Sunday, August 24, 2008

paying for parties

Last night I traveled 89.3 kilometres to attend a stag & doe for a couple I've known for awhile.  Jasmine was kind enough to drive me there and she even bought me dinner!  What a trooper.  Before I go any further, I want to give props to Jazz & Briony - they've been so great at trying to keep my spirits up.  Muchas gracias, mi amigas!

I should really set up this scenario so you can get the full picture.  I went to university with the groom and didn't really get to know him until after graduation.  The bride... well, I think I've spoken 3 sentences to her total.  She's an acquaintance at best.  There's a huge group of university folks that all hang out and over the last few years the group has slowly grown apart.  People have gotten together, married and most of all, they tend to stick to the ones closest to them.  I know there's nothing wrong with that as I have totally grown closer to Bree & Jazz and I'd rather hang out with people I'm close to instead of acquaintances that used to be somewhat tight but not really.

Once I met up with Jazz at the kiss & ride in North York, we set out to drive around the lake to this shindig.  Driving out of Toronto is always an amusing experience for me.  One minute you're in civilization and the next you're surrounded by corn.  I asked Jazz if she would mind stopping so we could scarf a couple fresh ears of corn but she was having none of it.  Too bad - it's almost harvest time!   It felt like we were driving forever but eventually we stopped at McPigs for some eats.  I had a feeling this event wasn't going to be 'catered' in any real fashion so we thought it best to eat processed crap.  Yum!  We got back in the car and drove to this little hamlet with an arena in the middle of it.  It reminded me of a B-rated horror movie... two girls drive up to this sketchy building only to have the masked dude with the machete hack them to pieces.  I didn't want to get out of the car because we were so early and then we'd have to deal with the family whom we'd never met.

We walk in and paid our $10 entry fee.  Keep in mind this is the same group of people who think $10 cover at a bar where you can't wear jeans is scandalous.  There was a bucket of spirits & door prizes prominently displayed and various games were set up on one side of the activity room.  Drinks were 1 for $3 and 3 for $10.  

Here's where I started to get uncomfortable. I had all the money I owned in my wallet and let me tell you, it was a struggle to part with it.  My friend Blanka says if she were me, she'd have a hard time paying for someone else's wedding; especially since there's a slim chance I'll actually be invited to the wedding.  Blanka is absolutely right.  People were actually asking for donations for the couple.  Donations?!  They're not exactly covered in flies.  Cha.  

I wonder who got the idea for the concept of a function like this.  I've been to engagement parties before but stag & does and jack & jills are nothing but a cash grab.  Why should friends and loved ones be expected to help pay for the wedding?  No one says you have to have all the traditional frills & lace so why bother?  If I'm not invited to witness the nuptial, I shouldn't be pressured into donating my hard-earned government cheese to the happy couple.  Pay for your own cake!

Last night wasn't a total wash as I did have an intriguing conversation with my buddy Cristiano who is undoubtedly the biggest chick magnet I've ever known.  Okay, so I'll admit to having a crush on him some years back only for him to tell me he only saw me as a friend (story of my love life).  We were chatting about my singleton status and I told him that right now, I'm not really looking as I have bigger fish to fry (food & shelter for a start).  Call me crazy but I could have sworn that Mr. Contarini was flirting with me!  Maybe I still have game.  Sort of.  That conversation will have to take up another blog post.

In all, I had an OK time.  I wanted to just go home and watch the Olympics which has now sadly come to an end so I'll have to find something else to occupy my days.  There's another cash grab coming up next month however I am likely not going to attend.  For one thing, it's yet again about 80 km away and I don't know if I can hitch a ride with anyone.   Lately I have begun to become very selfish so of course, I'm thinking, would you do that for me?  Likely not.