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Musings on a Marriage: Dance as if a Dream
Muted Real
Night had fallen, the streets were lit, and the marquee proudly displayed our name. We were greeted at the door of the Varsity by our DJ for the evening. He was dressed in a purple shirt with a green bowtie - very fortuitous. As we prepared for our grand march in, I risked a peek into the main room.

It was glorious. Everything we wanted it to be. Diffuse, rich light, broken up and tripping along the shadows. A velvet, antique music box of a setting. And of course, filled (absolutely filled!) with our friends and family, already deep in their cups and their plates. We had a few tables set up, and the rest was couches and chairs and leather booths to the side, cocktail tables and overstuffed armchairs. The music playing in the background was intriguing without being insistent. Sometimes things turn out so beautifully, you don't care about perfect.

We marched in and up to our VIP seating on the stage, looking out over so many familiar and loving faces. I gave a short welcome speech, but I don't remember really what I said. Then we descended into the crowd of well-wishers, and into an evening that sits in my memory like an ocean unto itself - at times indistinct but joyous, with islands of particular memories jutting out against the waves.

The food was awesome (potstickers! edamame! beef skewers and mini grilled cheese sandwiches and bruscetta!). The drinks were plentiful (full bar with Strongbow, and a specialty drink we designed for the evening and the bar was gracious enough to offer). I didn't eat nearly as much as I thought I would, though, and was far from drunk the entire evening. I'm fairly certain if it hadn't been MY event, I would have gorged and sloshed my way home. Yet something about my position in it all left me satisfied with a few tastes and just a cool drink now and then.

As hosts, we of course had many guests to greet, but that deserves it's own post. Among the events of the evening were:

- The photo booth that my now-husband surprised me with.
- Our mothers giving toasts on stage, and my mother's unavoidable weeping, proving to the gathered exactly 'where he gets it from'.
- The constantly overheard admiration for the grotto-like bathrooms
- Our first dance to "The Origin of Love" from Hedwig and the Angry Inch (He was so adorably unsure of what to do after a while, worried about just twirling in circles. I laughed and told him just to kiss me. He gladly complied)
- Our dance with our mothers to the ukulele version of "Somewhere Over the Rainbow".
- Almost missing the desert offerings, but I managed to sneak it at least one delicious keylime tartlet. So tart!
- My brother warming up the guests in my line for the Dollar Dance. Two dances for the price of one!
- Losing my husband for about two hours while he entertained 'the front of the house' (ie the smokers)
- Being lifted on a chair by four celebrants, terrified and joyful

And of course, the dance. You may recall some of my previous insanity around how this dance would go down. And we had more concern after we were called by a contact at the corporate offices for Midwest sound, basically saying "I don't get what you want, so you might need to just provide it yourself". However, concerns were eased when the actual DJ called, and especially upon meeting him in person. And so I danced.

I cannot tell you the last time I danced so long and so hard. There was thrashing, there was raving, there was bopping and twisting and leaping. The dance floor was hardly ever empty, drawing people in waves to replace the exhausted, or calling on others to shore up their reserves and celebrate 'just one more song'. Even my husband, usually a stranger to the dance floor, willing got up and shook his groove thang more than once.

We all learned (or re-learned) to Walk the Dinosaur, courtesies of my brother and two cousins. Skin-suit, pterodactyl dancing was also prominent. I performed a little Bad Touch (Discovery Channel). When I look back, only a few of our requested songs were played, but I honestly did not miss them. I was too awash in the moment.

The ending of the evening was appropriately theatrical. The wedding party took to the stage for the final song, to be joined shortly by everyone else still on the dance floor. As we all danced to the encore song, my brother, every the showman, picked up the mic to thank everyone and to ask for one more toast in our honor. It felt like the final words of a televised, glamorous event, like an old school New Year's Eve broadcast.

Then the lights came up, the illusion was broken, and the evening was over. In my maudlin moods, such a scene would have cut me against the harshness of reality. But I was still soaring high on everything that had just happened, and the growing stillness, the growing real-ness of the place was more like a soft cushion to land on. We last remaining few slowly trickled out of the theater, around 1:30am on a Saturday morning, our curtain pulled back to reveal happy celebrants all. We wished everyone well, saw everyone off on their way, and returned to our hotel.

Seriously, one of the best nights of my LIFE.

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Love, love, love! Sorry I couldn't be there.

The Hedwig soundtrack has a surprising number of songs that I've thought would work well at a wedding, so I'm super excited you chose one of 'em!

More dear ones would have been most welcome! Especially ones who would have recognized the origin of our first dance. :D

And so sorry about being a bastard and not replying to other comments in this vein... my head has sorta been all over the place lately.

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