Tuesday, October 7, 2014

Kevin and Deanna's Wedding

19 years ago I was honored to be a part of one of the best weddings I have ever been to.  Kevin is my cousin on my mom's side- the Gallagher's.  He is about 7 months older than me and his whole life I was forced upon him.  He wanted nothing more than for me to just leave him alone, but I would have none of it.  I would nag him to play with me until he finally just gave in.  At family weddings he would be forced to dance with me so our families could get the "oh they're such cute little kids" wedding picture.  I think he eventually just gave up and decided to like me.  It was just easier.  His high school sweetheart was DeAnna Barrella, some really cute Italian girl from the other side of town.  I loved (love) DeAnna.  Mostly because she is just a great person but partly because she made Kevin be nice to me.  When they broke up I was just devastated, but alas they reunited and Kevin made the best decision of his life and asked her to marry him.  I was asked to be a bridesmaid.  It was my first time.  Kevin of course had to remind me that I wasn't really a "maid" but more of a "matron".  Thanks cuz.  The wedding was beautiful and DeAnna was stunning.  I think I miss the over the top styles of the '80's and early '90's.  I have always thought that big hair and big poofy shoulders make your butt look smaller, and as a classic "pear" this is always a goal of mine.  The priest at the wedding might have hit the vino a little early because nobody could really understand what he was saying, but his personality just added to the whole scene.  Wedding finishes, pictures at the church, pictures at Oberlin College and then off to the reception!!!  Woo Hoo!!!  For my friends in the south, you have never lived until you go to a northern wedding.  Southern weddings are very pretty, very gentile, and can be very fun but the North has you beat on most counts.  Our family is Irish.  Very, Very Irish.  DeAnna's family is Italian.  Very, Very Italian.  The spirits were flowing the minute you walked in the door (except Father ???, he had started earlier remember)  I have no idea what we ate, I just know that it was not cabbage rolls.  Kevin forbid cabbage rolls because we had them at every single family function and he hated them.  We ate and we drank,  And we drank and we ate.  Kevin considered me one of the groomsmen so he expected me to do the shots when they did.  Wow. We danced and danced.  The Chicken Dance, The Electric Slide, Brickhouse and of course polkas.  Cleveland is the home of Frankie Yankovic- the King of Polka and dad of Weird Al. If you are from Cleveland you know how to polka.  Then the Italian's came out in their really nice suits and danced the tarantella (?).  This Irish girl couldn't do that, but unfortunately I think I tried (yikes).   Then it came time for the bridal dance.  The Bride and Groom go to the dance floor and people stand in line to dance with them.  You pay to dance so the couple will have some cash on their honeymoon, but you get a shot of liquor for your cash.  My last real memory of the wedding is one of the uncles holding the money bag asking if I would like a shot of schnapps or of whiskey.  I thought he said to have both, so I did.  I am told we stayed for a few more hours, but who knows.  I paid for that wedding for days.  I couldn't even eat my chicken paprikash the next day but it was totally worth it.  Their wedding was one of those events that people use as a marker in family history- Before/After Kevin and Deanna's wedding.  They really are a good match and I am very happy for them.

Weddings now are so pinterest perfect with every detail planned.  I long for the days when it was ok to have your reception at the Knights of Columbus so long as there was a keg and a good DJ.  Put some flowers on the table to dress the place up.  It isn't what matters anyway.  There are whole businesses devoted to the perfect wedding.  It starts with the perfect proposal, then the perfect announcement, then the perfect save the date card.  Tens of thousands of dollars are spent to ensure that the toothpicks are just the correct shade of rose to coordinate with the flowers flown in from the Netherlands.  I have even heard of weddings where the couple request that the guests wear certain colors so the pictures will look better.  Really????  I wish these people could have been at Kevin and Deanna's wedding and experienced a truly exceptional day.

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