Monday, January 12, 2009

GT4's Wedding - Pt 1

Peer pressure manifests itself through various contexts, like smoking, cheating in exams, taking roller coaster rides, prostitution and getting married. Most of your friends don’t realize that when they get married, you lose a safety net, and it leaves you wide open for the ‘when’s your turn’ question from nosy strangers.

So why would any true friends want to put you in such a precarious position you ask? That’s because regular sex without condoms, the chance to don a wedding gown and the prospect of losing their freedom is an enticing enough collateral that they would gladly trade in your happiness for. There goes altruism out the window, again.

I’ve never been entirely huge on the whole wedding thing, because my grim myopia on everlasting love forbids me to see anything beyond nagging, more nagging for putting your drinks on the table without a coaster, more nagging for leaving the toilet seat up and endless nagging for not listening to what they have to say.

Then there are the ones that do defy reality and look like an enchanted story right out of Disney. And I know of people who do deserve to be scripted into such a fairytale. And if there should be one, then I hope GT4 and Ruth gets the nod.

3 years ago when we were still religiously partying with cheap alcohol at O Bar, I would never have guessed that GT4 was going to be first of the group to get hitched. We were like all single heterosexual men, had too much love for women and alcohol – or beer in his case – and didn’t have any immediate goals to settle down.

Any other reasons other than the above two, immediately qualifies you to be gay. Need to focus on career, gay. Need time to go to gym, gay. Too much time spent in LAN shops and not enough time to meet women, gay + moron.

When he finally passed us the wedding invitations, it was a kaleidoscopic mesh of emotions. It was weird on some levels because he was my primary school-mate, thrilled because he’s a dear friend to me and the missus is a great person – pretty and she loves champagne, how can you not love her -, yet humbling enough for a good 2 minute self-reflection of my life.

The wedding was numerically symbolic due to several coincidences. It was on the 9th, in the year 2009, his car number plate is 9 and there were 9 brothers and sisters for the wedding. And just to make this more spectacular, I’m going to guess that they met on the 9th, had their first anniversary on the 9th and that bill came up to $9. Now THAT would be cool.

Prior to the wedding, I met up with him regularly over dinner, beer tasting and to throw him a stag night party, which was so mild, I think there are more vice going on at a children’s MacDonald’s party. The great thing was that he grew more excited with every passing day and it was infectious enough to rub off on me and I had a sudden urge to fall in love. So I decided to try proper dating again. Three words,

Worst.Idea.Ever. But that’s a story for another time.

Couple days before the wedding, GT4 gave us a brief rundown of the wedding day and our roles and limitations, which came with an emphasis on appropriate behavior, even under the influence of alcohol. That was a big problem for me. Then he reminded us of the time we have be at his place early in the morning. Now that was a huge problem for Reznor.

Now, I cannot impress upon you how much of problem it is to wake Reznor up, because this is one guy who can fall into such a deep sleep that he will not even respond to an alarm ringing incessantly next to his ear, and this was so loud I would have heard it last year.

True enough, on that very morning, everyone reported to GT4’s place on time or they merely breached it by 10 minutes tops, largely due to directions. Reznor, on the other hand, woke up late and came nearly 45 minutes later. I looked to my watch,

Me: “What time are we supposed to be there?”
GT4: “9.15am.”

It was 9.05am and we were at least a good 15 minute drive away.

Me: “Someone’s very optimistic today, isn’t he?”

When Reznor finally decided not to ruin the wedding and showed up, we convoyed down to Ruth’s place behind schedule -we later realized this was a good thing. This was the ritual practice of door knocking where the men had to go through an entire gauntlet of ‘punishments’ – physical, financial and digestive wise – before the groom is finally able to enter the bride’s room.

It all started with doing push-ups on a crowded stairway, and this was early in the morning, in my new pink shirt, a tie and an empty stomach. For a moment I didn’t know if this was a wedding or a Gucci boot camp.

With that done, it came to a plate lined with bitter-gourd, laced generously with wasabi and freshly cut chilli padi. I don’t know where to begin on this dish about what I hate about it because if ‘shit’ could encapsulate all my disgust for it, then a simplified ‘shit’ will do, but no. If you ever need to simultaneously vomit and sneeze at the same time, then this is the dish for you.

Had it not been for Jerm’s Fiji water – yes we drink only premium water -, I would never have managed to swallow it, and would effectively lose my appetite till my life is over. Then came the sour lime drink, which despite everyone cringing at it, actually tasted pretty good for me since I’ve always had a penchant for all things sour.

And finally, we got pass the first gate and we were allowed into the house but still kept from the bridal door. They took out some bowl with a paste in it and GT4 ran away like it was the plague coming upon Egypt again. You would think that he was going to be fed rotten squid or decayed intestines, but no; almond paste apparently has the same effect on some men.

Like what the fuck I hear you say? Yes, this was the one thing that was actually really delicious and it scared the shit out of him. And there I was thinking that there is nothing more scary than marriage.

Then we were made to line up in a row with our pants pulled up to the knees. Before anything else happened, we all knew there was going to be waxing, pain and a lot of screaming involved.

Botak raised a mild protest and as soon as he lifted up his pants, we could all see why. It was the Amazon rainforest; densely populated, curly and thick. And I thought I was going to have it bad. I did request to wax my balls instead, but they thought I was joking.

Me: “I have to warn you all that there will be a lot of screaming on my part.”

I walked over to this little boy sitting infront of us.

Me: “Hi boy, you might want to cover your ears, because the last time I waxed, a lot of bad things came out my mouth. You do not want to hear it.”

Then 5 seconds later, we were all left with a bald patch on our legs. I turned to Reznor , whose leg looked like the aftermath of a rectangle crop circle.

Me: “There goes wear berms for the next 3 weeks.”

Then it was some banana game where the groom had to peel the banana and eat it while it dangled out of the guy’s crotch. Suddenly, this felt more like an orientation day camp than it did a wedding. Maybe next we would get to sing some campfire songs and toast marshmallows on an open fire.

The penultimate hurdle was some QnA session which started out with a trick multiple choice question on her favourite colour. I shouted, “Diamond”, they laughed and GT4 still got it wrong eventually. And to make it worse, after a series of questions, he had to give them a token sum. He got a bunch of the questions wrong and we started shouting,

I think we try again next year lah.”

When that was all cleared along with the final block which was an agreement ‘contract’ of the usual ‘through sickness and health’ and the whole, ‘my money is my money and your money is our money' crap, he finally made his way into the room the end our suffering.

So it was back to his place and along the way we made some conversation with the 2 sisters that followed Reznor and me in my car. I commented on the relatively short ‘door knock’ and they told us that this was because we came late and we were falling quite a bit behind schedule, hence the abridged version. I always knew being late had its perks.

It was the mandatory tea ceremony at Gt4’s place and then the throwing of the bouquet. Now, if you’ve been properly educated to this ritual by Hollywood, then you would agree that this is the most coveted prize to get, because urban legends say that the one who catches it, would be the next to get married. And Tinseltown has always supported this myth with vivid imagery of a mob trying to snatch the bouquet from mid-air.

Then came the moment for Ruth to throw the bouquet and you would wonder if she was throwing a hand grenade instead, because everyone was trying to distance themselves away from the projected trajectory of the flowers. It took the photographer several minutes to coax them into populating the middle area for photo creditability.

When she finally threw the bridal bouquet, everyone ran away from it and it landed on the ground and the poor girl closest to it had to grudgingly pick it up. It was hilarious to watch because I have never seen women running away that quickly from flowers before.

Me: “Gt4, let’s show the girls how it’s done. We’ll stand there and you throw your car keys.”

We headed back to the bride’s place for her tea ceremony with this huge roasted pig, which two of the guys had to carry up. Then when it was all over, we had a brief discussion for the big dinner ahead and I told them they didn’t have to worry about fire safety because there were lots of SQ girls within the sisters. And more importantly about the rooms they allocated for the brothers.

Ruth: “You guys don’t mess up the room okay? No orgies or whatsoever.”
GT4: “You have to tell it to these two.”

He pointed at Reznor and me.

Ruth: “Ya, you don’t go into the wrong room hor!”
Me: “Relax, as long as the girl that I take up with me isn’t one of the sisters, it’s fine with you right. Don’t worry.”

I looked to Reznor.

Me: “So same rules as Bangkok applies ya?”


At 10:35 AM, Blogger The Horny Bitch said...

Typical Chinese wedding. BORING. Gotta wake up fucking early and only coming straight from the bar is the solution...

The situation in sg is girls running from bouquet, in US ppl fight for it... Now is that what we call "cultural diff"?

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