It’s summer and that means wedding season. A lot of people bemoan this time of year because of the fact that there is nothing worse than going to a wedding. What with all of the forced family fun and chicken or fish meals and coordinated Electric Sliding.
I, however, love weddings. I genuinely do. Maybe it’s because I actually haven’t been to that many. Maybe that’s because most of my friends are commitment-phobe, unmarriable weirdos, present company included. But I digress. I have always had a great time at the various weddings that I have attended, be they intimate Sunday afternoon affairs, Chicken-dancing, boozy, all-night blowouts or three-day Indian wedding marathons. For those of you whose calendar is filled with upcoming nuptials, here are some personal tips on how to have fun at weddings:
1. Ditch a Date, Go Alone.
So you’ve just been invited to your cousin’s/college roommate’s/co-worker’s wedding and you need to find a date. May I suggest that you simply don’t? Half the stress of weddings is finding a date. Do you ask that guy you’ve been seeing for a couple months? Are you at the “wedding date” point yet in your relationship? Do you drag your girlfriend along to your buddy’s big day, only to get the side eye all night at how much imbibing you choose to partake in? The annoyed eye rolls at how much you do/do not want to dance? Ditch them, I say! Going it alone is the best way to practice the tips that follow. This way you can do what you want, when you want to without worrying about making anyone else happy. And if there is every a time to be selfish, it’s at someone else’s wedding.
2. Bring a Friend.
If you feel you must bring a date, bring a friend. If you’re a woman, bring a girl friend. Or a gay friend. A straight, strictly non-romantic male friend. You will not have to impress this person nor care too much if they will get mad at you if you make an asshole of yourself. The key, however, is to bring a friend who is on the same page as you and also willing to follow the following wedding guest rules.
3. Get dressed up.
When do you get to wear fancy clothes? Never, that’s when. Never, and now, at other people’s weddings. Pretend you’re on Gossip Girl and you’re a spoiled teenaged girl, or on Mad Men and you’re a vacationing ad executive, or The Real Housewives of New Jersey, and you’re a completely illiterate moron, complete with open shoulder slit blouses. Dressing up is fun! Sometimes I pretend I’m on Ally McBeal and dress in ridiculously inappropriate outfits to work. I think I just dated myself, but it doesn’t matter, I’M HAVING FUN.
This really goes well if you incorporate the dressing up part, too. If you brought that friend as your date, work out some sort of scam. Assume pseudonyms. Introduce yourself as a different name to every new person you meet. Even in front of the people you’ve just met as Sarah. Now you’re Felicia! Keep going. Move, move, move! Don’t slow down. That’s key.
Now, this is harder if you already know people at the wedding. Your grandma is probably going to know that you’re not really a MBA student from DePaul. Or will she? She’s older and her memory isn’t as good. That’s easy. Your sharper, younger brother-in-law will be harder. But more fun! He might think you’ve just had too much to drink or have a brain tumor. Either way, you’ll have a good time, and fuck that guy anyway.
There is so much stuff at a wedding reception that you can steal. The obvious being booze. Weasel your way behind the bar and grab a bottle or two. Stuff them in your over-sized handbag.
Stock up on the desert table like you’re in line at Old Country Buffet. Ask a waiter for a to-go box. What are they going to say? No? If they say no, start crying. Say it’s for your date who couldn’t come because he has cancer. He had to stay home and couldn’t join you to celebrate Tom and Melinda’s nuptials. And now that he’s so sick, you’re wondering if the two of you will even walk down the aisle yourselves. Should you marry him now, not knowing how much longer he has? That’s romantic, but do you really want to be a young widow? Cry harder. HARDER. Get your to-go boxes and load up on cake.
If you don’t like the bride and groom very much, or if you’re just a huge asshole, snatch up one of their gifts from the gift table. Cards seem like a good idea, but they most likely contain checks, which can be difficult to cash. Go for one of the presents, one that looks like it could have something good like a martini set or one of those fancy pastel colored mixers. Just grab one, walk out, put it in the trunk of your car and go back to dancing inside. Who’s going to notice? No one, that’s who.
Centerpieces are getting stranger and more artsy thanks to the popularity of all of those stupid Do-It-Yourself Wedding and Crazy Bride shows on TV. Eight-foot tall pedestal vase roses? A bowl of goldfish? I challenge you to challenge yourself. STEAL THEM.
Weddings are notorious places for flirting. Flirt with the groomsmen. The maid-of-honor. The Father of the Bride. The rabbi. If you’re not single, no one is saying to cheat on your partner. I mean, don’t be an asshole. There’s nothing wrong with keeping your flirt game sharp, however. Remind yourself that you’ve still got it, damn it. If you’re single, hook up with as many single people as possible. Remember: Priests are always single, so they’re fair game in my book.
If you follow these six easy steps, you’re bound to have a pleasant and memorable evening at your next wedding. Don’t take things too far, remain (relatively) ethical and remember to dance like no one is watching, you shooting star, you.