GETTING MORE TALE #577: Wedding Tunes Tales
Mrs LeBrain and I have been married nine years. It is an incredible feeling, to have found the one made for you. I thank God every day. We still frequently talk about the wedding day itself, the most amazing day of my life. The bachelor night before was legendary, but the wedding was perfect.
Well, except a few minor details.
With the benefit of 20/20 hindsight, there is one thing that really bugs me today, and that is our wedding CD. Specifically, one track on that wedding CD.
I personally selected and approved most of the music for the day. I was very proud to work Frank Zappa into the reception music (“Peaches En Regalia”). I also had to make sure I had a Kiss song, so I chose “And Then She Kissed Me” from Love Gun. We focused on Johnny Cash and the Beatles for the ceremony, killing two birds with one stone on “In My Life” for the signing of the registry. As soon as we started sending out the “thank you” cards to all the guests, I compiled and burned dozens of copies of what you might call The Official Soundtrack Album to Our Wedding. I squeezed in everything I could, but Jennifer insisted we include one specific song for her maid of honour, Lara. [Note: Lara is not evil, but she will be portraying the antagonist in an upcoming store called “Seven”. Stay tuned.] I guess when they used to work together in a video store, they would play “My Own Worst Enemy” by Lit a lot. Some customer gave Lara a CD with that song on it and only that song…on repeat. I guess this inside joke meant that “My Own Worst Enemy” was Lara’s entrance music at the reception. And I guess that justified it being on the soundtrack CD. That is, by far, my biggest wedding regret. It never should have been on the soundtrack CD. It’s the only song I absolutely have to skip every time. It’s shit. Sorry Lara, but your tribute song sucks!
Jen has her own decision that she would go back and change if she could. We had the proverbial “bridesmaid from hell”. Bridesmaidzilla, or ‘Zilla for short, was drama from start to finish. Without getting into too much detail, ‘Zilla was at the bottom of the bridesmaid totem pole but tried to manipulate certain things to be about her. The highlight of these efforts was what we call the “caesar salad saga”.
It’s quite simple, really! Jennifer has a seafood allergy, and any decent caesar salad dressing has anchovy paste in it. We never take any chances, so we requested a regular garden salad for the dinner reception. No big deal, right? It’s a salad, but most importantly, it’s Jennifer’s wedding. You wouldn’t believe how this salad became a bone of contention between them! ‘Zilla looked up recipes for vegan versions online. The salad was repeatedly brought up, but Jen had never really had caesar salad before due to her allergy. Why would she suddenly want one for her wedding? Bottom line, Jen chose the salad she wanted. And for the record, since that time, she has tried vegan caesar salad and likes it. But why would she gamble on something like that for her wedding night? No, pick the salad you want. Bottom line, end of discussion.
Drama continued right up to the morning of the wedding day. As maid of honour, Lara was in charge of the bridesmaids and all communication was to go through her to relieve the pressure from Jen. Lara would take care of any minor details so Jen would not have to be bothered. Well, apparently a bra was needed on the wedding day, and so I received a 7:00 am phone call about it. ‘Zilla didn’t want to call Lara because they were not getting along, at all, so they thought it would a good idea to call the groom on his wedding day, about a goddamn bra. They actually called me to ask where you can get a bra on a holiday weekend. Are you kidding me?
They must have called Lara and gotten it sorted because they got the bra situation taken care of without the groom having to intervene. The wedding went off perfectly and the reception was even better. I did my best to curate some cool music, and as a special treat, my sister Kathryn performed at the reception. It was a jazz quartet — bass, bass clarinet, drums, guitar. The crowning moment of their performance was a jazzy rendition of the “Cantina Theme” from Star Wars. My sister had to order the sheet music which wasn’t cheap. Her band’s performance that night was her wedding gift to us, and that reminds me that I do have one more regret. That is, I wish I had filmed it.
After dinner, after the cake was served, and I was taking a rest between songs (I was a dancing fiend) I sat at ‘Zilla’s table for a bit to chat. Jen’s friend Gordie, who is hilarious by the way, and married to one of the good bridesmaids, was also sitting with a few others at the table. Knowing full well the drama that had gone down, Gordie mischievously commented, “That was a great wedding, Mike. Everything was perfect and I am so happy for you and Jen. The cake was great…the only thing I would change is the salad, if it was caesar it would have been perfect.” Then the husband of ‘Zilla said, “We even gave them the recipe to make it…”
The last bit of ‘Zilla drama happened later in the evening as they were leaving. The DJ played one of the special songs I picked, which was “Sweet Caroline” by Neil Diamond. My mom, sister, aunt and new wife started dancing to it and I shouted “It’s the Ladano girls dance!” My sister, who was right drunk at that stage, yelled out, “LADANO GIRLS, YAAAY!” They joined with me in a circle and we danced away to Neil, singing along, having a blast, laughing. ‘Zilla was, apparently, standing nearby waiting to say goodbye. I felt a tap on my shoulder and she very bitchily said “BYE!” while making a talkie-talkie motion with her hand. Yeah, bye!
Jen and I will soon be celebrating our anniversary again, and we’ll probably play that wedding soundtrack CD and relive the good memories. And I’ve convinced her to skip Lit from now on. Small victories are still victories.