No, Alanis, it's not ironic...it's karma.
If you are planning an outdoor wedding (or really any type of wedding) at any point in your life the next post may be helpful to your eventual success. Forget the meteorologists, or the fates or the weather gods, the person you need to show respect to is the bookstore clerk at the store where you're planning your wedding.
I don't know exactly when this phenomenon started, but in most of my time in BookWorld the table in the local bookstore is the preferred place to do all wedding planning. I do understand, there's easy access to wedding magazines, books, coffee, all the important tools to make your special day truly magical. However: planning brides have to rank in my Top 5 most hated customer groups. I realize the bride is the most important person in the world on your actual wedding day, at the wedding, and generally only to the people who love you. This super-specialness does not apply at the bookstore. (Unless you're getting married at the bookstore, which I saw on an episode of TLC's A Wedding Story. True fact.)
So brides-to-be, do you want to rack up some bonus karma points to avoid floods, fires, food poisoning and family brawls on your special day? Then follow these few simple hints:
1. If you want to spend time in a bookstore's cafe to plan your wedding order more than one cup of coffee, especially if you're going to be there for eight hours. (Yes, I've seen people sit there for eight hours, they may have stayed longer, but after eight hours I left.)
2. When you have removed one copy of every wedding magazine and book from the bookstore shelves and looked through them, buy something. I know those magazines are expensive, but if you're planning to drop $2,000-$20,000 on a dress you'll wear once you can shell out the $7 for the magazine you found it in. Or, buy a book not related to weddings. Maybe something for your fiance. Consider it rent for the wear and tear to merchandise
2a) If you have ripped, folded, spilled coffee on or put post it notes in a book – congratulations! It's now your book. Go pay for it.
2b) No, we cannot “just copy this one page” for you. Buy the book.
3) There's a magical place in almost every city and town called a library. It's designed to be a place where you can stay for hours and look at books and magazines, and then you can check out the books and take them home FOR FREE! They don't allow coffee or talking, but you can run in, grab books, and take them to a coffee shop or your house to do those things.
4) Don't move the furniture. If you have gathered together so many books, or all 20 of your bridesmaids to help in this planning session, you need to pare down to what can comfortably fit at one table. If this is impossible, then -surprise, surprise- buy the books you need, get the books from the library, and find a space that can accommodate you.
5) Put the books back where you found them. You found the wedding section once, you can do it again. If you can't, clean up your mess, find a nearby employee and say the following sentence “I'm really, really sorry, but I can't be bothered to put these back where I found them. Could you do it?” That's right, I appreciate your honesty more than your lying condescension. So if you don't want to clean up you have to eat crow and admit you're selfish and lazy.
Following these rules should ensure that your local booksellers won't be petitioning the Patron Saint of Beaten Down Retail Workers to help in bringing about the annihilation of your wedding day. Cleaning up the massive piles of books and trash left heaped on the tables gives us plenty of time to entreat an entire pantheon of various religious figures to add a mystical dash of chaos to your wedding.
BookWench is still reading Allison Hewitt is Trapped, but I did take a break to read Volumes 6-8 of Preacher by Garth Ennis.