Every once in a while, I peek my head out of the safe, offbeat cave I've carved for myself here in this corner of the wedding industry and I get a terrible shock. See, I spend so much time over in my little niche that I forget about the rest of the wedding world and how icky it often is.
Case in point: this HARDY HAR HAR hilarious LAST CHANCE TO RUN sign that you can buy for your ring bearer and flower girl to carry down the aisle, announcing that HO HO HO, this is your last chance to run!
Now, I get it: this is comedy. It's meant to provide a little moment of levity in a serious ceremony. But it hurts my head, and it hurts my heart, and here's why…
This sign says to me, “Any commitment before marriage doesn't really count.”
This sign says to me, “Commitment is terrifying and awful.”
This sign says to me, “Marriage sucks.”
Also, while there's nothing explicit about gender in this particular sign, in a traditional western wedding, the groom is the one who sees this coming down the aisle as he waits for the bride to make her entrance — so, you can extrapolate that this is extra HARDY HAR HAR because OH THOSE MENFOLK: THEY JUST HATE TO COMMIT.
Some versions of these “Last chance to run” wedding signs are much more explicit in their gender-grossness:
What about avoidant women? What about ladies who don't want to get married? Where are they in this joke? Why is the assumption that all women want to get married, and all dudes hate to commit? It's just not true, people.
If cracking jokes about commitment through “last chance to run” wedding signs tickles your funny bone, by all means keep giggling
Ok, ok. I know I'm being a grump here, and taking this silly shit way too seriously.
Far be it for me to say that weddings shouldn't be hilarious, or that we all have to put on our Somber Hats (somber-eros?) and our Very Uncomfortable Humorless Panties to talk about the sanctity of marriage. I'm completely confident that some of you find this sign hilarious, and that's cool: if cracking jokes about commitment tickles your funny bone, by all means keep giggling. I just find wedding humor like this problematic because it plays into and enforces so many stereotypes and generalizations about couples and commitment and marriage…
…That marriage is awful.
…That you should run.
…That you've got up until the moment you say “I Do” to just be joking around, and that everything changes after you get married.
It all just reminds me of the Game Over tshirts, where it's hardy-har-larious that the groom “lost” the game by having to get married.
Again, I get it: it's humor and it's subjective. We all have different tastes in HA HAs, and that's cool: there's no need to defend yourself if you think this stuff is awesome.