Reprinted from The Wave Magazine, January 10-23, 2007 Page 27.
7/7/07 Couples hope their lucky wedding date will bring lasting marriages.
Despite Census Bureau reports that the United States has experienced three-and-a-half decades of divorce rates reaching 50 percent or higher, some soon-to-be-married couples are feeling lucky this year. Couples are flocking to banquet halls, limousine renters, and other wedding services to book Saturday, July 7, 2007 — a date that’s emerged as more-or-less perfect for nuptials: easy to remember; lucky like a jackpot; fun to discuss at parties.
“I had at least 50 brides request it,” says Geraldine Mercante, manager at Willow Heights Mansion in Morgan Hill. “It was definitely the most popular date on our schedule, and I could’ve booked it 50 times over.”
The trend is growing to weird proportions. Some wannabe brides are booking 7/7/07 without telling their respective boyfriends; others are booking the date while single.
“I booked our venue without [my future husband’s] knowledge, before we even got engaged,” says Helen, who posted a message on Craigslist’s San Francisco Wedding forum, and asked to remain anonymous. “He laughs about it now, but he was pissed when he first found out.”
“Southern girls do this all the time,” said another Craigslist poster. “It’s so weird — they’ll book the prime spots, even when they aren’t dating someone. It’s really sick and if I was one of those guys I’d run.”
“Yeah, that sounds about right,” said Mark Owens, a salesman spotted at C & J’s Sports Bar in Santa Clara. “I don’t ‘t think I could deal with that.” Mark’s single and straight, but he says not communicating with a significant other about his or her own marriage is “just dishonest and mean.” He continues: “Hearing stuff like that makes me never want to get married.”
Not everyone agrees, though. Allison Rachel, from San Francisco, doesn’t think presupposing an engagement is bad. “Hey, if you’re pretty sure [the marriage proposal is] coming, and you think you can get that date, why the hell not? It’s not like you’re killing someone. You’re just taking the day you want.”
Russell Wilkie, a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist, has a different take. “No matter how lucky the calendar date of a wedding is, the potential spouse would be unlucky to wed a partner who would make such an important life decision without discussion.” Wilkie is President of the Santa Clara Valley Chapter of the California Association of Marriage and Family Therapists and an associate of the Couples Institute of Menlo Park. He has a private practice in Campbell, where he specializes in helping couples fight fairly. “The basis of a strong marriage is open and honest communication and working collaboratively on life decisions. The hidden agenda created by an unknown deadline is sure to create havoc in a relationship. If you want the 7/7/07 date, then you should ask.”