The Reception: a work of art worthy of a museum

You know those people who meet at BYU, but they're from two different parts of the country, so they get married in Utah and traverse the nation holding open houses and receptions in order to share their joy with as many friends and loved ones as possible?

Well, Cicada and Murray do not fall into that category. First of all, they didn't meet at BYU. They met after Murray stalked Cicada online. They are, in fact, from different countries, but that didn't stop them from holding only one reception; however, in honor of that alternative practice, we decided to wait a week to post the reception, so it would feel like they had two.

Anyway. After the temple ceremony and much photo taking, Nemesis and I hurried to Jenny's where we ate the entire contents of her refrigerator in order to shore ourselves up for the work ahead of us. Turns out we didn't really need to do that, but we didn't know this at the time. Then we headed out to the reception center, even the Springville Art Museum, also known as The Venue of Choice for Supercool People's Wedding Receptions.

Nemesis, as the Food Service and Preparation Chairperson, kept saying, "I really don't think we need to be there right at 4:00. I mean, it's not like we can put food out or anything. I don't think there will be much for us to do." I will shortly prove to you that all our preconceived ideas about this shindig were completely false. Except for the part about it being cool.

So we arrived, found the kitchen, and noticed that it was completely full of food. Nemesis, true to her name, took charge with a vengeance. Earlier, Ootsie Boodle had warned Nem that certain persons might be inclined to take over, and that she needed to be patient with that. Nem, with a straight face, said, "That's okay. I have a pretty mean left hook if anyone tries anything." I think the word must have gotten out, because no one bothered her.

Cicada had planned everything out marvelously, with the help of her excellent mother. There were pages of recipes (so we could throw salads and stuff together), pages of notes on what condiments went in what bowls, which platters would hold the fruits, vegetables, salmon, roast beef, etc., and everything organized in a most easy-to-carry-out way, what with the organizers themselves being involved elsewhere and not available for consultation for much of the time. It was truly amazing.

We started by donning our very own Cicada and Murray aprons, made for us by Dr. Rice, which was a delightful surprise. Dr. Rice came in, looking lovely but slightly harried, and said to Ootsie Boodle, "Well, we finished the aprons. And by 'we' I mean 'me.'"

Ootsie sympathetically patted Dr. Rice on the arm and said, "I know." Later I found out that The Boy and El Senor were supposed to be helping with that project. I guess they were busy playing with the Bean, whom they awakened early from his nap, to ensure that his parents would be driven crazy when he was overcome with tiredness halfway through the reception. A worthy cause, to be sure, but where did that leave Dr. Rice? Doing a huge job on her own with very little time, that's where.

Also, I can tell you that if my brother woke up my baby from his nap before my sister's wedding reception, there would have been words. None spoken in my hearing, however, which speaks very well of the Captains, I must say.

We didn't get a photo, but picture a white chef-type apron with this photo on the front. So cute.
People started showing up to help, and Nemesis was able to put everyone right to work, because she is amazing like that. I had a very fun time saying, "Ask Nemesis," and mostly minding my own business, except for when I had to tease Switchback to see what stuff she was made of. She came through brilliantly.

Here's what the kitchen looked like once most of the food was already out on the buffet tables. Switchback is either making off with a good deal of the dessert, or preparing to take it out to the serving tables. Hard to know which.

I think this was taken just after Nemesis came upon me eating up the baklava that she had set aside for Cicada and Murray to take home with them, since no one was feeding them during the reception. If I remember correctly, her words were, "What are you doing, you jerk? Those are Cicada's!" And then I felt slightly sheepish. I mean, how could I have known? There was food everywhere, and we had quickly developed the practice of eating whatever we wanted, since there was enough for about 12,000 guests, and as far as I know there were only about 350 in attendance. Also, there was no time to get a plate and sit down to eat, so we grazed. Anyway, after this disaster, we decided it might be a good idea to set aside the treats in a box, so that they weren't just sitting out there, unmarked, waiting to be eaten. Plus, who doesn't eat baklava when it's just sitting there? No one, that's who.

I won't burden you with all the details. Suffice it to say that there were French cheeses, artisan breads, I think I mentioned salmon, and every good thing. Here's the buffet table in most of its glory. Hard to get a good shot once people started thronging to it, but oh, it was lovely!

But let's talk about the highlights of the preparation. First, I must say that Cicada's family is made up of the most mellow people I have ever met in my life. Do not take this to mean that they don't get things done. They worked like crazy. But nothing stressed them out. For example, there was no salad dressing for the spinach, candied pecan, gorgonzola, craisin, and fresh pear salad. (Mmmmmmm!) Upon discovering this, I felt my blood pressure start to rise. It was mentioned to Ootsie Boodle. "Okay," she said calmly. "We'll just send someone out to get some." Like it was really that simple. This happened several times. At one point Jenny said, "Where were these people when I got married?" Because seriously, nothing fazed them. Not that anything went terribly wrong, but still. It was amazing and inspiring to watch.

Another example of restraint and patience. So we were searching everywhere for some stuff, and finally Ootsie asked El Senor if he knew where it was. He said, "Oh. It's out in my car. Did you want that brought in?" If it had been my kid, he would have seen much eye rolling and possibly have received a sarcastic reply. Ootsie just said, "Yes," and went on with her life. Nemesis and I may have exchanged glances, because that was too good an opportunity to miss for raking someone over the coals. Really.

The absolute best moment was when Ootsie Boodle realized that Certain Important Items had been left at The Condo, even the new home of the Terreno di Amores. And Cicada and Murray were conveniently at the condo, so she could just call them and ask them to bring said items when they came over to the museum. Only they didn't answer the phone. I came late to the conversation when Nemesis came over to me and whispered, "Afternoon Delight! Cicada and Murray aren't answering their phone!" Ootsie was standing there dialing and saying (calmly) "Oh, I'm sure they're just resting." I think her voice was slightly higher than usual, though. And then she (ever so calmly) started trying to recruit the brothers to just run over to the condo and grab the stuff. Understandably, every one of them refused. Ootsie Boodle graciously did not press them. Then she seized on this wonderful manwho, after hearing the details said, "Sure. I'm up for an awkward moment," and gallantly got in his car and ran the dreaded errand. Way to take one for the team, Viktor! Sadly, he had nothing to report upon his return, because Cicada and Murray showed up moments later. They must have just missed each other.

I'll leave you with a photo of the cake. Just one more example of how classy Cicada and Murray are.

And now Nemesis will provide you with the happy ending to our little story.


Miss Hass said...

Beautiful. Just beautiful.

bedelia said...

I love the cake. And i laughed really hard at the Victor link.

Jordy said...

I read the Viktor link too, and I laughed hysterically. Reading those stories about Viktor, then reading something nonchalant was a real treat.

Nemesis said...

I'm sorry for snapping at you about the baklava. Although I'm betting I didn't actually call you a jerk. Unless I did, in which case I apologize.

daltongirl said...

I'm pretty sure there was an epithet involved. Possibly not "jerk." Anyway, apology accepted. I didn't take it personally. You were under a lot of pressure. If I had had access to a calypso band, I would have sung "Under the Sea" to relax you.

Cicada said...

Why there was no "indiscretion" between the ceremony and reception:

1) We decided beforehand that wasn't classy.

2) We didn't want to have bad hair.

3) We didn't want to rush a good thing.

4) We didn't even have time to if we'd wanted to.