No one ever told me that jumping in feet first to the wedding and events industry was going to be a party and if they had I would have been suspicious off the bat. You see, dealing with the general public is a real ass whipping for anyone in the sales field and especially in the hospitality industry. Texas Twins TV
Weddings are frought with in laws and outlaws who always have an opinion but never bring their checkbook. They love to throw around their ideas or theories but somehow expect you to do what they want and at your own expense. “Oh, I want several large glass cylinders and flameless candles, two photographers, 6 chalkboards, two suv’s of your floral designs but I hired someone else to do my flowers so just bring your inventory for free and, at your own expense along with everything else.” Hey Princess, it might be a good time for someone to tell you up front that your continued “ideas” regarding your ceremony aren’t free! You paid the florist you hired didn’t you? The venue you used didn’t you? What the Hell led you to believe that you didn’t need to pay your wedding officiant and my team for putting up with all your bullshit for months on end as if you were the ONLY client I had?
My twin sister, Cindy Daniel is often doing or saying something pretty damn funny around here and it generally relates to our often hilarious adventures within the wedding and events industry. #Cindyism “They came in thinking dinner was free and balked at leaving a tip!” You see, Cindy watches EVERYTHING and surmises it fairly quickly with her style of Texas Humor and Redneck Reality.
I’m often reminding my team that working with the public takes patience and tact because it’s true. Sometimes it takes a stiff drink or a Xanax when you’re dealing with a dumb ass too.
On the customers end- they think they are always right while on the vendors end- we realize that they have no idea what everything costs around here nor do they care what everything costs because consumers love getting something for nothing.
Consumers also love to burn business on the Internet. Unless a business is aware of its rights under defamation and libel laws- they continue to get dirt kicked in their faces while feeling helpless to stop it. The only way to stop a bully is to effectively punch them right back in the face or grab a shovel and throw some shit right into their lap with a lawsuit to stop the stupidity.
Let’s take for instance my Texas Twins Treasures Inventory- I can’t tell you how many times wedding parties want to KEEP something belonging to me that was neither leased or purchased. I have the inventory I have because I purchased the products and created the designs not because a “Flower Fairy” left it upon my doorstep!
No, you cannot keep items belonging to me unless, of course, you paid for them. You might assume such ridiculous requests would be self explanatory and, you would be wrong. After all, the person asking has never put up a penny to pay for this service and, I provided my designs to for you a beautiful wedding not to give you my inventory!
Giving Dream Event clients photos is our perogatuve ya all, we post photos as a courtesy to our low cost clients because they value this “gift” and often leave positive feedback for us simply because we went that extra mile!
It’s truly amazing how many times a customer that didn’t pay for our photographers wants photos! Today let’s revisit what a wedding photographers “job” actually is and isn’t:
Showing up to photograph the event or ceremony- PERIOD. Wedding photographers do NOT print or email your photos for FREE. When you hire wedding photographers the photos themselves are a separate fee. What you are paying for is for the photographer to show up and take photos. If you haven’t paid for photography then of course, you aren’t entitled to either the photos or prints.
I bring photographers to many events as a “gift” to the couple when I’m hired and PAID to officiate. If my photographers are with me and are not paid to attend your event- you don’t have any say in what they photograph or, don’t photograph. In order for someone to effectively “work for you” you pay them to do so.
On many occasions I have posted photos of our events to social media sites as a “gift” to families so they don’t have to pay for purchasing the prints. That’s right, I said “gift.” Ask any other photographer if they are going to publish your photos at no cost and see what type of response you will get! That’s right, they are trying to earn a living here and doing shit for free don’t pay the bills.
Recently I was forced to file a lawsuit for Theft of Services after working at a wedding for 5 hours with two photographers AFTER publishing the photos on FB for FREE you can imagine my shock and horror that holiday fees (Mother’s Day Wedding) photography fees, wedding officiant fees (wedding AND rehearsal) were NOT paid. I was counter sued for not providing the photos That were never paid for as well as the photographers not being paid to give you some idea of how preposterous this counter suit actually was AND not staying for the reception! It should be noted that staying for the reception was NEVER discussed with myself or my staff and when you hire or retain a wedding officiant for a wedding the reception is never involved as part of the “deal.”
I’ve gone back to requiring payment in full two weeks prior to the event for a very good reason- trying to get paid at the event is damn near impossible and, if the customer already has the milk- why buy the cow?!
Customers will always find a reason to put their “bitch boots” on about something in the wedding business but- when you are charging far less than anyone else by offering low cost services, you would think that getting paid would be less of an “issue” and, you would be wrong.
Cheapskates come in all sizes and apparently taking advantage of others has become “trendy.”
When other wedding vendors contact me because I’m not writing about “Rainbows and Unicorns” within my blogs- I tell them that lying to make it appear that everything is wine and roses is simply not my style. This is Texas and I tell it like it is good, bad or ugly.
Having a sense of humor in the wedding and events industry is a must, especially at funerals! The in laws and outlaws fighting over everything the petty squabbles and even complaints regarding the appearance of the deceased are all “up for grabs!” Who sent flowers? Who didn’t? Who came? What is she wearing? Look at that or this! Funerals are a “free for all.” While officiating a memorial at one ceremony, I was effectively pushed over by the casket when the wife and ex wife started a pushing contest. No, I can’t make this stuff up!
Weddings are frought with the smug bastards who paid for nothing and complain about everything variety of “in laws and outlaws.” You know who they are- the old “clucksters” who thumb their nose at the food, the flowers, the venue and even the wedding dress or Bride or Groom.
These “miserable mobsters” are happy to bother showing up and complaining to each other throughout the entire affair. They love being unhappy and “rope a doping” everyone else into their “cynical circle.”
Now, as a minister, my job is to get everyone seated and conduct a ceremony that appeases the bride and the groom not the families of the couple but- the couple themselves. I’m very good at this and have been occasionally called “bossy.” Well, you try getting several hundred folks in order and ready to proceed without being “bossy” and let me know how it works out for you.
Recently, a deal breaker came about when inlaws and outlaws started “clucking” at a wedding after I addressed an unruly guest with a big mouth who continued to upset the bride and, enjoyed doing so. This event has continued to cause me great anxiety as to what I could have done differently to avoid stress to the couple, myself and my team in the future. Relatives can either be happy and pleased to be present or, “miserable mobsters” complaining about everything while contributing nothing.
I’ve decided that rather than tolerate loud mouthed inlaws and outlaws- I’m going to ask them to zip it or leave the ceremony since their interference ruins a ceremony for the couple and myself.
While you are sitting back there smugly complaining, I find it odd that you went to the trouble to bother coming unless, of course your usual routine is to show up and “spoil the fun for everyone.”
Hoping to recover from one of the worst wedding experiences that I’ve ever been forced to endure, my sense of humor isn’t lost on the ridiculousness of “family.” I have one myself and, believe it or not, a few folks that I would leave off my guest list too. The difference being that I recognize a problem up front and don’t wait to see it spiral on the back end.
We all have that one loud mouthed cousin, brother, stepmother or aunt that loves to stir the chili. Why not do everyone a favor and leave that idiot OFF your guest list? Why would you invite that “Redneck” to your affair anyway? Do you love the drama? Do you love listening to the complaints of folks who didn’t bring a gift or help pay for anything?
Let’s shoot for quality over quantity here- don’t invite everybody you’ve ever met hoping to get a good gift- you won’t they shop at the Dollar Tree and the cost of their meal and priceless antics at your wedding far outweigh the risk versus the benefit!
Your vendors and other guests will thank you for considering the consequences of feeling forced to invite them in the first place. Save yourself and save your day- leave those loud mouthed losers at home and save the cost of a stamp too on that wedding invitation too! It’s no wonder so many couples are choosing to elope these days with the ongoing issues of inlaws and outlaws throwing their advice your way or, how they think this or that should be. The problem with families is that everybody has one and like it or not- they aren’t going to simply disappear. Weddings are like a family reunion of folks you’d never want to see daily, weekly or even monthly and there’s a good reason- you don’t need the stress and neither do we.
Having someone “appear out of nowhere” to disrupt the ceremony with objections or insights while bullying anyone and everyone around them was the worst event that could’ve happened to a bride thankful for the wedding dress I gave her, thankful to my team for her hair and makeup and thankful for her wedding shoes, earrings, invitations and hats for her kids. Horrified that her bully of a brother would top his horrific antics at that wedding by smashing cake in her face and on her dress was the most horrific thing I’ve ever witnessed and believe me that out of hundreds of weddings and events- I’ve seen my fair share of rampant stupidity going on from the drunken bridesmaids to the ring getting lost in between the cracks of the patio to the sudden thunderstorm during a ceremony to the horse escorting the bride and leaving a trail the wedding party was forced to “wade through” leaving the altar. The guitar playing exboyfriend and the unexpected outburst of who had slept with who during a wedding ceremony, the allergic reaction to the bouquet, I could go on and on. Let’s not forget the tardy party bride who lied to get a police discount and was late to her own wedding by 90 minutes as I stood on the altar waiting. The thing about weddings is and always will be the “players” who think it’s an opportunity to make a fool out of themselves by becoming the center of attention. I’ve seen several of these types and will never understand why finding something, anything to complain about is commonplace at an event that was and always will be intended for joy and the promise of sharing a life together.
Funerals run a close second in unexpected antics, outbursts and maniacal behavior. Sadly, for those grieving the loss of their loved one, the moment to reflect of the joys and memories shared with the departed is destroyed by derelicts arguing over the estate.
Wendy M Wortham
Comments by Wendy Wortham