17 July 2013

How Spamalot finished my athletic career

Before I took up this running malarky (ie today), there was only one sport in which I truly excelled.

And that was 'The Bouquet Toss'. 

Before Beyonce, all the singles ladies had only one way to get a ring on it and that was to catch the bouquet at a wedding and know that happiness was but a proposal away.

The problem with this is that everybody was always too cool to saunter their single arses out on the dance floor to take part in this odd, but strangely enduring, ritual.  Of course, with so many of us shacking up before we got married, we were able to take part in this ritual for a lot longer than the lasses of yore and grow cynical and dismissive. But brides like throwing it, people like watching it and I, I loved it. 

And not because I was expecting a proposal.  Nay, I'd been a Bridesmaid six times and I knew that my chances of getting married had withered like testicles of winter swimmers.  But the sheer joy of making 'a big deal' out of it cheered up many a painfully tedious wedding.  

Step 1.  Holler and catcall to all the other unmarried ladies when the time comes, badger them into joining you on the dance floor.
Step 2. Hitch dress up, tuck into undies for effect. Growl. 
Step 3. Rock from side to side, hands on knees - as if about to commence the Haka.
Step 4. Talk up your agility and wins.  Diss the other women as eternal spinsters. Say 'yo mama' a lot.
Step 5. Roar and leap into the air punching other people in the face until the bouquet is yours.  
Step 6. Give it to the girl quietly sobbing on the floor beside you as she wants desperately to get engaged and 'beastly Alison won the bouquet toss again'.
Step 7. Drink wine and dance. 

But for me it all came to an end, one of the highlights of many a wedding, when I saw Spamalot in 2008.  As the bouquet was tossed into the audience, years of competitive training came to the fore and my arm shot up, catching the flowers tossed glibly by Sanjeev Bashkar and boom - before my trip to London was over my boyfriend had become my fiance and my years of bouquet catching were over.  

What did you truly excel at before Monty Python and Sanjeev Bashkar intervened?

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