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Entry 7: Bride Pride
(Wedding #2)

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Brookings, South Dakota

Thursday, May 14

BG drives directly from the Sioux Falls Regional Airport (enjoying the green, green, farmland scenery and a much-needed dose of country music) (shut up) to the Ram Pub ("home of the Stroganoff burger") on Main Avenue in Brookings. It is the location of the wedding shower for her college roommate, now otherwise known as...Badass Bride (no, supa sleuths, she is not The Classy Avenger -- see, we had these big multiple person suites. But anyway.).

After the guests regale BB with tasteful/less gifts/stories about her past, the gathering morphs into a bachelorette party and moves to Ray's Corner bar/foos ball emporium across the street.

Badass Bride Move #1:BB proudly wears all of her gift ribbons (around her neck) AND a magenta long-sleeved Victoria's- Grandmother's-Secret bathrobe given to her (as a joke?) by her sister. But the party doesn't stay bachelorette for long, as we (well, all but one of us) are soon joined by sundry dates/husbands, etc. Also, many of BB's local friends run into ex-boyfriends from, like, high school. It's a small town.

Oh, almost forgot: just before Ray's, the goils took a peek at Peelers, Brookings' scandalous new girlie bar.

Badass Bride Move #2: BB declares publicly that when she at least crossed the Peelers (Peelers!!!) threshhold, her party instantly became rowdier than her fiance's bachelor shindig. We don't actually go in, for various reasons (exploitation/objectification of women by the patriarchal male gaze, $7.50 cover, whatnot), but we do find out that -- scandalous, indeed! -- Peelers has been somehow unable to obtain a liquor license from the town elders. I don't think you can even bring the hooch in, either. So basically, it's a nude Coke machine. Haw!!! Fittin'.

But I digress. Possibly because I'm embarrassed to report that the DJ at our next stop (The Safari Lounge bar/dance club) kept calling us "the crazy old people."

BG spends the night at BB's. Jest like old times.

Friday, May 15

Badass Bride Move #3: BB rolls out of bed and saunters into the kitchen at 10:30 AM the day before her wedding, yawns, glances at the paper, eats some Monkey Bread (the biscuity, brownsugary Breakfast of the Gods. Note to self: get recipe from the Mother of all Mothers of the Bride), and placidly asks, "So, like, what do I need to do today?" BG, who is herself already making mental to-do lists, is astonished to note that from this moment forward (W-~28) no one involved in the nuptials is even the slightest bit rattled. Not at the rehearsal, the rehearsal dinner, the photos (the photographer is a high school classmate of BB's), the musical run-throughs (musicians = high school classmates) -- nor even in the face of actual tornado warnings. Well, the tornados were in Iowa. But still.

After the dinner, the college pals -- plus Badass Groom -- gather chez BB and dish for hours about people whom Badass Groom (not to be confused with BG) does not know. Badass Groom Move #1: He has fun.

Saturday, May 16
Wedding day.

Badass Bride Move #4: BB orders her attendants to make a McDonald's run for the entire wedding party; they have a bridal McPicnic in the church basement. Thus fortified, they do their part to create a lovely wedding mass/'ceremony, made even more special by the fact that several of BB's sisters were married in the same church.

Afterwards, word goes out to the younger crew ("crazy old people" to some) that we're making a quick trip to Skinner's Pub -- a splendid high-ceilinged, lazy-fanned, carved-wood bar old-time saloony joint -- before the reception.

Badass Bride (and Groom) Move #4: BB shows up at the pub. In her gown. Wait 'til you see the picture of her hoisting a 22 oz. Killian's Red. I didn't capture the moment when she spilled it on her bodice; don't tell the dressmaker. (Who, by the way, also made BB's prom dress. Do you love that?)

Then: over to the local Elks Lodge (all of these locations are within three blocks of one another) for a warm, homey dinner (buffet!) and, um, exuberant "dance" (DJ = -- you guessed it -- high school classmate).

Badass Bride Move #5: BB changes into Birkenstocks.

That's it for the Wedding Tour Diary itself, but I'm not quite ready to hold my peace. Take the following advice from BG, who is otherwise prone to be somewhat crabby about these affairs.

Attention, Married-People-to-Be (yes, they read this website; we all know that "love" is different from "need") and gals who have started Wedding Ideas files even though ONE BIG DETAIL remains to be worked out!This -- Weddings 1 and 2 -- is how it should be done. Let's review what we've learned.

Breakup Girl's Wedding Vows:
Honor and obey them.

1. Buffet, buffet, buffet. (That's as in dinner, not Jimmy. Resolved: "Margaritaville" is not dance music.)

2. Speaking of which, music is key. And it is possible to please the whole crowd, though perhaps not all at once. Make this your goal. Note: BG does not recommend the wedding band that she overheard performing at the Brookings Holiday Inn. She is fairly sure that it is the very same eighth-grade band ("Black Ice") that played at her eighth-grade dance. (Uh-huh. I remember "Black Ice," but not trigonometry.)

3. If you do do assigned seating, take good care of the singles. Mix it up; neither ghettoize ("Well, I guess we all know why we're here at Table 39") nor isolate ("It was lovely to meet you and hear all about precisely how this wedding compared to each of yours").

4. Brides: bring sensible shoes.

5. Brides: wedding showers are fine. Wedding shower "themes" ("Alphabet," "Around-the-House," "Seinfeld") are not. Oh, but shower games -- such as "Toilet Paper Bride" -- are a blast. If you bring the gift of irony.

While I'm at it, here's a Breakup Girl Policy Statement: Weddings (and births) should not be the only life milestones that are acknowledged with "showers." How about: turning 30 (Cf. "crazy old people"), renting one's first studio apartment, acquiring super powers, etc.?

6. Perks. The first four letters of "goody bags" are G-O-O-D.

7. No flames (as in open, not old) at the reception. Got this tip from the nice lady I overheard (though she was not as loud as "Black Ice") on the plane, who, at her daughter-in-law's wedding, managed to singe her stole.

8. Remember the immortal words of a wedding planner hired by another Friend of BG: "In a wedding, there are no 'problems.' Only ... 'situations.'"

For further reading, (1) click here, and (2) read further. Before I wrap up this wrap-up, there's one oft- (especially recently) asked question that demands a response from the top:

"Um, is it good luck to have Breakup Girl attend your wedding?"

1. Ha, ha.

2. Yup. Come on you guys, you know that Breakup Girl in no way encourages, promotes, or causes breakups willy-nilly. Breakup Girl Policy Statement #2: BG teases out breakups waiting to happen, finesses breakups-in-progress, exorcises breakups of Christmas past, and is also on call round-the-clock for everything that happens in between -- dry spells, weddings, whatnot -- precisely so that you all can have healthy, happy relationships. Or at least satisfying Seinfeld-free solitude. Chances are that at any given wedding, BG has helped at least one member of the happy couple do whatever it took to walk steadily down that aisle. Or has herself achieved healthy, positive closure with the groom.

3. Also, it's better luck to invite her than to have her find out she's not invited.

Thanks, everyone, for gathering here to witness Wedding Tour '98; you may now kiss BG. A special shout out to all of Breakup Girl's far-flung hosts and patrons who helped make this BG's kickin'est Wedding Tour ever! And mad props to my readers for coming along for the bride. I mean ride. It was a lovely vaca, but I'm also looking forward to getting back to your problems. I mean situations.

--Breakup Girl

May 1998


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