And then, just like that, I wound up in an episode of Girls:
Well, not an actual episode of Girls, as my parents kind of adorably misinterpreted and waited up all night to hear about my experience of being an extra in The Greatest Show Of Our Generation. I was at my friend Leah and her twin sister Elliott's 30th Birthday, which was as close to a glorious nighttime circus as I've ever gone to.
I typically hate when people celebrate birthdays in New York, because it's always the fucking pits. The whole hold a well vodka-soda and listen to this random co-worker of theirs talk about nothing while I put in my requisite 75 minutes before apologizing and leaving is far from my favorite adult role to play. But, then, we showed up at this warehouse event space, walked in, and, well, take a look:
I think I stood there for about ten full minutes trying to understand what was going on around me. Candy, separated into favorites with the fucking purple Skittles and yellow Starbursts banished to another galaxy? A popcorn machine forever full, with enough baggies to keep going back for more?! The list just went on and on and on — a tarot card reader, multiple photo booths, The Parent Trap playing against a wall, a fake fireplace, a doodle wall?!! No line for the bathrooms?! How could this be? WHAT WAS THIS PARADISE?!?!!? I had, of course, completely forgotten that Elliott is a party planner and interior designer, and she planned her fiesta like she would for her favorite client: herself and her twin sis.
I didn't kick back and drink enough to fully enjoy what was going on — her homemade coconut brownie pop thingamajigs were more worthwhile vehicles for caloric consumption than, say, prosecco — but it was all an incredible surprise that I still don't fully believe happened. You can also hire Elliott for your own parties here, and probably should, because she'll separate out the red Skittles for you like she did this past weekend. (God's gift to humans, am I right?!)
On Sunday, a car came at 3pm and thus ended the knowledge I had been given about my final destination of my boyfriend's co-worker's wedding. We wound up in New Brunswick, New Jersey, a town that has great kid's menu room service, as witnessed below:
Is this what kids live like these days? Eating the type of tiny beautiful carrots typically reserved for Gwyneth Paltrow recipes and Barefoot Contessa imagery? Not to get all "back in my day", but this is a total carrot stick game changer and way more bootiful than the veggie snax forced upon us. Anyway, back to the program.
If I wasn't already holed up with a fellow tribesmember, I'd be massively busting a move to lay into a gent of the Pakistani variety. (Ladies: heed that warning.) Totally unaware that this party would be the third in a weekend of blowout wedding celebrations, I had no notice to expect unbelievable, intricate earrings, a slew of women with insanely YouTube-tutorial perfect makeup and blow-away glitzy dresses that would thoroughly outdo the surprise episode of House Hunters I stumbled upon later that night featuring a "vintage-obsessed New Yorker looking for a new home for herself, her native boyfriend and her collection of beloved clothing, in the beautiful scenic city of Paris."
Oh, and the new couple get to sit on a fucking THRONE. Game over.
Now, I've never been the type of girl to dream of her wedding, or even really go as far as to plan anything out for my one day, possible, hypothetical one. My mom pulled her dress out of the drawer in the basement cupboard when I was younger to show me, and considering I've never heard of or seen it again, I'm pretty sure my response to the lace waterfall-meets-Sister Wives styling of it was less than satisfactory.
But, having been the brand of girl who uses Pinterest primarily to keep track of hairdos ill never be able to figure out instead of mason Jar floral arrangements, there is only one thing in this world that my never-nuptials are contingent on, and that is an Indian buffet.
Densely not thinking through where I was going or what I'd be doing, I was fully unaware that dinner time would mean a serving spoon, a chafing tray and a MOAT OF MEAT. While the rest of our table was at the hotel bar, I was diving face first into a veritable landscape of rolling lamb hills, palak paneer reservoirs and chicken driftwood in a babbling curried brook, with a naan cliff overlooking the vast, edible land.
Was it wonderful? Yes. Did I realize it would put everyone my age who wasn't used to going crazy on this grub out of commission at approximately 9:45pm? Yes. Am I looking at this photo of a gigantic mound of food and angry at myself for not eating even more? Sadly, Yes.
And, just to paint the full portrait for you, the groom's family member seated at our table ate a scoop full of brown rice, two bites of chicken and a side salad. AKA: less than a quarter of what I shoved into my face. I'm fairly sure my tombstone should be etched with "Their Plates Will Forever Look Nothing Like Hers", but the lettering would likely be really expensive. I guess CW DED" would probably have to do the trick instead.