get ritzy with it

a collection of my daily findings, things that inspire and fascinate me. art. fashion. design. music. photography. color. sounds. dreams. food. anything and everything. a place to think out loud. random thoughts, musings, obsessions, and ideas.

The elevation of marriage over other types of relationships (in particular, the relationships of those for whom it is not possible to marry). The treatment of marriage as some sort of bourgeois club. The pomp, the ceremony and fanfare. The sheer amount of money people drop on these things.

Years ago, I knew a girl who boasted that she wanted her future husband (at this point, unidentified) to buy her a $7000 engagement ring. I remember asking her why she would want to demand somebody spend that amount of money on her, when it could be better spent on something they both enjoyed (assuming they had that amount of money to spare in the first place).

Even now, the idea of wearing a large shiny object that other people are going to use as an evaluation tool - as one critically thinking engaged friend told me she’d observed they often were - frankly skeeves me out.

These days, I often feel like a bit of cheapskate. But I think the value that lies at the heart of that is a belief that if you have limited means - which the vast majority of us do - you should direct the money you have to the things that matter most to you: in my case and at this point in time, freedom, experiences and future financial stability. Large shiny displays of conspicuous consumption don’t particularly matter to me, and thus the idea of dropping a large amount of money on them that could be spent on something else strikes me as wrong.

Well, wrong for me. Obviously, many people do love and value big shiny engagement rings and big white weddings, and far be it from me to deny them that pleasure. I do resent however - and resist - the extent to which the process of getting married has become one big consumer fest.

As with many things relating to the politics of the personal, I think the different elements of the marriage question can be divided into three categories.

1. Those things that you personally and genuinely value.

2. Those things that your socialised self values.

3. Those things that you don’t value, but that other people think you should value and try to manipulate you into doing.

Differentiating between the first and second isn’t easy. We’re all social beings, and it can be hard to tell the difference between what you really care about, and what you care about because you’ve been successfully brainwashed. Sometimes you’ll mistake the first for the second, and sometimes the second will hit you in such a deepfelt emotional way that you will mistake it for the first. Detangling the two is a tricky process.

But however difficult may be, I think it is important to resist those things that fall into the third category. That job you really don’t want to take but you think will be safe. Those things you really don’t want to buy, but which people tell you you need.

Rachel Hills, “Diamonds Aren’t Forever: The Marriage Question” (via cityography)

“you should direct the money you have to the things that matter most to you: in my case and at this point in time, freedom, experiences and future financial stability.”

Oh, yes. Yes yes yes. I don’t get big rings or big weddings. If I told you how much my two person wedding is costing in total next month, you’d laugh at me. A good friend of mine at school got engaged a little bit after me and her fiance got her a big ring. She’s a sweet girl who could really care less about the ring itself but it’s the classmates who swarmed her and instantly told her that “he must really love you, hold onto that boy” made me laugh and sad all at once. Not because my engagement ring is smaller, although it is and I asked for it that way, but because there are people who see marriage as a wedding, as some sort of auction where the highest bidder with the biggest ring is your one and only someone. It makes it easy to see what people value when you hear their views about entering into what’s meant to be a lifelong union and for these people, it’s not that union.

I don’t think I’ve stated it out right here but we’re not having a big wedding. I’m sure we could figure out a way to have one, have our families help, wait a year and save money but I don’t see the point. I’ve never wanted a wedding. I look at real weddings on wedding blogs sometimes in the same way I read Vogue, fascinated and interested but clearly something that’s not me. I prefer quiet dinners to big parties, money in the bank over more debt, a state of calm over the anxiety and stress that comes with planning a public life event where everyone in your life suddenly thinks they have a say; I’ve never wanted a white wedding and stressful circus that can come with it.

I fell in love with Ian alone and I want to marry him alone. Not that we won’t celebrate later on with our families and friends but this isn’t a bond about them, it’s about us. I got the ring I wanted but I also would have married him without the ring, without a dress, without any of that. That’s frosting, it’s nothing. Marriage is about commitment, about meaning it when you say for richer or poorer, good times as well as the bad. The problem is everyone wants a wedding instead of a marriage and they have no idea what the latter even is.

(via nudewave)

(Source: karavanderbijl, via swooncityyy)

Me and my gurl christina (Taken with Instagram at Guantanamera)

Me and my gurl christina (Taken with Instagram at Guantanamera)

2 years ago