Cheers to you, Mr. /Ms. “Take Over the Wedding” Guest! We see you at every one of the 1,000 weddings we have produced for almost 20 years. You have been the inspiration for this post, celebrating the next “casting call” for the next wedding we produce.
All candidates are invited to audition this September; however, it is helpful if we know in advance who is taking on which role, but if you wish to just show up for more of an inprov performance, as we are used to, we welcome that, too. In fact, we will be looking for you.
Know It All Bridal Party Member
Trying to show off in front of others and convey that he/she is a true friend, Know It All is really just struggling for attention and feels inadequate in power in life in general. Still, she decides the wedding planner and all the professionals doing their job who have spent a year working together to plan the couple’s wishes do not know as well as she does and asks each one constantly, “Should we be doing it this way?” on the actual day of the wedding, and then proceeds with her own idea and making sure that all the hard work planned by the bride/groom and professionals is thrown out the window because her way is better. Perhaps secretly she always wanted to be a wedding planner; perhaps she wants to look like a hero to the couple, but whatever the reason, her way is always better and she lets everyone know.
Pouty Passive Aggressive Guest
When discovering that some guests sat at her table by mistake, displacing her, Pouty Passive decides to make her own “table” at the patio adjacent to the main dining area and just stay there , separate from the other dining guests. When the Catering Manager kindly offers to help her find her seat or make another one for her at another table, Pouty Passive declines and says she will remain at this patio table the entire night, determined to send a message to all and put them in their place and make them pay for this accidental misfortune.
Big Spender I
Thinking that it is perhaps his bank account paying for the wedding, Big Spender 1 has no problem telling the wedding vendors what to do – even if it costs extra money to the wedding couple. At evening’s end, he is the first one at the band or DJ stage to insist that the DJ break all local sound ordinance laws , the facility policy on going overtime, and ensure not only the DJ/band stay late, but that the facility and all vendors working stay late because of “just one more song” requested by Big Spender 1. Further, Big Spender 1 feels that he is exempt from county laws and apparently feels that he has enough money he can take on the attorneys and lawsuit which may result from the venue being closed down because the music went over the legally-contracted time.
Big Spender II
Big Spender 2 came to party. And even though it is after 10:00pm, the venue and all service provider’s end time as well as the bar being closed 20 minutes ago, she treats her last two sips of wine in her glass on her table like they are the last two teeth she has left, and she is at risk for losing them. When the catering staff removes her glass because she is on the dance floor and it is past event end time, and the staff are cleaning up, Big Spender 2 will march right over to the nearest staff person and demand that her glass with two sips of wine that was left on her placesetting be replaced immediately, since the catering staff had the nerve to remove it while she was on the dance floor after event end time. She insists that the staff go and get her another glass. She feels she is entitled to spend the bride’s and groom’s food and beverage money, since it is not her own. She came here to party on someone else’s dime, and no one is going to interfere with that – not even after the end of the event when it’s over, and especially not with those last two sips of wine left in her glass. They will have to pry it from her cold, dead hands.
Believes that he/she has more food and beverage service experience than the professionals working the event, whose expertise includes thousands of events keeping food fresh, replenished and ensuring top notch service for large groups of guests. While all guests have been asked to wait until their tables are invited to the buffet and there is a reason for this, Banquet Captain determines he and his table are more hungry and important than the other 200 guests, bride and groom and their VIP tables combined, and self-dismisses their own table out of order, ahead of anyone else. Banquet Captain often masks their disrespectful behavior as trying to “help look after others” and has an inner need to be the “hero” of their table, when really they just are impatient, hungry and have an ego the size of Argentina.
Seating Chart Re-Arranger
Seating Chart Re-Arranger is mysterious. No one knows exactly why he/she decides they don’t like their table or seating assignment. It can be best surmised that again, they feel they know better than the wedding couple who spent painstaking months putting it together, handling cancelations, last minute add-ons and more. It could also be that Seating Chart Re-Arranger does not care for being in the same space as some others at his/her table and lacks the maturity to just deal with it as an adult for a few small hours of life. But whatever the reason, they are sneaky – often switching out namecards at placesettings, table numbers and more when no one is looking, wreaking havoc on other guests who are following the plan correctly, often displacing them and causing time delays while the planner and staff figure out where the issue is. As a side note, it is surmised that Seating Chart Re-Arranger may sometimes be connected to Pouty Passive Aggressive Guest above intentionally.
Think we are making any of this up ? Think again. We couldn’t make it up if we tried. Reality is often stranger than fiction and we have witnessed most of this cast of characters at almost every single wedding we have ever produced. Keeping a sense of humor about it helps keep it in perspective and perhaps, if we are really lucky, may help remind a few guests that the day is about the couple getting married and honoring their hard work and the professional expertise of all their service partners (vendors). Most importantly, we hope it is a reminder of a lost dying art: how to be a guest and have some manners.
Tags: casting, event planning advice, guest behavior, guest role, snark