The Times' are a changin'
It’s Sunday, and I have some time on my hands, as I’m not working and packing is pretty much done. So, knowing that TV sucks on Sunday and being on this new kick to embrace the intellectualism that I’ve been hiding for the last three years, I picked up the NY Times on my way back from brunch at Silver Spur on
Now, I could sound all intellectual and write about how I bought the NY Times because I love the week in review section that is a hit list of the news that you shouldn’t have missed. Or I could write about the Book Review, how the Times and its writers really have a pulse on today’s great literature. But, come on. You’ve probably been reading for sometime and realize that I am way too preoccupied with my own life than to give a shit what is happening outside of my apartment. And anyway, my summer reading list is long enough and, I think a lot of their book reviews are pompous and try too hard to sound intelligent instead of just telling you whether a book is a worth while read. I also think I hold that opinion of the Book Review because the last time I read it was in ninth grade, preparing for the Verbal Section of the SATs. I only managed to get a 610. But I also drew penises all over the test booklet and (not so) politely asked them to “suck it”. Thank you ADD and to my mother who smoked cigarettes while I was in the womb.
I’m embarrassed to admit the real reason I buy the NY Times. It’s like coming clean and admitting that you aren’t the person that you pretend to be, a let down in a sense. My family has an idea of my secret, they think I buy it because of the travel section. And they are partially right, it's the second section I read. However, when I tell you the real reason why I buy a newspaper for $3.50 and throw 75% of it out, you will understand every single one of my character flaws and see the soon to be not-so-secret secret.
I am addicted to the Sunday Styles wedding announcements.
I’m embarrassed to make this admission because it showcases every single stereotype that I embody: a social climbing desperate NYC single woman.
There is a certain glamour in getting your announcement in the Times. It implies that you are special: that your wedding is newsworthy, possibly an allusion to current or a future connection to high society. In layman’s terms, that you are worth knowing.
I read it for solely aspirational purposes, on the other hand. And to look for exes of mine who may have accidentally “made it,” with Daddy’s help. Seriously, it’s one thing to glance over at the names, see if anyone who you may have lost touch with since high school, college, or the encounter off of myspace. But, why do countless women, myself included and perhaps the most guilty offender, read the announcement in its entirety when we have no idea who the hell the people are? Like, if I have never met Amanda Moore and her future husband Peter, why do I continue to read, engrossed that she went to Yale while he went to MIT?
Instead of a train wreck, I’m caught staring in jealous fascination at the superficial beauty that the announcement provides. For that split second, as you read just the highlights of a relationship, their best-of’s you become engrossed with a bizarre sense of fleeting intimacy that disappears by the write-up’s end. It’s just enough for you to give a damn as you read, until there is no more information to fuel your curiosity. There is a certain sense of hope that can be ascertained from the couples who have “made it”. Each announcement reinforcing the promise of the American dream fulfilled: play by the rules, find a good man, and see the future you can have!
However, it's similar to when you see a Lamborghini on the streets of NYC, you don’t notice the bald impotent man in the driver’s street. Or in this case, that poor Amanda is marrying an I-banker who she will never see and that sixty percent of the marriages that I read that Sunday aren’t going to last.
But for that split second, as you read about each couple, you don’t care that the announcement is as deep as the newsprint it is printed on. There is a big smiley picture and fabulous resume distracting from the fact that you can almost feel your thumb and forefinger touching each other as you hold the paper. It’s easy to get lost in the aspirational glamour of the Times’ announcements: Harvard boy meets MIT girl. Dad is Sr. VP at Goldman while mom is a homemaker. She is keeping her last name and will work for Tishman construction as a lead engineer. I wish for that, to have that glossy resume and for people to assume that I have a bright future ahead of me.
I will do anything to get my wedding announcement in the Times. Including going $40K into debt in order to ensure my fitness among the competition. And the truth of the matter is that my pedigree is not that impressive. I have to compensate using educational and professional achievement in order to make up for my families’ blue collar past.
Or so I thought.
With that degree from
I’ve begun to notice a disturbing trend. I remember the days where my mother and I used to read about the couples, excited to see the closest semblance to our family: a couple whose pedigree included a tiny
Like all embarrassing addictions, sometimes you need to take a break. And with my life so crazy, I haven’t read the Sunday Times in about a few months. Now, I don’t know if it has to do with that new website redesign and they are desperate to sell more papers, or if this is a result at a growing trend towards democratization but, what the fuck? First of all, it was three full pages. When did the Times ever deem three full pages of people’s wedding announcements worthy to know about?!
Teachers, parents as insurance sales people,
So, once again, I am back to square one. Learning that there are no guarantees for anything. Everything is in a constant state of change, including bastions of the old guard such as the wedding announcement page. But not to sound like a bitch, where am I supposed to place my wedding announcement? Like you really expect me to share the page with a