Sometimes, even Phyllis Nefler's gotta take a break, and she's gone skiing—skiing-skiing—this weekend. Taking her place to rock the NYT's Weddings & Celebrations is my bloggy colleague Lilit Marcus, the Nice Jewish Girl behind Save the Assistants. Lilit?
I'm not sure exactly where Miss Nefler is from—or today! Yay, Phyllis! Bonds of Column-Slavery: broken!—but growing up in the South, I learned many important lessons about marriage, many of which were funny and sometimes useful regional customs! Like: Did you know you're supposed to say "best wishes" to the bride instead of "congratulations," lest you accidentally imply that the bride won her groom through trickery or deceit? Like she most likely did. But still.
Another one of which is a value we both—and all bridesmaids—clearly hold dear: don't ever-EVER-get married on a major holiday (Valentine's Day, Christmas, the Carolina/Duke game). There are reasons for this, many of which are obvious, some of which are not. Like, for example:
4. Your bridesmaids need to go out and get crunk and find single men on holidays like New Year's Eve and also Your Wedding. Don't deprive them of one.
However, the most important one, of course:
1. In the future, your anniversary might have to compete with something and thus less attention for you. Like the Carolina/Duke game.
So, like last week's Christmas couples, these Vows will now have to share their anniversary present with New Year's Eve, and while at first, that'll seem whimsical, the logical progression of this is that each anniversary will find itself exponentially less charming than the last. Either way, the whole New Year's Eve thing might explain the slim weddings section today: just two pages-two!-in print. If cotillion pays off for anybody, it's Vows editor Robert Woletz around the holidays. So he can go get shitface drunk in their honor. While at the office. Or home. In his BrideCave.
First up are Elizabeth Cronise and Joe McLaughlin, whose deep, life-affirming love story that'll echo through the ages–-it involves a Latin-inscribed Marc Jacobs leather bracelet she found the day they met-–earned them the top "Vows" column. The bride's a lawyer; the groom, an actor and bartender. She went into the chichi Cafe Cluny with a friend; he was behind the bar. Sparks, as they are known to do, flew. Ms. Cronise helpfully points out that what attracted her to Mr. McLaughlin was his cheerful attitude, because although he was a commonah he didn't have a chip on his shoulder about it: "'He has this sweet disposition you don't normally find in restaurant workers,' she said later, 'Or in actors.'" Emphasis ours. [Ed. She's not even wearing it in the photo. For fuck's sake!]
Did any of you watch the Paula Abdul reality show, Hey Paula? There was this one episode where she was drunk or on pills or something, and she had a date, and she started babbling about how men should treat her like the gift she is.
That really helped me to get through the last few sentences of the Cronise/McLaughlin wedding announcement, because everything sounds better in a Paula Abdul voice. You see, Ms. Cronise refers to the aforementioned leather bracelet with wonderful OMGdeepsignificance!!1! as "a gift to us from the universe" and her husband as "the gift that I was always waiting for." Gifts! You are a gift!
Speaking of gifts, the least Ms. Cronise could do in order to help continue the through-line of her bracelet-themed wedding story would be to hand out some Marc Jacobs trinkets to her erstwhile bridal attendants. They're the real gifts, darling bride, and don't you forget it!
Oh, so some other people got married, too. NEXT: Therese Kolata and Nathan Allison Jr. met as Penn undergrads. Her mom is a science reporter for the Times; his mom is an elementary school teacher in Trenton. They should not play Job Switch Day. Also, if you must get married close to New Year's, your bridesmaids will be very appreciative of the fact that you did so in Las Vegas. Points to the Allisons for providing the bridesmaids with plenty of venue choices for drunken karaoke and boozy table-dancing.
Aviva Yaffa Androphy and Evan Marlin wanted you to know that they are Jewish. In case the bride's name wasn't obvious enough, she went to undergrad at Brandeis and is working on a PhD at Yeshiva University. Oh, and her mom teaches at the East Meadow (NY) Jewish Center's religious school. Oh, and her dad is the leader of said East Meadow Jewish Center. As for the groom? He is wearing a kippah [Ed. "Yarm-ooh-l-eew-k?"] in their very cute photo.
I'm used to Southern wedding announcements, which tend to skip over colleges and professional accomplishments in favor of listing everyone involved in the bridal party and what the bride's dress looked like. Lacking that information, I will conclude that the bridesmaids wore blue and white dresses, perhaps made out of Israeli flags and sewn with the sweat and tears of Zion. You know, because they're all Jewish. WHATEVER.
Alexandra Anneke Asjes (got to love that assonance) is the daughter of a retired UBS managing director "of Zurich" who has "a master's degree in text and performance studies from the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art in London," which she is putting to good use as a segment producer for an MTV show called "Pranked," which seems to be like "Punk'd" without Ashton Kutcher or an unnecessary apostrophe. It's got those College Humor guys in it. The groom, Jonathan Lynch Dudkowski, is a freelance film and TV editor. Their wedding was "Quaker-style." I'm dying to know what that means, because Quaker weddings are rad. Did they stand in the middle of a circle facing each other while people who felt moved by the spirit shared blessings and good wishes? I can only imagine the difficulty for the poor bridesmaids who, without a more traditional people-standing arrangement, probably had to figure out some sort of way to stand near the bride and groom without blocking anyone's line of sight. And your Bridesmaids are drunk and/or teary enough without having to do a round of PT just to get things moving.
Let's score this shit:
• The groom's name has a 'III' +3
• Also, he's from Scarsdale +2
• Her schools: Dartmouth and Yale Law. His schools: Georgetown and Penn Law. +7
• The bride will be keeping her name -3
• They didn't get a photo in the print or online editions -3 [Ed. Harsh!]
• "Mrs. de Gantes, 29, is a second year MBA student at Harvard" +5
• "Mr. de Gantes, 28, is a first year MBA student at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology." +2
• "Mr. de Gantes is a son of Countess Joselyne de Gantes of Grenoble, France, and Count Antoine de Gantes of La Seyne-sur-Mer, France." +10
• "The bridegroom is a descendant of Francois de Gantes, who was a military commander and adviser to King Louis XIV." +1,000
By the way, the French word for bridesmaid is Demoiselle. If you don't know, now you know, blogga.
[One more time, Lilit Marcus everyone! Nice work subbing in for Phyllis Nefler, who will be back at her regularly "scheduled" time at 2:30 PM next Sunday. Lilit is the wonderful NJG (read: Nice Jewish Girl) behind Save the Assistants, which is a blog that deserved a book deal, and got it! Lilit's commenter handle is SusieDerkins, and she'll be around to chat it up soon. Thanks, Lilit! ]