Three of my former students, athletes, and interns are getting married soon. Dan Fosselman, James Clear, and Matt Peitsmeyer are "taking the plunge." I wrote this last year but feel it has more relevance now than ever.
The Dude's Guide to Your Wedding Day
Who am I to give advice to any man on their wedding day? I am no expert... well, actually I am. Nikki and I's wedding still holds the record for the most fun had in the history of weddings. Look it up. I have a lot of former interns and athletes gettin' hitched and I always try to give advice to people who didn't ask for it.
The Registry Conundrum
When you are registering for your wedding, you have to bite the bullet and go through the process with your bride... together. Here is the thing. Register at common places where anyone can shop for practical items. Do not register for China. Unless you are hosting Thanksgiving for dignitaries on a regular basis, just get your grandma's when she dies. She probably has multiple sets. One set of China is more money than most will want to spend on you. Register for practical shit.
Now there will be a time when you are walking around Target with one of those little registry guns and your fiance is going to ask your opinion. "Do you like the green towels or the blue ones?"
You are going to want to say something that you think is going to be charming like, "What ever you think is best dear, you are the expert and I just want you to be happy." Now what she HEARD you say was, "I don't give a shit what color towels we get." And not caring is the worst thing you can do. Just man up and pick the towel you want. She will pick the other one anyway, but you showed her you gave it your best.
Get the venue first. All guys would rather have a wedding one of two ways. 1.) A destination wedding on a beach, or 2.) in the back yard with some kegs and a BBQ. Either one will probably not happen and here is how you can tell for sure. Ask yourself this question. How many of your and her grandparents are still alive? If 1 out of 4 is still kickin' then you have about a 50% chance "your" day will be spent in a church. If you are catholic like me, that number goes to 100%. So if you do the math and all 4 GPs are alive and you and your fiance are catholic, you have a 400% chance of having a wedding in a church, with communion, in a tux.
Here is the basics, you shouldn't care about any of this so make sure you know what your fiance wants. My wife wanted a string quartet. That's it. She is the lowest maintenance woman on the planet but remember, it is her day, dickhead. Not yours. Second, delegate to your Mom and her mom. They have been to a lot of weddings and they are the 2nd and 3rd most important people at the wedding. (you are like 6th behind her dad and the maid of honor). They care about flowers, and readings, and invitations. Empower them, not so you don't have to do it (you need to be involved) because frankly, they will most likely do a better job than you could anyway.
Casual is better dinner. After dinner, have the ability to invite all of the "out of towners" to wherever you have the dinner to see them afterwards. You won't have very much time the next day.
Get your groomsmen something individual. DO NOT buy them flasks with their names engraved. C'mon man. That is just so very lame.
You don't pick it. Seriously, it doesn't matter if you are wearing it or not. The colors of your groomsmen have to match the bridesmaids dresses and do you really care? The only person looking at you is going to be her. Everyone else is looking at her. Don't do anything nutty. You aren't a pimp and its not your prom. She picks it.
Trust me on this. Try to avoid the "reception immediately to follow. I know this seems convenient but stay with me. Wedding at 2pm and Reception at 6pm. What is everyone going to do in between? Show up to your wedding more "prepared" to have a good time. More importantly, it give you time to spend with your wedding party. That's important. You probably won't have your and her best friends together ever again. Seriously.
THE Most Important Factor of EVERY Wedding
It's the DJ. No really. It's the DJ. Don't believe me? You are not being honest with yourself. We have all been at weddings where we get handed blow-up electric guitars as we find out "Who let the Dogs Out?" We have had the obnoxious DJ who is the "expert" at having a good time but doesn't play one song you like. The DJ keeps the entire night flowing and if you get a douchebag, he literally owns you that night. Be careful of who you choose.
This is a must. This will help your entire evening. Give the DJ three lists (this is why you need a DJ with no ego). The first list is a "You must play" list. The second is a "play if you get to it list" and the third is your longest list. This is the "do not play even if requested list". This should be started early and added to every day. Give these lists to the DJ and don't budge. My mother is still angry that the DJ wouldn't play a polka (typical Yinzer). That's why he's the man. Sorry Mum.
Ever see the dance floor just scatter, when the DJ plays an alternative song that your creepy drunk cousin requested? Not at my wedding. No matter how much time passes, there are still DJs that will play the Chicken Dance, the Macarena, You shook me all night long, Funky Cold Medina, Doin' the butt... Should I go on? If you want to get the old people up to dance then play some Earth Wind & Fire, Kool & the Gang, or even some Doo Wop, but please avoid Young MC, Tone Loc, and Nelly.
Obviously open bar and as soon as the wedding party arrives you should eat. You guys eat first and do all of the formalities right away while your guests are still eating. They will take a break from their meal to take a pic. Here is the optimum schedule.
- Cut the Cake (don't put in in each other's faces... it's not even that funny).
- Your first dance
- Bride - Dad
- Groom - Mom
- Anniversary Dance
By this time everyone is done eating. This is the dance where all Married couples have to get on the dance floor. THIS IS THE LAST SLOW SONG OF THE NIGHT. "But, what if someone requests a slow song?" There should be no slow songs on the 1st two lists. There is nothing worse than "Ok we're going to slow it down for this next one." It's like when we were kids and there was the couple skate at the roller rink or an adult swim at the pool. It Sucks. Your wedding is not an 8th grade dance where you have to provide an opportunity for the dude who brought a date to your wedding to rub his pee pee on her while dancing. Try being interesting while talking to her instead.
Anyway, this is the dance where the DJ keeps announcing couples to leave the dance floor if they have been married less than.... whatever time frame. The couple married the longest is the last one dancing and SHE gets the bouquet. Do not throw it to the group of single girls. This is the worst thing about weddings.
Don't Throw the Bouquet
Here's what happens. You call up all the single ladies while playing Beyonce' and it's a group of either girls that are too young to get married or embarrassed that they aren't married. The bride throws the bouquet and it usually hits the ground 5 feet in front of everyone, no one catches it, or it hits the ceiling. It's just dumb.
And by all means, do not to the garter thing. Very Awkward. And it sucks.
Your Conduct... Final Thoughts
Don't drink to much. This is not a party, it is the most important day of your life and nothing means more to your wife than this day. Enjoy the day and the evening. You should have done all your shots during your bachelor party. She deserves more than the frat boy persona she was helping you grow out of... at least for the wedding day.
Dance with your wife. Seriously, man. I am not saying you have to be Justin Timberlake, but dance with your wife. Probably the last day you will ever have to dance with her and (more importantly) her friends again.
If you are getting married soon, the only thing I have to say is enjoy the process. Most girls grow up dreaming of this day their whole lives. You didn't. Make sure it is everything she dreamed it would be.
...and don't "Let the Dogs out".
RDL (Eccentric Emphasis)
- 295 x5
- 293 x4
- 295 x3
- 295 x2
- 295 x1