Today we went to a wedding.
As usual, we’re running late. So late that I’m wrapping the wedding present in the car and writing the card in between gear changes.
I’ve just read that back, it sounds like I am also driving. I wasn’t. Don’t call the police on me. The worst I’ve ever done is get dressed whilst driving.
As I wrap, Meeester reminds me of our bad reputation present wise. There are at least four people at this wedding who will remember our previous wedding present faux pas. We take bets on how long it will be before one of these people brings it up today.
This is the story of the wedding present faux pas that will haunt Misssy and Meeester for as long as they both shall live.
It is ten years ago and Meeester and Misssy are yet to have the pleasure of Indy and Junior Missy’s company. They have been married for about a year.
Meeester’s band are supposed to be playing a wedding. They never normally do weddings but a friend of a friend of a friend has asked a bunch of Aberdeen bands to play a small set at his wedding reception, and for some other reason Meeester’s band agree, despite not really knowing the bride or groom.
The band WAGS are also invited to the wedding. Misssy has made it clear that she is not going to a wedding of people she has never met before.
The day of the wedding arrives and Meeester gets a call from the groom to say that his band needn’t play, he has over invited bands and he’d rather that they just come along as guests instead. Meeester and Misssy decide they won’t go. Not knowing them, and such.
On the evening of the reception, friends who ARE going to the wedding despite not knowing the bride and groom, arrive at the Flat of the Flying Martinis with booze, and the agenda of persuading them to come along to the wedding after all.
After much to-ing and fro-ing Misssy relents and agrees to go along.
“But I am not going to a wedding without a present”
“The only shop that is open is the all night BP garage”
“Well I can hardly turn up with some Calor Gas, a bag of kindling and a pack of Magic Trees, can I?”
“Nobody will know we’ve not brought a present. Forget it”
Misssy counters, “But I’LL know. We have to take a present.”
Then it dawns on her that in the attic there is a small mountain of semi-opened wedding presents from their own wedding. You know, unwrapped enough to know who sent you it, but put in stasis still in its box for a time where you decide you either need it, or it’s time to put it to a car boot sale.
Or…. use it as a wedding present for somebody else.
Misssy grabs a couple of boxes and decides a set of matching mugs on a wooden tree are just the ticket. The party can now go to the wedding. In fact the party have all added their names to the label.
“To Couple we Barely Know,
Here’s some token of our embarrassment that we’re at your flipping wedding but we can barely remember your names. Have these mugs to remember us by as we are sure to never meet again. Sorry.
Misssy, Meeester, Friend X and Friend Y”
In fact, whilst at the wedding a couple of other people ask if they can stick their names on the card as well. Fine by us. We sheepishly place it on the table crammed with presents from other people who actually love and KNOW the happy couple.
But, oh for the love of God, why didn’t anyone check out the inside of the box containing the mugs properly?
The couple are opening their presents the next morning and are moderately delighted with the present from the gang of people they barely know, but who came to their wedding anyway. But oh, what’s this card inside the box? A further greeting from the merrie band of people whose faces we woudn’t be able to point out in a line up?
“To Misssy and Meeester M
Wishing you our warmest congratulations on your wedding day,
Bill and Anne Neighboursofyourmum XXXX”
Luckily, the couple thought it was hilarious. They vowed to pass it on to the next wedding they went to, with the original label, our label and their future label all intact and enclosed.
So, if you get wed and get a gift that has a succession of labels/cards attached, then you are in receipt of the “Gift of Shame”.
Pass it on.
Update: On my myspace (where I also post the Misssives) the girl who was best man (I know!) at the wedding has been in touch. The couple in question have now split and she is hoping that she will receive the mug tree as a gift in her own upcoming nuptials. Ha! Lovely!
Further Update: This post was published in the book, "You're not he Only One" available from www.lulu.com