“Mazel Tov, Dummies!” – 30 Rock – Season 7 Episode 7

30 Rock is probably my favorite shows of all time, followed closely by The Office and The Golden Girls. I seem to identify with Tina Fey’s character, Liz Lemon, and I’m alright with that. Liz is a very creative person that loves every single person with whom she works, and that’s pretty much Adriane in a nutshell. I’m also a lovable goofball with a penchant for eye-rolls and witty one-liners.

Liz dates a multitude of men throughout the course of the show, including Jason Sudeikis as a lawyer, Jon Hamm as a doctor, and Matt Damon as a pilot. It wasn’t until the sixth season that Liz finally found her man, a hot dog vendor named Criss (that’s right, no “h” and two “s”) played by James Marsden.

Adopting a child had always been part of “having it all” for Liz, but her lack of a husband was keeping her at the bottom of the adoption lists. After a few deep conversations about their future, Criss and Liz decide they should get married so that they can adopt a child sooner rather than later. Having never expected to have a wedding after resigning herself to spinsterhood before meeting her man, Liz had no interest in planning a big “special day.” The next day, the two of them rushed off to city hall to be married by a judge. After a series of misadventures, Liz and Criss go from getting married without witnesses to being surrounded by their closest friends and Tony Bennett.

THE SCENE

The bride wore a classic white sheath dress, complete with long sleeves and a hood. Okay, it was a Princess Leia costume, and yes, she had the side buns. But as she said, “I’m a princess.” The groom looked exactly like the “marzipan candy man” the bride had secretly always envisioned. The bride was escorted down the aisle of a small room in City Hall decorated with crepe paper, streamers, and gift shop flowers by her boss, dressed in a tux with bow tie in respect to such a formal occasion. The new Mr. and Mrs. Lemon (we never do learn Criss’ last name) exchanged a gold tooth grill and and a set of brass knuckles featuring the word “TITO” in diamonds. The ceremony was brief and photographed by the wife of the bride’s former boyfriend, who what also in attendance. Two homeless gentleman were also present as witnesses to the union. A small cake reception was held immediately after the ceremony and ended as the credits began to roll and the screen faded to black.

THE REALITY

If Liz and Criss were two real people in love with each other so much that they can’t wait to get married and adopt, they probably would invest their wedding dollars in the adoption process and less on the celebration of their union. Your typical courthouse wedding is very inexpensive. In Chicago, one can get married at the courthouse for $10 plus the cost of the marriage license, which can range between $15 and $65 depending on if you want a decorative version in addition to the standard certificate. “Couples are welcome to invite up to 15 family members and friends to observe their ceremony in Marriage and Civil Union Court at 119  West Randolph Street,” according to the Circuit Court of Cook County. The website also states that up to 10 ceremonies are performed at the Chicago Cultural Center one Saturday of each month. Each ceremony is allotted up to 20 guests, but appointments must be made in advance.

When you break down the costs for the wedding, the total for this wedding was well under $1000. The bride already owned her dress. The jewelry exchanged was purchased at a police auction for an unknown amount, so we’ll estimate $250 at the most. The groom’s tux might have been a rental, and we will err on the high side at another $250. Since they were married in New York and The Wedding Advocates currently work in the Chicagoland area, the price of their marriage license might differ from a Cook County marriage license. However, we’ll tack on $75 for a marriage license, upgraded pretty certificate, and administrative fee for use of the Judge’s time. Throw in another $200 for streamers and grocery store flower arrangements, and we are looking at a $775 wedding. I have yet to hear back from Tony Bennett’s people in regards to is rate for private performances (mostly because I never reached out to them), but technically his services were a gift to the couple from Alec Baldwin. Maybe your boss has connections like that?