LAUGHLINES: She’s Got the Wedding Bell Blues

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Matt and I went to a wedding over the weekend, and wow. What a romantic event. Made me ashamed of my wedding, back a million years ago.

This wedding was the kind you see in a movie. Less than 100 guests and an outdoor ceremony in a garden. The bride wore a slip of a dress (she’s a slip of a girl) and the groom was appropriately bashful and beaming.

The table centerpieces were old milk bottles stuffed with wild flowers. The wedding party was all white teeth and flowing hair (even the guys), and the parents of the bride and the groom seemed to actually like each other.

There were tears and smiles. The couple gave us all kazoos, with instructions to play “Here Comes the Bride” when the bride walked (floated, more like it) down the aisle. So funny and sweet.

My wedding? Hell, I barely remember it. Who does? My dress was a big poufy thing (what was I thinking??), my shoes were too tight, and I got a little drunk in the limo ride from the church to the reception.

I remember the vows, but not the kiss. Did I even kiss poor what’s-his-name when the preacher told us to kiss? Not sure. I hardly remember the preacher.

My wedding is a fog of appointments, fittings and rehearsals. And fights, lotsa fights: fights with the organist (“Lady of Spain” is not appropriate as a recessional, is it?) fights with the caterer (who couldn’t tell us what the stuffing actually would be in the stuffed chicken breast), fights with my mother (who doesn’t like chicken anyway), and fights with just about everybody else.

Complicating the menu was the bar option. Open bar, with Matt’s family? That would’ve have meant a second mortgage on my parents’ house. What about the reception music? Deejay, band, or Uncle Mort spinning his polka records?

There are millions of snippets I do recall. My sister trying to zip up her maid of honor dress after packing on a few pounds in the months after the engagement party. My dad threatening one of Matt’s brothers with his shotgun after the poor kid made moves on my younger sister. The photographer following me into the ladies’ room to get a “candid” shot.

Was it fun and romantic? Not really, but it was real. It wasn’t like the movies, or even the wedding we went to this past weekend. It was a man and a woman promising each other to survive the reception and driving off into the sunset with a lot of weird gifts and a few big checks.

Ain’t love grand?

About Cate Drew

I’m on the high side of 40, with three dogs, two teens and one husband, living in a small New England town in a house that’s never quiet. Ever. It’s not that I have a really colorful life – I just tend to write colorfully about it. And there’s plenty of material: marriage to the Man of a Thousand Bad Ideas,.. my mom, who moved Dad’s coffin closer to the street six months after he died so she could visit his grave as a kind of drive-up window…our dog posse…our kids…lots of siblings and in-laws, former co-workers, old boyfriends -- they’re all here. Toss in 14 years of Catholic school and you’ve got a lot of guilt, too. Which reminds me: forget “high side of 40.” I’m 51, damnit.

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