Perhaps Number Five Should be "Forgettable"

It all started out innocently enough. While attending a wedding over the weekend in St. John's, Newfoundland* The Lovely Wife and I got to discussing "First Dance" songs. Before you get married (if anyone out there isn't or hasn't been, you may take notes), you have to figure a few things out, one of which is the selection of the song you will dance to in front of all your friends and relatives and those half dozen people neither of you recognize but you're pretty sure they aren't just drinking your booze and abusing the mussel bar.

Where was I? Oh yeah, the First Dance. See, First Dance songs are inevitably one or more of the following:

1. Cheesy
2. Predictable
3. Romantic (optional)
4. Regrettable

Usually you hear something like Edwin McCain's "I'll be" or some such drivel (no offense if you chose that), or something from this website (html capabilities temporarily lacking, so click if you dare - ), but sometimes these songs are thoughtful and entertaining. Well, as entertaining as guessing the meaning behind why a particular couple chose a particular song. [Was it the song they first danced to? The song playing on the radio when s/he proposed? Perhaps it was playing in the police cruiser the first time they were busted at a demonstration.]

So when TLW's coworker and new bride prepared to hit the hardwood to have their every toe-stubbing move scrutinized by 150 guests for four minutes and thirty seconds, we cringed expectantly at their choice of song. It turned out to be a decent selection ("All I Want is You"), and after we felt sufficiently dirty for watching them try to slow dance in a manner that was both romantic and not icky in front of everyone and their grandparents, we got to thinking about our own First Dance song, a conversation that unfortunately went like this:

Her: What the hell was our first song?
Me: Uh… it was.. Uh… oh, crap.
Her: [laughing] I'm sure it was romantic.
Me: Yes, and deeply meaningful. WHAT THE HELL?
Her: Don’t worry, we'll remember.
Me: Either that, or we'll have to just get married all over again and choose something memorable.

And later…

Me: I bet we can remember all our friends First Dance songs.
Her: What was [friends] G&S's first song?
Me: Blue Rodeo. Lost together.
Her: Are you sure?
Me: Pretty sure. Remember that wacky guitar solo in the middle?
Her: Oh yeah. How about J&P?
Me: It was that Rod Stewart song that we had never heard.

Her: And your brother's?
Me: Time in a Bottle. What about your sister's?
Her: Can't Help Falling in Love, by UB40.
Me: Right! [Sigh. Pause.] Damn it.
Her: Huh. Yeah, we suck.

Given that I'm something of a self-diagnosed music freak, my forgetting our First Dance song is akin to forgetting the middle names of my offspring (I'm pretty sure at least one of them is named after a family member…if I could just remember which one.) And so it drove me abso-friggin-lutely nuts, to the point where we'd narrowed it down to "something that was by an artist that people knew, but possibly didn't know the actual song". I also deduced from my musical craziality that the artist was likely Canadian, and possibly male. So from Saturday night at 11pm until Monday morning at 11AM when I could check the home computer for evidence of the homemade CD insert, I mentally scrolled through my ipod and hurled band names at TLW, which she in turn nixed as possibilities. At one point, we even named our "runner up" song, that is, the one we didn't choose because (and get this) IT DIDN'T HAVE ANY PERSONAL MEANING TO US. ** Oh, and we remembered the song TLW danced with my dad to (Sweet Caroline). Several times between Saturday night and Monday morning I would forget about the mental mining expedition we'd started, only to have her bring up artists which would remind me that I had an unsolved mystery afoot and cause my eye to twitch maniacally and for me to spew forth the names of random artists, Tourette-like.

Returning home, I could find no evidence of the playlist that contained the First Dance song. Fortunately, G&S (see above) had sent us a dark, scratchy 15-second digital camera clip of TLW and me dancing to "Feels Like Home", by Chantal Kreviazuk.

TLW and I agreed that it was a good choice.

*I'm refusing to call it Newfoundland and Labrador, since really, Labrador had nothing to do with our weekend away. It didn't bother us, we didn't bother it.

** India Arie's "Ready for Love". Feel free to use it. It's great.

Posted bythemikestand at 2:54 PM  

8 stepped up to the mike:

Megan said... 3:14 PM, September 04, 2007  

Ha. I can't imagine remembering other people's but forgetting my own. I forget other people's first dance song the morning after. Our's was "Man of the world" by Marc Cohen. It wasn't one that had any special meaning to us (first date, while proposing, etc) but it was the only one we could agree on. HOpe that does foreshadow anything.

meegiemoo said... 4:43 PM, September 04, 2007  

My husband and I had no dancing at our wedding so we mercilessly have one less thing to try and remember 10 years later.

Steph said... 4:58 PM, September 04, 2007  

Mr. Happy and I didn't have a dance - There were not one but THREE Baptist ministers present at our wedding. If they had danced the end of the world would have been imminent. - but we do have a song, the title of which is engraved inside his ring.

chRistine said... 8:40 PM, September 04, 2007  

we eloped, solving most of the wedding issues including song. our song, however, is yellow by coldplay.. we heard it on our first date. how corny.

i remember the song i danced to at my first wedding. the memory, unfortunately, continues to outlive the marriage. bryan adams, everything you do. should have known, right? ;)

Charlatan said... 11:14 PM, September 04, 2007  

We were supposed to have dancing but due to a timing issue the dancing was canceled.

Instead, we had our song played and we danced our "first dance" in a small garden alcove alone... I think a few friends and the wait staff may have see us dance in they getting their coats and tearing down the dinner set up...

The song was Tom Waits, Innocent When you Dream.

Karen said... 10:49 AM, September 05, 2007  

Multiple weddings, no dancing, maybe dancing should have been included?

If there's ever a next time, I'm putting my vote in early for "The Luckiest", Ben Folds.

Tanya said... 8:58 AM, September 11, 2007  

That's hilarious. I didnt even GO to your wedding and I remember what your first dance was!

Lisa said... 8:30 PM, September 13, 2007  

Hilare that you can remember everybody else's!

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