
MOH, and she happily accepted. She said she wanted to be there for EVERY
decision and help in EVERY detail. Cool! Early on, I called her to
ask if she'd go dress shopping with me. She said sure! But on the
morning of, she called to cancel. Ok, irritating, but I can deal.
Next week, I call to ask if I can come by to run some ideas by
her and she says she'd love that! I arrive at her house at the appointed
night only to find that her boyfriend has decided he wanted to go to dinner.
She said I could come along too, but she couldn't keep our plans. It would
be rude, after all, to tell him no! I went home disgruntled. I took
the hint and quit asking her to do things.
Several months later, really close to the wedding, she calls
to tell me she's been planning a bachelorette party for me for the past year and
insists that I attend on such and such a date. Fine. Whatever.
I arrive, only to find her in a pissy mood, unwilling even to be photographed.
The kicker of it all was when we had to go pick up another BM at the airport (as
previously agreed) and she had a tantrum ON THE WAY THERE in the car! And
she had another one in the parking garage!! We finally got back downtown,
and she sulked and said her schedule was messed up. Soon after, she gave
up and LEFT US! Way to go, hostess.
Fast forward two days to my wedding. We all go to get
our hair and makeup done, and she, of course, arrives late. Fine. We
all get our hair done, and then go for makeup. We're all done, and on a
tight schedule, so we need to go, BUT she does not like the makeup after all and
INSISTS that she have it redone!!!! We all wait for her for HALF AN HOUR
(and leave my photographer waiting for us at the place I'm to get my wedding
dress on!). Finally ready to leave (in separate cars), we head for my
dressing location. We are all to take pictures as bride and bridesmaids
there, but....she arrives ANOTHER half an hour late!! I end up taking my
bridals with none of my bridesmaids (she's still in regular clothes). This
throws off my photograph schedule for after my wedding, too, which makes me late
to my own reception. When we finally do get our photos as a group, I
notice that she has a HUGE sports bra tanline that's very plainly showing itself
to everyone because she has the nerve to show up wearing spaghetti straps!!
Thanks a freaking lot.
I'm being a bad bridesmaid????
My girlfriend since grade school asked me to be in her
wedding. In the very beginning I told her that there are two other BM’s
that are ”take charge” kind of girls so I am just going to stay in the
background and take direction. The first problem came when I realized that
my son’s graduation party would have to be the day before the shower.
There are many reasons out of my control that prevented me from having it any
other day. I told her and the other BM’s that I would not be available
to help that much with the shower but let me know if they need anything.
Mind you that they had a meeting scheduled with the bride’s mom about the
shower and somehow “didn’t even think” to ask me. Fine. During
the month of May I had something to do every weekend, plan the party for my son,
etc. etc. etc. Keep in mind that I had my son when I was 17 and raised him
by myself, therefore, planned his party by myself, paid for it by myself and was
completely overwhelmed for a few weeks, by myself. I have no idea that the
bride is somehow upset that “I have been ignoring her”. The party was
June 10th, her wedding is July 22nd. Am I missing something?
On the day of my son’s graduation party which was held at my
house, not only did it rain all day but it was freezing and I had about 50
people coming to my VERY small house. I was so stressed…I was able to
find a tent and it eventually stopped raining but in the midst of my freaking
out, the bride called and the first thing she said was that I was being a bad
bridesmaid and that I was ignoring her. Right then and there I explained
to her that my son is the priority now, I have not been intentionally
“ignoring” her I am just overwhelmed. His graduation is a HUGE deal to
me…after all I raised him myself and he is a great kid. I wanted to be
able to give him a great party…I didn’t realize I was required to call and
check in with the bride to make sure she was not being ignored. Well….we
get past that after having a few words and now the wedding is three weeks away.
I called her to ask where we were planning on getting ready,
if we were getting our nails done, etc and she told me that she had made an
appointment for 6 people to get their nails done and one of the girls couldn’t
make it so I could take her place. I said okay…kind of getting excited,
trying to have a good attitude but after thinking about it I called the bride to
ask if there was a reason she is leaving me out. Mind you, we did not go
together to pick out dresses, as a matter of fact, we ended up with our dresses
by default. Someone had backed out of a wedding and there were 4 dresses
at the bridal shop they would sell for $50 less than the regular price so she
said ok and we all had to order ours. She let 4 people of the bridal party
take the “used” but never worn dresses and get the discount, the rest of us
had to pay full price. Reason #1 to be upset.
Back to the saga….when I asked the bride why she was leaving
me out, she said that I was ignoring her and her feelings were hurt. She
told me that “we” have been waiting 35 years for this (we are 35) and I
should be giving more attention to this wedding. I chose not to mention
that I have been waiting for my son to graduate for 18 years…who cares about
that anyway, right? He is only the most important thing in my life and is
shortly leaving me with an empty nest at age 35. I guess the bride is to
self absorbed to ask me if the reason I have not been in touch consistently was
because there was something wrong. Emotionally, his graduating and the
party was very stressful because my life is really changing. It is really scary
to think about. Maybe if she had been more sensitive, this would
have never happened. She also went on to tell me that leaving me out of
the nail appt. was not intentional. I then reiterated that when I was
planning my party, ignoring her, as she put it, was not intentional. She
also went on to tell me that I haven’t even called to find out what was going
on…every other wedding I have been in, the bride called ME to tell me what was
going on. Does anyone else think that a tit for tat, you didn’t call me
game is for children?
There were many other things said that I won’t go into but I
guess the reason I am writing this is because I want to remind future brides
that their wedding is THEIR WEDDING. I told the bride that from now until
the wedding that I would do what ever she needed, she said “oh now you
will….” I would not budge with her the fact that my son is more
important than coddling her…I told her we should just put this in the past and
move forward because I do not want to be a bad memory of her wedding and I also
don’t want to cause ANY turmoil. That is the last thing I want to do…I
didn’t even know I WAS doing that. She is holding a grudge….she is
ruining her wedding. Again, there is a lot more that could be said but
this experience, and I have been in 4 other wedding, has been horrible.
She is one of my best friends but she is completely self centered and not
understanding. This just seals the deal that I will NEVER have a wedding
because I will NEVER take the chance that my friends may have to go thru this.
If I ever get married….Vegas here I come!
My sister and I had always had a difficult relationship but I
thought we were both trying to get along and become close. When planning my
wedding, I asked her to be my Maid of Honor. Things seemed to be going well. We
talked every other day and she helped me plan. It was to be a fairly informal
event. The night before my wedding, my sister, future sisters-in-law and friends
decided to take me out for an impromptu bachelorette party. I'd like to credit
her actions to being drunk, but she hadn't had a drop of alcohol. When I went to
use the ladies room, she turned to my future sisters-in-law and friend and said,
"I hope your brother knows what he's in for. She is a b**** and a slut. I
pity him." This continued throughout the evening every time I was out of
ear-shot. My dear older sister completely trashed me and continues to do so.
Needless to say, we no longer speak.
I recently married the man that I had been with for nearly six
years. I asked my brother's fiancé (we'll call her Maggie) to stand up for me. I
should have realized what a mistake that was if I had taken a minute to remember
the circumstances of their own relationship. This may seem at first to not truly
have much to do with the story, but it gives some insight into the bridesmaid's
My brother started dating this girl shortly after my fiancé and I became engaged. Six months later, fearing that he would lose her when she
went away to college, my brother proposed to Maggie...the night of her senior
prom. That's right, she was a high schooler. I lightly warned my brother that
that is not necessarily the right reason to ask someone to marry you, but there
was not much I could do. I had met my fiancé while in high school; so I did not
have too much room to talk. However, we did wait several years before even
Turns out that she didn't go to away to school after all and
ended up living at my parents' house. I visited home often; I'm very close with
my family. I don't really like visiting anymore because of Maggie. She was a
slob and promptly told me to remove my own items from my bathroom at home as,
evidently, I did not live there anymore. (I sweetly informed her that I had
lived there a lot longer than her even if I was at school most of the time and
that I was still my parents' daughter. Still I consolidated my things and
dropped it.) She took over two bathrooms and two bedrooms at my house (the guest
room and my brother's room). Despite her laziness and her complaints about my
parents (who she believed had ridiculous rules about cleaning up after
yourself), Mom and Dad allowed her to stay FOR FREE, feeding her and buying her
this and that. However, my mother did stop taking her grocery shopping (she was
trying, in vain, to bond with her) after Maggie continually put things
for herself (clothes, candy, etc) in the cart, expecting Mom to pay. Actually,
neither one of my parents ever asked her to do more than to keep her own things
in order. They never asked her (nor did she ever offer) to make dinner, run the
vacuum, or do her own laundry. She actually started complaining when my mother
got tired of seeing her laundry pile up and started washing Maggie's clothes
herself. Oh how terrible my mother is! (sarcasm, sarcasm)
I was home even more often than usual as I was planning my
wedding in my home town. Maggie's rude behavior always escalates when I visit.
Of course, when you're getting married, when relatives visit, much of the talk
is about your wedding. Bro and Maggie's wedding was set for a year after mine;
so much of the talk was about MY wedding. I tended to play down my wedding and
did not bring it up unless asked about it. I didn't want to bore anyone and seem
stuck up. However, when my cousins or aunts would ask to see something that had
been purchased for the wedding or asked about flowers and dresses, Maggie would
immediately start gushing about her own wedding (for which almost nothing had
been picked out). And since she lived with my parents, she was always around.
Even when MY fiancé's parents came over and asked about the wedding, she went
running to grab the cake topper that she'd recently purchased just to show them.
Fast forward to the shower. Not all of my bridesmaids could
attend the shower because they lived far out of town. The only other bridesmaid
in attendance ("Judy") besides Maggie was also engaged. I spoke to
Judy briefly at the shower about her own plans, and got to see her ring for the
first time. Of course Maggie could not stand it and had to start talking about
her own wedding plans. My brother attended my shower as we are very close as
well. I felt sorry him as Maggie ordered him around the entire afternoon. We
played a few games and there were some prizes. My brother won a game and
"picked out" the prize Maggie wanted for herself and gave it to her.
Another guest won twice and graciously declined her second prize so that someone
else might win. Even upon seeing this polite act, when Maggie won a game, she
greedily went over and grabbed another prize. Never mind that my brother had
already given her his. I spent much of the shower socializing with the other
guests and hostesses and luckily did not get to witness the rest
of Maggie's horrible behavior. Later, one of my aunts in attendance called my
mother and cried about Maggie's behavior. She treated my brother horribly and
then talked incessantly about how wonderful her own wedding would be. I'm just
glad that I did not have to hear much of it.
Maggie did not bother to help with anything for the wedding
unless my brother started helping me first. She watched a friend and me assemble
invitations while she sat in the floor talking about her job and how stressful
it was (she was a babysitter). She did not offer to lick one envelope or affix
one stamp. I did not think it appropriate to ask to do any "grunt
work," but I was a little embarrassed that even in front of someone else
she could not at least offer to help. Perhaps she figured that gracing us with
her company was enough.
Fast forward again to the bridesmaids' luncheon. I had a lunch
for my girls so that I could thank them for their support. I provided sandwiches
and gifts for all of them. A few hours later we went out to a restaurant for a
snack and conversation. Once again Maggie was very "me, me, me" and
drove my poor bridesmaids crazy. They were furious that someone would try to
steal the spotlight from my fiancé and me.
I have never confronted Maggie about her behavior at those
events. It would only make visiting my parents and my brother more
uncomfortable. My own brother cannot confront about her behavior as she breaks
down and cries, "I can't deal with this right now! I hate this house! I
just want to be on my own!" And the closer and closer it gets to my
brother's wedding, the worse she gets. I understand that my wedding has passed.
It is now time for them, but a selfish little part of me feels that she ruined
events that were about us. But like a good little bridesmaid (yup, I have to
stand up for them), I will smile sweetly and offer to help in any way I can and
avoid doing to her what she did to me. This story is the tip of the iceberg. Now
my parents are helping my brother buy a house. She does not appreciate it and
complains about the time that my brother is putting into their new abode so that
they can move in. But that's another horror story for another day.
In 1992, my sister "Bunny" was getting married. She
and her fiancé, "Vic," lived in New Orleans, but were getting married
in Lafayette, LA, where most of our family, including my then-husband, my son
and I, lived. They kept traveling to Lafayette to meet with the priest, with the
caterer, etc. Bunny was coming to Lafayette nearly every weekend, and Vic was
with her for many of the visits. The drive is about two-and-a-half hours.
The Lollapalooza concert did not go to New Orleans its first
year, 1991. My then-husband "D" was therefore very excited to learn
that it would be in New Orleans in 1992. Unfortunately, it was scheduled for the
day before my sister's wedding - the same day as the rehearsal and rehearsal
supper. D, our son and I were all in the wedding, I was a bridesmaid, D was an
usher and our son was the junior groomsman. I graciously accepted the fact that
we'd miss Lollapalooza, and that Bunny's wedding was far more important.
D, however, kept insisting we could fit both events in;
"We could go to Lollapalooza for a little while, then leave in time for the
rehearsal." I'd counter with "By the time the bands begin, we'd have
to be on the road." He would pout and later on, try again. Finally, a week
or so before the wedding, he said "Wait. . . where's the wedding?" I
replied "At St. Mary's." He asked again, "No, where is the
wedding?" Again I replied "At St. Mary's." (the church we
attended at the time, actually). Then it came out; despite numerous visits to
Lafayette by the bride and groom, to meet with the caterer, to meet with the
priest, D believed the wedding was in New Orleans. No wonder he thought we could
catch part of the concert!
I am not sure if this is up to the level of errors your site
shows, but I thought it might be worth mentioning so other brides do not put
their bridesmaids though a similar experience. A few decades ago I was to
be a bridesmaid for an aunt. There are no other bridesmaids or page boys. This
was my first wedding, at the age of 11. I do not know if there was a rehearsal,
I certainly was not invited to one.
So, on the day of the wedding, at a church I have never been
to before, I am left outside by my parents with "I guess you need to wait
for the bride." On my own. No one had told me it is traditional for brides
to turn up late.
So I'm standing out in the cold, in a frock with no sleeves,
on my own. For what felt like an hour. I've got no idea what to do
when/if the bride shows.
I am nearly in tears when aunt finally shows, and follow her
into the church, where she gives me her flowers, which are such a big bouquet I
nearly fall over, as the only flowers I've held so far are my tiny plastic
bunch, and I'm not expecting such a heavy bunch. Fortunately the best man grabs
me and the flowers before I hit the deck, but being grabbed by a man I've never
met before was very alarming too.
I do not remember the rest of the wedding, just the waiting
outside in the cold on my own, scared. Please brides, hold a rehearsal and
invite your bridesmaids.
My very good friend was getting married a few years ago and
generously decided that she wanted to take her bridesmaids (me and three other
girls) out for dinner a few weeks beforehand. She was going to pay for
everything. Because she's vegetarian and I'm vegan, she invited us all to a
vegetarian restaurant that we'd both been to and enjoyed. Two of the other
bridesmaids apparently got very upset and began to whine because they wanted
meat. The bride is just too nice for her own good and so to avoid further
argument, changed her plans so that we'd all meet at a local "burger and
fries" sort of place one girl had suggested. (She'd come up with a number
of other omnipresent mainstream chain restaurants as well--uh, thanks, the bride
knows about those places and probably didn't choose them for a reason.) Of
course, it offered little for vegetarians and vegans. Though I'm used to
occasionally being in these sorts of situations--when you choose to eat
differently than most other people, (and even when you don't CHOOSE to) you'd
better be able to handle it once in a while--I thought it was extremely rude and
selfish to argue with the bride's choice of restaurant, which of course she'd
suggested because it would include everybody, particularly herself! It wouldn't
have hurt them to eat a vegetarian dish for one night. The really ridiculous
thing is that after all that, the first protesting bridesmaid had the gall to a
order a cheese dish that didn't have meat in it anyway, and the second never
even showed up!! Thanks a lot, guys. I know that I'm biased here, but I thought
it was very rude.
A few years back, my best friend Aimee got engaged. She
and her fiancé had 3 beautiful children and had been together for years.
Needless to say, I was thrilled when she asked me to be her MOH. She had
also asked her cousin Jaime and long-time friend Ann to stand up as bridesmaids.
That's when the trouble began. A few months before the wedding, we
three were planning a bridal shower. Since we were all pretty much broke,
single mothers, we decided to have the shower at my home, which has a very large
family room, big enough to accommodate all the people we planned to invite.
Again, being broke, we decided to do everything ourselves (all
favors, baking, cooking, decorating, etc.). Since the shower was at my
home, I ended up doing 90% of the work. I did all the cleaning (as other
two couldn't possibly show up early enough to give me a hand), all the
decorating, and most of the cooking. By the time guests arrived, I was
exhausted. That wasn't the worst part. The worst part was, after all
the guests and bride had left, the two other bridesmaids decided they just had
to go home and "knew" I wouldn't mind if they left without helping
Skip on to the bachelorette party....Aimee had her heart set on
going downtown to a show and a few hot spots. No problem. Jaime, Ann
and myself all talked and decided it would be best to rent several hotel rooms
in the area for the night. Aimee had only invited a few more people to the
party, making about 6 of us altogether. We all
pitched in and reserved a big double room for the night. We head out
to the show, and start to have a great time. Jaime and Ann start to get
very, very drunk (which is fine, we don't have to drive home).
After a few hours, Jaime and Ann decide they can't possibly
finish out the night and stay out with us...they are too drunk and must get back
to the hotel. We say goodnight and stay out for a few more hours.
When we finally get back to the hotel, we are stunned to find nobody there.
These two decided they couldn't live without their boyfriends for one night, got
into the car and drove home early, leaving me with a very hurt bride (don't
forget, one of these girls was her cousin). Now, on to the wedding.
We had a rehearsal before the wedding and everything went off fine.
Next day at the wedding, Jaime decides she wants to walk down
the aisle before me (leaving from the alter, after the ceremony). I
thought, whatever, as long as Aimee didn't see anything, I wouldn't bother her
with little details. At the reception, once again, Jaime and Ann could not
live without their boyfriends. They stuck to the table near the bar all
night long...did not go out to dance, did not help the bride in the bathroom,
did not do a darn thing all night but drink and hang on boyfriends.
I never told my best friend Aimee about most of their behavior so as not to hurt
her. It just feels better to have it off my chest!!
I hope I don't come off seeming too bitter in this story, but
three years after the big day I have not yet been able to bring myself to speak
to the two young ladies who are the subject of this story. The
first was my best friend since elementary school. We had promised, way
back in our bike riding days, that we would be one another's' MOH's when the
time came. Sadly, her family moved 10 hours away, but we still
visited one another when we could and talked on the phone. I remained her
ever devoted "Best Friend". Nor was I put off when, in college,
she eloped. No one else knew she was getting married until afterwards, so
I didn't feel too left out at not being told until months later.
Our communication became somewhat strained after the birth of her daughter, but
that was something I could understand as well.
It was never a question in
my mind, after DH proposed, that I would ask her to be my Matron of
Honor. Knowing that she might have concerns (she still lived 10 hours away
and would have a 3 year old daughter at the time), I tried to do everything I
could to let her know I would accommodate her. I told her that she would
certainly not be expected to do any of the planning things that MOH's usually
consider their due (no showers or bachelorettes or anything). I told her
that I would be honored if she would just buy her dress and attend. Please
understand, I dearly wanted her there and probably would have been willing to
buy her dress for her (despite being somewhat strapped for cash myself) and had
her stay with my family if she would just show up. In retrospect, I guess
I should have offered. I just didn't think of it because, well, I would
have torn down the moon for her. I figured the feeling was mutual. Regardless,
she seemed happy to accept.
The other woman in this story was my
favorite cousin. I had been honored to stand up in her wedding a
few months before receiving my own proposal. I did the whole dress, dyed
shoes and professional hair shebang. My DH (then BF) and I drove
5 hours away the weekend before our exams to go to her wedding. We scraped the
bottom of our meager college student funds to get her two champagne
flutes from her crystal pattern. We left at 5 am the day after
the wedding in order to make it back on time for exams that day. I, of
course, asked her to be in my wedding, even though it meant that, because of
size concerns (many friends, tiny chapel), one of my best girlfriends was left
out of the mix (she was very understanding, family must come first in these
My cousins' husband is in the military and was stationed overseas
(in Europe) at the time. She was living with him, however, was
planning to be in the states visiting her family at the time of my wedding
anyways. At the time I invited her into the party I asked if being away
from her husband was going to be a problem. She assured me it wouldn't.
Keep in mind that all of this asking occurred a good year and a half in
advance of the actual wedding, it's not as if the girls did not have time to
warn me about any sudden changes of situation/heart.
dresses are picked out, the girls are told to wear whatever shoes they want
in silver and do their hair however they want because I don't want them to have
to spend any more than they already had to for their ($120, not extravagant
for these times) dresses, and plans are made for various wedding
related activities. I decide to send out a sort of newsletter to our
wedding party. It includes little snippets about all the members so they
can start getting to know each other, information about dresses and tuxes, and
dates and times for such things as the bachelor/bachelorette parties and bridesmaids'
pre-wedding luncheon. It turns out to be a good idea because it gets all
the members calling us to say "Hey, I'm coming to this" or "Where
can I pick up this thing I need?" The only people who don't respond in
some way are the two ladies above who, both being out of state, are the
people to whom the newsletter was most directed.
A week or two after
the newsletter was sent out I receive an email from my cousin. She states
that she's given it some thought and, seeing as how her husband could be
deployed to a more dangerous spot than then where he was currently stationed at
any time, she needed to stay in Europe, ostensibly so she'd be closer to
wherever he might be deployed. The long and short of it is that
she wants to back out of the wedding party. I am, of course, hurt by
her decision (especially since I had specifically asked her if this might be a
problem when I initially invited her), but whatever. I'm certainly not
going to have someone in my party who doesn't want to be there. I write
her a reply email that is as friendly as I can make it.
However, as a
result of this, I start to get worried about my best friend, whom I had not
heard from in some time. I call my best friend up and I talk to her a
while. I mention that my cousin had backed out and I hear a certain edge
start to come into my friend's voice. Not wanting to drag the torture out
further I tell her that I know what a burden being in a wedding can be (what
with the expense and her having to come from so far away and having a little
girl and all). I told her if she felt she needed to back out that I would
understand. Sounding sad, but clearly relieved, she said she thought she
probably should. I told her it was okay, I wouldn't hold it against her,
and that I really hoped that she and her family could at least make it up to the
wedding as they were certainly still invited. She told me she'd try to
make it. Then we hung up.
It was now a good 1.5 months
until the wedding date and I had just lost a bridesmaid and my Matron of
Honor. Now, before you think that I'm some horrible Bridezilla who
nobody wanted to stand up for, let me say that my friend, who I unhappily had to
leave out originally, was very pleased to now be asked into the party.
Another good friend, who had previously been living far away, returned
to my home state and was good enough to step up into the other spot. There
was a near mutiny among the remaining maids as to who would get to be MOH, but
going once again with the adage that one cannot argue with family, I appointed
my DH's sister.
The wedding went off with the usual little hitches: some
RSVP'd guests didn't show (without explanation), some guests added themselves
last minute (as the untimely passing of my great aunt the same week brought
additional family members into town), several close cousins couldn't come
because their mother (my aunt) had decided to get married (second time) on the
same day (after being told of our date) in another state. But all in all,
everyone had a good time. The ceremony was lovely, I still get compliments
on the reception, and the friend who had fortuitously returned home just in time
to be a bridesmaid ended up taking down the Best Man's number with our guest book
pen and is now happily engaged herself. Neither of the two delinquent bridesmaids were in attendance. Their loss.
My fiancé and
I got engaged in New York on Valentines Day 2005. At the time, I had a slightly
strained relationship with my sister because of a new relationship she had with
a friend of ours who had only weeks before split with his wife of only 18
months. We disapproved, hence the slight strain on our relationship. Anyway,
when we returned from our break with our happy news, we immediately began
discussing bridesmaids, best men, ushers (English groomsmen) etc and I asked my
sister and my fiancés sister to be my bridesmaid, a first step to healing our
temporary rift about her choice of boyfriend. A friend of mine, we’ll call her
Annabel, has been a good friend to me for many years and when I told her about
our engagement she immediately thanked me, and said she’d be honored to be my
bridesmaid. Okaaay, not sure I’d actually asked her but I’m always one for
keeping the peace and thought that a combination of my sister, my fiancés
sister and a friend would be nice.
The months go by and I crack on with the planning. My sis and
I are becoming really close again, and she’s being really supportive with all
the planning. Annabel lives 4 hour drive away, having moved just before our
engagement because of her job, and my fiancés sister is in London with her own
life to lead, so I really don’t expect help from anyone but truly appreciate
the help my sister is giving. Particularly because my mother refuses to accept
that the wedding is happening at all, I really need someone to get excited with
me so all’s well. Annabel then asks my fiancé and I to go to Greece for a
week with her, to a place she lived a few years back, and we excitedly agree,
booking flights based on her work commitments etc and really look forward to it.
We arrive, and she immediately disappears with one of what turns out to be 23
men she slept with during that week – yes, 23. Now I’m pretty broad minded,
but I had no idea about this side to her, and we were entirely left to our own
devices all week – not a problem, of course, we’re getting married after
all, but if we’d known we were going on holiday just the 2 of us, we’d have
gone somewhere of our own choice! She had arranged for a studio apartment in the
town for us, while she was staying the other side of town with a friend who
still lived there, and apart from 2 hours a day on the beach we didn’t see her
until the flight home.
So by now I’m thinking she’s not the person I thought she
was, although I’d always known her to be spoilt by her wealthy father, I had
no idea she had so little regard for anyone else’s feelings. And we’re still
slightly bemused about why she asked us along in the first place if she didn’t
want to spend any time with us! We return home, and Annabel starts telling
everyone what a fantastic holiday we all had (we did, but on our own!) and that
she’s so excited about being Chief Bridesmaid (Matron of Honor in the UK).
Hang on a second, what?? I’d asked her no such thing, in fact I’d asked no
one at that point, I was wanting to leave it until a little nearer the time to
decide. So I sat her down and explained that I hadn’t decided on a CBM, but
that I couldn’t ask anyone other than my sister to take that role, given the
amazing support she’d given me in recent months. She went mad, telling me how
ungrateful and selfish I was being after she’d organized our holiday for us,
been there for me, etc etc, and stormed off.
The next day, she called me (she was back in her home town) as
if nothing has happened, asking me to go up for the weekend with her so that we
can go dress shopping. I reluctantly agree, hoping to mend burnt bridges (that
I’m pretty sure I haven’t burnt!) and we choose a style of dress that I
think will flatter all 3 of the bridesmaids, floor length, strapless with a
slightly corseted but plain top half with chiffon tiers down the skirt, very
simple and elegant and hopefully something they can wear again. The shop
assistant tells us that the dress comes in a range of colors, and as we
didn’t have a color scheme I suggested we ask opinions from a few people
which color they would prefer. Annabel voted for turquoise, fuchsia pink and
ivory – yes, ivory. In the end my Dad had the deciding vote, someone who
rarely gets involved preferring his daughters to make their own choices, but he
said he loved midnight blue, most agreed and that was that. I decided to
complement the sedate color of the dresses, we’d have fuchsia gerberas and
wraps to bring some color.
This is where Annabel starts butting in – she
wants a fuchsia dress with midnight blue gerberas, to make her stand out from
the other bridesmaids (do midnight blue gerberas exist??). I put my foot down,
and say that although I don’t want them to all look like identical dolls, they
will be wearing the same dresses in the same colors. I don’t hear from her
for 4 months, which included my birthday and Christmas – not a card, email,
text or anything. I continued to include her on all emails about the wedding,
including booking her a room at the reception venue hotel, organizing my own hen
weekend (batchelorette party), asking opinions on hair styles, menu choices etc
and hear nothing. Then I get an email from her saying that of course she’s
coming to the hen weekend, wouldn’t miss it for the world, but wants to share
a room with me because she won’t feel comfortable sharing with anyone else.
Ok, I’d rather not be sharing a room with her given her lack of interest in
the last few months, but as I’ve said before I’m a sucker for keeping the
The day before we’re supposed to leave (an overnight cruise to France,
then 2 nights in a lovely hotel by the sea) she emails to say she can’t come
because she’s having an abortion that day. Right. Ok. Not sure what to say to
that, so I say that I’m thinking of her and ask if there’s anything I can
do. She says yes, drive up and spend the weekend with me. Now I may be called a
bad friend for this, but I wasn’t prepared to miss my own hen weekend because
she was having her third abortion – accidents happen, but surely people learn
from their mistakes?? But no, she hasn’t learnt and I’m left to pay for a
hotel room and cabin on my own (about £300, $500 or so) and she’s now upset
with me because I wouldn’t come up and see her.
Since then, I’ve heard little from her apart from an email
yesterday saying she couldn’t afford the £50 for her hair and make-up to be
done (her actual words were ‘£50! To put a clip in my hair?’) so her mum
would have to pay for her (she’s 30 and we’ve paid for dresses, wraps, bags,
flowers, shoes, hair accessories and gifts so they only had to pay for their
alterations and hair/makeup) , but would like to upgrade her room at the hotel
to a suite (£100 extra). So £100 room upgrade is ok, but your Mum has to pay
for your hair on the morning of the wedding? She’s also told me that that my
pastel pink Jimmy Choo wedding shoes were slutty and to ask who is walking out
of the church with the Best Man (who she fancies, but who fancies my sister
amusingly) as she thinks she should as she’s unofficial Chief Bridesmaid.
She’s told us that lamb is a bad choice of main course during the reception
meal, suggested that the 3 bridesmaids sit on a table by themselves (why? Why?),
said she wants to stay at my house the night before the wedding (no WAY, her mum
lives 2 streets away, she can stay there) She did get her mum to drop a cheque
off to the bar for the hair and make-up, but her mum wouldn’t speak to me so I
can only guess at what she’s been saying to her about me.
So a word to any brides-to-be – don’t chose your
attendants until much closer to the wedding, or at least stick up for yourself
if they chose themselves - it’s amazing what you find out about someone in a
My husband and I were married three years ago. This a
second marriage for both of us and we each have children from our previous
marriages. My husband was also attending college classes full time and we were
trying to pay for the crash course wedding ourselves therefore it was a smaller
and less formal affair, with a lot of help from our church,
friends and family members. We did have a small church wedding and
reception as I wanted a "real" wedding since I was only married by a
JP the first time.
My husband had an old friend (we'll call him J); hubby
told J 10+ years ago that J would be the best man in his wedding. He wasn't
the best man at my hubby's first wedding and my hubby wasn't really close to J
anymore but out of the sake of friendship, asked J to be his best man the second
time around. My hubby really wanted (we'll call him S) be the best man.
J comes up and tells my soon-to-be-hubby that he doesn't have the funds to pay
for the tux, so we make arrangements to spring for the tux and shoes. S set
up the bachelor's party for my husband and takes care of all the details of the
wedding that we (hubby and I) don't catch. S is our very helpful groom's man,
even helped with seating because I didn't think about ushers (had no clue what I
was doing setting up a wedding).
Fast forward a few months: Well the wedding
happens (small and quaint) and when it comes time for the reception, which was
buffet, a lot of my guests did not RSVP, but we had the food, just not all the
space, so I was one table shy for about 8 guests. S goes to the
trouble to set up another table, seating my in-laws at a new spot so that my
hubby's and my family could sit together and the best man wife and
kids takes the seats that were reserved for my father and brothers!
When we mentioned to J that there was not space for his family at the
bride/groom family table, he pointed out 3 seats for my father and brothers
to sit at with the other guests and not the family! To not cause a scene, my
father and brothers sat in the 3 seats where J's wife and kids should have been
sitting. Then J doesn't want to do the toast so S does the toast. J didn't stick
around to help with the end of the reception, but there is S helping box things
up and take to our car. J was a very inept best man.
At the end of the
reception, my hubby's aunt come up and starts telling me that she got to take
the centerpiece from her brother's wedding and still has it at home. Keep in
mind, I had only met her once at my husband's grandmother's funeral, so not
really getting where she was going with this, I said something about that being
nice. Then she pretty much tells me that she would like my centerpiece from
table, but me not really getting her hint that she wanted my MAIN floral
centerpiece from the head table, gave her a centerpiece from one of the
guests table. I guess this not being what she wanted, she then gave it to
my SIL before she left the reception. I saw the centerpiece at my SIL's house
and told her something about my husband's aunt getting one too and she said,
"no, this is it" and that the aunt handed it to her in an attitude I
can only describe as disgust because aunt didn't get the floral centerpiece she
wanted. I wouldn't want to be the Bridezilla from hell and know now that I
could've had my act a little more together, but on both of J and aunt's parts,
that was just bad. I hope in 7 years, my husband and I can do a renewal of vows
and not have to put up with these type of people again. Thanks for allowing me
A very dear friend of mine ‘Beth’ is a bridesmaid in my
upcoming wedding. ‘Beth’ is an absolute etiquette nightmare. The type of
person that borrows clothes from you and never returns them, borrows money and
never repays you, and all the while has an attitude like she deserves
everything, but will criticize anyone else who makes etiquette mistakes.
Although I have grown accustomed to her frequent lack of etiquette and almost
expect blunders from her on every occasion, I thought her story would be
entertaining for others.
Last year a mutual friend of ours, ‘Grace’ was getting
married. I was a bridesmaid while Beth really wasn’t as close to her so she
was not. I decided to hold a shower for Grace at my home. As the guests arrived,
Beth arrived with no gift. She looked at me and said, "Oh, I didn’t bring a
gift…" I didn’t know what to say, so I just told her it was fine maybe
Grace wouldn’t notice. (What else could I do?) Beth also informed me that she
had to leave early. We promptly served food and started games, which Grace had
bought some prizes for out of her own pocket. Beth proceeded to stay long enough
at the shower to win a prize, then promptly left right after, gift in hand. The
only person I know who shows up at a shower without a gift, and leaves with one.
After Grace's wedding, Beth complains about nearly everything at the wedding- how
she thought the ceremony was stupid, the weather was bad, the food, and the fact
that there was no open bar (the bride & groom do not drink and it is against
their religion, but they still provided a cash bar, which I thought was fine.)
Fast forward one year, and now I am the one getting married.
Both Grace and Beth are bridesmaids. I take the girls to get bridesmaid dresses
and they all settle on a lovely dress. Beth could not make it the day we picked
out dresses, so told me to order her a size 2. (Now- Beth has a tendency to
vastly fluctuate her weight between a size 2 to a size 8. She tends to go
through ‘phases’ of super skinny, then phases where she doesn’t care and
lets herself go) I warned her and said maybe you should get a 4 or 6, that way
it could always be altered. She would hear none of it. So I ordered the size 2.
All the other girls paid upfront for their dresses, while Beth asked me if I
could buy it for her because she didn’t have a credit card at the time, or the
cash- so I did. (I thought I was being nice when I picked out a pretty
inexpensive dress as far as bridesmaid dresses go.)
Time for my shower. I see Beth the weekend before and she kids
me, saying ‘I am not getting you a gift for the shower!!.’ One week later at
the shower-Beth calls to say she cannot attend because she is ‘sick.’ No
card, not gift, nothing. Apparently, I though she was kidding but she was dead
Meanwhile, Beth starts dating her flavor of the week. She
absolutely insists his name be gracefully written on the invitation instead of
just ‘guest.’ Fine- even though they have been together maybe 2 weeks, and
there is a very good chance they will not be together when the wedding comes
around. Mean, I know, but she is one of my best friends and I cannot come close
to keeping track of the men she dates.
My wedding is now 1 month away. Beth cannot attend the
Bachelorette party because she has to work. She then calls me to tell me
(surprise!) that she has gained a lot of weight and doubts she will be able to
fit into the dress, which she has not paid me for (it’s been about 8 months
since I bought the dress for her.) My fiancé absolutely refuses to let me give
her the dress until she pays me for it, so she now has no idea if the dress will
fit or not. And at this rate, I HIGHLY doubt I will receive a gift, card or any
money from her for the wedding, or any money for the dress which I will
eventually have to give her.
I was married in a coastal town in Europe about a month ago, a
beautiful destination wedding with just our immediate families, 2 close friends,
and my 2 cousins and their husbands. My 2 cousins were my co-maids of honor and
they were the problem- which is an understatement. Fortunately, they could not
ruin the best day of our lives and we are already laughing about their
ridiculous behavior. My husband's extended family lives in the country where we
were married so my biggest regret is that these lovely European relatives who
met me for the first time were witnesses to extremely ugly behavior on behalf of
MY extended family. Fortunately, they love me and didn't hold my cousins'
behavior against me.
It started 4 months before the wedding, during the planning.
My one cousin, "Amy", began to complain about the travel plans I made.
It must be said that my husband and I paid for the plane tickets for both
cousins, plus their husbands, plus Amy's 3 year old child, for a total of 5
international plane tickets. This was extremely expensive and it meant that my
husband and I would not take a honeymoon alone- we would just spend the week
after our wedding in Europe with family. We had wanted to extend the trip for an
extra week so we could travel alone in Europe but decided it would be more
important to have these family members with us. Big error.
Amy complained bitterly about the fact that we were flying
into a city 3 hours away from our final destination instead of into a closer
city. This saved me about $1200 but all she cared about was having to drive
those 3 hours after a long flight. She implied that I was selfish by saying that
I didn't take her feelings into account. She told me she could not be in a car
on those windy roads and would take the train. Fine. She also complained because
my husband and I would not be paying for her room for the week- despite the fact
that we spent almost $2000 on flights for her and her husband and child. I told
her if she couldn't afford the room, I would understand that she couldn't be in
the wedding. But she told me this was going to be a second honeymoon for her and
her husband and she had to go. She also spent the summer bossing me around,
being a huge know-it-all about how to travel because she has been to Europe
once- on a guided tour with mommy 10 years ago. Meanwhile, it must be said that
I travel for business- I take at least 4 international trips per year and work
in developing countries, countries with tremendous political unrest where you
really have to be on top of your game to stay safe and accomplish what you're
there to do. So travel is something that I am quite competent to do.
On the train, Amy left her purse on the seat across from her
and some guys snatched it and jumped off the train. So Amy the "world
traveler" lost her phone, her money, credit cards, and most importantly,
all of her medication. I knew she had neck pain from an accident a few years
back but I didn't know that she was completely addicted to hard-core pain
killers. The kind of drugs given to terminally ill cancer patients. So Amy spent
the week in withdrawal- like a heroin addict. The hospitals she went to in
Europe would not give her the drugs she wanted. Apparently, in Europe,
"neck pain" is not a legitimate reason to prescribe narcotics. They
told her she was an addict and she got so pushy at one hospital that security
escorted her out. Luckily, I was not there for that- my husband and I were busy
running around getting our documents so we could be married. I somehow felt very
bad for Amy despite her bad behavior all summer.
Amy's husband also lost his passport, making us miss our
return flight while he looked for it the morning we were flying home.
The other maid of honor, "Candy", behaved fine.
However, her husband "Tony" was another story. Unbeknownst to us, Tony
was having his own addiction problems. Having smoked pot all day every day for
15 years, he was in a terrible state without it. He had meltdowns like a 5 year
old throughout the week- including screaming in the airport when a connecting
flight was delayed by 2 hours. He made scene after scene. He called a male
steward a f****** homo because it was against the rules to play his portable DVD
player in flight. I'm surprised the guy wasn't arrested. You simply can not act
like that on planes in a post 9/11 world.
Jump to the rehearsal dinner- Amy never showed up, claiming
she didn't know there was a rehearsal dinner. It was right at the villa where we
were staying! Plus I have emails where we discuss it. Plus what else would there
be on the night before the wedding? Candy and Tony showed up but we wish they
didn't. Tony discussed his drug problem with anyone who would listen meaning
that my lovely in-laws overheard him. When they set out hor-d'oeuvres and
champagne to start one of the best meals I've ever had in my life, Tony threw
his hands up in the air and said it was all gross and there was nothing there he
could eat. Everyone else was thoroughly loving the food- we were in one of the
culinary capitals of the world. He made such a scene that the waiters were
calling him a pig in their native language. He proceeded to get drunk on
champagne, downing as much of it as he could, ordering more for himself despite
the fact that they had moved onto wine service for the first course. Then he
stood up at the table before the second course was served and announced loudly
to all of us that he was far too drunk to stay. That's the only thing he did
The next day, Tony failed to show up for the wedding, claiming
he had a stomach virus. If stomach viruses are caused by drinking an obscene
amount of champagne, then I believe he had a virus. Candy was actually mad at me
for not believing he was legitimately ill. Amy made it to the wedding- wearing a
tiara- I was the bride and I didn't even wear a tiara. She also wore a strapless
dress that was thoroughly inappropriate for church- it was too big and kept
falling down and she was too sick from drug withdrawal to pull it up or even sit
up straight. After the ceremony, she parked herself on the church steps with her
legs open and managed to get herself in dozens of our wedding photos- dress
falling down on top, hiked up on the bottom. At our reception, she and her
husband fought constantly. In the bathroom, he threw water on her and she
screamed so that everyone heard her. She laid down on a bench at the restaurant
as if she was in the privacy of her own home- again, dress hiked up. She
complained to our dear friends at the reception that it was going on too long
and that it was terrible that she was sick because she bought a whole new
wardrobe for the trip and couldn't wear it- this from the girl who couldn't
afford to pay for her own accommodations. I was the bride and I didn't even buy a
new wardrobe for the trip.
Needless to say, my husband and I avoided the cousins and
their husbands for the rest of the trip, spending our time with our friends and
immediate families. After the trip, I had to ask them to email pictures several
times before I saw any. Amy still hasn't sent hers. I bought both girls an
expensive attendant gift- real pearls- and Amy has not bothered to send a thank
you. Amy's wedding gift to us was a hastily scrawled card- written on the way to
the airport for our flight home and promising a gift "the next time we see
her." She has actually sent me an email to complain that I didn't spend
enough time with her during our wedding week and saying that she hoped I
appreciated her coming because she spent her vacation time and money to be
there. I thought it was her second honeymoon....
My mother is upset that Amy is a mess in dozens of my photos
but my husband and I laugh. I'm only sad that my cousins weren't the people I
thought they were and sad because I will not have the close relationship with
them that I had hoped to have when I moved back to the East coast where they
My advice? Pick your attendants carefully and make sure they
are up to the task of travel if you are having a destination wedding.
This is a story about a future bride who gave her future groom
too much responsibility and everything turned tacky.
My fiancé and I attended a wedding 3 hours away last summer.
The groom, Adam, was a good friend of my fiancé and I had grown to like the
couple a lot. The bride, Amy, was very organized; Adam has never been organized
and waited until the last minute on everything. At the bachelorette party, Amy
informs me that she had given Adam three jobs: dealing with the drinks, dj and
assigning various jobs to the wedding party.
My fiancé, Joe, was an usher for the wedding, so I was
prepared not to see him until the reception. The morning of the wedding, Joe and
I were doing some quick errands until he had to meet up with the wedding party
at 10:30. Adam called while we were out and had us pick up the tuxes and the
alcohol. How we fit everything into our car was amazing.
The ceremony was beautiful. I met up with Joe at the reception
and he told me that Adam and forgotten to get a certain type of booze for his
mom, so Joe was told to go get that during the ceremony. I also found out what
Joe and the other 2 ushers did before the ceremony, they had to set up all the
tables and centerpieces while the groom and groomsmen watched sports inside.
(The reception was outdoors and it was above 100 degrees that day with no wind).
With it being so hot, all I wanted was water when I got to the
reception. I went around looking for it and couldn't find any. I asked the
reception site organizer and he said if it's not in the cooler, the couple
didn't buy any. They didn't have any water at the reception only alcohol, which
is the last thing I want to drink in that heat. I get dehydrated very quickly
and spent part of the reception puking in the bathroom. Throughout the night I
heard other guest complain about no water.
When Joe and I sat down for dinner, Adam came up to us and
asked what Joe was doing. Apparently while everyone was eating, Joe and the
other 2 ushers, got to deliver champagne and glasses to each table and then
clean it up afterward. And Joe was also told to videotape the cake cutting.
During the dance portion of the reception, Joe was asked to
videotape the first dance, father-daughter dance and go around and get
best-wishes from guests for the rest of the night. The DJ that the groom hired
was terrible. He started playing the wrong song for the first dance and then
managed to blow a speaker during the 4th song.
The only time I spent with Joe that night was when I helped
him with his last job — cleaning up the mess.
While I understand that all these jobs Joe was assigned had to
get done, there is no reason to assign them all to the same person. None of the
groomsmen or bridesmaids were doing anything but drinking, dancing and eating.
Also, Joe wasn't informed of these jobs until the day of their wedding. The
polite thing to do would have been to assign the jobs to different people far in
advance and make sure it was OK.
But I know one thing, I'll never forget that wedding.
The day before our wedding my fiancé and some of his buddies
went golfing. They were all done golfing at 4pm, and most went home to
change and get ready for the rehearsal which was at 6pm.. Well, one of the
groomsmen "Brad" just decided to stay at our home, get ready there,
and ride to the rehearsal with us since we lived very close to the church.
At 5 pm I realized I forgot my husband's suit at the dry cleaners, so I was on
my way out the door to pick it up quickly before the rehearsal. Brad asked
if I could take him to his car quickly (which was still at the golf course).
I said I would take him, but asked why he needed it since he was riding with me
and hubby. He said he had to drive home really quick and let his dog out
to go to the bathroom. I knew there was no way for him to get his car at
5pm, drive all the way home in rush hour traffic on a Friday, and then make it
to the church by 6pm. But what else could I do besides stress the
importance of him being there on time? I also wondered to myself why he
hadn't thought about this earlier, or made arrangements with someone to let the
dog out since he had known about the rehearsal for awhile.
So, hubby and I go to the church. Brad still isn't
there. We wait about ten minutes, and start without him. Around 6:30
he starts calling hubby over and over during the rehearsal. Not sure what
he wanted since we weren't going to answer a cell phone in church. There
is no way he could be lost because the church is in the city he lives in.
So, at 7pm the rehearsal is over and we head out to the restaurant. Guess
who manages to make it to the restaurant for free food and several alcoholic
beverages? You guessed it-Brad.
To recap, Brad was able to go golfing all day long, hang out
at our house, and show up for dinner and drinks, but just "couldn't"
make it to the rehearsal.
Page Last Updated July 30, 2007