I'm not your bitch, don't hang your shit on me.

Tuesday, August 07, 2007

Here comes the host

Weddings are celebratory occasions where the love of one is dedicated to another. Typically, they include a bride, a groom, friends/family, guests, a gown, suits, food, and booze.

They also include a host for the reception. And, this is where I come in.

**

Since I don’t suffer from stage fright and am a ‘natural’ in front of an audience, my long-time friend K asks me if I want to be the host for her wedding. She doesn’t need to ask twice as I practically take the symbolic microphone from her hand as if I am ready to go on stage.

It's the host’s responsibility to inform guests about the night’s festivities while keeping the night moving at a brisk pace - sounds easy enough. Although, there’s a kink in the curl: the majority of wedding guests are not fluent in English. Knowing this, K, ever resourceful, asks another friend of hers to act as co-host and translator.

Being the planner that I am, I meet with K before the wedding, move some elements around in the schedule, write notes and introductions, and send the information to the co-host to review. I’m nothing if not prepared (and dictatorial).

After dehydrating from crying too much at the wedding ceremony, but before the reception, I meet my co-host and we go over a few notes. With some issues resolved (after talking to several members of the bridal party), we go on with the show.

There is the introduction of the bridal party, a traditional tea ceremony that requires spoken instructions to the guests, speeches, saves (the guests want the bride to sing a song in front of the groom, but since I know the bride is very shy and does not perform in front of large groups of people), games, advisories (“Please enjoy the delicious food. And, just as a reminder, there is an open bar…”), and the occasional PG-rated joke so as not to insult the old, the young, and the in-between.

Although the night entailed doing an endless series of squats from getting up and sitting down tentatively for four hours, mostly everything goes according to plan – just the way I like it.

Everyone has a wonderful time - from day to night. The bride was lovely, the ceremony was beautiful, the guests were entertained and well-fed, and I was about to take part of it all.

If there is anything I would add, it would be a few notes for the guests:

Do…

Tell the host he’s great.
Tell the host he's funny.
Tell the host he’s entertaining.
Tell the host he’s kinda hot (and not because he’s sweating in the heat).

Do not

Say “Why didn’t you do…?” after an introduction.
Say “Why didn’t you say…?” after a game.
Say he's slurring words after his fourth glass of wine.
Say how he should do his job.

If any guest decides to do any of the things on the second list, I’d advise them to keep quiet, or stay home for the next wedding on the schedule. Because weddings aren’t about them, they’re about the host.

7 Comments:

Blogger Steven said...

And, yes I know it's really all about the bride (who looked beautiful, by the way).

August 07, 2007 12:00 am  
Anonymous Tuna Girl said...

Oh, honey. You are wrong. Clearly the wedding is all about the mother-in-law. Or at least mine was. What? Is that not normal?

What a great thing you did, by the way. That was very brave of you and must have meant very much to the bride.

August 07, 2007 3:18 am  
Blogger Sh@ney said...

I would never have taken you for a limelight thief!! *pokes tongue*
I am very fearful of public speaking...Stagefright - BIG TIME
I had to speak at my brother's wedding & pretty much knocked back 3 drinks in 5 minutes prior to it & another handful straight after...The sooner I forget about the horror of it the better...
Hmmm OK I go now!

August 07, 2007 9:11 am  
Blogger Chris said...

This is why I don't do weddings anymore. And I'm not talking about hosting, but about attending them in the first place. Although I wish I could have been to this one.

August 07, 2007 10:53 am  
Blogger Steven said...

TG: I totally forgot about the MIL/MOB. Thankfully, both of them didn't want to be in the spotlight.

August 07, 2007 12:32 pm  
Blogger Lewis said...

Of course you reached out and took the symbolic microphone. Who wouldn't have? Nicely shaped, perfect size, just right for grabbing. Especially after the glasses of wine.

August 07, 2007 5:18 pm  
Blogger kevin said...

I hope you havent got too sun burnt from your provincial holiday in Ontario!!

Kev in NZ

August 07, 2007 10:08 pm  

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