I was never one of those little girls who daydreamed about her wedding. Among other reasons, I was superstitious: It seemed like picking out a color scheme when I was 10 would pretty much guarantee that I would never find a husband.
Eighteen years later, I still haven’t. Instead I have a girlfriend who would rather put all that cash toward a down payment on a house (and I can’t say I disagree), but there’s something about being a girl, at a wedding, that brings out my inner wedding planner. Or at least, my inner wedding critic. Weddings seem to be 90 percent logistics, and I hate logistics, so I don’t think my fairytale wedding could ever come to life unless my fairy godmother did all the planning and never sent me a bill.
But as don’t-have-to-deal-with-the-grunt-work wedding critic, I’m getting pretty good. I had a great time at Cara and Jeff’s wedding this weekend—which is saying a lot since I’m not a fan of Christianity or heavy metal, both of which played a prominent role in the evening’s festivities—and I made some mental notes.
1) Make it personal. In this case, that meant walking down the aisle to an orchestral cover of a Metallica song. It actually worked really well, almost to the point of making me reconsider Metallica. Almost.
2) Use your talents. Jeff is a film and TV editor, and he put together a funny and sweet video/slideshow of his and Cara’s lives til now, complete with Jeopardy!-style cards separating each section, like “That School” and “That Other School” to describe their college years at USC and UCLA, and “Do You Yahoo?” for the part where they met online.
The program said that the pre-processional music was performed by Cara, and I had this vision of her sitting backstage in her white dress, pounding away at the piano. But I think it was a recording.
3) Use the talents of your friends and family, even if they’re not living. Cara’s late uncle kicked off the ceremony with a lovely rendition of “The Wedding Song.” My mom was an awful singer, but maybe she can help out with the programs.
4) Reign in the DJ. This observation isn’t particular to Cara and Jeff’s wedding (though their emcee was all about the icebreaker games), just weddings in general. I’ve attended weddings of couples who I know aren’t, say, Nelly fans. But somehow strains of “It’s gettin’ hot in here…” find their way onto the dance floor. Who knows, maybe Cousin Jim begged to hear his favorite hip-hop artist. Maybe other people are just more accommodating than I am.
Weddings are all about making concessions to your loved ones. My mom chose blue as one of her colors because my aunt had a blue dress she wanted to wear. But B and I are control freaks. If we ever decide to throw ourselves a Big Gay Wedding, we’ll want to handpick every song. We’ll want wedding cupcakes in 14 different flavors. B will call every guest individually to make sure he/she takes the most efficient freeway route to the wedding. I’ll throw out invitations if I don’t like the way my handwriting looks on the address line. We’ll be very picky about the work of well-meaning and unpaid family members. We’ll be Bridezilla times two.
So mark your calendars for 2014, folks!