Sunday, November 23, 2003

Pantihose and Promises

It's been a year and a half (that's when I stopped ballroom dancing and dudeing up with the frilly fun clothes that go along with it) since I wore pantihose, but I struggled into a pair yesterday as I readied myself for my cousin's daughter's wedding. I finally twisted far enough to get them on, but not after hearing a few crunches and cracks in my back. Not a good sound for someone who's got a major problem with a disc in her lumbar spine. As it turned out, no harm seemed to have been done, but I have promised myself that from now on, no more pantihose.

And then my cousin's daughter and now husband promised each other, in front of friends and family, all the things that people promise each other when they're in happily love and looking toward a future together.

It was a traditional Catholic wedding ceremony that included a reading from the Book of Genesis about how the Judeo-Christian God created man, realized that the poor guy was lonesome, and then formed woman out of the guy's rib. Yeecchh!!

I wanted to stand up and yell, "Hey, haven't you heard of Lilith? Don't you know the power of myth to make real history happen? No, No! That's not the story that needs to be told. You got it wrong. You got it all wrong!!"

But, of course, I didn't. I just squirmed in my seat and hoped for the best.

And the reception was the best! Tribal, even.

I have to hand it to my cousin's daughter and her mate. It was their celebration and their way to celebrate. The DJ revved up everyone (except those of my mother's generation) with rhythms driven by blood-pounding drums. And the tribe gathered around the newlyweds, who writhed and wound around each other as well as others in the gathering circle as the bride's white gown sparkled through the web of strobing limbs. They danced in groups, alone, and in pairs -- men with women, women with women, men with men. The beat went on, and on, and on. The circle ebbed and flowed and whooped and danced. The air throbbed with promise.

And my cousins and I crowned our you'd-never-know-it-graying-heads with glow-in-the-dark circlets and became, for those moments, our younger, vital, music-infused selves. Luckily, I must have sent my sciatic nerve into shock because it never felt a thing.

After the reception, some of my cousins went back to one of their homes to continue partying. I had to drive back upstate. The party was over for me. At least this one was.

But I'm promising myself that I will find more chances to party. And I'm promising myself that I will do it without the back-breaking risk of wriggling into those claustraphobic pantihose.

No comments: