What is happening in the Washington Post today? Is "Sally Quinn" and "massive personality disorder" trending on Google or something? Because there is a column, that is happening in our lives, dedicated to sorting out some sort of mix-up that happened with the weddings of various people, associated with the Family Quinn.
People often ask me how to make conversation at dinner parties. I always tell them to ask about their dinner partner's family -- once they get started, they won't stop. Everyone has a dysfunctional family. Ours is no exception.
So, we're sort of leading with the Anna Karenina opening, as imagined by a Leo Tolstoy who is just as verbose but twice as narcissistic as the one we already have.
I'm going to discuss a drama unfolding in our family, and I'm discussing it only because others have made it public and messy. It's a conflict that I hope readers can understand -- and avoid in their own lives.
Okay, okay. I hope I can understand. Also? I hope I can understand how it came to pass that any people, in America, were concerned about this!
Our son Quinn Bradlee is marrying Pary Williamson in Washington on April 10. My husband's granddaughter Greta Bradlee is getting married the same day in California. In the past few days there have been a spate of negative stories, both online and in print, about the "dueling weddings." It's been hurtful to all four of these wonderful young people. This "dueling" characterization couldn't be further from the truth.
First: HEAVENS TO MURGATROYD! Second: On a personal note, I would like to thank the Culture, and the People in that culture, for somehow shielding me from being aware of these problems and the "spate of negative stories" that has followed in the wake of this terrible, byzantine dilemma with "Save The Date" cards. You all are the true heroes!
Here's what I have learned, reading this article:
--Sally Quinn, she has a book!
--Lent is involved, somehow.
--Sally Quinn apparently has immediate access to the calendars of several members of her family.
--There are "existing tensions" in the Quinn family. (Indeed.)
--"Anyone who has ever hosted a wedding knows the maddening details involved."
But only some describe them in detail in major world newspapers. Ah, but the point of this whole piece -- you know, the thing that makes it newsy...the thing that makes it publishable in a major newspaper -- is that all of the maddening details of weddings are alike, but each wedding's maddening details are maddening in their own way. And these details...well, they're way too confusing to recap. A forgotten date, a second wedding, a lot of misunderstandings and recriminations, and a gossip item. There's nothing here that could not have been litigated in private. Why this is in a newspaper is just beyond my understanding. But I concede: the details, they are maddening!
Luckily, this whole over-sharey episode seems to have had a happy ending:
I feel so sorry that all this happened. That I am responsible for the big mix-up is clear, but it is not deliberate. However, there are many lessons to be learned here. I can only hope and pray as these four begin their lives together that they don't repeat the mistakes of their older relatives. Family, for me, is the most important thing in life. I wish for them, too, that they will be able to take their own fractured families and make them whole once more.
Sally Quinn's The Party: No 'dueling' Bradlee weddings, just scheduling mistake [The Washington Post]
Sally Quinn, Disinvited [The Awl]