Here's a guest post originally published at Sarcasm and Lemons!
Confessions of A Vampire Wedding Planner
Hello everyone. I’m so excited to be today’s guest blogger at Sarcasm & Lemons! I’m Thomas Winship, author of Vaempires: The Evolutionary War, an ongoing vampire series that explores the question: what if vampires evolved?
To date, the series has three books: Revolution, Zombie Rising, and White Christmas. However, I’m not here to talk about my books today. Instead, I want to introduce you to Rhonda, vampire wedding planner extraordinaire and author of the DIY bestsellers, Help Me, Rhonda, and The Best Laid Plans.
[Rhonda] Hello everyone. I’m Rhonda. No last name. I gave it up for Lent one year and never picked it up again. Haha!
Okay, with the icebreaker behind us, what say we move along?
As Tom said, I’m a wedding planner. But I’m not just a wedding planner; I am The Vampire Wedding Planner. Like me on Facebook.
But seriously, as most of you know, a wedding planner is a professional who assists with the design, planning, and management of a client's wedding (thank you Wikipedia). It’s not a profession a person typically aspires to; it’s a profession a person turns to—the type of person who is never satisfied and knows he/she will continually seek that “perfect” wedding, but doesn’t have the nerve to seek it on his/her own behalf, because of the stigma associated with being married multiple times.*
As such, I’ve planned more weddings than I care to count—each one an example of individual beauty and artistry that rivals the wonders of the world by melding the essence of the subject couple with the genius of yours truly. But that’s not what I’m here to talk about today. Instead, I want to change gears and share something that I’ve never shared with anyone before, in any form or forum: the things I detest most about my job.
That’s right—Rhonda, The Vampire Wedding Planner, is about to dish the dirt on those undead dopes and divas!
Rhonda’s Ten Pet Peeves:
10. Incorporating blood into the wedding: Blood isn't a color scheme. Nor is it a state of mind. For that matter, it’s also not a theme. Blood is not the “be-all” or the “end-all.” Not even close. And while it may be thicker than water, nine out of ten vampires still prefer water for bathing, mixing with a nice scotch, or cooking their favorite pasta. And, in my experience, nothing whips a wedding crowd into a frenzy quicker than the unexpected sight of blood; not cheap hors d’oeuvres or a cash bar or even a rampaging bridezilla. Nothing.
9. Vampire children who order Bloody Marys: It isn’t witty. It isn’t original. It isn’t adorable or cute or understandable. It’s only in their nature if they haven’t been raised with proper limits. Serving alcohol to minors also happens to be against the law in most civilized societies and, besides, have you ever witnessed a group of drunken, out-of-control vampire children? It’s Hunger Games meets Lord of the Flies, with a script by Michael Bay and a soundtrack by Marilyn Manson.
8. Destination weddings: They are a bad idea, plain and simple. Too many variables; too many things to go wrong … and I’m not talking about the “don’t drink the water” variety. The Caribbean has too much sun. The Mediterranean has too much anti-vampire history. And everywhere, absolutely everywhere, the potential for innocent casualties (aka collateral damage) is just too great for my peace of mind.
7. Couples who think their story is unique: Believe it or not, I don’t care who turned whom or how compelling you think your story of “finding true love after centuries of solitude“ is. IMHO, two vampires with more than a few years difference in their ages have exactly one thing in common: physical attraction (commonly referred to as the lust-monkey). Strip away the beautiful veneer and all that’s left is the fact that you’re hot for each other. Congratulations for being as shallow as the humans you consider yourselves superior to.
And here’s a news flash to vampire couples everywhere: yours is not the greatest romance of all time. Not even close. Let’s see … a tormented guy who mistreats a woman he later falls in love with … a young woman who’s ready to give up everything and everyone she’s ever known for a guy she barely knows … a guy so in love with a woman that he sneaks into her room to watch her sleep … a woman who must choose between two men who promise to protect her while continually exposing her to danger … these are the collected descriptions of every Lifetime movie ever made.
Heck, there’s a good chance that the thing you call love is outlawed somewhere.
I’m just sayin’ …
6. Wedding guests: Not all of them, of course. Most wedding guests are quite pleasant, but there are some—typically those who are horny or lonely or drunken or some combination thereof—who get under my skin. If I had a dollar for every person who’s placed a sloppy kiss on my cheek only to slide down to my neck, or offered to show me how big his/her claws are, or attempted to trick me into inviting him/her to my room for a nightcap (yup, that rumor is true—they can’t come in unless invited), I’d be a blue blood. Luckily—contrary to popular belief—vampires do not get stronger as they get older. They get stranger, certainly, but not stronger; which is fortuitous since the overwhelming number of inappropriate advances are made by centuries-old relics who are more dangerous to themselves than they are to a lil’ ol’ human gal like me.
5. Custom wedding vows: Yuck! What is it about getting married that endows so many people with delusions of grandeur? And what makes people think that being in love (or something like it) suddenly transforms them into writers?
I’ve seen people who can’t read my brochures suddenly decide that they’re going to write their own vows. You can imagine how that turns out.
And even for those who can write, I say leave it to the experts. You’re not growing your own flowers are making your own dress … so why screw up your vows?
Trust me. You’ll screw them up plenty over time. Don’t give it a head start at the altar. I’ve heard enough bad vows to fill a library. In fact, it may be the subject of my next book. For now, here’s a treasure from a few days ago:
Bride: Each day was empty. Meaningless. I never lived until the day you bit me.
Groom: You may not be able to get blood from a stone, but I’ll always be your rock.
Yes … they were that bad. I kid you not.
Don’t let that be you.
4. Parents’ dances: Yes, they are a custom in many cultures. Yes, they can be very sweet and emotionally moving. Who doesn’t like to see dad cry or mom beam with pleasure?
Conversely, no one wants to see dad die or mom scream in anguish … which is why I always ask a client to please eschew the parents’ dances if any of the following are true: a) you or your spouse has “mommy” issues; b) you or your spouse has “daddy” issues; c) you can’t agree whether to dance with biological parents or the vampires who turned you; or d) any of the biological parents are still human. Of course, I also throw in e) any of the potential dance partners look younger than the newlyweds. It’s not necessarily dangerous, but it’s just unnatural.
It’s also why I don’t plan weddings in California.
3. Maid of Honor/Best Man speeches: These things are dangerous enough in the human world, where an already-drunken best man accidentally reveals that he and the groom were once “very, very close” or the maid of honor recounts the wild college weekend that ended with the bride married to a charming hotel valet … but just imagine how interesting things get when the individuals in question have a shared history that’s centuries’ long.
Forget “who slept with who” … it’s a straight-up cornucopia of dysfunction, with plenty of “who turned who” and “who drained who” mixed in with a bunch of “who watched who get staked and did nothing” and “who left the lid up on whose coffin.” Then there’s a bunch of “I always got stuck with the non-virgin blood” and “WTF were you doing there?” thrown in for good measure.
Think The Jerry Springer Show on crack and you might come close.
2. Certain bonuses, tips, or gratuities: It pleases me tremendously to know that I gave you a perfect wedding; the one you always dreamed of. It’s also my job, so I’m satisfied both personally and professionally. If you want to show your appreciation with more than words, it’s usually my turn to be grateful.
Cash is preferred. Checks made out to “cash” are a close second. Odd marketable securities and/or precious stones will not be refused, although I don’t have the right connections to ensure I’m not getting ripped off when I cash them in. A villa in France, an exotic car, a sports franchise … there are myriad ways to reward me.
However, I can’t stress enough how much I’m not interested in becoming a vampire. I don’t want to “join the winning team.” I don’t want to live forever. And I certainly don’t want to stick around for the sake of performing the same service for “the children of your children’s children.”
1. Sparkly vampires: I could go on all day about this one. I won’t, of course, but I want to go on record as saying that I could. What I want to know is: when will the madness end? It’s been years, and I still have far too many couples asking me to make them sparkle.
I’ll admit that it was kinda cute at first—cheesy, but cute. But it quickly became droll. Then it evolved into boring, before power-shifting from passé to infuriating to where it currently sits: mind-numbingly maddening. And still it continues. I want to scream, “Are we planning a wedding or a costume party?” But I hold my tongue.
For pete’s sake (Pete, of course, is my husband, who is wayyyy beyond sick of listening to me complain about this), people, I’ve never seen a sparkly vampire. They aren’t real. They are a figment of someone’s overactive imagination, I suppose, or perhaps an underactive one … but the fact is that they don’t exist. Period.
I have seen vampires with oily skin that glistened in sunlight. I’ve seen vampires that glowed by the light of the silvery moon. I’ve even seen vampires—typically well into the festivities, when it’s easier to confuse the kitchen and restroom doors— with sparkly things inserted in places never intended by nature … but I have never seen a vampire that sparkled naturally.
So, there you have it; the top ten things that drive me crazy. Still, if you’re a potential client—and who isn’t?—don’t be frightened. None of the above will stop me from giving you the kick-a$$ wedding of a lifetime (or two)!
And for those wondering how I can ever feel safe when vampires constantly surround me, remember that I have sole control over the one thing that all vampires fear:
My bill for services rendered.
*Author’s Note: I apologize to any wedding planners offended by Rhonda’s statement. While I’m certain she believes this is the truth, and I strongly support her right to speak freely, please keep in mind that her statements represent her opinion only.