Sunday, September 30, 2012

The Father-daughter Dance

In our culture, the father-daughter dance is a tradition upheld in most weddings, one in which the father dances with the bride, kind of a poignant summation, a handing off of his little girl with one last nostalgic dance to their favorite song, something very meaningful to both of them.  This was the background that Lafawnda and I were presented with when we began working on our dance months ago.

Various relatives and friends had suggestions of various kinds.  This was the result of that - and then I'll let you in on the conclusion!

We picked a slow song, something quite sentimental and sweet.  As the Disc Jockey played it, we began our dance:

We were serious as is appropriate for this sad occasion.  After all, as bhb said, I am giving my daughter away and that is heart wrenching.  We continued this way for awhile:

Unfortunately, the photographer missed some of the steps taking place.  What you see in this picture is Lafawnda right after she has shown her boredom and I am talking to the DJ, asking him what the heck he is playing???

This was all planned.  When Lafawnda and I truly examined our relationship, what really stood out was our relationship with Popeye!  No, really.  When she was little, around four or five, we would faithfully set aside time every day and watch Popeye!  She could imitate Olive Oyl perfectly.  This represented our relationship to a tee.

I sent an email - and this was the early days of email, mind you, but I worked in that industry - to the syndicate that owned the Popeye cartoons at that stage.  I said that I was Lafawnda's father and that we watched Popeye every day, like clockwork.  Delightfully, they had the great sense to have Popeye himself respond!  He sent an email to Lafawnda and she was in 7th Heaven!  She saved that email somewhere and we are hoping to find it again some day.

So, she and I went online and found a Popeye Sailor's hat and a corncob pipe being sold for Halloween.  We ordered it well ahead of time and on the day of the wedding, it was safely folded and tucked into my tuxedo!  So, we had it set up that when signaled, after we had shown our disdain for some packaged, schmaltzy dancy, he faded it out and faded in The Popeye Theme!  As he did so, I pulled out the sailor hat and the pipe and we finished our father-daughter dance representing who we really were:

It was our dance of true celebration all the way!  The people in attendance absolutely loved it!


  1. Oh my goodness, I wish you had a video! :) WHat a great idea!

  2. The photos catch the mood perfectly. Did nobody have a video going?

    Here the first dance is the happy couple and for the second, the bride dances with her father, while the groom dances with his mother in law. At Elly's wedding, since her dad was no longer with us we skipped the second dance idea and had a free for all on the floor instead! DANCING.

  3. I gotta tell ya, consort. You absolutely made my day. I well remember the days when Popeye and Olive Oyl were so popular.

    I'm laughing with tears in my eyes. Blessings to you and the bride.


  4. @Delirious

    It worked out even better than we had hoped. Everyone really got into it!

  5. @Grannymar

    No video for our dance, but a phone video is floating around for the dance Lafawnda and Flash did. I will be posting that soon, but I don't know if I'll be able to relocate that video on Facebook and make it available.

  6. @Maxi

    It was so US, Maxi! That is what was so beautiful about it when we realized what we really wanted to do.

  7. I bet that you danced to this:

  8. What a fantastic dance and you would make Popeye proud, my dear friend. This is what I call making memories on steroids!!!! All of your loved ones will be talking about this father-daughter dance way past the third or fourth generation into the future. I can hear those future young ones saying, "Well, if you think I'm crazy, just wait til I tell you about Great, great, great grandfather." I think you will motivate them all and challenge them to out do you.

    Enough, my comment is turning into a fan letter. LOL

  9. Excellent idea. Love it.


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