This weekend is the wedding. The Wedding Of The Marrieds In Which I Have No Date. I know, I know, woe is me. I even considered asking the Very Cute Boy from last weekend but for some rarely sane moment of reason opted out of that. (Digression: Did I mention that he is moving back to the West Coast very soon? Yes, well, he is, so I don't even want to start something up for that reason. I don't do long distance and we wouldn't have enough time to get to know each other before. And he lives in a sketchy neighborhood so he could walk out of his front door and die any day. And, yes, the question of the hour is, "Do you find excuses to be single?" Maybe. So I don't end up getting in over my head too soon and end up a heartwreck? So, I see, a psychoanalytical topic for another time...But, right now, I am enjoying singlehood and plan on playing it out for the summer. If VCB wants to come along for the ride, hop in. Dr. Freud, your hour is up. Get off my couch.)
The not having the date thing - really is tongue-in-cheek. I don't care that I don't have a date. Really. What does irk me a tad is the fact that I *did* have a date that canceled on me at the very last minute. And the fact that I told everyone I was bringing him. Big mouth strikes again. And now I have to tell everyone that, well, he stood me up. And then you get those words of sympathy "Oh, sorry. He doesn't deserve you. Better you found out now what he is like. You will have fun anyway. Borrow my husband." Thanks. Yes. Yes. Yes. And, uh, no.
Witness my neurosis for the weekend....
When slow-dancing comes on - hide! So I can always borrow a friend's husband or boyfriend to twirl me around the dance floor. But the thing is - I don't really like to slow dance. Missing that "chick gene." I have a problem with following. No, I don't always need to be in control. On the contrary. Maybe it's impatience. Maybe it's because I can't do it perfectly. But I always end up wanting to take the lead. I don't want to anticipate when he will call me or when he will ask me out, oh, sorry, ahem, I mean, where we will twirl next. So dancing with me often leads to the Stepping On The Toes or the Falling Down (hi floor!). So I end up on the sidelines (read as: The Bar) - watching. And I see the looks people give me. Poor, poor single girl, drinking herself silly, envying the Dancing Twosomes. So when the slow-dancing comes on, I will go for a smoke break (and I don't even smoke on a good day).
Do not take on any extra-special responsibilities that I didn't sign up for, wasn't consulted about, and didn't practice for. Namely, I hope I don't have to hold the book that the priest reads from during THE WHOLE CEREMONY. Wait. Let me start that one over. I hope that I do not have to stand in front of 200 or so people in a very quiet church, showing my rear side, on camera and video, holding a book like a book stand would usually do. But I guess I could say if called upon to be the Book Stand again, I am a pro. Really. Everyone told me so. Really. They said I looked pretty standing up there. I didn't know how to take this. How does one get to be the Book Stand, you may ask? Or, you may be asking, how do I avoid being the Book Stand? Well, my original responsibilities started off innocently enough. First, the Miller Brewery tour. OK, so it was a self-imposed responsiblity, nonetheless, it had to be done. Then I went from Beer Garden Denizen to Program Girl. Really. I changed in a phone booth. Or I clicked my heels and counted to five and poof. No. Really. For the amount of time we had in between the Very Important Beer Outing to the Very Important Passing Out of The Programs, I needed some magic superpowers. But I worked with what I had. Being human is the pits sometimes. Anyways, I thought I was doing a lovely job with the passing out of the programs and all. I got to chat with a few people. Direct people. Cut people off who were taking advantage of free programs. Who knew passing out programs required so much authority and responsibility. But then - and here is where you need to learn from my mistakes (because you should totally go to the Miller Brewery and I realize it has nothing to do with my point but I will tie it in at every seam I can). So, if the priest - no matter how lovely and charming and pious he may be - and no matter how much you may fear the wrath of God - even if you have to repent, or atone, a million times over - if he asks you to help him out, immediately become ill or mute or die (but not really this one). Because this is what might happen.
Sweet Little Old Priest: You look like a nice young lady. Would you do me a favor?
Unsuspecting Soul: Sure Father! What can I do for you? [Am a very good Ass Kisser in the eyes of God.]
SLOP: You must hold this book for me.
US: Sure! You want to do a practice run, don't you? I have a fear of speaking in front of large crowds and I practice, practice, practice!
SLOP: No, nice young lady. I need you to hold it for me during the whole ceremony. You will stand up in front of all 200 people. You must stand there with your backside to the crowd. Holding the book in front of you. You will come up when I motion for you. It's easy.
US: But - don't I get to practice first?
SLOP: No time. We are on now. Walk next to me and follow my cues.
US: But I have to confess, Father. I was at the Miller Brewery earlier. I am sure that is a sin.
SLOP: No, nice young lady. The sooner we get this done, the sooner we can head to the reception and drink. Now follow me!
US: Yes, sir. *gulp*
So I was in the procession with the priest and the altar boys. I sat at his right hand side. I jumped when he said jump. I held the book with no problems. I had a starring role in the ceremony. I had more airtime that the bride and groom. I never got the hiccups. It was a ground-breaking performance for me. So I am good at the Book Holder thing (hold the librarian jokes). I just hope I am not typecast. Because I have so much more dimension.
Turn phone off to avoid drunk phone calls from friends. Well, I know that I won't get a call from "Ty" asking me what I am wearing. Which he has done on many occassions and, once, at a wedding. But he will be at the wedding. You may ask - why even bring your cellphone to a wedding, you yuppie, am-so-connected, am-so-popular, techno-dependent? For the very reason why I have a phone. Poor me is all alone, the phone is my safety call when help is needed. Ever since my dead cell phone saved me from some nefarious cab driver taking me on some random back streets of Arlington, I never leave home without it. I took it out, saw that it was dead, but acted like it worked - because I was quick-thinking which doesn't happen all the time. I told the phantom callee where I was, what cab I was in, etc. Needless to say, the cab driver immediately turned around and dropped me home and didn't ask for money. Weird.
Hope I don't get overcome with coughitis. I have been suffering from some kind of respiratory infection for weeks now. I have been to the doctor. I have taken the antibiotics but I can't shake the sore throat (which comes and goes) and the cough. So, I hope I don't have a coughing attack during the middle of the ceremony. You know coughing fits always happen at the most inopportune moment. Speak now or forever hold your peace. *cough, ack, cough, ack, cough, ack, ack, ack, cough, cough* I'm sorry. Was that a cough of dissidence? Then the whispers in the church. Poor, poor single girl, bitter because she is single. Can't these single people be happy for people that find true love?
Hate the "traditions" - no, wait, embrace them if you can. Typically I tend to embrace traditions, customs, etc. And I believe in superstitions. Something borrowed, something blue, etc. I also lift my feet at train tracks. I don't step on cracks. I say "rabbit foot" at the first of the month. And I knock on wood. But all the hokey wedding traditions? The father has to be the one to walk you down the aisle. Father's first dance. Throwing the bouquest to all the poor Unweds (i.e., ladies in waiting). The whispers. Poor, poor single girl, the only one to catch the bouquest. Doesn't that negate the "luck"? While the guys get to be racy with the garter - ooh la la, give me your leg, baby, and let me cop a feel. (Seriously, I haven't been to a wedding where they have done the latter two in a long time.) Then the ceremonial cake-cuttiing. And the feeding of each other. Keep it behind closed doors. But now, I would give anything to have some of those traditions. I'm here to say that not every little girl dreams of what "her" day will be like. I never had this image of a wedding day because I never thought of it as my day. I always expected that The Man I Marry will dream the dream with me to make it our own day together. But now I would give anything to have my father walk me down the aisle. To have that father's dance. I want him to "give me away." I think about it now. When it is too late. I usually get choked up during these moments at weddings. Not at being dateless, but fatherless. But I am hoping that maybe this time I will be able to smile a little dream for daddy.
I won't end on that note. I think the concept of a wedding is a beautiful thing. However you do it. Pomp and circumstance or down and out. Traditional or non-conformist. Anyway you do it, it is joyous and it is an occassion to drink. For the most part I will be doing just that.