Studies have shown that an American wedding now costs roughly two billion dollars and lasts an average of 26 hours. Planning takes an estimated 10 years, while the median number of guests hovers somewhere around 14,000. And all that planning stress is now potentially enhanced by the additional cost of feeding and watering interloping freeloaders who believe their unwelcome presence at wedding receptions somehow adds to the joy of the day.
This New York Times piece framing wedding crashing as a whimsical hobby akin to geocaching or news raiding is infuriating. It profiles people who find weddings online, attend receptions, eat and drink for free, and then…gloat about it? For example, the adult man who still describes Wedding Crashers as a “great movie” and attended a couple’s New Year’s Eve wedding reception unbidden and on the hunt for single women:
Mr. Greenblatt danced, schmoozed with guests (using the Snows’ tactic of claiming friendship with the bride or groom, depending on who the other person knew) and posed for photos, which he posted to Instagram and, in at least one instance, tagged the bride.
He apparently creepily lurked in the hallway during the sit down dinner and then returned for the party, but it’s chill because he left a $100 gift card.
Another couple crashed the best man’s table at a reception held at Rock Island Lake Club in Sparta, N.J., where wedding wedding packages cost $160-$240 per person. They left the couple a dollar to cover their free meal and drinks:
Like Mr. Greenblatt, Ms. Wolfson and her date also left a card. Theirs contained a Polaroid photo of themselves and “a buck for good luck.”
In order to bring this shitty behavior to scale, some tech-minded terrible people even had the idea a few years back to create an app that enables potential crashers to easily find parties where they’d be most able steal from buffet tables and open bars by amassing data from the wedding websites of naive couples who made their wedding pages public without realizing that everyone on the internet is tied for worst person on the internet. Luckily, the app never materialized.
Weddings are a day for your parents’ friends to get completely shitcanned with your friends and badly dance to decades-old pop music. Safeguard that sacred union by password protecting your wedding website.