There’s really only a handful of circumstances when talking about the intricate details of your wedding before someone’s actually put a ring on it is kind of acceptable.
I mean, when I was about 8-years-old, it was perfectly OK for me to bang on for eternity about how my wedding dress was going to look EXACTLY like the one Peaches ‘n Cream Barbie wore (seriously, how soft was that tulle skirt?)
While those really were some damn good times, there was a day where it had to come to a screeching halt.
Because what if I said those things when I was 28? It’s not cute anymore, is it? No, it’s deranged.
Which is why you can imagine my mind falling out of my ears when, as I was slavishly pinning all the wedding things to my ‘Crikey O’Reilly, how did this happen?’ board after I said yes to The Mister, when I realised that many of my ‘repins’ were from the Pinterest boards of women who weren’t getting married.
They weren’t even engaged.
I get that it wasn’t so long ago that most women had a hope chest or glory box - or at the very least a scrapbook of wedding snippets.
Except this isn’t something that’s shoved under your bed next to the ex-boyfriend’s shoebox filled with photos, mixtapes, ticket stubs and well-and-truly-dead pot pourri from 1998.
But to have a public digital inspiration board to collate your wedding ideas before you get engaged? My first thought was the scene in classic Australian film Muriel's Wedding when Rhonda finds Muriel’s weird ‘wedding album’ full of photos of her dressed up as a bride. I’m suitably uncomfortable with it.
There is only one situation where some digital wedding hoarding worked out for all and sundry. Ryan Leak checked out his girlfriend’s wedding Pinterest boards. He knew she wanted to get engaged and married on the same day and created her ‘dream’ wedding.
Thank baby cheeses she has a man that can realise her hopes and dreams for her. It also helps that he had the means.
So this public display of wistful thinking… is this a Thing now?
If The Mister used my Pinterest boards to do the same, our wedding would have been a hot mess of techy gadgets, shoes, vintage movie posters, cool hairstyles and black and white arty pics of hot blokes. Good luck with that one. My lone ‘wedding stuffs’ board has gone largely abandoned for nearly a year.
Anyway after 20 minutes, OK 4 hours, digging around Pinterest boards called ‘Whenever I get married’, ‘If I have a wedding’ and the melancholic ‘One Day <3’, I came across something odd.
I came across Engagement 101 Magazine.
Its tagline: ‘The magazine to read before you get engaged’.
My brow painfully furrowed as I read about 'engagement coaches' and competitions such as 'pretend to propose to him and win!'
I went from ‘what’s going on here?’ to ‘who buys this?’ to ‘someone is buying this’ to ‘good grief, this magazine exists and someone is buying it.’
This must be how it feels when you buy a skin magazine from the newsagent, stuffed between the newspaper, a scratchie and a pack of Longbeach that you know you’re never going to smoke. You know, the periphery purchases.
But seriously, in a world of smartphones, since when do you buy porn magazines from a newsagent?
Maybe, like porn, it’s how some of us drench ourselves in fantasy. And, like porn, there is usually a realization somewhere down the track that it’s not a true representation of anything.
Perhaps it’s just another way that our perception of what’s public and private has changed. I mean, I don’t know anyone who writes in a private journal anymore but the chances of them having a public blog (or two) is reasonably high.
I actually think that Pinterest is a great tool for digitally collating pictures you would normally lose. Twenty years ago you would have literally cut out the picture of that sweet-ass Looney Tunes cummerbund you’d found and filed it in your wedding binder under ‘Groom: Dieter Brummer’.
I know that some women rate getting hitched pretty highly, but I think that planning a wedding before I’m absolutely certain a wedding is going to happen is weird. Not as bizarre as those ‘I’ve picked my wedding dress, song, bridesmaids, church, cake ... now I just need a groom’ stories, but it’s on the right track.
Just be warned though, if your partner (or worse, your not-quite-a-partner-yet) happens to see you pinning the shit out of Mason jars, Khaleesi-inspired wedding gowns and photo-booth moustaches, it’s really hard to shove your whole computer under the bed.
Pippa blogs at The Wry Bride.