Thursday, December 30, 2021

Our weekly column from the humor site PreOccupied Territory.

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partyHod HaSharon, December 30 - A woman and her fiancé acknowledged this afternoon that while the two of them much prefer an intimate, wholesome celebration to accompany their upcoming nuptials, their social circle and the industry surrounding the production of their affair have aroused a sense of shame in failing to throw the gaudiest affair they can afford and then some, lest anyone get the wrongheaded idea that the event marks the start of a bedrock institution of any stable society and family instead of merely an excuse to get drunk and grope the waitstaff.

Shenhav Katz, 28, and Lior Zakenn, 30, confessed their misgivings Thursday about the wedding they plan for this coming March. The couple announced their engagement over the summer and set about making arrangements, discovering along the way that they shared a simple sensibility in celebratory occasions: small family gatherings in someone's home, rather than lavish catered affairs. Knowing that a wedding calls for more elaborate fare and a wider circle of invitees, Katz and Zakenn agreed on a wedding hall in this Tel Aviv suburb, while establishing that they intend to keep the music, boozing, and consequent shenanigans to a minimum. Disappointed, even horrified, reactions from relatives and friends in the meantime, however, have given the couple pause.

"'You mean you're not going to wear the flashiest, sexiest, most expensive gown?!' I swear, that was the first response I got," recalled Katz, who plans to wear a conservative, heirloom dress that once belonged to a beloved great-great aunt, a Holocaust survivor. "It's almost as if people think this is about partying down, which of course is an important element, but that there's no more than token space for tradition, commitment, or basic dignity."

"My friends' first reaction was to ask about the bachelor party," added Zakenn. "Where did they get that from? I've never been the boozing type, and when I do go to parties I'm all about the food and the conversation. Shenhav and I met through volunteer work in the community. I know my various friends' weddings were... festive, I guess you'd call it, but that's not my thing. But now they've given us this sense that unless we do as they did, blowing tens of thousands of shekels on a big-name DJ, flowing alcohol, kitschy party favors, an interminable slide show that everyone secretly hates, and a million other superficial things, we've deprived ourselves, or them, or something, and we're not really married? I have no idea what's happened here."

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