The instructions were fairly straightforward:

1) Wear a black or navy blue suit.  (Check!)

2) Wear a white dress shirt with french cuffs. (Check!  Later, uncheck as I realized I’d grabbed the wrong shirt on my way out of Vancouver).

3) Be at Lawrence’s parents’ place for noon.  (Check!)

I wanted to make sure I was there in time because my failure to make the previous night’s bachelor pad had almost resulted in disastrous consequences for my buddy Lawrence, the groom to be.  For future reference, in the event you are throwing a bachelor party for a friend and I am unable to attend and oversee the event, please observe the following rules:

* At the beginning of the night, do NOT take away the groom-to-be’s wallet and keys.  Or, if you do, keep your eye on him and do not allow him to wander off at any point!

* While it may seem like a fun idea, please do NOT get the groom-to-be drunk to the point that he is incapable of making rational decisions.  Or, if you do, keep your eye on him and do not allow him to wander off at any point!

* As the evening’s festivities draw to a close, make sure you have everything before you go: wallets, credit cards, THE GROOM-TO-BE! Did you remember to keep your eye on him and not allow him to wander off at any point?!

In all fairness to the gang that organized Lawrence’s stag, this post comes days too late.  How could they have possibly known that when you hit the town, take away the groom-to-be’s keys and get him so drunk he is incapable of making rational decision, that you should KEEP YOUR EYE ON HIM AND NOT ALLOW HIM TO WANDER OFF AT ANY POINT!!!

But I’m getting ahead of myself.  Guess what happened at the bachelor party?  At some point late in the festivities, a crazy-drunk and wallet-less Lawrence wandered off (He must have used some mad ninja skills to avoid detection otherwise there is no explaining how they could have lost THE GUEST OF HONOR).  He managed to hail a cab and offer somewhat coherent instructions that resulted in him being driven home.  Of course, the fact that he was wallet-less meant he couldn’t pay the cabbie, and the fact that he was key-less meant he couldn’t get inside his house to get the money to pay the cabbie.  And so, after a testy discussion, the cabbie drove off in disgust, leaving Lawrence to wander up his driveway and finally settle down for a good night’s sleep. Outside his front door in the cool Autumn night air.

I suppose it could have been worse.  At the very least, he survived the night.  Nice going, guys.

So I wasn’t going to let my buddy down on his big day!  His instructions said be there by noon, so I was there by noon!

My car rolled into the empty driveway.  I rang the bell.  The door was answered by some guy I didn’t know who stared at me like I was trying to sell him something.  “I’m here for the wedding,”I said.

The door opened wider and, while his smile said “Come in!” his eyes said “WTF, man?  It’s noon!  Okay, you can come in, but you just sit there while I finish checking out my facebook account.”  As I stepped into the vestibule, I was greeted by the hoot and holler of Lawrence’s family – all upstairs, still getting dressed.  “I was told noon!”I said, briefly considering the possibility of heading back out and driving around the block for an hour.

Too late.  I was ushered into the kitchen where I took a seat and feigned interest in that day’s local sports page while my greeter took a seat opposite me and checked his facebook account.  Eventually (and, by eventually, I mean about a half an hour later), the rest of the groomsmen arrived – old high school acquaintance Bob, old high school acquaintance Scott, a guy called Gabby, and, finally, the man himself: Lawrence.

Buddy, please. No gang signs.

 

He brought gifts for his groomsmen: matching ties, scarves, personalized cufflinks (I was unable to wear), and, just for me…

 

Peace on toast!

 

 

Our corsages arrive. Sorry. Boutonnieres.

 

 

Lawrence's mom serves the hors d'oeuvres.

 

The photographer’s assistant arrived (a lovely young lady who’d spent time in South Korea, she was an adventurous eater and we ended up discussing weird food and Asian cinema) and took a slew of pics.  She insisted on taking shots of Lawrence helping us put on our boutonnieres.  Through the magic of photography, it actually looked like he knew what he was doing.  In reality, none of us did.  Fortunately for us, the photographer was an expert at pinning those things to our jackets with minimal blood loss.

An action shot!

Also in attendance was this kid –

 

Liam, the ring-bearer.

 

Not sure whether he was someone’s son or he just came with the corsages (buy a dozen, they throw in the kid for free) but the little guy had some great quotes, all directed at Lawrence:

Advising him on being on time for his own wedding: “Don’t be late, slowpoke.”

On his sister: “Your sister laughs a lot.”

On the fact that our limo didn’t show, necessitating self-drives to the ceremony: “No limo ride?  This is the worst wedding ever!”

 

Scott, Lawrence, and Bob waiting for the limo that never came.

 

We drove to the wedding site, a venerable golf course located deep in the heart of who-knows-where.  As we wound our way up past the various golfers in the midst of their games, I resisted the urge to fall back on traditional wedding car protocol and honk-HONK- HOOOOOOOOOOONK my way by.  “Nice pants, buddy!!!”

 

My buddy doing his imitation of an action figure.

 

As we headed inside, I stopped to meet a host of fellow guests. Including several who I’d apparently already met.  As Bob said after the various pleased-ta-meetcha’s had been exchanged, it looked like my internal monologue was: “Hi! How awkward to meet you!”

 

The calm before the storm.

 

The guests took their seats and I was hustled to the back room where the wedding party had gathered.  The bridesmaid I’d been paired with assured me that even though I’d missed the rehearsal dinner, I’d be fine.  All I had to do was walk down the aisle with her, then split up once we hit the altar. I go right, she goes left.  The key was in the pacing. Not too fast, but not too slow.  Just follow her lead.  The music started up.  We waited.  More music.  More waiting.  Even more music. Even more waiting.  Finally, someone asked if we were going to be cued.  Groomsman Gabby scurried up to find out and then, seconds later, came bounding back, waving us forward.  We charged out of that back room like diner patrons escaping a grease fire – then slowed our pace as we hit the aisle.

 

My superior aisle-walking sets the tone for the entire evening.

 

 

The sassy bride (aka Mrs. Buddy).

 

Boy, I nailed it.  I was basking in the glory of my terrific aisle walk, so I ended up missing most of the ceremony – but from what I could gather there was a reading, another reading, the exchange of vows and rings, and that was that.  Time for dinner and it couldn’t have come a moment sooner. I was starving!

Alas, as it turned out, dinner was a ways off.  The wedding party and immediate family headed out onto the grounds where we took some pics.  No, scratch that.  We headed out onto the grounds where we stood around and waited for the bride’s brother who had saddled up to the open bar and was presumably in no hurry to abandon his beer.  We waited. Eventually, we sent someone inside to get him.  Then we sent someone else inside to get the both of them.  Then, moments later, someone else to get the three of them. Twenty more minutes and we’d have all been back at the bar.

Eventually, the brother came out, beer in hand, and we took photos. Then, more photos.  And more photos still.  Finally, we were done.  I headed inside, looking forward to dinner.  I was absolutely ravenous.

Unfortunately, dinner would have to wait while the bride and groom took even more shots.  So, I picked my poison, campari and soda (seriously, it DOES taste like poison!) and spent the next hour chatting with my old high school buddies, a surprisingly sober John, and Nigel who made the 12-hour car trip from Ohio with his new wife and dog. After a couple of drinks, we were instructed to make our way to the main room.  Finally!  Dinner!

Not so fast!  In order to eat, you had to make your way through the procession.  And with some 150 guests queued up, it was going to take a while.  About another hour to be exact.  The other groomsmen and I tried to keep the pace up, escorting the guests from the wedding party to their table (“Okay, granny, quit with the chit-chat!  People gotta eat!  Let’s go!  Let’s go!”).

I ducked out to wash my hands and came back to find the parents and wedding party getting ready to head inside.  I took up position alongside my bridesmaid partner and waited.  As the emcee announced each couple in turn, their grand entrance was accompanied by a signature tune.  I wondered: What had Lawrence chosen for me?  Hero by Enrique Igelsias?  Wind Beneath My Wings?  Enter Sandman?  They announced our names and we marched in – to the theme from Star Wars.  Close enough!

Dinner, when it was finally served, was surprisingly good.

 

Butternut squash soup. A little thin but the touch of truffle oil was a pleasant surprise.

 

I’m not going to bother with a pic of the salad.  It was a salad.

 

It loses points for presentation but gets points for being perfectly cooked to a medium-rare tenderness.

The dessert was a trio made up of a dark chocolate truffle, white chocolate cake, and milk chocolate mousse.  Again, surprisingly good.

Then, it was time for the obnoxious DJ to take over.  Boy, did this guy loooove the sound of his own voice.  Two more drinks under my belt and I’m sure I would have clocked him.  It was a flashback to my wedding some twelve years back.  The shoe game!  The dancing single men!  The cutting of the cake!

 

White cake with lemon frosting. Very good.

 

Speeches, speeches, speeches.  All mercifully short and entertaining.

The proud parents.
Scott and Barb.

Come midnight, it was time for a tradition reserved for weddings and cruise lines: The Midnight Buffet!

The dessert table. Try the cookies. They’re excellent.
The fruit and sandwiches table.
Buddy chows down. No word on whether he had to sleep outside his front door again last night.

All in all, a great night.  We should do it again sometime.

28 thoughts on “October 11, 2010: 10-10-10! Lawrence’s Big Day!

  1. Aw, what a great wedding! The bride is lovely and the groom is dashing, but more importantly the cake looks fabulous! Congrats to the bride and groom.

    Makes me almost rethink my moratorium on weddings. I guess they don’t all have to end with your sister bawling her eyes out that her drunken dad has ruined her wedding. Which explains why the last three weddings in my family have all been elopements.

    I do love cake and bad dancing tho.

  2. You got the theme from Star Wars! How cute is that!! The theme from SG Atlantis would have been awesomer, but that is still so sweet! The steak looks divine. Just the way I like it. Perfectly cooked and sitting right in the middle of a pile of mashed potatoes. Yum! Beautiful bride and very handsome groom. (That ring bearer is a doll.) Thanks for sharing the special occasion! Congratulations to the newly married Mr and Mrs Buddy! 😆

  3. 😆 God, that was hilarious!!!

    I’m not a huge fan of weddings, unless the food is good. 😀 I don’t like big weddings. Mine was too big – I think we had 250 guests, give or take. I WANTED a small wedding at a fine restaurant in town, with just a string quartet and NO dancing, but mom had other plans (“I’m paying for it, so you do what I say!”). We ended up with the catered firehall wedding avec DJ deal, but I did put my foot down on a few things:

    1. Only a maid of honor (my sister) and best man (hubby’s brother). I had been in weddings. I hated picking out bride’s maids dresses – finding something to fit all shapes, finding something everyone agreed upon. Plus, I’m not into those ‘girly’ days out with a buncha catty broads. I wasn’t having it. Just having one attendant solved a bazillion problems and saved my nerves.

    2. No rice/bubbles/bird seed, garter grope, bouquet hurling, cake smashing, toasting, glass clinking or anything else remotely considered ‘tradition’. Ugh. I hate that crap.

    3. No little kids at the reception.

    4. A three-tiered cake, no ‘satellites’ or bridges or waterfalls or fountains – just a traditional cake with REAL FLOWERS…no sicky-sweet icing roses or marzipan crap. 😉

    5. Okay…fine. I’ll have ONE dance with Mr. Das, but not with my dad, or my brother, or the best man, or some little pervy kid pawing my butt…none of that creepy shit!

    People say my wedding was great – the best party in forever. They say the dancing was great (I don’t remember), the food was great (I don’t remember), the whole evening was great (I don’t remember). All I DO remember is that – when we entered the hall – the DJ introduced me as…*drumroll please*….

    Derrière.

    😕

    d as in derrière.

    😛

  4. You and your buddy (at least in his first pic) have a similar smile. That smile that purposely blanks out the eyes so we can’t see into your soul. That email exchange you posted yesterday showed a lot of similarities between you two, too.

  5. LOL! Very nice wedding! I loved the part about your BA aisle walk! 😀 And the part about the bachelor party tips were AMAZING! Once again very well put together post! And I’m glad you had a good night!!! Goodnight!!!

  6. Why do most of your male friends have impressive bodies, Joe? Lawrence looks action-figure fit, with and without the jacket!

  7. Sounds like it was a good day overall – and nice food to boot!

    Hoping also that Harvin’s effort tonight was enough to get the snow monkeys over the line!

  8. What an awesome time. I actually love weddings. You’ve made me all nostalgic. October 24 will be our 18th wedding anniversary. I am like Das, I didn’t want all the stupid stuff (garter throw, I’ll keep my bouquet thank you very much). Jeff hates to dance. He danced a few times though even though he hated it. I was on the dance floor most of the night in between making rounds to the tables. I picked out every single song for the evening. I was upset that the substitute DJ decided to do the stupid chicken dance and the other crap, but it actually got people out on the dance floor so I just let it pass. We had a small reception (about 50-75 people) — everyone came in from out of town and we basically partied from Friday until Sunday. My wedding was at 4 (an hour long — Catholic Mass), pictures from 5:30-6:30 at a local park, 7:00 to midnight reception at a hotel, midnight to 3 a.m. the party continued in the bridal suite (not just me and Jeff), morning buffet at the hotel, afternoon fly out for honeymoon. People kept wondering when “we” were going to leave. I said, “Leave? We paid for this wedding; we’re staying until they kick us out.” We had wedding crashers. Someone pointed them out to me, and I went up to them and said, “Who are you?” They said, “Great party!” I said, “Glad you are having fun, but please leave.” We had a lot of expensive food and open bar. Scariest moment of the night — the basket we had for people to put cards in (and some with cash gifts) disappeared. What was funny is that we only paid for 2 hours of open bar, and Jeff’s dad said he told them to keep the bar open (and he was paying for it). Guess who they billed instead? Some pics from the day:

    http://www.twitpic.com/m6wck

    http://www.twitpic.com/mesw2

    http://www.twitpic.com/mpaxy

    http://www.twitpic.com/mpb01

  9. Looks like a fun time was had by all Joe! It looks like the top layer of that cake is off-kilter, or is that just the angle of the photo? Also, it looks like a big hat!!

  10. Really, Joe, sight for site? Tsk, tsk, tsk.

    I don’t hate weddings as much as I hate funerals, but better you than me.

    The steak looks incredibly yummy, but why is it on top of the mashed potatoes? Doesn’t that make it hard to cut? Especially after a few libations? Slip, slide, dry cleaning bill?

    HATE that cake. What is with ribbons and live flowers on cakes? Sugar roses and draped swags are a dying art, any fool can slap a few blossoms on a stack of rolled fondant and it will look good. At least there is no tulle, my niece had tulle on her cake. Purple and black tulle. I still have flashbacks, and we didn’t even get to eat her cake, just the sheet cake made for the guests. Weird. As though the baker thought the lavender liquid in the fountain built into the base of the cake would poison us.

    Speaking of poison, I have a random bottle of Campari in the downstairs fridge. I don’t drink it often as I have to seek out soda which is preservative free. But yes, I have mixed and consumed Campari and soda in my own home, of my own free will. (Don’t involve the cops and the bills should be non-sequential).

    Harumph. Curmudgeon Central, over and out.

  11. Congratulations to Lawrence and his bride. Thank you for the pictures. I hope you had a great time.

  12. It looks like a good time was had by all, and the cake was gorgeous. Congratulations to the bride and groom!

    Looking forward to Awakening tonight at 9PM!!!!!

  13. Hi Joe,

    Back in town , and my office, after vacations . A lot of episodes to watch. We could not wait for SGU. So we watch the first two. OH God! I hate Rush !

    Nice to read your blog again !

    Have a nice week !

  14. Heh, DJs are in a world of their own. They seem to fall into three groups, the talkative ones who talk for a length of time that equals the length of the previous record, the others who turn the music down while they muffle something into the mike.
    And the terrific ones who rock the house.

  15. Hey Buddy(s) congrats! No disasters.
    The only trad. wedding I’ve done was on New Years Eve 🙂
    I mostly behaved at others’

    I will be watching SGU alive tonite.
    DD

  16. PS I solved a lot of problems by paying for my wedding myself. Only way to have final say.
    PPS Happy belated Canadian T-day!!
    DD

  17. We charged out of that back room like diner patrons escaping a grease fire – then slowed our pace as we hit the aisle.

    This describes every aisle walk since the beginning of time 😀
    First laugh of the day!

  18. Congratulations to Mr. and Mrs. Buddy! Wishing you both a life time of happiness.

    @PBMom – A big Congratulations to you and your hubby on 18 years…that’s awesome!!

    Joe, a belated Happy Thanksgiving. How are Mama Mallozzi and Sis doing?

    Thanks for taking us all on the wedding journey; it was great! I made hubby sit through me reading it all to him while he chuckled. (He doesn’t read your blog [or anyone else’s], but I force him to hear the highlights)

    When Hubby and I got married, I found all the traditional stuff snuck up and caught me by surprise. Though, I did insist on a school bus (yes, the big yellow one) for our wedding party transportation, because that’s where we met – way back in high school. I had to insert some quirkish humour into the day somewhere. If I were to plan it today, now that I’m ‘older and wiser’ – it would be so, so much different…less formal and more fun!

    Well, it’s official: today I’m 39. Huh…sigh…kind-of feels icky. All the women in my life tell me 40 is pretty rockin’, though. I’ll just hang on to that as my happy thought for the next 365 days.

    Have a safe trip home, Joe 🙂

  19. That was too funny! I suppose the lesson of the day is keep your eye on him and not allow him to wander off at any point? Isn’t Montreal cold this time of year? So glad the groom didn’t get frostbite anywhere 😉 .

    Seriously, the wedding looked super and the bride beautiful! I don’t get the whole posing for pictures taking thing, though. It seems like a lot of trouble for everyone. Most people hang one wedding photo up and look at the album once every ten years.

    I like candid shots and that is what we mostly had at my wedding. Plus, I wouldn’t register for gifts either. It seems silly to ask people for presents when we were adults. We didn’t ask for our parents to pay for our wedding either. Adults should pay for their own wedding! If a couple pays for their own wedding the parents can’t have an input….saved me a lot of stress.

    Look what you’ve done! Now we are all reminiscing about our wedding’s!!!

    Can’t wait for SGU!

  20. Damn Joe,

    Wedding season is killer, I work as a cook in a country club and I usually get shuffled to the Banquet Side of things. Dear Lord, makes a man think about his own possible wedding future, granted its more for the bride, but Damn I am going to have a couple of bits. Drives me nuts. Well, your ordeal looks like it was wholesome on all levels of the occasion so congrats (Free food= plane ticket purchase). Well, enjoy your toast thingy!

  21. @ PBMom – You are bea-U-tiful!!!! In your wedding pics you look like an actress from the glamorous 40s! Here’s one from my wedding (the only one I seem to have in my PB account): http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v54/dasNdanger/wedding.jpg (Yes, I married Ricky Nelson, and NO…I do not look like that anymore. 🙁 )

    As far as receptions go – well, Mr. Das and I did things the old-timey way (nudge, nudge, hint, hint), so we did NOT want to linger at the party! 😉 😉

    das

  22. Awwh… @Das You are so sweet. I had my hair and makeup professionally done for the day (as did my wedding party on the girl’s side — my gift to them). My favorite is them looking at my cathedral-length train, trying to figure out how to bustle it. I loved my dress. It had a V down the back, too, that almost went to my waist. I had a heck of a time trying to find a bra. Heavy sigh, I’d love to look that way again, too.

    I LOVE your picture. Now I finally have some idea what you and Mr. Das look like. Thank you so much for sharing that. I think you look BEAUTIFUL too. Every bride is. It’s that glow, I think.

  23. What bad timing. We got the biggest real life reality show happening with the evacuation of the trapped Chilean miners. So expect a slump with all TV shows tonight. Truly an Act of God for ratings for everyone.

  24. Just catching up with your blog.

    Firstly was the groom a lucky guy or what? Not only does he manage to get a free ride home without getting beaten up by the cabbie, but he also didnt succume to the dreaded lurgie after sleeping out in the cold all night!

    And you sir, looked very hot in your wedding garb! BTW – are you one of those guy’s who actually dances at wedding (and other celebrations) or do you congregate at the bar all night along with the other non dancers?

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