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Saturday, February 9, 2008

Knot note: Real love asks why, people marry for different reasons

The cathedral is vibrant with beautiful voices. At the back, the glowing low-pitched voices of men are a thrill to listen to. In the outlined corridor leading to the altar, a little girl carrying a beautiful bunch of flowers looks flashy in a long flowing flowery outfit as her calculative walk rhymes with the sound of wedding serenades! Behind her, a procession of the bride and the bridegroom and their entourage too, very dashing!

In fact, the church is outpouring with crowds that have come to see God join two unlike poles together so that no man should put asunder! The lapel of the bridegroom's coat is pinned with a red rose while the woman is decorated to bliss; a special bridal fabric covers her.

As they walk hand in hand, down the aisle, they have braced themselves for the, "In sickness and health, until death do us apart," vows! What an awesome day! Patrons are actually witnessing that indeed on this happy a day, a man has left his father and mother to cleave unto his wife; and they have become one flesh!

We are talking of the wedding. Quite a substantial sum has been injected in preparation for the ultimate day. The bride must look radiant, so cashmere-wedding dresses have been ordered, say from Singapore, a load has gone into buying suits and shoes, champagnes that must be popped and of course a disco has been hired -- guests must shake their bums later in the night!

Well, there is treat in the wedding bash on a hilarious day where the luxury of sumptuous meals and wedding cakes define the true matrimonial party! And we are asking, why is it that people have to go out of their way to organise a wedding instead of simply approaching a man of God who would save much ado by simply slipping marital rings on their fingers?

Dear, the answer lies in a small game; people want to make cash. Among the Ibo of Nigeria, the saying is that when a man dines with kings, he paves way to his own greatness. So your parents have invited the big guns to your wedding, at the after party, Museveni offers a 100 cows, Wavamuno hands over keys for a brand new Mercedes while Sudhir surprises the newlyweds with a month of honey moon at his Munyonyo haven, all in form of wedding gifts! Then why shouldn't the unmarried borrow follow it up with their own wedding as well?

Modern society has transformed so much that one must shrive in financial abundance or else you will never grace the gossip pages of daily newspapers. Everyone wants that, which is why sons and daughters of the affluent hold press conferences to announce kwajula parties before they can wed. And by the wedding day, their parents will have sowed a generous seed in numerous planning parties hoping that on Dee day, the floodgates of gifts will gush down in quantities that not even any storehouse would contain!

Take it or leave it, weddings have rescued millions for money-strapped souls. Jude is a broke, jobless graduate who has joined politics and attended many press conferences organised by his party. In this way, he has been able to hook up with a daughter of a minister who practices journalism. The poor guy does not even love her but is desperate to wed the girl because he knows the magic in those silver designed invitation cards: "The family of - and - with great pleasure invite the company of - to the wedding ceremony of their children…", he can't wait to go for the kill.

Don't blame Jude. The desire to harvest material benefits from weddings dates back to traditional society. Ananse takes advantage of this and plays different chiefs who want to marry his lovely daughter as portrayed in Efua Sutherland's classic play, The Marriage of Anansewa. When he has squeezed those staggeringly rich ancient chiefs dry, the once impoverished but now billionaire trickster gives away his daughter to the only sensible Chief-who-is-Chief.

See that it goes back to how one plays his game. Weddings can be a gamble though it's better to always concentrate on the glittering side of the coin. Mostly, they are organised because one wants to show off his jewel and vice versa. When guests thronged former president Godfrey Binaisa's wedding to the Japanese dame, he boasted, "Look at her!" Again, he tickled the crowds more with the romance of the weddings when he turned to his bride and said, "Darling, give me a kiss (laughter, then suspense) …and a second one (more laugher and more suspense)…and a third! Man, the old dude just showed us why good weddings will forever be good weddings!!

Also, people want to see wine flowing just like the wedding at Cana. In doing so, the newlyweds will have preserved cultural heritage. Traditional culture holds that people must wed to be recognised by the rest of the community. Secret weddings are to be left for those that have bones in their closets. But if one is devoid of any 'dirt,' then one must hold a wedding as a seal of oneness.

The book, Billy Graham Answers Your Questions notes that marriage is a divine act brought about by the creative hand of God: "It is the longest and closest relationship known to man and it is sacred in God's sight," Graham writes. And so do I say, what better way but for couples to consecrate themselves in holy matrimony by holding memorable, church weddings!

And when things come to a nutshell, it remains clear that women push this wedding hype. They insist on wedding publicly and if not, the marriage would rather not take place. Those who prefer moving in without giving a hoot are truly desperate and know they might lose the man. And of course the loving kind of guy will do anything to please his beloved. So staging a wedding becomes a way of professing undying love to the other half.
At that, when Yvonne Chaka Chaka croons along with the hook to that memory-reviving Wedding Day vibe, cast your last look to the pretty, sublime bride and her handsome prince charming seated side by side on their wedding day and remember that they had to go through all because it is the most unforgettable moment that can happen to anybody before we depart from this earth.