SMOOTH 70s GROOVES, SUGARED CEREAL, & THE SPACE NEEDLE
Finally, I had a chance to break out those dancing shoes my horoscope promised several weeks ago I would get to use. My Girl and I flew up to Seattle for yet another wedding weekend. Mercifully, this is the last scheduled wedding I will attend this year. I was invited to seven, went to five, and feel guilty about the two I missed, which were held in Oklahoma City and Cancun.
This one was another wacky affair, 70s-themed with a relatively silly ceremony and karaoke during the party. Each table was named after a different cereal and was represented by the corresponding bobble-head doll. Although I was seated at Cap’n Crunch, I staged a major coup by walking away with Count Chocula. The ceremony was brief and performed by a friend of the couple who they paid to take an online certification course to become an ordained minister of the universal consciousness, or something like that. At the beginning of the ceremony, the groom’s group of close college friends, ironically nicknamed The Stupids being that they’re all smart and attractive and eloquent and successful, stood up to say a few words. Their charismatic leader announced they would be reciting a hymn and the audience was asked to participate by joining in on the refrain “Skyrockets in flight, afternoon delight.” Each member of The Stupids read a verse, which consisted of the lyrics to a song from the 70s, and the tone for the wedding was set. The ordained friend shared a few humorous anecdotes about the couple, and then, like the wedding the week before, the bride and groom exchanged romantic vows they had written, then the rings, and within minutes they were married. The majority of the cocktail hour was spent seeking out the hors d’oeuvres trays and commenting on the ridiculous outfits, one of which I was wearing. Having realized I forgot my tuxedo as we were waiting to board our flight out of Los Angeles, My Girl and I had to scramble around Seattle’s vintage shops the day of the wedding to find something for me to wear. I settled on a tight silky shirt with a wide collar showcasing my chest hair. The detailed print features a scene from the shores of Venice, Italy. I found some polyester paints that blended nicely and we high-tailed it back to our lovely and quaint room at the Marqueen Hotel in the historic Queen Anne district of Seattle. We were a little late to the wedding, as the groom had told us it started at 6:30 when it was actually called for 6:00, but luckily when we got there, everyone was mingling and the ceremony hadn’t started yet. My outfit/costume was easily outdone by some of The Stupids. One wore a baby blue tuxedo with an orange ruffled shirt and had let his hair grow out for eight months so he could go with the afro for the outrageous occasion. A few of The Stupids grew mustaches and I even saw one person with a fake mustache. And, of course, many of The Stupids sang songs during the karaoke portion of the party, and they sang them well. Seemingly, The Stupids do everything well, unlike your favorite Piker, who chose "Luck Be a Lady" to showcase his lack of musical talent. Let me just say that the arrangement wasn't the Sinatra arrangement I was used to and threw me off my game immediately. After a verse and a half, the groom stood up and came towards me and mercifully cut the song short. In that moment, I identified with all of those losers who were gonged before they completed their act on The Gong Show. But, the groom gave me a chance to redeem myself with another song and I very appropriately chose "That's Life." Thank the karaoke lord that this arrangement was indeed the Sinatra one I was used to because I belted that thing out, not particularly well, mind you, but with enough gusto to get the wedding party audience back on my side using the subtext of having sucked up the joint on my first attempt to give the performance a dimension it would not have had otherwise. Kudos also go to My Girl, who volunteered for the always difficult task of singing the very first song, choosing Blondie's "The Tide is High," which is a fun song, but not a singer's song, and My Girl has a great voice that she didn't really get to use. But we did get to use those dancing shoes, as the band had us grooving to one soulful seventies tune after another, and the bar consistently fueled our buzzes to the bitter end while never getting us wasted. This allowed us the privelege of being among the faithful few left at the end to usher the blushing bride and glowing groom out the door and into the crisp Seattle night to begin their life together as a married couple.