WHEN YOU DISCOVER YOUR FRIEND IS ENGAGED TO SOMEONE SHE MET 3 MONTHS AGO

First:

ahhh 3

Then:

ahhh

Finally:

ahhhh 2

Is it possible to contract hypertension from a Facebook status?

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EXPECTATIONS AND REALITY OF A CHRISTIAN MID-TO-LATE 20s-30s SOMETHING GIRL: A PLAY IN 2 PARTS

 Expectations of a Christian mid-to-late 20s-30s something girl:

SCENE:  Underneath a cloudless blue sky sits a cozy starter home with three bedrooms and 2.5 bathrooms on a corner lot of exactly .45 acres. Meticulously clean windows are trimmed with black shutters. The white siding falls nothing short of a dazzle promised by Crest Whitening strips within 2 hours. The shrubbery is green and never in need of a haircut and not a weed (GASP, dare I say the actual word!?) is to be found. A red front door beckons you inside, where we find said mid-to-late 20s-30s something Christian girl. We will call her Chloe.

ENTER: MUFFIN, CHLOE’s hypoallergenic cross breed. Poised, full of (tasteful) spunk, and totally potty trained after watching that Youtube video only twice. She is flaunting a sequined periwinkle canine sweater.

MUFFIN

“Woof!”

CHLOE

“Did Muffin take care of her business and flush the toilet after herself?”

MUFFIN

“Woof woof!”

CHLOE

“Good girl!”

ENTER: ALYSSA and AIDEN, CHLOE’s three year old twins. Poised, full of (tasteful) spunk, and totally potty trained after watching that Youtube video only twice. They are flaunting matching his and hers periwinkle “play” outfits.

CHLOE

“What have you both learned from Baby Einstein today?”

ALYSSA

“Look Mother! I wrote you a symphony.”

ALYSSA hands her mother a 30 page symphony, spiral bound.

AIDEN

“Look Mother! I painted us a family portrait.”

AIDEN reveals a 20×30 canvas oil painting of photo-like resemblance of the four-some.

FRONT DOOR OPENS.

ENTER: Tall, dark, handsome husband (TDH). I don’t even think we need to give him a name.

ALYSSA

“Father!”

AIDEN

“Oh, Father! You’ve returned as you always do at 5:15 PM every evening Monday- Friday!”

TDH

“Wow, honey. Baby Einstein really has helped his articulation skills! That 25 disc collection sure was an investment we will never regret! Our precocious children are the talk of every parent who drops his child off in the church nursery every Sunday!”

CHLOE flips her perfectly quaffed blonde hair back over her shoulder as she kisses her husband.

CHLOE

“Jealousy!”

TDH slides a package of bacon on the table. This is to be both literal and metaphorical (and every kind of cheese in the dairy aisle).

CHLOE swings her arms around her husband’s muscular frame thanks to his $60 a month gym membership.

CHLOE

“Have I told you how much I love you?”

TDH

“Every half hour by text, telephone, or e-mail.”

CHLOE

“I’m so happy we met our freshman year at [Insert name of Christian College here] and that it was love at first sight and you showered me in flowers, jewelry, and Chickfila nuggets. And then you proposed on the beach by candlelight at sunset before the spring of our senior year. I’m also glad we didn’t wait long for our engagement (you know how temptation is!) and were married the day after our graduation. I barely passed my finals, but it was so worth it!”

TDH

“Aren’t you forgetting something?”

CHLOE

“Why, how could I forget! And you paid off all of my school loans as our wedding present!”

ALYSSA and AIDEN join in the familial hug, clasping on to a parental limb. MUFFIN barks once, politely, with a stick in her mouth ready for her allotted outdoor time.

A pleasant, upbeat tune signals the closing fade-out.

FADE TO BLACK.

 

Reality of a Christian mid-to-late 20s-30s something girl:

SCENE:  Underneath a cloudy, rainy sky sits the cheapest apartment known in the [insert name of high cost of living suburb of your choice] area. IKEA furniture fills the glorified studio to give a “cute” feel as her friends like to call it who make bank. Bundled underneath a heavy quilt because her 36% below the national average salary limits her heat usage to never, sits said mid-to-late 20s something Christian girl. We will call her M. The only light in the room is the glow from the television.

M

“DARN YOU CAGGIE! You are obviously into Spencer. Why don’t you just kiss him already?”

M throws her $4 Ikea pillow at the reality-but-obviously-scripted British show that has captivated her since she rolled out of bed at 11:00 AM on a Saturday. The show attempts to satisfy both her latent pining for love and not so latent pining for babies with British accents.

FOUR HOURS LATER. We find M in the same spot as four hours ago (no thanks to the marathon of reality-but-obviously-scripted British show), empty candy wrappers at her feet.

M

“KISS HIM CAGGIE! GOSH FREAKING DARN IT KISS HIMMMMMMMM!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!”

Commercial break. M checks her bank account, praying that God maybe magically deposited thousands of dollars in there so she can pay off her school loans and buy some groceries every once in a while. There are only so many flavors of Ramen noodles.

THE PHONE RINGS.

M grabs her dumb phone because smart phones seem like a commodity greater than gold.

M

“Hello?”

It is M’s best friend calling to say she got engaged. M is full of merriment, glee, and [fill in other exuberant phrases here]. She then realizes she has no money to buy a bridesmaid dress.

Five minutes later.

THE PHONE RINGS.

It is M’s other best friend calling to say she got engaged. M is full of merriment, glee, and [fill in other exuberant phrases here]. She then realizes she has no money to buy another bridesmaid dress.

M happens to go onto Facebook and is informed that 17 of her other 406 Facebook friends are engaged. Six other married friends just had their first child. Three are working on their second (bow chicka wow wow).

An Inbox refresher reveals an e-mail that soon it will be her 5 year college reunion. Suddenly, she feels ill.

M

“WHERE HAS MY LIFE GONE?!”

M opens up a new Google search. She types in “How much does it cost to own a kitten?”

M remembers she does not like kittens. Backspace, backspace, backspace.

M opens up the Amazon webpage. She types in “Kitten stuffed animals” and finds 14 new from $3.56 and 6 used from $1.59.

M orders 5 new from $3.56 at a supplier that is 98% positive over the past 12 months.

A sad, bleak tune not unlike a dirge signals the close out.

FADE TO BLACK.

FEATURE STORY: MEET, DATE, AND MARRY ALL AT THE SAME PLACE

ring by spring jillnance.wordpress.com

photo: jillnance.wordpress.com

HARRISBURG—For every Christian girl that embarks on her college journey with a year supply of toothpaste and her heart set on an MRS degree, listen up, things just got even easier for you.

Local Christian college, Messiah College, has started to take advantage of the syndrome that affects their student population in droves known as the “ring by spring.” Students meet and date fellow students and before the spring of their senior year, if he likes it, he puts a ring on it.

“We are striving for what we call a ‘lifecycle education,’” president George Humphry states. “We take them from their infancy, 18, and in four years we pair them off for life. Just like penguins. Also, apparently termites.”

For years, this process has been happening organically. Students have been meeting in the dining hall by the panini press, stalking each other between classes, making out in the stacks in the library, and getting engaged by the covered bridge. But when it comes to the big day, they are finding other facilities to say “I do.”

“That is completely unacceptable,” Humphry states. “If it began here, it needs to end here. Which is why we’ve created a special wedding package plan to use our facilities for a very nominal price on the special day.”

The wedding package includes use of the chapel with chaplain for the ceremony, and a choice between the cafeteria or the student union for the reception for $30,000 or $40,000 respectively.

“The options for catering are endless: macaroni and cheese, chicken fingers, and my personal favorite, those French fries with the smiley faces. Nothing says ‘good luck on beating the odds of the national divorce rate’ like a fried potato with a face full of joy,” Humphry adds.

To enhance guest entertainment, the theatre majors have thrown in a bonus “Take a Stroll Down Memory Lane” add-on package which includes a fifteen minute one-act play dramatization of the couple’s meeting, dating, and engagement history. For an extra fee, the play can be filmed beforehand to portray actual spots on campus where events took place. Couples can choose between “family-friendly” or “true-to-life” versions.

Special discounts apply to couples who are continuing their education on campus in the graduate programs. Also, for students who get married the day after their graduation.

“We’re really excited about offering this exciting new feature to our student population. We’ve already begun advertising our wedding day offerings when the freshmen arrive during Welcome Week,” Humphry explains. “If you meet your spouse during your first week here you get 15% off!”

But that’s not all.

“We’re still figuring out how we can take it a step further in the lifecycle education plan: babies. We love when our students multiply! We’re thinking about starting a campaign to renovate our Alumni House with soundproof walls so we can promote a special ‘weekend getaway’ option where conception could take place for our married couples. We’ve already designed a new infant onesie that will soon be available in the bookstore that reads: ‘I’m a Messiah Creation!’ This is truly a very exciting time in the history of our college!”