The belated wedding post

8 Oct

photobooth picWriting a wedding recap is not easy. Mostly because I don’t even know who the audience is – those of you who are close to me were in attendance, and there is a good chance the rest of you don’t care about the goings-on. But I’m going to press on in the face of reason.

Herewith, a recap of the wedding, which mostly contains tips listed in no particular order for a great wedding celebration. Why the tips? Because our wedding fucking rocked, which means I now consider myself a wedding-having expert.

First off, the wedding details: Took place on 9/25 with the ceremony at the Cowles Conservatory outside the Walker Art Center and the reception at the Profile Event Center (and yes, it’s totally normal for you to have never heard of the place).

And now, allow me to present B’s Tips for a Kick-Ass Wedding Day:

Expect problems. Everyone told us countless times to not sweat the small stuff, to keep in mind that the nice part about things going wrong is that no one would be able to tell, blah blah yada etc. But the amount of problems we incurred throughout the day would have been laughable if they didn’t cause the bride to nearly cancel the whole damn thing and collapse in a fit of unrelenting tears. I’ll spare you most of the details and say simply: the torrential downpour caused us to switch locations at the last minute, the hairdresser never showed up because he was in detox, the limo driver got lost, and we ran out of food at the reception. I dare you to top that.

Still, I will concur with the belief that none of it really mattered. Good people, good music and good people can overcome most everything. Believe me, for I have lived it. So I’m just saying, rather than just trying to shrug off mistakes, I’d suggest you go one further and be fully prepared for a carnival of follies. Preparation helps to minimize the tears.

Only suckers rent tuxes. I am still having trouble understanding the rationale behind spending $150 for a one-day tux rental. For the same price, my groomsmen and I purchased – as in bought, which means we get to keep them forever and just maybe wear more than one damn time – sweet Merona Premium suits from Target (which are actually very good quality). I mean, sure, we each had to wear our own shoes, but you find me a groom who actually cares about his groomsmen’s footwear and I’ll show you either a liar or a guy who’ll be divorced in two years after coming out of the closet.

Where was I? Oh, right: renting a tux is ridiculous. Use that money to buy a suit. This is so obvious I can’t believe I actually have to point it out. One of the dumber traditions in American history.

Choose Friday. One of our most-proud ideas was to have the wedding on a Friday night. You’re granted a better chance of availability – for both your guests’ attendance and your preferred ceremony/reception sites – during the busy summer and fall months.

And best yet, if you’re like us, you absolutely love giving your guests the gift of a two-day recovery before work on Monday. Tough to beat. Seemingly dozens of people told us how happy they were about the Friday date. (Related: most of our friends are drunks. Lovable ones, though.)

Get a photo booth. If you’ve got the dough, do yourself a favor and bring in a photo booth. The new ones take high-quality digital strips and save everything on a disc for you. I can’t begin to describe how great of an idea this was – we got hundreds of photos, some very touching but most entertaining and hilarious, of all our friends and family. The resulting photo album is already one of our very favorite possessions, and our guests were able to take home the strip for a kick-ass keepsake. We looked through our album over and over. We laughed. We almost cried. Such an essential part of the experience. Have I raved enough yet? OK, I’ll stop.

(A tip for interested locals: give a holler to Todd at Uptown Photo Booths. He did us up right.)

Live bands cure all ills. As mentioned, we incurred our fair share of problems throughout the day. We were more than a little stressed during the dinner portion of the reception, and more than a mite worried as the band set up about how the rest of the evening would play out.

But once the band started, all was perfect in the world. I’m not exaggerating. People leapt off their seats to join us on the dance floor, to loosen up, to laugh and sing and generally be the delightful idiots we know them to be. The dance floor was packed pretty much all night; many, many people stayed much later than we expected.cIt was ridiculous and occasionally embarrassing, yet more fun than I ever imagined.

And so you know: I was planning on this being pretty much the greatest party ever, so for the band to not only meet but somehow exceed my expectations is an incredible feat. My brain released so much serotonin I thought I was going to have a meltdown. Just a stupid, unfair amount of fun for one night.

And, sure, the hearty amount of booze helped, and the fact that we have an almost historically cool group of friends and family was a driving force, but I will always attribute the impossible-to-put-into-words fun to the band. A DJ wouldn’t even have compared.

In conclusion, I have no conclusion. Just wanted to spend a few moments wallowing in self-indulgence to pass on tips to a readership that possibly couldn’t care less. Either way, thank you for sitting through this. You are now excused.

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4 Responses to “The belated wedding post”

  1. RandBall's Stu October 8, 2009 at 7:45 am #

    I am crazy jealous that you got Hookers & Blow (non-old folks in the crowd: that’s the cover band run by the Honeydogs guys) to play your wedding. If they do 10-year anniversaries in outstate Legion halls, the CMS and I are calling them.

    RE: things go wrong. So very true. At ours, the AC crapped out, the hotel couldn’t figure out how to tap a keg, pants were removed on the dance floor in front of teetotalling relatives, etc. However, that downpour/detox combo platter? That’s hard to beat.

  2. Aunt Barb October 8, 2009 at 8:45 am #

    Every wedding has it’s problems but in the end it doesn’t really matter. I put Tom’s ring on the wrong finger,the florist forgot half the flowers, the best man had salsa down the front of his shirt (since they decided to have a few drinks before the ceremony) and at the reception my mom and photographer yelled at me because I couldn’t find the groom to finsh up the photos ( his sister,cousin and aunt had stole him away). But that was 24 years ago and overall it was a great day. Just like your’s was. You guys had a fantastic time and so did everone else. Welcome to the family Danielle =)

  3. Clarence October 8, 2009 at 11:04 am #

    Re: things go wrong.

    At our wedding the baby fell out during the Dollar Dance, but I think you still got us beat. Also, I cannot agree with the live band recommendation enough. So, so much better than a DJ.

  4. A.B. October 10, 2009 at 6:06 pm #

    This is the first wedding I attended where everyone, literally everyone, was having an insanely fun time from ceremony to reception. B and Danielle set the tone early with a quick and heartfelt vow exchange. I cried when “Halleluja” played, smiled non-stop for the rest of the night.

    Danielle was one of the most stunning, drop-dead gorgeous brides I’ve ever seen, and both bride and groom were glowing. GLOWING. B’s mom was so fabulous looking I almost didn’t recignize her when I and my sweetheart almost tripped over her on the way to our seats. It was a personal, joyful, giddy night and a perfect reflection of a much-loved couple.

    Excellent work, you two! Up for a repeat for your 1-year anniversary?

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