It was undoubtedly the best wedding I have ever been too, not that it didn't have its weird moments though. He rented out a three million dollar beach house for a week for about six grand and invited all his friends, family, and friends of the family for a soiree that will probably not be topped in my lifetime. Five minutes into the party I found the margarita machine and was high flying about twenty minutes later. It was then I was informed that I was to be the videographer. Nash's camera is some uber complicated three thousand dollar camera that I am yet to understand how to operate. Luckily he has color correction and a veritable cornucopia of options in post production to make up for my ignorance.
At around six thirty they decided to hold the ceremony, by then I was rather sauced and ready. I followed the bride with a tracking shot down two flights of stairs to the second floor where everyone clapped for the couple. Nash's mother, who is an ordained Atheist minister, announced that the ceremony would be held out on the beach. High tide had just peaked and I once again followed with a tracking shot down to the beach where they were wed. Unfortunately, the ideal position for shooting them was being encroached by the tide, and rather than breaking the shot, I let the water ruin my shoes.
It was worth it.
Later there was live music from two Mexican guys who played a harp and a ukulele. It got a little weird when his Aunt started hitting on me. First she was just really interested in what I was doing with my life. Then she couldn't stop playing with my hair. A few drinks later she was grabbing my ass and trying to kiss me on the mouth. Of course my friends just watched and snickered will I was being molested, that is to be expected. What really weirded me out was the fact that her husband was watching the whole time and did absolutely nothing to stop her. I kept looking at him like "You know, you can step in any time now..." but he just kept on acting like nothing was afoul. Finally, Nash's mom stepped in and regulated her sister. I poured her a shot of Cabo Wabo to show my gratitude and then found a corner to hide in until she left.
Still, I had fun and the highlight of the evening was when everyone was toasting the newlywed couple. Of course parents spoke up with the usual "they grow up so fast" routine, and the bride's sister managed to set the bar for being overly emotional, but it was when everyone was done and they were about to direct everybody's attention to the catering that I felt I needed to speak up.
I announced "Before anybody gets too excited about the food, I have something I'd like to say." I could sense the uneasiness in the room. You see, I have a habit of speaking my mind and to Hell with the consequences. The looks on my friend's faces and the newlyweds was priceless. I used this to my advantage. "Nash and I have known each other since we were in the sixth grade, and as those of you who have been keeping track already know, that is a long time. So I figured I should say something, and then I got to thinking... What would be more inappropriate at a wedding than a political analogy?" Everybody's eyes got wide.
"When Nash was in high school in government class we were talking about American politics and he said that people tend to focus one side too much and that a country is like a plane. If you lean too much on one wing you tend to fly in circles. I happen to agree. Without getting too serious and without revealing his political persuasions..." "You already have" he interjected. A few people nervously chuckled.
I continued "Here is my point, life is a lot like politics in this sense. I watched for years as Nash flew in circles. And then one day something interesting happened, he met Genvieve. And I'll be damned if she didn't set him straight. She reeled him in and gave him balance and for that I am eternally grateful." And then I turned to him and said "Here's to flying straight. I am glad you found your other wing."
Everybody ate it up, including my best friend and his new beautiful wife. Ryan and his father especially enjoyed it because they are both amateur pilots. Several family members later complimented me on my speech and it felt good. While I was honored to film the event, and just plain honored be there, the greatest honor was to be able to say what I said... and mean every word of it.