Aug. 28, 2005

Blow by Blow...

So, what went down Friday night? Well we had three visits from the police, once with eight officers. We had a bank spokesman who channeled his inner DJ. We had a broken toilet. We had a sound-system crisis (but no-one knew about it). We had girls swapping dresses. And that's just off the top my my head!.

Guess I'd better run through this in chronological order... First, Dan and Tam were casting about looking for interesting venues to hold a post wedding bash for all their friends. They were looking for a place with a bit of character, perhaps a gallery, or warehouse space. I suggested a bar at the top of the Manulife Center called Panorama which had a great view of the city (see a 360° interior view of it here). They liked it but price and "feel" weren't quite right. Sheryl had seen an amazing home on a design TV show, and as chance would have it she and Tam found it through a film location web site. This is the house two of the Rolling Stones had been staying at for the last few weeks that also turns out to be literally two blocks from Sheryl's condo (but well hidden). Catering was arranged by Rick from Daniel et Daniel, with DJ Kasha hired to spin the tunes. Sheryl's friend Louise helped with the decoration concepts too. I had a part to play as well, as roadie and amateur photographer as well as providing sound system advice. Sheryl's friend Adrian took photographs that night too, as well as at the wedding. He's the real deal, with serious fashion (the young Kate Moss) experience. I'm looking forward to seeing his results.

So on the day the weather was stunningly perfect. Warm with blue skies, and a clear evening. The house was a converted small factory renovated by a multi-millionaire for his family and now serving as a party venue when not being leased to the "right kind of people". It had two very open floors with 20 ft ceilings and a huge roof-top patio. The catered food was both gorgeous and delicious, with a general Asian theme. Sheryl made another one of her sensational decorated cakes. DJ Kasha pumped out great tunes, starting with mellow background stuff and switching to heavier beats as darkness fell. When the guests arrived it was all in place, with tonnes of little decorative touches added through out the house to cement the experience.

What happened before the guests arrived? Well let's just say that there were some technical problems... Dan had rented the equipment that DJ Kasha had specified, but decided to save the set-up fee by doing it himself. He's a capable guy, but we got stumped... He, his brother Andrew, and I set in all up (two turntables, two CD players, a mixer, an amp, speakers) and everything seemed properly connected. The problem - nothing came out! It turned out that everything was properly connected but the amp had been mis-configured by the rental company. With the clock ticking down I left Dan to scratch his head because two head's worth of scratching wasn't helping and no-one was returning calls. I raced back to the office and grabbed the compact mixer/amp and speakers I had used at Sheryl's Aussie Barbecue and inserted them into the DJ's system. We had sound with 15 minutes to spare. A friend of the cater showed up shortly afterward and identified the problem, a tiny "dip" switch that set whether one of the inputs should act as an output.

Then, as soon as the DJ started testing, we got screams of abuse from the apartment building beside us! I don't know what they expected on a Friday night, but I like my music quiet enough to converse and that's what we had. It the end we had a visit from upset neighbours and three police inspections, with as many as eight officers "in attendance". The police ended up giving the bride congratulatory hugs and shaking everyone's hands. The worst thing that happened was that someone from the apartment building threw a peach at the patio (a good hundred feet away and probably 40 feet below them) and struck the bride full on in the chest. Now that was something the police should have acted on. I was amazed at how Tam took it in stride. In the wee hours of the morning we moved the speakers inside and just kept going. When the DJ finished her gig at 2:00 AM she relaxed with us for a while and one of Dan's friends, who is a spokesman for one of Canada's biggest banks, took over. I think he missed his calling... He spun the tunes until probably 6:00 AM.

I don't have much to say about the actual party, as it was just one long blur of tasty snacks, lichee cocktails, pumpin' tunes, and dancing with beautiful girls. Just one big swarm of happy sexy people. I gather that as the evening tailed off into morning there was a blocked toilet that required massive continuous bailing and a visit by a 24-hour plumber. But that's just how you know it was a good time. And yes, those sexy girls kept slipping off to the bathroom to swap dresses. Sheryl and I left at 4:00 AM but couldn't fall asleep until 5:00. Maybe we should have just stayed up.

Listening to: Shiny Happy People by R.E.M. from Out of Time.

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