lifestyle hacks

Why Get Married When You Can Do Nuptial Edging?

Marry me. Photo: ALBERTO PIZZOLI/AFP/Getty Images

When people ask me if I ever plan on getting married, I basically just black out. Marriage — only in the sense of the word that means a mutually supportive and loving long-term partnership with a person you really like to be around — sounds fine, but the barrier to entry (a wedding) feels prohibitively high. You may have to plan at least one large party, possibly more, and these probably won’t be the kinds of parties where you just roll up the rug and ask people to bring beer; these may require seating charts, the gathering of many addresses, and the implicit request that your guests spend a lot of money. You may also have to spend a lot of money and make a website. For me, it’s too much! So I am pleased to hear there is another way, a better way, according to one Liv Tyler.

Tyler, 42, has been engaged for nearly four years now. She who knows all too well just how exhausting weddings (particularly celebrity weddings) can be has a useful hack: Stay engaged as long as humanly possible.

“I love being engaged, but I don’t really have a desire to get married,” Tyler recently told Tatler, a British fashion magazine. “I always felt like marriage should be more of a reward … for surviving your relationship … I feel everyone’s got it backwards.”

Tyler seems more focused on the life-as-married-people aspect of the arrangement, but still, it boils down to what the Cut’s Kelly Conaboy described as living a “permanent Christmas Eve” and what I will call nuptial edging: You exist always in avid anticipation while nimbly avoiding the anxiety mines — a pricey party, the average cost of which approaches the median household income where I live; the social calculus of crafting an attendance list; the bargaining between a partner who wants to take the subway to City Hall and a partner who wants the rented lawn tent — that often pave the path to marriage. Doing it Tyler’s way, you get the lifelong partnership, which is actually the goal, without ever having to really worry about the Big Day or inhabiting the institution itself. If all goes according to plan, you get married … upon death? I’m not sure I understand this correctly, but presuming Tyler knows as much about love as she does about skin care, deal me in.

Why Get Married When You Can Do Nuptial Edging?