The String Trio

In planning our wedding, selecting the music was one of the very first things we decided to tackle. After all, what could be easier, or more fun? We figured we'd knock this one out in no time flat. And, the fun of doing so would kind of set the tone for the balance of our wedding planning.

As it turned out, selecting the music certainly did give us some insight into what planning our wedding was going to be like. Here's the glimpse into the future that we gained:

Nothing about planning a wedding is easy.

As hard as it may be to believe, from the very beginning, Teresa and I totally disgreed over the music for our wedding. And, it took a pretty good dose of husband-and-wife-like compromise to come to an agreement.

All of the disagreement was borne out of my fear that our wedding might turn into just another typical Southern wedding. You see, weddings here in the South are notorious for being some of the most lenghty, mind-numbingly boring, milk-and-cookies affairs known to man. And, I was bound and determined not to put my friends through such an experience. So, I came up with what I thought was a bright idea:

I wanted to hand out kazoos. Now before you laugh, listen to my plan: I figured I could go down to the music store and pick up 100 kazoos for less than a hundred bucks. Then, I'd take them down to my shop and paint "Fred and Teresa" on the side of them. The kazoos could then serve as a kind of a take-home memento of our wedding. And, when time came for Teresa to walk down the aisle, I wanted everyone in the audience to play Here Comes the Bride. I figured that this would get everyone involved in our wedding, and would make things a little more fun.

I excitedly told Teresa of my grand kazoo plan. It was obvious from the start that she did not share my enthusiasm for kazoos.

She reminded me that the audience will not be comprised of young, rambunctious free spirits, all eager to play the kazoo. She was right, too. I often forget that we are no longer living in the 70's. Our friends aren't driving around in VW buses, clad in tie-died tee shirts anymore. Instead, they're in coats and ties, driving to work in mini-vans. I forget that some of them are actually grandparents. She also pointed out that many members of the audience will be elderly relatives of ours, and might be prone to vapor locking at the sound of a hundred kazoos. Worse yet, our audience might actually chicken out, and not make a sound.

Teresa went on to tell me that she didn't care what kind of insane ideas I came up with for the reception, but that the ceremony itself was very important to her. In the end, all she asked of me was this: Ten Minutes of Dignity.

I could tell by the look in Teresa's eyes that this was not some frivilous, off-the-cuff request. The wedding ceremony was far more important to her than I had realized. How could any man possibly reject such a simple, heart-felt request? If Ten Minutes of Dignity was all my sweet little bride requested of me, then Ten Minutes of Dignity was exactly what I would do my best to provide her.

So, we reached a compromise. I agreed to give up my kazoos. In return, Teresa agreed to walk down the asile to the beautiful sound of Wagner's Bridal Chorus being played by a live string trio. And, I would be waiting for her on stage in the most dignified tuxedo I can find.

Having reached this agreement, we sent off for audition tapes from musicians around town. Then, one beautiful Friday afternoon, we sat out on the screen porch, had a few beers, and began listening to the tapes. The sound of the Corda Trio playing the opening strains of the Bridal Chorus sent a shock of cold chills down my spine. When I looked over at Teresa, she had tears in her eyes. The choice was made.

So, our wedding day will begin with Ten Minutes of Dignity. I will be standing on the stage in the most dignified manner I can muster. I want every eye in the room to be focused on Teresa as those violins begin to play. And, the only sound I want to hear above the violins are the sniffles that the sight of my beautiful bride are likely to evoke.

Then, after the ceremony, maybe we can bust out some kazoos.