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Miss Manners: Plan for dream wedding leaves out certain relatives

Wed., Feb. 3, 2010

DEAR MISS MANNERS: I am thrilled to be planning a dream destination wedding. We have picked a remote spot in an exotic location.

We can afford to have a fabulous wedding day event for anyone that can attend (with a few other activities thrown in); however, we can’t afford to cover hotel costs for everyone. We might be able to help with some of the transportation (with miles) but not for everybody. We are hoping that with advance notice, relatives and friends can budget the time and funds necessary to join us.

Many of our friends are looking forward to it. It is the immediate family that will have the most trouble due to cost (it will be expensive), and some family members have health issues that will prevent them from traveling.

They haven’t said much. I’m not sure they like the idea. I don’t want to offend anyone, but I would like to have this wedding the way I have dreamed about it. Please let me know what costs I’m responsible for and how far does that responsibility extends (to which people). I’m confused.

GENTLE READER: But your immediate family is not. You have made it quite clear that they are not an important part of your dream. Miss Manners thinks you should consider yourself lucky that they haven’t said much.

The hosts of a wedding are not responsible for the travel and hotel expenses of their guests. But neither should they be responsible for their families having to do serious financial planning in order to attend.

Admittedly, scattered families and health problems make it difficult to pick a location that is convenient to all. But you are not even trying. Picking up the expenses of all of your close relatives would go a long way to making up for that.

But here’s another idea: Hold your wedding in your family’s hometown and go to your remote, exotic location on your honeymoon. Of course, you will want to take along all those friends who are able and eager to travel with you.

DEAR MISS MANNERS: One of my duties at work is to release print jobs and collect money for those prints. The container we keep the money in is located at another desk.

When I had to make change for a patron and took the money over to the other desk, a patron/friend of a co-worker was standing behind the desk in front of the money drawer looking at images on my co-worker’s computer.

I needed to get in the drawer to get change so I said, “Excuse me.” The patron/friend did not move so I said a bit louder, “Pardon me,” to which the person replied in a snide tone of voice, “I dunno, what crime did you do?”

I wanted to reply, “Strangling a rude patron” but held my tongue. Could Miss Manners please advise me as to what an acceptable response would have been?

GENTLE READER:- “The crime of courtesy. Instead of just saying, ‘Get out of my way.’ ”

Readers may write to Miss Manners at MissManners, or via postal mail at United Media, 200 Madison Ave., 4th Floor, New York, NY 10016.

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