There were several perfumed candles burning in the entrance.
Fighting off a chemical headache, I uncorked the wine and took this time to reflect. I stood in solidarity, I'd always thought, with the spell each wedding attempts to cast; we’re doing similar things here, aren’t we? Me with my pen in hand and you with your better spun, less acerbic sense of narrative. Your signature cocktail, your monogrammed satchel of artisan sweets, the curated perceptions of those who give your toasts: themes emerge. Themes that sneakily defer both future and past to the present.
The fragrance of the candles was taking over, a rose-scented sort of bathroom smell. A smell that works hard to hide bullshit. This, then, weddings, was the difference between you and me. The cooks, who were concerned about the candles clashing with people’s appetites, opened up the kitchen door. The first few drops of rain were falling.
You’ve always been a little neurotic, the maid of honor read from her notes, the tears lining up behind each awkward pause. But that’s what I’ve always loved about you. She spoke for us all when she said this. It was clear that tonight would veer toward bereavement, not chaos. Fizzle not bang, drizzle not thunderstorm. Sympathy cards all around for the bride. Either way, I regretted not saving that “November Rain” allusion for tonight.
I went outside to the pantry to eat my dinner, letting the rain loosen up my food on the way. Nothing was going to clash with my appetite—even the raccoons, who despite the open pantry door, failed to make an appearance.
I pondered what sort of changes next year’s season would bring. Would pudding be the new tarts be the new pie be the new cupcakes? Would weddings tighten or ease their imaginative grip?
I went home with several slices of braised pork.