Friday, April 4, 2008

Here Comes the Bride (so look at her, damn it, and pay NO ATTENTION to the lectern...)

I now have the dress and the shoes for my cousin's wedding tomorrow. I agreed to read for her, and found to my dismay (no, HORROR), that I will be reading an excerpt from the Song of Songs...the "my lover is like a gazelle" part.
Damn it.
How exactly am I expected to stand in front of my brother, sisters, mother, grandmother, uncle, aunts and numerous cousins and read "my lover is like a gazelle" without so much as a snicker? You couldn't just pick St. Paul's letter to the damn Corinthians like every other Catholic in Philadelphia? Noooo, we have to go Old Testament. Shit. Not only that, but then I'll have to endure the mighty-funny critiques of my performance from my hardy-har-har siblings for the rest of the evening. My older sister in particular will extend herself on the topic after a few cocktails. My only weapons will be those we've used against one another since high school: the "fuck you" fake sneeze, and the removal of imaginary eyelashes using a prominently displayed middle finger. Actually, those are both still excellent.

I might need to take defensive action, honoring another time-honored wedding tradition in our family, which is to begin drinking several hours before the ceremony (it starts at 2 pm, so maybe not). Sigh.

At least the dress and the shoes won't let me down. The dress is a just-above the knee hot pink silk crepe de chine with a deep v neck and elbow-length sleeves. It lightens to light pink at the bottom, almost a tie-dye effect. The shoes are black patent peep-toes with a wedge heel and critically-important grippy rubber soles. The marble floor at St. John the Baptist in Philadelphia is 170 years old and polished by generations of Irish Catholic feet...better men and women than I have taken serious spills while walking down that aisle. If I have to proclaim that my lover is like a gazelle with a straight face in front of the entire congregation, then I'd better make bloody damn sure that my feet will remain firmly attached to the floor at all appropriate times.


Matty Boy said...

I've never done the "remove the fake eyelash" thing, being a guy and all, but I have rubbed the side of my nose slowly with just one finger.

The classics never get old.

Best of luck at the family get together. Try not to get disowned by more than one person.

The Lady Who Doesn't Lunch: said...

Nice of her to spring this tid-bit on you so late in the game.

Maybe you can mask your sniggering with some good old fashioned fake tears, which by the way are also good for disguising disgusted sneers - if you do it right.

CDP said...

Matty--not a fake eyelash, a real one embedded in the eye (but imaginary). So you can do that one, too! Thanks for the luck, I will need it.

Lady--An excellent suggestion!

Dr. Monkey Von Monkerstein said...

I've got to hang out at one of your family reunions one of these days. You people sound like my kind of people.

FranIAm said...

C'mon - you can do it. Especially with those shoes. (BTW- a photo would be nice, just crop your head if you don't want us to know 'bout you! Either that or photoshop someone else's head onto your body.)

I have had to do that reading and worse yet, I had that reading at my wedding. C'mon my girl, a good RC like you should be well aware that there is an Old Testament reading followed by a Psalm followed by a New Testament reading (and who doesn't choose Paul, right?) and then the Gospel.

Look at the bright side, you get to go first. Maybe the Psalmist or the second lector will slip on the aisle and everyone will forget your gazelle like lover, your stag.

That Song of Songs is all sexed up- enjoy it; we don't get too much of that in our readings.

CDP said...

Dr. M--most of them are. Not sure how you'd feel about my grandmother...

Fran--I know, I know. (Would it be wrong if I were to do something to ensure that one of the other readers slipped? That would be wrong, wouldn't it?)

Anonymous said...

I would suggest that you imagine all the wedding guests in the undies as a way to keep from giggling through "my lover is like a gazelle," but I fear that would simply make matters worse.

The drinking early/polished marble thing is fraught with danger, as well.

Might I suggest a good dose of deep cleansing breaths, no eye contact and plenty of alcohol and masked rudeness to your siblings after?

And whatever you do, drink enough to take the sting out, but not so much that you spill anything on your hot pink dress!

CDP said...

Dcup--the old underwear trick, is that all you have for me? I'm doomed. Especially if I think about a certain recent post of yours, and inadvertently read "my lover is a Uruguayan hermaphrodite." Yes, utter doom. (and I don't generally mask my rudeness to my siblings, suckas get it with both barrels)

dguzman said...

Just do what my drunk uncles used to do at every family wedding when they got drunk and belligerent: pull out your knife and start waving it around.

CDP said...

Dguzman--FINALLY, some HELPFUL advice! Seriously, you crack me up.

BeckEye said...

I've taken the liberty of rewriting that passage for you:

Hark! my lover, Michael Johns, comes springing across the mountains,leaping across the hills.

Michael is like a wallaby or a young wombat. Here he stands behind our wall, gazing through the windows, peering through the lattices.

Michael speaks; he says to me,
"Arise, my beloved, my beautiful one, and come!"

"For see, the winter is past,
the rains are over and gone. And now it is time for the doing of it."

Worker Mommy said...

I think it may be ok if you laugh. It just may be that once you've said it others will be cracking up along w/you!

CDP said...

BeckEye--You know, I would have to read one of the few biblical passages about "the doing of it". Michael will wake up soon and see what he's missing.

WM--And I might not have a choice.

Mathman6293 said...

It's all an association game
Gazelle to Lion King to Disney to Corpocracy to George Bush... eek!

Mazel Tov to the bride and groom.

Dr. Zaius said...

" lover is like a gazelle..."
Do you mean like "my lover is too quick?" I think in the American military they say, "To jettison your bombs before the misson has been completed," but the British call that, "Instant custard!"

Distributorcap said...

maybe if your lover was more like an elephant

oh never mind

have fun at the family gathering
you are a braver soul than i....

Anonymous said...

As I am attending a wedding NEXT weekend in Philly, I have taken notes :)

Wyldth1ng said...

Did it go well? the snicker part.

Anonymous said...

CDP - I wish I had read this sooner. Damn these busy weekends. Hope you had fun at the wedding and that there weren't too many f-bombs tossed in sober states and drunken stupors. And, I almost forgot, hope you didn't fall and break your ass in church, because that would have been funny to see.

CDP said...

MathMan--exactly. And thanks!

Dr. Z--I didn't think of that! There is a part of the reading which goes: "Arise my lover and come." I added "to me" without authorization from the bride (I learned from my sister that she chose the reading on purpose, as I suspected).

Dcap--exactly, there was no winning here.

Suze--I'll be posting a recap, hopefully in time for it to be useful for you.

Wyld--it did! I remained dignified and composed throughout, thanks to some editing of the text (done by me, and no one was the wiser)

Spartacus--I got your f-bomb right here, funny man.

WendyB said...

Can I score an invitation? Because I would love to hear this reading.

CDP said...

WendyB--you are too late, I'm afraid. It took place on Saturday the fifth, and I maintained a dignified front and remained on my feet. I'll post a recap at some point this week.

susan said...

I was too late for the original but I'll be back to read the recap. My favorite weddings were the Catholic ones and the Song of Songs is a great tradition.

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