When I got married, people threw rice at the newly married couple as they left the reception. There was "meaning" to this tradition; something about fertility if I remember correctly (they must have thrown a LOT at us...). However, nowadays, brides think that their wedding must be "unique" and, in turn, begin the search for "all things different." Unfortunately, my daughter is no different (sigh).
I thought it was funny when she first brought the subject up... that is until I realized that she was SERIOUS! She was talking about leaving the reception and wanting "cute little lanterns" like the ones on the movie "Tangled." Her father jumped right on the idea as not being such a good one by commenting, "You have to release those over water so they won't burn the whole city down." Scratching my head a little I thought, "Good reply! And quick too." Apparently her plans for a "unique departure" will not be thwarted that easily.
Photo by Andrea Reynolds.
It had been several weeks and I assumed (I know what THAT gets you) that the lofty, magical fairy tale departure from the reception had possibly been replaced by a more sensible one. Was I ever wrong! Not only was it NOT replaced... she had found MORE ideas for "unique departures"!
Caitlin has been blowing the text messaging and e-mail up, sending me "ideas" for her upcoming wedding. You see, she is attending her last year of college in Texas and I am here in Louisiana. So, this particular e-mail arrived (along with the text message that told me to check my e-mail...) with more lofty ideas on how she and Kevin could depart the reception, along with attached links (to prove that those things really did exist).
FIRST on the list was... You've got it! Those little lanterns. SO...she had not given up on THAT idea. She also added a note that they did NOT have to be released over water, but would be totally burned out before they hit the ground. Hmmm...I wasn't so sure about that. And if there was ONE EXCEPTION where they didn't... it would be US.
I scrolled down to the next idea: it was BUTTERFLIES and FIREFLIES. These butterflies and fireflies would arrive in some sort of paper packaging and people would release them as the couple made their exit. OK...What if they were not alive when you opened the paper? Would they all just drop to the ground? And I thought that moths only flew around at night, not butterflies.
Oh well...on to the next idea: BALLOONS. At the time the couple would rush from the reception hall, people would release helium balloons. Hmmm...OK, so WHO would be responsible for filling, storing and passing out around 400 helium balloons? Just asking...
The throwing of rice had a meaning behind it. In later years, people began to throw bird seed at newly married couples -- this was a more "earth friendly" alternative. Nowadays... well, things have gotten a LITTLE RIDICULOUS! Oh, I will agree that all of these ideas appear to be romantic and magical... FOR HOLLYWOOD, that is! There are people who are HIRED to put all of these things in place for movies... it is their JOB. Furthermore, it wasn't very hard to float those lanterns up in "Tangled" because it was an animated Disney movie; they drew them into the scene.
And what (if anything) is the meaning behind all of these other "unique ideas"? The lanterns: love starts out with a flame and then burns out and crashes to the ground? And the butterflies and fireflies? Let love soar; except if it's dead to begin with? And the balloons? We're just full of hot air that won't last long? Well, I think that all of these ideas are fine and dandy for a Hollywood Wedding, but for me... JUST THROW THE RICE, PLEASE!!!