Lessons Learned & New Rules

Last weekend I was the chef for a wedding rehearsal dinner (Shrimp & Crab Bisque / Arugula & Asparagus Salad with a Honey, Lime, Rum & Bacon Jus Dressing / Surf & Turf of Maine Lobster Tails and Braised Beef Short Ribs / Cocktail of Port Poached Pears and Apples with a Brandy Demi-Glace and Hazelnut Whipped Cream was the menu… in case any of you were curious.) The following day I was the on-site Sommelier for the reception. That extremely exhausting back-to-back inspired a few New Rules and gave me some Lessons Learned (or reinforced.)

Lesson Learned: I have been in the company of a few sailors (both civilian and military) and generally found them all to be varying degrees of lovely. After being in a room filled with boat-people, however, I am ready to declare the collecting gathering of them at least equal to a barrel of monkeys for delivery of fun.

Lesson Learned: Yacht-people (defined as persons who refer to their sailing vessel as a yacht rather than a boat irrespective of the size of such vessel) are generally a collective bunch of asshats.

Lesson Learned: Some people will never out grow the common grade school mechanism of communicating attraction through hostility. Being mean to people was a shitty method of flirting then and is even worse now. Yes, I’m looking at you, Bridesmaid #1

New Rule: if you don’t have at least one bartender in your life who you would want at you’re wedding, then as the twitter kids like to say, #youredoingitwrong.

New Rule to Qualify the Prior Rule: If you have ten or more bartenders in your life who you would invite to your wedding (and you’re not industry,) #youreprobablydoingitwrong.

New Rule: If you don’t look at your bride as she walks down the aisle and think you’re “marrying-up” #youredefinitelydoingitwrong

New Rule: For every half carat past 1.5 your likelihood of being an asshat increases by 10%. Yes, Bridesmaid #3, I’m thinking of you.

Old but Rarely Followed Rule – The Best Man’s toast should always be more about the bride than the groom.

Lesson Learned (reinforced): A man’s willingness to dance at a wedding is directly related to his ability to get laid at a wedding; and a man’s ability to dance well makes the aforementioned fornication a virtual certainty.

Lesson Learned: When considering your first-dance song, one ought to limit the choices to tunes less than four minutes in duration… after that, it just gets weird.

New Rule: trying to sneak booze to underage guests does not make you “the cool uncle” it makes you a raging asshat who thinks it’s acceptable for a business to risk their livelihood over your intention to slip some wine to a college girl.

Old but Rarely Followed Rule: if there is a champagne toast, and underage guests are attending, be sure to have some flutes of ginger ale so everyone can participate.

Lesson Learned: Throwing the bouquet and tossing the garter, are traditions that need to end. Props to my clients for showing me how much classier a wedding is without the need to herd all single people into a mosh pit like being uncoupled is a pre-existing condition.



5 Responses to Lessons Learned & New Rules

  1. L A Cochran says:

    Former Boyfriend used to refer to the table where all the single people at a wedding were relegated as the Single People’s Fun Club. It was one way to get through the event when it was clear that being single was not the in thing to be.

    I regard assigned seating as another relic that only belongs at the most formal of weddings, and even then, I can make a case for ignoring it.

  2. firecracker says:

    if nearly all of the traditions were to end tomorrow, i’d be a very happy kid. the money dance, garter, bouquet, shoving cake into the face of your new spouse, etc. need to GO AWAY.

    as a boat people, i feel comfortable saying that if boat people talk about the kind of boat they have, they’re doingitwrong. don’t talk about it, just do it.

    Too many cleave to tradition for no other reason than it’s always been done. By that logic, we wouldn’t have iPods.

  3. viewonderingnomad says:

    Most of the weddings I went to growing up were Greek. All the teenagers drank at them, but we were with our parents (and the bartenders didn’t card). Do you think there are cultural exceptions?

    Yacht people are awful: all that one-up-man-ship and materialism. Boat people are way more fun.

    I believe that the US model of 21 and over drinking is dangerous, arbitrary, and generally foolish. However, when a business is involved and that business’s liquor license is could be jeopardized, I get all kinds of follow-the-rulesey. If the wedding is located at a private home, and the caterer is not asked to pour booze to the underaged, then let em’ drink.

  4. City Girl says:

    I remember seeing your Tweet of your last lesson learned about the bouquet and garter toss as I was heading into treatment. In the midst of the chemo-induced haze of the past week, it has still resonated. Oh, and I heartily concur with setting a four-minute limit on the first-dance song! xoxo

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