Any problem in the world can be solved by dancing
– James Brown
I would believe only in a God that knows how to dance.
– Friedrich Nietzsche
I recently received this request from Very Very Good Girl :
Would you be willing to compose some play list to use during the reception1 when the band is taking breaks? Your CV for this task was strong to quite strong, with your annual Hilton Head mixes that get better and better. You could even throw in a Leonard Cohen ditty or two.
I am, of course, flattered to be asked2 and happy to accept this responsibility – although I am simultaneously surprised to learn that this key position at the very3 epicenter of the wedding ceremony-reception-honeymoon experience has somehow gone unfilled until now.4
After a couple of days, I now have a tentative playlist that should work well as long as the dinner lasts no less than 3.22 hours and no more than two days, and the band takes two breaks of 93 minutes each.5
As is usually the case when I take on a new task, traversing the learning curve has resulted in insights and observations which I now share with you:
1. Witty dinner repartee is highly overrated. The chances of our civilization surviving and advancing could be greatly enhanced if post-nuptial dinners evolved into hushed affairs with each guest quietly and introspectively pondering, in the musical environment created by the playlist, the significance of the ceremonial bonding of two souls just witnessed. Conversations should be restricted to praise for the exquisite content and the soundtrack’s impeccable echoing of the conjoint psychosexual development of the bride and groom from birth through their individual resolutions of their (also individual) Oedipal/Electra conflict.
2. An exam on the music at the end of the evening wouldn’t be a bad idea – especially if the scores are posted.
3. Just because every wedding mix I’ve composed has included at least one set of spectacularly lewd lyrics, set to a sweetly melodic tune, explicating the mechanics of one or more perverse sexual acts doesn’t necessarily mean that this wedding mix will be enriched with such a specimen. On the other hand, …
4. A wedding reception dance mix with “too much MoTown?” That’s crazy talk.
Note: The impending wedding of my cousin Gwen has triggered a review of my nuptial-related posts. Today, we return to the 2008 Very Very Good Girl – SportsBizPro wedding.6
Note: Originally posted Apr 19, 2008 at 1HeckOfAGuy.com, a predecessor of AllanShowalter.com
- For those not familiar with the upcoming premier event of the North Carolina spring social season, the “reception” references the impending nuptials of Very Very Good Girl and SportsBizPro to be wed in May. [↩]
- I am especially flattered because, my youthful appearance and demeanor notwithstanding, I am actually closer – and this is not a joke – to VVGG’s father’s age than to hers [↩]
- In this case, “very very” [↩]
- There is a reason that the aphorism, “Upon the skills and cunning of the writer of the play list (the more precise translation of the original Greek into contemporary English is “sacred creator of the music which governs the universe”) for the wedding band’s break depends the continued existence of civilization, the physiological and spiritual development of children everywhere, and the ultimate significance of college basketball at the Division I level” is passed from generation to generation. [↩]
- Theoretically, of course, the songs can be aborted at any point – if one is willing to despoil the aesthetic integrity of the carefully constructed composite playlist. [↩]
- Very Very Good Girl is the daughter of two of my best friends from medical school, Duke of Derm & Princess of Peds. SportsBizPro is her then groom, now husband of 8 years and co-parent of their incredibly attractive twins. Their marriage occasioned the posting of The Very Very Good Girl – SportsBizPro Nuptial Quiz, Crucial Wedding Rules No One Else Will Tell You and Crucial Wedding Rules No One Else Will Tell You, Part 2 [↩]