No Shirt, No Shoes, No Service

Some people have asked me about the dress code for the wedding. I’m a little confused by the question, and sickened.

As soon as I heard the words “dress code,” my palms started to sweat and my heartbeat sped up. Flashbacks of Ms. Becker, the administrator at my middle school who lurked the halls enforcing an arbitrary dress code, flooded my mind. As my preteen friends and I walked the halls of Westpine Middle in Sunrise, Florida, we would pull our shorts down to make them longer and hunch over so our shirts didn’t expose any hint of a belly, just so we wouldn’t have to deal with that wretched woman. Whenever Ms. Becker was around, she would pluck us out of the hallway and make us place our hands by our side to see that our shorts came down as far as the tips of our fingers. If the shorts were a fraction above our fingertips or if they were the slightest bit frayed, she would call our parents and send us home to change.

There was no stopping this woman. She even got to my mom who, whenever we went back-to-school shopping, would crouch down next to us in the JCPenny dressing room and use measuring tape to make sure all our clothes met Ms. Becker’s rigid standards.

I eventually started wearing jeans and long sleeve shirts because I preferred to look like a jackass in the Florida heat than endure anymore time with the administrator.

I will not put my wedding guests through that kind of torture. I’m surprised anyone even asked about a dress code. People can wear short or long dresses or no dresses at all to my wedding. I don’t really care. I’m not going to turn people away at the door. And if you feel you must wear flip flops to an indoor wedding in March, just don’t let me see them. I won’t kick you out, but I might get nauseous because I can’t stand the sight of people’s feet in flip flops. Sebastien will just mock you.


About JadedBride

Amy Kraft is a print and radio journalist based in New York. Her work has appeared in publications including Scientific American, Discover, Popular Science, The Week, Psychology Today, and Distillations, a podcast out of the Chemical Heritage Foundation. She is currently working on a book of humor essays. View all posts by JadedBride

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