Monday, September 19, 2011
So You Think You Can Dance… How Unfortunate
Dream sequences and big nights out have a lot in common – they both tend to end with your very own version of Dorothy’s return to the real world at the end of The Wizard of Oz. Instead of the classic…
“And you – and you – and you – and you were there…”
You find yourself saying something along the lines of…
“And everyone from work… and a trans-gendered puppet… and the cast of Happy Days were there… and then we all ate lasagna.”
So when I uttered this sentence to Fi on the phone the other day…
“And the bride and groom… and a whole heap of people I used to work with… and Guy Sebastian* was there… and then I got in a dance off… twice.”
You might be excused for thinking I was describing a vivid unconscious imagining rather than my Saturday night.
It was superb weather for a fairytale wedding overlooking Sydney Harbour. The bride was stunning (the bride is stunning as a rule, the type of woman who probably serenades birds as they help her dress in the morning), the groom was dashing, the gathered friends and family were aglow with the goodwill generated by coming together for a truly special event.
I wore a borrowed dress, borrowed accessories and my very own, extra special Heels-That-Make-Me-Want-To-Cry-Or-Alternatively-Chop-Off-My-Own-Feet. The shoes came off the minute the ceremony ended and I had my first glass of champagne in hand – I liked to think I was rocking a bit of a bare-foot hippy look, when in actual fact I was probably giving off more of a hillbilly-lush vibe.
The evening was going absolutely swell, I had just lost a fictional sheep station as part of a rather elaborate bet, and had managed to scrawl out an appallingly nonsensical series of messages in the guest book (I think I referred to myself as “the Judy Greer to the bride’s Anne Hathaway”, which is both obscure and misleading because I can’t guarantee Judy Greer is actually a widely understood reference, and I’m fairly sure those 2 women haven’t actually ever shared a substantial amount of screen time) using the kind of horrid handwriting that would usually be attributed to a 14 year old boy (sadly that’s not drunk handwriting, that’s just what it looks like whenever I put pen to paper).
Then the alcohol in my body flicked that most tiresome of switches in me – the one that leaves me convinced I’m a fabulous dancer. I hate that switch, it is an old, time-worn, mortifying, inhibition-free version of myself that is certain people can’t help but be impressed by my amazing moves.
Before you know it I’m in a retro dance off with some random guy I had never met, and failed to speak to before or after. People backed away. I wish I had backed away. But no, there I was throwing out some robot, some running man, some shopping cart, a little decorate the tree, a hint of drive the car followed by the necessary sequel, reverse the car… it was like one of those conversations where someone grabs a joke and runs with it far beyond its used by date.
It would have been fine, a weird blip, if it only happened the once. The 2nd dance off had a format change that saw me going move-for-move in the middle of the dance floor with a friend. I maintain it was her idea.
The evening was rounded out with the bouquet toss. After the first throw saw it land on the ground, I (hater of bouquet tosses) stepped in a little closer (as I thought everyone would do) with joke serious face on for the next throw. Turns out no, no one else stepped in closer, thus it appeared I was some desperate, superstitious spinster out to snag those flowers whether it was the last thing I did. Suddenly I was Desperate Deidre, Crazed Candice, Man-Hunt Mandy. Appalling. How do you then make clear to a group of relative strangers and drunken friends that you were joking? You can’t – it’s too late.
Dancing and drinking continued – laughter and merriment galore. It was, on the whole, a perfect evening for a rather perfect couple (off-putting, I know).
As I took myself off to bed that night (after briefly and inexplicably trying to boil an egg) I could not help but be grateful to have been invited to such a important, intimate event. Then I tripped over the Evil Heels of Doom, slammed head-first on the floor, and suddenly I was pondering how I managed to store so much crap under my bed. But the wedding glow of seeing a happy friend still lingered - it warmed my cold, cold heart as I drifted off to sleep.
* = Guy Sebastian, the proof that talent shows find actual talent, the single most delightful male singer Australia has produced in quite some time, and a freshly re-acquired crush.