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My Nigerian engagement ceremony bridentity crisis

I'm generally of the belief that your wedding is not always about you, but it should reflect you: your beliefs, your values, and your community. But how could I feel good about a ceremony where I didn't feel like myself and nothing else felt like me either? In the end, it was really been a two-step process…

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Fuck yeah, kale bouquets

There seems to be a lot of people talking about kale bouquets lately, as if it's some sort of recent and possibly ridiculous wedding trend. Are you kidding me? Not only did we feature this photo of kale bouquet back in early 2009, but the bouquet is freaking GORGEOUS! I say, get your freaky kale on, ladies and gentlemen.

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Why wedding planning brings out my inner Andy Rooney

There's the Offbeat Bride for whom "typical bride stuff" is already too much to think about. In fact, it kind of turns her into a cranky old man. That bride is me. And in my head, that cranky old man is the late Andy Rooney, whose out-of-control eyebrows and ranty commentaries on modern life used to comprise the last five minutes of "60 Minutes."

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Othering: the ways Offbeat Brides push themselves away

Over the years, I've seen something come up time and time again from Offbeat Bride readers: people will send an email, post on the Tribe, or leave a comment that basically amounts to, "Do I REALLY count as an Offbeat Bride? Do I really belong here?" I think of it as the Offbeat Bride's version of othering: this way those of us who've defined ourselves as non-normative have of pushing ourselves away from other people. The push makes sense, of course — if you live in a region where your politics aren't aligned with those around you, of course you're going to feel a push, and like you need to clearly define yourself as "not that." There are a lot of social and cultural contexts where it makes perfect sense that people who feel a little bit off the beaten path would push against the people and society around them. What makes less sense to me is when I see us push against each other…