Weddings can be glorious events. However, they can also be hyper stressful, chaotic messes. These weddings are the latter. Content has been edited for clarity.
Imagine Walking In To That
“I wish I was kidding with this answer, but it actually happened!
To get myself through college, I worked at a country club and an event venue that hosted several weddings per month. Those jobs kept me entertained for days. From brides peeing in buckets after sprinting back into the kitchen insisting on using the bathroom THAT SECOND to me having to fish inebriated (once unclothed) groomsmen out of the swimming pool, to having a couple approach me and ask if I wanted to join them in their hotel room later (I declined!) to spontaneous stripping of groomsmen and performing some choice dance moves on the dance floor.
However, my absolute favorite was on my second or third shift. I had been asked to go to the drink storage fridge and grab some more bottles of bubbly, as it was a hosted bar and people were going through it like it was water. Still not sure where to look, I was opening a few doors in trial and error when I opened a door to a room that wasn’t unoccupied.
It was the bride making out with her new father-in-law, the new hubby nowhere to be seen. When they realized I was standing there, they just stared blankly back at me. I closed the door and just kept on looking for bubbly; needless to say, when I saw those two around the country club, I bee-lined to another room and found the floor suddenly fascinating to look at.”
“Over thirty years ago, I was invited to a Thai high society (hi-so) wedding of a student named Suthida. Her family was both wealthy and powerful. Her mother was gorgeous, her father was handsome, and her brother got the best physical characteristics from both.
But Suthida, well, people asked if she had been switched at birth (she hadn’t, the parents had tests done several times). Her nickname was ‘Uan,’ which means ‘fat’ – and she was, no matter what she did about it.
However, her close friends gave her a different nickname, ‘Su,’ which means ‘persevere’ and ‘don’t give up.’
She was bright, intelligent, enthusiastic, motivated and witty…unless she was around her family who treated her badly.
As many wealthy, powerful families did then, her parents agreed with another wealthy, powerful family that their children should marry and that was that. She invited our class to her HUGE wedding. Because of the families involved and because these events were/still are to show wealth, power and connections, it was at a 5-star hotel and traffic was blocked for miles. The jewels and gold in the room could have covered the national debt.
The first ‘you can’t be serious’ moment was that we were invited. The second was that we were seated at a choice table near the stage and cake table. The third was Su’s mother wearing a western style, mermaid wedding dress. She was stunning, but…wasn’t it her daughter’s wedding?
The fourth ‘you can’t be serious’ moment was when Su’s brother was given the microphone to announce the couple, but talked for almost 15 minutes about a new business he was starting. The MC (Thai weddings have MC’s) wrestled the microphone away and ‘invited’ the bride and groom to the stage.
When Su and her groom moved towards the stage, many gasped, for Su had defied her mother and changed into a dress of her choosing– a 1950s pink and grey satin dress with hot pink heels. She rocked! The groom, who was better looking than Su’s brother, then did something that melted every woman’s heart (except his mother-in-law’s): as they reached the stairs to the stage, he twirled Su and then carried her in his arms up the stairs and to the speechless MC and her parents.
The usual thing is that various powerful people are also invited on stage and they give speeches while the couple stand frozen beside them. Not this time. Su and her groom had created a mini-play about their first meeting; guests were laughing so hard, they were crying. Thai’s love pomp and circumstance, but they adore humor.
The fifth ‘you can’t be serious’ moment was when Su’s parents realized that tradition was being tossed out and grappled for the microphone so their powerful friends could speak. However, when they did speak, they focused on what they had just enjoyed, infuriating Su’s parents.
The last ‘you can’t be serious’ was when Su’s mother pulled her behind the cake table and berated her for ruining the wedding and said the marriage would never last.
But it did.”
Death At A Wedding
“Years ago, I was asked to join my church’s wedding guild, probably because they needed new blood. This hardy group of older ladies coordinated all weddings and receptions held at our church. Within a couple of months, I was assigned my first wedding/reception.
I wouldn’t call the bride a Bridezilla, but she was definitely obsessed with having a perfect wedding. She wasn’t difficult to work with, but seemed unusually afraid that something would go wrong. I should have listened to her intuition.
Just a few days before the wedding, I got a call from the church office. The secretary began the conversation with,
‘John Baring (not real name) passed away yesterday.
‘I’m sorry to hear that John passed away.’ I replied, wondering why this piece of news warranted a call from the church.
‘The funeral will be on Saturday at 2:30 PM.’
‘What?’ I screamed over the phone. ‘The wedding is at noon with the reception immediately following in the hall! You’ve got to be kidding!’
‘It has to work. There’s a reason why our hall is named Baring Hall. The good thing is that family isn’t having their reception at church. They’re hosting one at home after the funeral. Just tell the DJ to keep it as quiet as possible during the funeral.’
And so I did. I also didn’t tell the already nervous bride. There are things best not told to a bride! We almost got away with it too!
The wedding ceremony was performed without any glitches. The bride looked radiant and relaxed. It helped that she had a couple of glasses of bubbly while getting ready in the bride’s room. While the guests were munching on appetizers, the bridal party wrapped up their pictures. When finished, I led them to the hall. They were introduced to the guests as the groom swung his bride into his arms for their first dance as a married couple. Afterwards, the luncheon began. I breathed a sigh of relief. It was just a few minutes before 2:00 PM. It looked like the plan to keep the funeral and the wedding away from each other was working.
As the funeral began in the church, several of the groomsmen felt that music was needed during lunch. They approached the DJ, who told them he had been asked not to play music during the meal. The groomsmen complained to the groom who told the bride. She went to the DJ and told him to play whatever the groomsmen wanted. Knowing where his pay was coming from, he cranked it up!
As I tried to get the DJ to lower the volume, two men in dark suits walked in. They made a beeline for the DJ. They told the DJ to can the music out of respect for the deceased. The DJ shrugged his shoulders, but didn’t turn off the music. One of the men tried to push the DJ away from his console. He pushed back. That’s when the mini brawl began. Luckily, for all of us, two of the groomsmen were able to intervene and cooler heads prevailed.
By then, the groom had found out about the funeral. He agreed to stop the music until the service in the church was over. Being protective of his bride, he wanted nothing to spoil the day for her. When asked what to say to the bride, he said he would take care of it.
The funeral ended next door. The wedding reception went on successfully. I toasted the bride and groom that night with a few glasses of bubbly. All’s well that ends well.
The week after the bride came back from her honeymoon, she called me.
‘Is it true there was a funeral at the same time as my reception?’ She demanded to know.
I sighed and said yes.
‘You ruined my wedding!’ she bawled.
That was the last time I ever spoke to her. From then on, she ignored me at church and at other functions. As for me, I went on to become the President of the Weddng Guild in the years that followed my first wedding assignment. I often think I should write a book about my experiences as a church wedding coordinator.”
Never Trust A MIL
“My best friend’s wedding would qualify as a ‘you can’t be serious’ moment. You’ve heard stories about nightmare mothers-in-law, no doubt. It’s awful when the wedding hasn’t even taken place and she assumes her role straight from the start. Let’s call the mother-in-law, ‘Tina.’
The bride’s colors were navy blue and white. She was very specific about how the decorations would look at both the church and the reception hall. However, she was a bit more liberal with the color scheme for the mothers (hers and her future mother-in-law’s). They were allowed to wear any shade of blue they wished. I actually liked the idea. The mothers would be in their ‘pops’ of blue, thus allowing them to share the spotlight with the bride, in their own way.
The next morning, we all arrived at the church in our coordinating, navy blue bridesmaid dresses. The groom, his best man and his groomsmen wore coordinating, navy blue neck ties and cummerbunds. The flower girls were in white with navy blue accents throughout their dresses. Navy blue adorned the pews and various places throughout the church. The bride’s mother wore a lovely powder blue dress (embracing the bride’s request that the ‘mothers’ wear whatever shade of blue they wished). Then, there was Tina, who entered the church wearing a bright pink, chiffon, floor-length ball gown. She looked like a big, bottle of Pepto Bismol!
‘You can’t be serious…’
You could hear the entire wedding party gasp. Not only was she wearing the wrong color, but she looked as if she was trying for prom queen! The dress was a nightmare! Initially, we tried to be understanding. Some of us thought that maybe she hadn’t been able to find a blue dress she liked. Others of us thought, perhaps she just couldn’t afford a new dress and maybe this was her ‘go to’ dress for all formal events. We found out at the reception that none of these ideas were true.
The pink was on purpose. As soon as the bride had given Tina her request, she went to purchase the dress, specifically looking for ‘large and pink’ (according to her son, my bestie’s husband). She spent the entire night flouncing around the dance floor just so she could be seen. She went on and on about how much she loved her dress and thought it was the perfect color to wear to her new daughter-in-law’s wedding. It was truly a slap to the bride and her wishes on what was supposed to be her special day.
This was certainly a wake-up-call to my bestie. Their relationship got off to a bad start and has never improved. Thankfully, she didn’t raise her son otherwise. I find it highly unlikely that they would have gotten married at all.”
Treated Like Trash
“My husband used to have a best friend who was also a friend of his family (keep in mind that my husband’s family shunned us 8 years ago)
Five years ago, we went to his friend’s wedding because he asked my husband to be his best man. We arrived early, but the wedding ceremony had already started. We both thought this was weird. The ceremony took place outside on a lakefront and it was hot that day. I wore a sun dress and my husband wore a black suit and tie. I sat down in the back to avoid his family that shunned us previously. Everyone looked at us with 1,000 daggers. He walked to the front and all the groomsmen were dressed in khaki shorts, polo shirts, and flip-flops. My husband stood at the end of the line because his friend appeared to have another guy as his best man. He was not given the dress code over the phone. My husband’s little brother was the minister, which surprised us both because we didn’t know he was going to do it. We found out later that he was ordained online just so he could do it. Little brother became best friends with the groom after my husband’s family shunned us.
After the ceremony, the groom walked up to us, tapped my husband on the shoulder, and said ‘Sorry man, I had to think fast, I didn’t think you were coming.’ My husband was deeply hurt. I thought, ‘You can’t be serious.’
While we were mingling with the groom’s family, we heard the wedding party talking about the wild bachelor party the night before at little brother’s house. My husband was the best man and didn’t know about any party. He was just told to show up at the wedding at 1pm. We made an attempt to talk to my husband’s younger brother (the minister) and his 2-year-old son, but his wife shielded us from our nephew by carrying him to their car and leaving. I’m glad we didn’t bring our son who was 3 at the time.
The reception was held at a nearby park at 4pm. We had some time to kill, so we went to a friend’s house nearby. When we got to the reception at 4, it was already ending and people were leaving. We ate quickly and left. My husband was so upset that he did strenuous yard work for the rest of the day. It was a horrible experience for us. We agreed that he was set up to look like a fool. My husband never spoke to or saw his so-called ‘friend’ until last year. He’s divorced and remarried with two kids. He said he’d call, but never did. It’s for the best.”
They Forgot To Arrive
“About five years ago, I performed a wedding ceremony for a very sweet young couple. The venue was a local park and the plan was to have the ceremony by a wooded area near a picnic shelter with a reception there afterwards. A low budget wedding, but hey, nothing wrong with that. It was a beautiful place and the flowers and decorations looked tastefully done.
So far, so good.
The ceremony was to begin at 1pm, so I arrived a little after twelve to make sure everything was ready to go. I was standing around chatting with a few guests and I had been observing the bride’s and groom’s mothers working around the tables and getting things ready for the reception. I noticed they were dressed very casually for the wedding with both of them wearing blue jeans and t-shirts. I wasn’t alarmed because there were several people in jeans, although most of the 40 or so guests were dressed a little nicer with numerous men in khaki pants and dress shirts and I saw at least a few women in dresses.
Fashion has been all over the place at weddings for a number of years now.
What did alarm me, however, was when I heard the bride’s mother say to the groom’s mother, ‘Well, we really ought to head to the house and get dressed for the wedding.’
This was at 12:45 with a planned wedding to begin at 1. This was my ‘you can’t be serious’ moment. My alarm increased when I saw there was not a single wedding party member anywhere in sight.
At 1:05, no one appeared to notice. By 1:30, people were coming up to me and asking me if there was something wrong. A couple of men joked about the groom getting cold feet. I told them I had no idea.
Around 1:45, the bride’s father arrived looking harried and tying his tie as he emerged from his car. After asking him if a wedding was going to take place today, he sort of shrugged and said, ‘I think so.’
By around 2:00, the guests had dwindled to fifteen or so, and they seemed contented with drinking a few brewskis and chatting among themselves. The other guests had given up and left. I took aside the photographer, who was a family friend and was actually just a guy with a digital camera, not a professional, and asked him to do me favor. I gave him my cell number and asked him to call me if the bride and groom wanted to get married today. He looked apologetic and said that he would.
I then headed to the house.
At 3:30, the photographer called and told me the bridal party were all there and wanted me to come and perform the ceremony. I ambled back to the park, and we had the ceremony. The handful of guests who remained afterwards ate heartily, drank merrily, and celebrated with the happy couple. No explanation was ever given for the wedding starting over two and a half hours late.
The bride and groom still keep in touch with my wife and me, and they appear to be deliriously happy together.”
Outshining The Bride
“My husband’s best man, M, was dating a girl, K, who had formerly been a friend of mine. Our friendship had gone sour when I got engaged. She had met M a scant week before I met my husband. She was angry and jealous that I had gotten engaged and she hadn’t. I didn’t catch on at first because I would never have thought she would, or could, be jealous of me. We were best friends. But K grew increasingly nasty to me as the wedding clock ticked down and she managed to poison the rest of our group of girlfriends against me as well. None of them had spoken to me in months. It was very hurtful and a bit surreal. Apparently they hated me for being happy.
My husband and I disagreed about inviting K to the wedding. I didn’t want her there; he insisted that we had to invite her. I grudgingly conceded that we would invite her because she was M’s girlfriend and I didn’t want to hurt M’s feelings. I just hoped she had the common sense to not embarrass herself or M at the wedding.
K showed up at my wedding wearing a white floor-length sheath dress, looking beautiful, slender, stylish, elegant, and smug as anything. She looked more like the bride than I did, which was her goal. I couldn’t do anything about it and I wasn’t going to give her the satisfaction of seeing how angry and hurt I was. A few friends of mine offered to spill pasta sauce on K and I was tempted to let them do it, but I said no. It turns out that ignoring her was the best choice. She had a terribly boring time at my wedding, sitting there among strangers, getting disapproving looks from everyone.
That was a long time ago, even if the memory is still quite clear in my mind. In the end, the whole incident has become just another story — one with two takeaways. Don’t invite people that hate you to your wedding and don’t outshine the bride.”
Best Man MVP
“I used to work at a fine dining establishment, that would house receptions. The location was a 40-year-old, hole-in-the-wall and hard-oak bar, with the upstairs dedicated to events.
We had all kinds of slightly off-kilter receptions; one where only the groom’s mother spoke English. Phenomenal tippers, and the couple was very happy. Though just trying to get people their assorted drinks was slightly difficult (they ended up just pointing to our drinks and our 1 mixer; frozen margs for everyone).
Another off kilter wedding reception was the ‘southern chic’ reception, where the wedding planner turns out to be more ‘bridezilla’ than the bride. She had been misinformed about many things for our venue and we had to listen to her drain on and on about our ineptitude. If she had come to see us beforehand, she’d’ve found out that we could barely host 100 people in the upstairs. She insisted on putting out all the decorations herself. We tried hard not to laugh at her as everything she had brought was Walmart’s Mainstay Mason Jar Wedding Decoration. The reception was packed and the pianist/MC had to cut the music because they wanted to start ho-downing on the second story of an over 150-year old building. The bride and groom sent each of us servers with plates of homemade BBQ.
Probably the most ‘you’ve got to be kidding me’ wedding reception was the cold-footed groom, whose entire family was obviously unsure about the marriage. The groom’s mother showed up early to decorate, got absolutely plastered, and left us to figure out her decorations ourselves. The tables ended up to where his side of the family was completely away from the other guests. The tension between the heads of the houses was palpable. The groom ate nothing put in front of him and repeatedly ran off to the bathroom. We ended up posting someone near the back to ensure that if he did end up getting ill, we would be ready for it.
It wasn’t until the Best Man pulled off a stand-up routine for his speech, that the tension died down. He apparently was friends with both the bride and groom, and roasted various revelers, uniting the houses in a comradery of ‘we all do dumb things.’ He ended with a speech by laying down a statement of something like, ‘Listen, my friends are crazy in love…they’re not crazy about each other, they’ve already lived and loved each other long enough to get out of the Honeymoon phase and are absolutely dedicated to each other. No, they’re crazy in love with you, their families and want your support, not your money. So loosen your ties, petticoats and girdles and live a little! Drink with me one more time: to the bride and groom!’
MVP Best Man. They all ended up having a wonderful time. We didn’t even mind that the cake ceremony ended up as a minute long food-fight.
Weddings, y’all…crazy, tense, and thoroughly delightful (on most occasions).”
How Did They Get The Video
“About 30 years ago I was the ‘plus one’ on a wedding invitation. The guests were all seated in church. The couple was at the altar and the minister was working his way through the ceremony. At the point where he said ‘If any person present knows of any legal impediment why this couple should not be married, speak now or forever hold your peace,’ the bride spoke up. She asked the minister if she could address the congregation, he replied that was unusual, but she had every right.
She turns to the guests and starts what I can only describe as a ‘best man’s speech’ or the ‘bride’s fathers speech’ at the reception. She thanked various aunts and cousins for the flowers, dress, etc., relatives that had flown in from Australia, and so on. It was all a bit awkward and uncomfortable, not to mention odd.
Finally, she turned to her chief bridesmaid and groom and said, ‘Lastly, I would like to thank my chief bridesmaid and groom…’ both of whom smiled, ‘for sleeping together last weekend after his stag night and my hen night. And for those that don’t believe it, here’s the video tape.’
She marched out of the church, handing the tape to the groom’s mother.”
The Cops Arrive
“I went to my a friend’s wedding 20 years ago in the groom’s very small hometown. The wedding was great, relaxed, nothing over the top, and the ceremony was short and sweet. The plan for the reception was to walk to the bar across the street for drinks and bar food. Easy right?
As we all start walking across the street, a fight breaks out. The groom’s ex-girlfriend decided to get hammered and crash the wedding. She attacks the bride, my friend. A bunch of us get together and pull the psycho ex off the bride. Her dress is wrecked, her hair and make up are thrashed, and she’s seeing red. We are trying to chill her out and get over to the bar while patching up her dress when the cops show up. Not a couple of cops, but cops from this town, the next town, and another town.
They start putting all of us in handcuffs. Everyone in the bridal party is now sitting on the curb in handcuffs. The fighting was over, the psycho ex-girlfriend is passed out in the street, and we’re all in handcuffs. Surely, you can’t be serious!
They end up letting us all go, we end up at the bar and have a good night. I guess that was the most exciting thing to happen in that town in a while.
It’s been 20 years and we still tease my friend that her wedding photos are all mugshots.”