The Bungle Years: Reception conniption

Looking to score free food whenever I can, I recently accepted an invitation to attend the wedding reception of a close friend. One might wonder, “If he’s a close friend, why did it take free food to get you to go?” Let me explain.

I hate almost everything about wedding receptions. Almost, because I like the free food. Here are a couple of things I don’t like about receptions.

Dancing: The success of dancing at a reception is solely based off of the amount of people who participate. Since 99 percent of people who attend a reception attend out of sheer obligation, almost nobody ever wants to dance. Knowing that nobody likes to dance at receptions, the DJ at this one guilt-tripped everybody into doing the chicken dance by saying if we didn’t, we would ruin the couple’s entire wedding day. As much as I want the couple’s wedding to be a happy one, I firmly believe that the chicken dance is just not something adults should do in public. Stumble out of a bar? Yes. Threaten a referee at your daughter’s seventh-grade basketball game? Sure. Vote for Mitt Romney? Why not? But the chicken dance? Sorry, I’m a grown man.

Not knowing how to escape the inevitable, I frantically searched the room for another alternative. I had hit the dessert table four times already. Another trip would just prove I was stalling. I had to think fast.

I pulled my iPod Touch out of my pocket and started to pretend like I was filming everybody else. The lack of a recording light on Apple products made it the perfect disguise. While I was pretending to record, an older gentleman walked up to me and said, “This is great! Can I get a copy of this?” A copy? It’s digital. But, not wanting to blow my cover, I had to play along. “Sure thing!” I said with a smile as I gave thumbs up.

Traditions: I’ve never been able to find enthusiasm for wedding reception traditions. Before I got married, I always had to participate in the event where the bride throws her garter, and the gentleman who catches it is the next to get married (I think). For obvious reasons, my lack of enthusiasm for this tradition was shared among other single guys. When the bride threw the garter, we would all run like combat soldiers fleeing from an incoming barrage of hand grenades. One guy would jump under a table, another would run out to his car, and I would run back to the dessert table.

I also hate the cutting of the cake. Why is that a spectacle? Under what other scenario would anybody care about somebody cutting a cake? “But, Isaac, it’s so cute to watch the couple feed each other the cake. Oh, look! They got in a flirty little cake fight and ended up shoving it in each other’s faces! Isn’t it cute?” No, it’s not. That happens every single time. Their cute little cake fight is what’s standing between me and cake, and I hate anything that stands between me and cake.

The bottom line is that wedding receptions are just a girl thing. After the reception, my wife asked me a series of questions involving the reception.

“What was the bride’s dress like?”

“Um, white, I guess.”

“What were the colors?”

“Well, the baked potatoes were brown, the brownies were brown. I guess the colors were brown.”

“What song did the bride dance to with her father?”

“Look, quit asking me all of these questions! I need to go make a copy of the chicken dance video.”