1. Get The Gift Early: So I’m new to this whole wedding thing and I didn’t really understand the concept of a registry until it was too late. If you wait too long, everything will be taken, and you will end up buying your friend a sham, and then immediately googling the question, “What is a sham?” I mean, I knew what the word meant (bogus, false, or fake). However, I was not familiar with the home decor definition. Turns out it’s a decorative pillow. I might as well have gone into the store like “Excuse me good sir, my friends are getting married and I’m looking for something no one needs with the undertones of LOVE ISN’T REAL!!!!”
2. Plan Ahead: The majority of the guests drove, which would explain why although everyone was staying at the hotel, I was the only person who showed up at the church like a BOSS wearing a cocktail dress, heels, and a rolly bag. Cause nothing says style like a backpack with wheels. As you may know, rolly bags are in no way subtle. It’s funny, when you’re in Penn Station, wheely bags don’t seem loud. Not so much when you’re approaching a quiet church in upstate NY. I didn’t want to draw any more attention to myself, so I poker faced that shit, threw it on my back, and climbed up the stairs to the church like “Nothing to see here.” Always good to show up at a wedding profusely sweating.
3. Get Primped: I don’t go to formal events very often, so I said, you know what, sometimes you just gotta #treatyoself. I got my hair did and eyebrows waxed, and when they asked if I’d like to upgrade and throw in a bikini wax at a discounted price, I thought, you know what, ya never know. Let’s do this. You’re probably dying to know, did I end up bringing someone back to my room? Well, if granola bars from the convenience store at the hotel count, then YES. Glad I went through this to wake up next to Nature’s Valley crumbs.
4. Choose Your Shoes Wisely: When I go to a party, I DANCE. Yes. ALL CAPS. That being said, when homegirl gets down, she does it with arch support. I’m not risking breaking my ankle because my stilettos couldn’t keep up with me when I’m grapevining the shit out of “Ain’t Too Proud To Beg”. Even though it’s hard to find shoes that are both comfortable and socially acceptable to wear in public, it can be done. Just tell the clerk you’re looking for a shoe that’s somewhere in between “Fuck Me Pumps” and “These Were The Only Shoes That Fit My Bunions”. Otherwise, this could be you.
5. Scope Out The Scene (Subtly): Let’s be honest, if you’re single at a wedding, it’s just natural that you will size everyone up immediately upon arrival. (No? Just me?) Do remember though, you are in a church, not Country Buffet. Jesus is watching. So don’t be creepy & keep eye fucking to a minimum. If someone catches your eye, just move on and pretend you are looking for someone you know.
6. Turn Your Phone Off: Okay, it’s 2014. I understand that asking you to turn your phone off is unrealistic. So if you can’t turn it off, at least make sure it doesn’t go off in the middle of the ceremony. This includes vibrate. No one at this ceremony got a phone call. Nope, it was worse. Someone got FACETIMED. Anyone who has an iPhone knows that the FaceTime ring is one of the most obnoxiously loud noises a piece of technology can make. Did this person take the decent approach and quickly reach for their bag so as to stop the disruption as soon as possible? No, they pulled the Shaggy approach, and straight up denied it was their phone. This went on for over a minute, which felt like an eternity. Unless someone is trying to FaceTime Jesus, there is no excuse for this.
7. Practice Your Small Talk:
I am an introvert. Since small talk isn’t my thing, I need to be prepared. Especially when I’m seeing people I haven’t seen in a long time. “How have you been?” & “What have you been doing?” are simple questions, but if I don’t plan it out I end up saying something completely random and irrelevant like “Yeah, I’ve been really busy…I tried almond milk recently. I liked it!” Or I go the self-deprecating route which I realize is normal for comedians but regular civilians find it slightly off-putting during a quick chit-chat. Nothing stops a conversation in its tracks like “Ya know, I’ve just been standing in for child actors and doing my best not to question my life choices. But how are YOU?!”
8. Catch Up Before The Dancing Starts: Did you ever do that thing as a kid where you try to rub your stomach with one hand and pat your head with the other? If not, try it, and you’ll quickly learn that doing two things at once is HARD. This is how I felt when someone I hadn’t seen in four years asked me what I’ve been up to, WHILE “P.Y.T” by Michael Jackson was playing. I don’t even remember what came out of my mouth. I mean, half the reason I dance is so I don’t have to engage in awkward conversation any more than I have to. So this was startling to say the least. This is what happens when you try to dance while carrying on a conversation. One thing suffers, and unfortunately, this time, it was my moves.
9. Open Bars…Have A Game Plan: Sure, it’s really easy to rely on willpower when that vodka tonic costs $12. But when that shit is free, good luck to you. Sometimes it’s not how much you drink, it’s what you drink. Mixing alcohols is tempting, but unless you’re Frank The Tank, I’d suggest sticking with one beverage. No one wants to be the friend throwing up at the reception. And come on, it’s a wedding. These people are committing their LIVES to each other. The least you can do is commit to wine or vodka for a few hours.
10. How To Make A Friend In 10 Seconds: Photo booths have this magical power in that you can enter as strangers, and leave as lovers or best friends. Seriously, nothing makes people look like they adore each other more than a photo booth strip. “Grab the boa and big sunglasses. WE’RE DOIN THIS!!”
11. Dance, Like Elderly People Are Watching: Because they will be. Not in a creepy way. But in a “I wish I was that young again” or “If only I still had some cartilage left in my knee” way. So rather than dropping it like it’s hot, how about, dropping it like it’s warm. There’s always one girl who gets too drunk and gets all Miley Cyrus on the dance floor, making everyone uncomfortable.
12. The Only Exception To #11 Is “Baby Got Back”: It’s not a wedding, or a party, if this song doesn’t play. And when it does, SHAKE. DAT. ASS. No one can argue with you. After all, Sir Mix-A-Lot told you to do it. You’re just following directions.
13. KNOW YOUR RIGHT FROM YOUR LEFT:
Sorry, I get heated about this one. Usually cause I’m the person passionately leading the dance (comes from my days as a Bar & Bat Mitzvah dancer). Whether it’s the Percolator, Electric Slide, or Cupid Shuffle, I’m doin it. I don’t even know why they still have breathalizers. The best way to tell how drunk someone is, just start playing “Cupid Shuffle” and see what happens when they have to differentiate between “To the right to the right to the right to the right” “To the left to the left to the left to the left”. Seriously though, if you’re too drunk to know your right from your left, get outta my line, cause Haller’s gonna Electric Slide right over you. (Did I really just type that sentence?)
14. SURPRISE! It’s The Bouquet!:
Apparently, if the DJ starts playing “Single Ladies”, it’s bouquet time. I just thought it was Beyonce time. One second I’m hoping at least some of the moves I learned from watching the “Single Ladies” video over and over again on YouTube would come back to me, the next, I have forever flying at my face in the form of flowers. Luckily I’m 4’11 and that shit flew straight over my head. Next time though, I will be prepared.
15. Easy On Dinner: When someone asks why you aren’t dancing, you don’t want your response to be “I ate my whole dinner.” I’m not suggesting you don’t eat, as drinking on an empty stomach is never a good idea. But before you wolf down that entire slab of beef tenderloin, remember that you are in this for the long haul. This isn’t Thanksgiving. You can’t just unbutton your pants. If you’re a guy, you can, but this will be outrageously inappropriate. And if you’re a lady, well, you’ve got tights, spanx, or whatever else is under that already tight dress. AND you are expected to dance like you are actually capable of taking in oxygen. Remember, being gassy and bloated is not fun for anyone at a wedding. So take it slow. Your stomach will thank you.
16. The Last Dance…Is The Worst Dance: If you haven’t gotten all of your best moves out of your system by the time this song comes on, it’s too late. This is the DJ’s way of saying “No seriously, I’m fucking tired and I want to get out of here.” So do him a favor and wrap it up. Don’t make him break out “Hit The Road Jack”.
So, there you have it. 16 valuable lessons you can take with you to your next wedding.