Planning a same-sex wedding
The fact is, most couples argue in the early stages of wedding planning. My partner, Diane, and I are no exception to this rule. Currently, our biggest argument surrounding plans for our wedding is whether or not she can slide into the ballroom during our reception, performing Journey's "Don't Stop Believin'" on her air guitar. That's right, we plan to make our entrance to an '80s rock song that makes vague references to gambling and prostitution. Despite this, we will hold on to our personal feelings about the lyrics: a mention of my origins and a mantra to keep believing. After all, as Diane and I talk about wedding plans, we have to believe that when the day finally rolls around, we will be permitted to legally marry one another in our home state of Maine.
The theme surrounding our wedding dreams harkens back to a time when the Queer community couldn't imagine marriage equality, but was trying to survive homophobia, hate violence, and the AIDS epidemic. Granted, being able to get legally hitched is still among the least of our community's worries for some. But times have changed and Diane and I are part of the new generation of young Queers who want to enter into the legal institution of marriage. Although we were children in the '80s, we remember that decade in our lives fondly — and would later refer to characters like Bert and Ernie, Rainbow Bright, and Punky Brewster as our individual roots. (For those, not in the know, a root is something that signals to a younger queer person that they might be different than their straight peers. Rent the 1999 Jamie Babbit film But I'm a Cheerleader for further clarification and a good laugh.)
Having such incredible memories of '80s shows, candy, and music, I knew I wanted my wedding day to bring me back to my childhood. When I brought up this idea one night during a tipsy karaoke adventure, and she exclaimed "yes!", I knew again that Diane was the one.
A common misconception about our plan is that the primary theme will be the music that will be played as our guests drink and dance all night long. But Diane and I want to incorporate all of the things we love about the era that introduced us to neon and Pop Rocks. We imagine bouquets of Blow Pops, Tootsie Rolls, and Pixy Stix instead of flowers on the tables. In lieu of a cake, one of our artist friends has offered to sculpt a creation out of Little Debbie snacks, Twinkies, and Ring Dings. Decorations are trickier — should we go with an '80s prom theme or a collection of decorations that draw on the vast number of '80s films we still watch? We're up in the air. Our guests will be encouraged to come in costume after raiding thrift stores or simply pulling that prom dress with the puffy sleeves out of storage. Yes, the music will be '80s too, and we want a mix of karaoke, a live band, and a DJ spinning tunes throughout the night.
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