Sunday, April 22, 2007

done with April weddings

Yesterday was the last of the weddings for this month. After two weeks of out-of-towners, I was glad this one was local, and involved no rental cars, hotels, or airplanes.

Some thoughts on weddings after this last batch:

- After going to so many weddings, certain things seem to look and sound familiar. For instance, I'm not a Christian, but I can practically recite that verse from the Corinthians by now, "Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It is not rude, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs." Okay, I lied, I forget the rest. Not bad, though?

- I'm not sure why, but sometime during the 90's, it became standard bridal attire to wear a strapless wedding dress. This style looks great on slender women with good shoulders and toned arms who don't slouch, and is not super flattering otherwise. I really am curious as to how this look became de rigeur.

- Wedding cakes seem to come in two varieties: those that look good, and those that taste good. Heavily decorated cakes tend to have too much sugary frosting that weighs down the cake itself. The best wedding cake I ever had was at a wedding in Seattle last year; the bride's med school friend baked three scrumptious cakes, one carrot, one lemon, and one chocolate. Unfortunately I only got to try the first two, since the chocolate one ran out so fast.

- I'm not a big fan of tradition, myself, so perhaps this complaint is unique to me, but I feel a lot of wedding receptions go through a laundry list of "must-do" items. There's the introduction of the wedding party, the first dance, the father-daughter and mother-son dances (I always feel like the mother of the bride and the father of the groom are getting ripped off), the speeches, the cake cutting, the bouquet/garter toss (always awkward since no one ever wants to catch it), etc. I don't include the table toasts in this list because that's the only activity that actually involves the bride and groom getting to spend time with their friends and family.

- Wedding DJs tend to be really loud and really perky. No further comment.

I realized I'm making it sound like I hated all the weddings, which is totally untrue. So, here are a couple of the highlights from this month's weddings:

- I do think it's pretty risky to plan an outdoor ceremony in April, but things worked out okay for both outdoor weddings, so there was some gorgeous scenery. One venue even provided cute Japanese umbrellas for the guests to ward off the few sprinkles.

Greystone Park, Beverly HillsThe Bridges Golf Club, San Ramon

- For one of the bridal showers, we had afternoon tea in a private room at the Beverly Hills Peninsula. Although the food was not as impressive as the Hong Kong Peninsula (to be expected, I suppose), the decor and the service was amazing.

- One of the slideshows that we saw was extremely professional-looking; it used off-center zoom transitions between photos, and had a "scrapbook" sequence with framed images. Later I discovered the groomsman who put it together works at Shutterfly.

- One of the receptions was on the 48th floor of a high-rise in downtown Dallas, which made for great views. (I'm told the glowing ball on a stick is called Reunion Tower.)
Dallas by dayDallas by night

- At the end of the Dallas reception, the guests were given 3-foot-long sparklers, to help "send off" the bride and groom. This may have been a bit dangerous, given the preceding four hours of open bar, but it appealed to the pyro in me.

- The cake from yesterday's reception, was one of the prettiest wedding cakes I've seen:

Also, one great thing about going to so many weddings is that I never lack for fresh flowers. Currently I have one centerpiece on my dining table and two small decorative bouquets in my living room. Those should last me until mid-May, which is when I'm off to the next wedding, this time in rural Minnesota.

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