My uncle has a side business of being a wedding photographer on the weekends. During the busier summer seasons, he works larger weddings and picks up a second person to help with getting all the shots he needs for these more demanding, expensive clients.
Years ago, I was in between semesters in college, and I got the gig to be his assistant. The cash was good, and as a naturally tech savvy guy, I was pretty comfortable using his digital cameras, even though they were a pretty new thing to most people.
It was a blur of a summer. Just a flood of white dresses, boring speeches and awkward dancing. But one wedding I will never forget. From the moment we showed up to snap pics of the bride getting ready, she was really rude to my uncle and me. We weren’t her first choice for the photographer gig, and she let us know it. I guess her mom had chosen us and was paying for it as a gift. But my uncle, being a total pro, just rolled with it and told me to try my best to stay quiet and out of the way.
Through the whole day she would smile for the camera, but once my uncle said he had the shot, her smile with be gone and she would roll her eyes or say something nasty like, “I hope you know what you’re doing.” Not that she was any nicer to her mom, her bridesmaids or even her new husband. This chick was just mean to everyone! But I did what I was told and silently took pictures and tried to stay out of the way.
When it came time for the couple to cut the cake, my uncle’s camera battery was dying, so he left me alone to take those pictures while he went out to his truck to switch to a new battery. The couple did the typical feed each other the cake thing, and the groom ended up smearing a big blob of a red icing rose on the bride’s face. Everyone thought it was funny and cute, but she was NOT happy about it. I quietly clicked away while he politely wiped her face off and told her she looked fine. But then I saw it in the little digital screen on my camera – she did not look fine.
The red icing had stained her face, so she basically had this bright red mark from the middle of her left cheek, part of her nose, across her mouth and down her chin. She looked like a deranged clown. When my uncle came back he immediately noticed the weird stain and quietly said to me, “Don’t say anything. Just stay out of the way.”
The crazy thing is that we took pictures for another hour and NO ONE else said anything to her about it. For the last part of her wedding, inclding the flower toss, garter removal and final exit into the limo, the bride has this huge mark on her face. I still can’t figure out if everyone was too drunk to notice or just don’t like her enough to care about how stupid she looked in person or on camera.
And I know we weren’t the bride’s first choice, but every single picture my uncle gave her was in focus, well lit and in frame…including the 34 images of her looking like the Joker.
– Quiet & Out of the Way
B*tch Session: Would you tell the bride or just keep snapping away?
Jen: For the record, I have a hard time telling a friend if she has a booger, so if I was this guy, I probably wouldn’t tell the bride she had all that stuff on her face. I’m pretty sure one is supposed to say something, right?
Erika: Not necessarily. She was a total bitch to everyone, so my answer is NO!
Jen: Would you tell her if she was nice?
Erika: Honestly, even if she was nice, I wouldn’t tell her! Let her mother tell her! And it’s crazy that not one person was willing to help this woman out, she must have been a monster.
Jen: Yeah! And I can’t get over that she wasn’t nice to the PHOTOGRAPHER. If you’re a bride, you end up spending the entire day with your photographer – more time than with anyone else you’re paying. It’s an important relationship to foster…unless you like looking bad in pictures that will be around FOREVER.
Erika: That’s true. Getting along with that person is kinda important.
Erika: And it bums me out that the bride was being difficult to her mom who was paying for the photographer. It’s like, be cool. You’re making women look bad!
Jen: Yeah, who wants to be angry on their wedding day? And that photographer sounded nice. I’ll try to friend request him on Facebook, too.
Erika: You’re gonna be the FB Mayor of Wedding Town! Oh, one more thing – why was the wedding cake icing RED? Was the Chinese Flag on it?
Jen: Maybe it was clown cake. The irony!
Erika: Any other clown based topics we need to cover for this?
Jen: Well, my brother was named after a clown.
Erika: Wait, WHAT?!!
Jen: Yeah, he was nicknamed after Bozo the Clown because of his red hair. My brother’s first name is Charles, but to this day he goes by Bo.
Erika: Well, if they find dead hobos in the crawl space under his house, you’ll only have yourselves to blame.
Jen: True. Shout out to my brother, Bo! I’m Facebook friends with him, too. 😉
Erika: So the moral of this story is be nice to your photographer and be careful what nicknames you give your kids.
Jen: Sage words, Erika. Both of those things – photos and nicknames – can stay around forever!
Photo Credit: Seth Kaye Photography
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