(Please to be moving along if you're not in the mood to listen to a rant)
Long back when I was in school (Err.. Ok, maybe not that long back), one of the few things that I enjoyed making in SUPW class was bookmarks. Well, that may also be partly because the only work involved in that was artfully cutting out old wedding invitation cards and fashioning them into bookmarks.
My mom had this superstition that wedding invitation cards, once the wedding date is over, should not be retained and had to be destroyed. I offered to destroy it creatively and productively.
Now, tell me, how do I make a bookmark out of a Facebook Invite for a wedding? Hmmm? Do you even know what you’re depriving me of when you send me a FB event request for your wedding? Will you be answerable if my children have to read old books of mine that have been dog-eared beyond recognition, because I ran out of invitation cards that I could have destroyed?? I want an answer dammit!!
No no, I’m not ranting and raving against Facebook. God knows I spend most of my time there myself. But somehow, inviting somebody for your wedding on FB seems, I don’t know, very impersonal. And that too from people I hardly know except for when they sat next to my table once in the canteen in college. So is it like, our parents take the pain of going to everyone’s homes and inviting them or posting cards, and taking time out to call up everyone in their telephone directory, but our generation (Yes! The G factor) prefers to just send out FB invites? And call rates are as low as 1 paisa per second now. Are the most important people in your life, who you really want at your wedding, in your phone list or your FB list?
When I asked one of my friends about it, he told me that it’s probably because they want an RSVP- a confirmation of who all are attending. Umm.. Sure, that works in the west, where they have very small intimate weddings with just about 200 guests. But in India, where a wedding is no less than a circus, would you even notice who came and who didn’t? And would it really matter if a few extra people turned up to join the already 1000-odd crowd? On the day of the wedding, the only thing you would remember is the discomfort caused by all the heavy jewelry and silks, and the ache around your mouth from smiling too hard too long. Only when you see the albums later on, will you really know who all attended.
And there’s the other thing about FB invites. The confirmations- I’m attending, maybe, no. Really, what is the point of that? If you’re very good friends with that person, can’t you just tell them in person that you’ll be attending? (In fact, you go even without a formal invitation!) Isn’t it just brutal to click a ‘no’. I mean, imagine the poor guy’s condition when he sees more ‘No’s’ than “I’m attending’s”. And the people in the “Awaiting reply” list come across as just plain insensitive for not even bothering to reply. And what’s with the ‘maybe attending’. Is it another way of saying “Oh let me see, I have an appointment with my dentist that day to get my gold tooth fixed, so I may or may not be able to attend your wedding.”
I can understand creating an FB invite for an actual event, like a fund-raiser or a concert, because you want to spread the message and have as many people on board as possible. What message do you want to spread here? “Girls, sorry to break your heart, but I’m getting married. Come watch me trash your hopes!”, “Guys, stop giving me anonymous calls and sending me flirty sms’es. I’m getting married. Do come, I'll point you out to my husband-to-be who's a gym trainer.”
I don’t mind missing out on a sadhya to which I was invited over FB. Congratulations! But no thanks.
Wish you a very happy FB, I mean, married life.
(Why do I have this sneaky suspicion that I may not get invited to many weddings hereafter? Oh well...)