Remember that part where I said that L and I had been lucky that no one so far has had a breakdown? You do? Well, scratch that. Just strike it from the record and pretend you never heard me say it.
That's because at what was probably our penultimate "production meeting" at L's family's house in Chicago over the weekend things got a bit tense. We hadn't had a meeting like this since, oh, Thanksgiving and a lot of things that we went over then had been forgotten over the ensuing six months. The problem was that each person forgot a different detail, making the person who remembered the other person's forgotten detail annoyed that the other person had forgotten the detail. You follow?
Our biggest challenge in planning is the location. At a hotel or country club an events manager would handle all the details down to who will turn on the lights in the ballroom. But at camp we are in charge of everything. If food is made in the camp's kitchen for a party in other camp building, it doesn't just magically get there. That's a detail we - and by "we" I really mean L's parents - have to figure out. No party planner will come to camp to help us decorate for the rehearsal dinner or set up a microphone. So when one item on our list includes "projection screen for rehearsal dinner," it's not just something that can be checked off so easily. Behind each item is responsibility: someone to take charge of getting the screen, setting it up, testing everything before our guests come in, and then breaking it down after it's all over.
"But we went over this last time," was a frequent refrain of our meeting. As were "You didn't hear what I said," and "We just went over that." "Why are you being so hostile?" may have made an appearance although I admit to blocking some of the conversation out of my mind. Smartly, as I am not yet legally bound to L's family, I chose not to express my opinions too forcefully, instead playing the role of mediator, reinterpreting questions and hopefully preventing the meeting from descending into total chaos.
To be fair, things ended smoothly, no one's feathers were left ruffled for too long and a few heated moments doesn't change L's parents's generosity. A lot of the stress might have had to do with the condenesed nature of our meeting, crammed in as it was among a number of other events L had to attend for a good friend's wedding this weekend. Between a dinner on Friday night and L being nervous about getting to the church on time for the Saturday evening ceremony, a limited window of opportunity to discuss everything made conditions ripe for conflict.
Only three months to go...Posted by The Groom at June 1, 2004 11:06 AM