Wednesday, 10 April 2013

Caitlin Moran and a registry office Up North

I was holding out for a bigger wedding, you know, I thought we'd probably tie the knot just after we won the Euro Millions. But as the years went by, I started to get a little impatient.
It was only when my sister quoted me a bit of Caitlin Moran that the penny finally dropped...
"Six years and a £19.99 engagement ring later, and it’s our wedding day. It was – initially – going to be in a register office in London, followed by a reception in a pub.
In boring, empty mid-October. Everyone could have got the bus home. It would have cost less than 200 quid. We could have knocked it all off in five hours flat. Oh, I wish we’d had that wedding." 
Caitlin Moran How to Be a Woman.
When I read this, I thought, "yeah, why not just do that?" It's so simple, so easy, so right, and in the day and age of the Twenty Grand Wedding, quite original!

Caitlin Moran didn't get married like this. In the end she opted for a monastery, a  red velvet dress and ivy in her hair. She herself insists "It was a bad wedding!"

And no wonder she looks back nostalgically on  their original wedding plan. It would have been really cool wouldn't it? Whatever decade.

For a start registry offices in London are usually found in beautiful listed buildings,  not  like the purpose built council breeze blocks found on the edge of leisure centres or disused libraries that we have up here.
regist off
Chelsea and Middlesbrough Registry Offices
And then there's the pub. Well it's London  so  what kind of pub do you want? You can have your pick...  you want one which only serves crisps that are hand made, freshly rock-salted and arrive in a brown paper bag, there you go. You want one with live folk  music and real ale served in a dimpled pint mug, then have that. You want tatty velvet sofas and vintage etched mirrors, then they have that too and more! And in any of those quirky, cosy, rustic taverns a bride wearing a subtle wedding dress and a groom in an open shirt and braces wouldn't look out of place.

Where as here, among the barely dressed spotty teenagers and the barely alive old boozers, you would get less attention walking into the local pub with a sandwich board saying "twat" than you would in a wedding dress.

But I still would have done it. Bought a round of pints and peanuts for the guests and had our first dance to the jukebox (unfortunately it only plays James Arthur nowadays) and demanded a lock in at the end.

But it would have been a bit inappropriate to take the kids. And I really haven't got the stamina to keep drinking past 11pm these days, so we opted for registry office and family meal - you know "somewhere nice".

And I don't regret the decision, in fact I am really looking forward to it. i think it's going to be pretty good and actually rather cool, in a non-London kind of way.

Plus,  if I had one of those big weddings, I know, like Caitlin Moran says, I would have let myself down and probably the whole of humanity down too, you know just by being a bit of a wedding twat...
"Weddings are our fault, ladies. Every aspect of their pantechnicon of awfulness happened on our watch. And you know what? Not only have we let humanity down, but we’ve let ourselves down too.
Weddings do women no good at all. They’re a viper’s pit of waste and despair. And nearly every aspect of them reverberates badly against the very people who love them the most: us. Our love for a wedding is a bad love. It does us no good. It will end badly, leaving us feeling cheated, and alone.
Whenever I think about weddings, I want to run into the church - like Dustin Hoffman in the Graduate - and shout ‘STOP! STOP THE WEDDINGS!"
Caitlin Moran How To Be A Woman


  1. I'm not married, have always felt in some way that I'd be (like Caitlin says) letting the side down if I did get married and giving in to the conventions and all that nonsense of society at large, BUT looks like after 13 years together we may actually bow down to the social order and get married at some point for sake of kids/house/taxes etc. Sados eh?
    My sister's getting married in a muddy field in a couple of weeks. We all have to sit on hay bales and wear wellies. Anyway I'm sure you'll have a lovely time on your 'big day' even if you do turn into a wedding twat!

    1. Your sister's wedding sounds fab! We've been together 10 years and are doing it more for the kids than anything else, but quite looking forward to being the Mrs FH!
      Your sister's wedding sounds fab! Hope it all goes well!

  2. I had a 'big' wedding - secretly wished I didn't - it was more my Dad's big day than mine. I would have a preferred a reg office job and a party afterwards - followed by a fab holiday (of course).

    1. Aah the honeymoon! We're having ours in Cornwall with all our kids and all my family - mmm bot quite a romantic getaway but Hey Ho!