Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Wedding Follies

     I haven't been to a lot of weddings lately, but it seems like these things go in spurts.  A large number of your friends and siblings get married around the time that you do, but then there is a lull.  The next batch might be your nieces and nephews and your own offspring, and maybe even some kids that were close friends with your kids.  The last spurt might be the next generation of kids in your lineage, if you are fortunate enough to be around for them (I suspect I will not be), and then you are done.  After this, it's likely you'll attend more funerals than weddings, but this blog is not about funerals but about some weddings and receptions that I've attended, and the good times that followed. 

     If you were invited to my own wedding, then you got a good idea of how I was going to behave if you invited me to yours.  The way I looked at it, our wedding was the best party we ever threw.  We got to pick the music, the date, the guests, the booze, the location, and most people that were invited came, as it is only a one time event (Well at least in our case it was ..... so far). 
My bride and I
There was no way that you were going to drag me out of there til the last song had been song, and no one did.  After that my wife had a 3 hour drive with me to Niagara on the Lake, and I'm reminded often how I sang all the way, and why wouldn't I?  Weddings are supposed to be celebrations, aren't they?  Sure they are, and we have been known to celebrate.  We were the first in our group to get married, but the others quickly followed suit.  They came so quickly they kind of blended together, but here are some highlights of those.  At one, a bunch of forks got mysteriously stuck into a banquet hall corkboard ceiling (I was not invited to this one, just heard of it later, I did get invited for his second one).  Another time we had a 2 hour wait in between the wedding and reception, so we took over a local small bar in Messina NY, and scared half the locals out by telling them there was a new dress code to the bar. After we got to the reception at least two girls
"shot the boot" and drank from one.  Another friend had his wedding at the Inn on Canandaigua Lake, but it was delayed a few hours due to a power outage, and then it was held by candlelight.  
An early wedding
They opened up the bar, to make up for the power, and I think that one remains one of the most fun receptions I have ever been to.  After the 4th hour of drinking, my friend asked me to do the prayer, prior to dining (They said I did I fine job, but you couldn't prove it by me). My friend Dan has a great story from that reception, how he was standing at a urinal, lit only by a candle on top of it, and laughed so hard at a joke that was told, that he blew out the candle and plunged the room into total darkness.  At still another of our friend's weddings, I was dancing with an inebriated partner and she let go on a spin, and tumbled directly into the 5 piece band.  Of course that reception had to be at the fanciest place around at the time.  I interacted more positively with bands and DJ's at almost every wedding I went to around that time, with most of those evenings ending with me singing (unsolicited), with the band.  My favorite go-to song was American Pie, and rarely did I have to look far to get some partners in crime to sing along with me.  Not to belabor the point, but I like to have fun at weddings.

     A wedding buzz can be a difficult thing to keep, as some folks have a habit of shutting the bar down, mid wedding and re-opening it later. 
I went to such a wedding, one time, with my pregnant wife who had offered to DD for me.  Not to be outwitted, I proceeded across the hall and crashed another wedding that was still serving.  I stayed for one, but then they played "Brown Eyed Girl" by Van Morrison, so I had to dance too.  A family friend came in a little later and dragged me away during a dance with the bride, but she still has the video to remember it by.  As I have said, I like to have fun at weddings, even those I'm not invited to.  The bride thought it was hilarious that I crashed, and her group mixed it up with ours coming through in a Conga line later that night.  I've crashed a few weddings since then, just to dance and such, but they say you never forget your first, and I haven't. The first wedding that I actually attended was my brother Paul's.  I wore a new dark blue leisure suit, but while serving on the altar, I kicked a candle while carrying it, and spilled white wax all down my pant leg.  I would have loved to dance or carry on that wedding, but as a 12 year old boy with a guilty conscience and a large white stain down his pant-leg, even I couldn't do it.  That's probably why I make up for it now.   

     One of my funniest wedding stories (and one of my wife's most embarrassing) was when we were invited to Boston to a cousin's wedding. 
Young Russ should have had this
We caravaned out with about 12 family members to attend, but at the reception my wife and I found ourselves at a table of almost complete strangers.  I started by trying to have a conversation with another cousin and his wife.  I didn't know him very well, and when he asked my opinion on something that sounded like it would be a possible felony, I turned my attention to the other couples at the table.  Left around me were Old Russ and his wife next to me, and Young Russ and his wife across the table from me.  I engaged Old Russ in conversation by asking how he was.  20 minutes later, I was still listening to the monologue on his ailments, though admittedly I can now hold my own in a conversation on knee replacements.  In desperation, I shouted to Young Russ across the table and tried to engage him by asking " How about you Russ, how long have you been a Deaf Mute?"  I'm not sure if it was the kick I got under the table from my wife, or it was from watching the color drain from her face, but I knew almost immediately I had nailed it.  My wife could see the hearing aid behind his ear from her angle, and his Mother confirmed it by saying, "Oh Russ doesn't hear too well, and he hasn't spoken in years."  That's right, I called a Deaf Mute, a Deaf Mute.  My wife insisted we move to another table, but I got the best wedding story out of it.  I later asked my cousin, why he placed me where he did, and his answer was "Because it was next to the bar".
Yet another wedding, this time with family at the table
  He made a good point, but couldn't I have been next to the bar, and not mixed in with potential felons, the elderly and handicapped?  Probably.  That's one of the problems with weddings though, you never know who you are going to draw as your table-mates.  I have fun, regardless, but sometimes my jokes fall on deaf ears. 

   One of the last weddings and receptions we went to, was for a favorite nephew of mine.  He stocked my brand of Gin at the bar, and I took full advantage.  I laughed and danced and even remember the bustiest girl at the reception  falling all over to dance with me (She was top heavy).  We hosted an after hours party, and the last guests had to be walked back to their rooms propped between others.  One girl spent a good amount of time sprawled out on the grass, and I don't think she was a star gazer.  Now, that, was a reception.  As I close this blog on weddings and receptions, I'll leave you with this bit of advice.  If you do invite me to your wedding, fully expect that I will come prepared for a good time.   I'll hit the open bar hard, dance my feet off, may end up on stage, probably embarrass myself or others, but will definitely help you celebrate and create some wedding memories.   You've been forewarned.

Having fun, even with a cheesy mustache.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

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