This post has been updated since it was first published.
In the grand tradition of Hax’s annual Holiday Hootenanny, which started in 2000 as a way for Hax readers to vent their frustrations (and celebrate the joys) of the holiday season, Friday’s chat will offer an opportunity to talk about all things weddings — the good, the bad and the ugly.
The Wedding Hootenanny was proposed by a reader, who wrote in to a recent Hax chat with this incredible tale:
Hi Carolyn, Would you consider a wedding version of the holiday hootenanny (preferably soon)? Sis just announced that she’s hoping I have another early delivery (my first child had a terrifying and dangerous arrival at seven months) so that I have more time to lose the baby weight before her wedding photos. I know this will be funny eventually, and in the meantime, misery loves company!
Topics may include, but aren’t limited to: engagement party/shower etiquette, bridezillas/groomzillas, bridesmaid dresses, heartwarming toasts, toasts that made you cringe, destination weddings, the best maid of honor/best man ever, the worst maid of honor/best man ever, outlandish demands from various members of the bridal and special anecdotes from your own wedding or those you’ve attended.
We’ll also riff on another Hootenanny tradition — a soundtrack, curated by you, with a focus on obvious wedding songs (think “Chapel of Love”) and songs you’d hear at a reception party (“Electric Slide,” anyone?). If you want to play a good — or awesomely bad — wedding tune, follow the instructions below.
1. Go to turntable.fm. Register with your email address or log in through your Twitter or Facebook account. (Turntable will not post anything to your Facebook wall or Twitter stream without your permission).
2. Search rooms at the top of the screen by typing “Carolyn Hax Wedding Hootenanny.” Click into the room titled “Carolyn Hax Wedding Hootenanny.” If you can’t find it, try this link, which only works if you are logged in: http://turntable.fm/carolyn_hax_wedding_hootenanny
3. Music should begin playing. You can mute at any time by clicking on the stereos.
4. Your name or Twitter handle will appear with an avatar and a little speech bubble identifying which of the characters in the room is you. To change the name that appears with your avatar, click on “Settings” at the top of the page and select “Edit Profile.” Change the “Display Name” to any name you want and click save. You can also change your avatar’s appearance.
5. You can chat with fellow readers on the bottom right.
6. If you like a song, click the “awesome” button at the bottom of the screen. If you dislike it, click the “lame” button. If enough people “lame” a song, it will be skipped.
How to DJ:
1. Occasionally, DJ spots up “on stage” open up. To start DJ’ing you will need to have songs added to your “DJ Queue.” To add songs to your DJ Queue, click “Add Songs” on the right. Search for song titles or artists in the search box or upload music. Click the plus sign to add songs to your queue.
2. When you have songs in your queue and you see a “Play Music” bubble over a DJ spot, click on the spot. This will transport your avatar image up to that spot. The first song in your queue will play when it is your turn.
3. We ask that DJ’s play a maximum of three songs and then vacate your spot to another DJ. You can jump back in if another spot becomes available later. We reserve the right to boot any bad DJs, so no “November Rain.”
4. You can quit DJing by rolling your mouse over your avatar and clicking “Quit DJing.” This will make you part of the audience again.
The chat starts at noon on Friday. Note that Hax will devote the first hour of the chat to answering your usual questions about life, love and her recent columns. You can submit questions here.
Carolyn Hax: How to abandon a wedding tradition
Carolyn Hax: Engagement parties, showers and other wedding events
Carolyn Hax: 2012 Hootenanny of Holiday Horrors
Surviving wedding season: Sanity-saving strategies for brides, grooms, attendants and guests