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Matrimania Gone Terribly Wrong (At least we think so) June 11, 2010

Posted by Onely in Your Responses Requested!.
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Christina and I are slightly wary of posting this, because we do not want to appear insensitive or overly critical about what is obviously a very sad situation that we are grateful we are not in, but we read about this a few days ago and can’t stop thinking about it… So we’d like your help analyzing the situation.

Here’s the story: A wedding party’s bus got hit in Indianapolis over the weekend, one of the groomsmen died, and multiple people were injured. The couple exchanged vows at the hospital, and even continued with the reception that evening (it sounds as though they may have turned the reception into a prayer service/remembrance for the groomsman who was killed, but it’s unclear from the article).

This marriage is being presented (at least in this article) as a triumph over tragedy, but we personally find it unsettling. How can this couple’s marriage, which turns the attention to them and away from the victim, be interpreted as “mak[ing] the best out of a bad situation”? That’s a direct quote from one of the nurses. Notably, neither the bride nor groom is quoted. It could be that the couple wanted the entire thing kept private, but the media and hospital staff made a huge matrimaniacal deal out of it, adding cookies and reportage–and turning the couple into the stars of the show, the show that weddings are “supposed” to be.

We wonder if clinical shock may have played a role in their decision to go ahead with the service. People are raised to think of weddings as inherently comforting and magical–so when you’re upset and vulnerable, why wouldn’t you reach out for something with that power? The hospital staff probably had similar thoughts, which is why they facilitated the impromptu wedding.

Should we or should we not be astounded that the marriage aura is seen as so powerful it can be used as currency to offset or mitigate the knowledge of a friend’s body lying in the morgue several stories below? Copious Readers, what are your thoughts about this? Is this an example of matrimania gone terribly wrong (as we suggest in the title of this post), or are we being too critical?

— Lisa and Christina

Always a Bridesmaid, Never the Bride June 15, 2009

Posted by Onely in "Against Love"...?, Food for Thought, Heteronormativity, single and happy.
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This past weekend, I was a bridesmaid for a friend’s wedding in St. Louis. This is the fourth time I’ve been a bridesmaid over the last eight years or so, and doing it made me think about the popular (American?) expression, “Always a bridesmaid, never the bride.” For those of our readers unfamiliar with it, the expression carries a highly negative connotation, suggesting that the woman (or person) in question hasn’t (or cannot/will not) fulfill her ultimate ambition in life — being a bride (for info on the origin of the expression, check out this link).

I’m sure I don’t need to explain to you, copious readers, how heteronormative and sexist the expression is, suggesting that a woman’s most impressive achievement will be her wedding day (!!). But I have started to think a lot about what it means to be a bridesmaid, especially as one of the co-writers of this blog. (more…)

Pop Culture, Scourge of the Onelies: The Bachelor (or Matrimania Gone Terribly, Painfully Wrong) March 4, 2009

Posted by Onely in As If!, Heteronormativity, Pop Culture: Scourge of the Onelys.
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the-bachelor_lTo protect my dignity, I must say this right up front: I have not watched The Bachelor in a very long time. I recall seeing parts of the first season, and it took almost no time before it  lost its appeal even as a guilty pleasure. Today, even the idea of the show makes me squeamish (Seriously. Just think on that picture you see to your left ). So, I did not watch the now-unfortunately-infamous finale of the most recent season, which aired on ABC Monday night. But apparently millions of Americans did, and I have since watched clips and read this detailed recap, so that I could post about it here: Not only was the finale a true “shocker,” it also underlined our culture’s deep misogynistic and matrimaniacal impulses in horribly unsettling ways.


Stop the Madness! Onely’s Top Ten Reasons NOT to Get Married… January 9, 2009

Posted by Onely in "Against Love"...?, As If!, Food for Thought, Heteronormativity, single and happy.
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Hi everyone,

As I mentioned in my previous post about heteronormative wedding cards, part of my holiday madness included attending and participating in the wedding of one of my good friends. Every time I go to a wedding, I can’t help but count the many reasons why I never want to get married (and/or have a wedding). This one was no different — and because my friend IS a close friend who also happens to like to control everything in her life, the reasons I normally have against weddings seemed magnified in this case.

So, in the spirit of all of us who feel justified never wanting a wedding of our own, Onely presents … “Stop the Madness! Top Ten Reasons We Never Want to Get Married”: (more…)

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