In light of the fact that my wedding dress resides in New York, and I reside in D.C., all trips to the Big Apple now involve a little quality time at Kleinfeld. For efficiency’s sake, mind you. These are not mere exercises in me slipping into my gown to stare lovingly at my reflection in the mirror contemplating the awesome and unchecked ability of a garment that costs thousands of dollars to influence a bird’s figure, skin tone, and general outlook on life. That would be an exercise in vanity.
No! No! There was actual business to be dealt with this past Saturday. I had to pick a veil—short, long, really long, lace, beading? But before even making it into the inner sanctum that is the Kleinfeld showroom floor, my mother, sister, and I were confronted with a sign informing us that TLC was filming Season 2 of Say Yes to the Dress and that by default everyone entering would be filmed and considered for possible use by the show, unless they informed their sales assistant that they weren’t interested. She didn’t even have, “Hello, welcome back to Kleinf—” out of her mouth before I was politely informing her that if a cameraman or producer so much as contemplated perkily bounding in our direction that we would be forced to get testy. Decidedly testy. My mother and sister flanked me arching an eyebrow each to underscore that one would not want to test the limits of our icy dismissiveness.
It’s not that I mind the idea of Say Yes to the Dress. I simply believe there are some who want to be on it, and some who merely want to watch it without thinking “Oh Jesus, did I really say ‘I am a golden goddess. This dress can save the world,’?” I fall into the latter category. Although I am of a generation that certainly views reality shows and the larger “look at me” attitude of blogs, social networking sites, etc. as completely normal (obviously), I still shy away from the idea of surrendering final televised cut of my image to someone else. Because in nearly every episode of Say Yes, the brides come off as flighty, indecisive, rude, bitchy, stupid, or the worst offense of all in my book—dull—or some combination thereof.
When I’m staring into the mirror, seemingly pondering whether I have the bearing to pull of a full-length veil, I know that there is plenty of other stuff running through my mind that has nothing to do with the length of tulle floating behind me. What I would not know, were I to surrender myself to the TLC producers, is whether I would appear three months from now on screen, staring at myself while a ticking clock graphic appears in the lower lefthand corner and an announcer dramatically intones, “And some brides just can’t seem to make up their minds at all.” [Cut to our assistant rolling her eyes outside the dressing room bobbing her head and shoulders while whispering, “I cain’t tell what huh problem is. It’s a flippin’ veil, yah know?”]
After making my decision and bidding adieu to my Cinderella-at-11:59 p.m. self, I headed back into the lobby area. There, a nauseatingly upbeat producer with a clipboard stood grilling a guy slouched in one of the sofas about whether or not he had seen the dress, did he want to see the dress, did he trust his fiancée to pick out a good one, yadda yadda yadda. On and on. A few feet away, a bride with an orange fakebake, horrific highlights, and ridiculously long fake French manicured nails sat with a portable microphone unit, waiting for her cue. I turned up my coat collar, donned my sunglasses, and pushed open the door to East 20th Street.
No pictures, please.