Let me just come right out and say it: Please don’t get married in me.

I’m not an event space. I’m not shabby chic. I’m not wabi sabi. I’m not rustic glam.

Here’s what I am: A barn — i.e., tired, weathered, drafty, creaky, seismically unsound, highly flammable, basically derelict — i.e., a fucking barn.

Our thing is, basically, we host farm animals. Big, dirty, fetid beasts. Sometimes, we house grain. If we’re lucky, a tractor. Unofficially, we provide refuge to rodents and rural teenagers needing a place to screw.

That’s it, that’s all. We’re not meant for weddings.

(Note: To that person who points out the historical precedent of barn dances and shit like that, I say one thing: No one asked you, nerd.)

Me? I was a dairy barn. I’d hold about a dozen dairy cows at any given time. You know what dairy cows love to do? Lie down. Also, eat, sleep, shit, and moo. Did I enjoy barn-ing for these cows? No. Not especially. But goddamn if it wasn’t respectable. Goddamn if I wasn’t a real-ass barn.

Then the family sold the farm and took the cows with them. I didn’t care though. I thought I was going to be retired. Honorably discharged. Or, as we say, firewood.

But no — the new owners? — bastards had me stuffed with lavender and bergamot. They festooned me with Edison bulbs. They hung (fake) crystal chandeliers from my beams. Tastefully adorned my ass with oak wine barrels. Hay bales wrapped in burlap. Planter boxes wrapped in burlap. Mason jars wrapped in burlap. A wagon wheel.

Did I get one coat of paint? Maybe a wood stain? No. Everyone wants to keep me distressed. You love my distress. You put my distress all over your Pinterest boards. You would snort my distress if you could. Bottle it, sell that shit on Etsy.

(Why does no one fetishize other distressed buildings? Why does nobody get married in public schools?)

At the very least, promise me you won’t pay extra for the animals as photo props. I mean, seriously — you’re going to pay to take a picture with a donkey? But mostly I can’t stand the way they look at me. The animals. They smell my lavender smell. They look at my portable wood parquet dance floor. They see the hay bales in neat rows. They’re confused. They’re like — The fuck? I thought this was a barn.

And I want to be like — It is.

I am.

I will always be a real-ass barn.