Hey Fuzzgals and Fuzzguys, given that the temps are rising and weddings are likely filling up your calendars, I figured I would hit you up with a few dos and do-nots for the summer wedding game. We’ve also got a couple great songs for a playlist below (if you are looking to DJ your neighbors’ nuptials or whatever). And we also have a new segment–the Fuzzy Question of the Month. Think of the possibilities! You could be a catalyst for next month’s column just by sending an email. Send your thoughts, concerns, quotes, quips, (please, no filth) to email@example.com. Be sure to include IThinkMarkJustMakesTheseUp in the subject line so that Lee knows what to do. I'm leading off with the most important rule of Summer weddings: "Saget’s Folly." Named for America's Funniest Home Videos host Bob Saget.
If you are in the wedding party, or if you are even just standing around at an outside ceremony–do NOT stand on a dock, boardwalk, bridge or any other surface suspended over water. I don’t care how much the photographer bribes you. Those of us familiar with America’s Funniest Home Videos reruns know exactly how this story plays out. Whenever five or more grimacing, tuxedoed, dinguses align in order of shortest to tallest, while over water, the surface will give way.
Don’t want to smell like stagnant water? Remember Saget’s Law.
This is not to be confused with Saget’s Other Law: Piñata + Blindfold + Child + Bat = Bystander Groin Gettin' Bashed.
Dance a lot at the reception. Ever wonder why older people are always dancing at weddings while adolescents don't? As we age we start to get a much better handle on our egos. Remember–your friends invited you to celebrate, not to sit around thinking about what other people think. Honestly the best advice for attending a wedding is to remember that it’s not yours. Disagree with the readings? Don’t like deviled eggs? Tired of that song? Lucky for you everyone is free to have their own wedding. Take a 3 hour break from your ego and think instead about your friends and loved ones. I promise you’ll have a great time.
The exception to the above is for line-dances. These things are silly and provide the perfect time to go back to the table and get something to drink. Nobody is gonna care who "turned the right way" when the bride’s grandma hits the ground due to your flying elbow. Might as well just "Cupid Shuffle" your dumb ass back to the Hampton Inn if that happens.
The exception to the exception is if you own a line-dancing horse.
Don’t wear a new pair of dress shoes without adequate prep. Leather-soled shoes are great for dancing, but they are slick as ice right out of the box. Scuff the bottoms up a bit on a rough surface before heading to the wedding. (David Letterman used a cheese grater for this prior to running out on stage.)
Quick story: yours truly was talking on the phone to his Jr. High prom date, Jill, the night before the dance while simultaneously trying on the patent leather shoes that come with rental tuxedos. Naturally, I slipped on the spot where the carpet met the top of the wooden stairs at my parents’ house. Folks, I fell down the stairs while talking on the phone to my prom date. (Shout-out to nervous energy and pacing while on the phone.)
Learn from my mistake. Scuff the bottom of your shoes before wearing them. While we are on the subject, after age 15 all males should stop wearing the rental shoes (bowling excepted.) In fact, adult males should stop wearing rental gear altogether. Just go ahead and buy a tuxedo and stop renting clothes. It will look a lot better, you’ll wear it a few times a year, and it will pay for itself in no time. Also, let’s not be amateurs here. Learn to tie your own bow tie with the tux you just bought. Don’t worry if you skipped that lesson as a kid. Bow tie tutorials are all over Youtube.
Fuzzy Question of the Month
And now on to the Fuzzy Question of the Month:
Jethro T. from New York, NY asks: Mark, what’s the best song to come out of the long-time collaboration between songwriting legends Carole King and Gerry Goffin? Bonus question: What do you think of skateboards?
Wow! What a prescient submission, Jethro. King and Goffin were married for years and co-wrote some American pop and R&B standards. Pressed to choose, I think "(You Make Me Feel Like) A Natural Woman" is the best. I don’t know whether anybody recorded it before Aretha Franklin (and don’t care to do that research), but her version sounds about as good as anything can. So good, in fact, that it made The Big Chill soundtrack.
As for your bonus question, I don’t know, man. Skateboards seem like a great way for a man your size to break his leg.
Our Summer Wedding Playlist
You know what, nobody needs another wedding playlist. Go get the soundtrack to the Big Chill.
Mark is a former lawyer who lives in Nashville. If you see a guy walking a golden retriever in Germantown, feel free to say Hi. You should know, however, that there is another guy who looks a lot like Mark who also walks a golden retriever in Germantown so you might be saying Hi to the wrong dude. It has caused confusion in the past—including one particular incident where the other dude's wife hollered down the street at Mark several times before getting a closer look and realizing her mistake. Anyway, say Hi. You can also find him on the internet at basketofchips.com and @cmharrod.