When I was younger, I had the opportunity to attend a few weddings. While there, I was introduced to the quaint and curious custom of the “dollar dance” at the reception. For those of you unfamiliar with this tradition, it’s a portion of the reception when guests can, for a dollar or more, dance for a few moments with the bride or groom. It’s only a for a couple songs, so those who don’t want to participate don’t have to. It’s usually done to give the newlyweds a little spending cash for the honeymoon, as well as a chance to say a few words in (relative) privacy. A better explanation and history can be found here.
I’ve recounted this to a few people who hadn’t heard of this before, and they found it tacky and appalling. The idea of handing over cash as a gift at a wedding struck them as gauche in the extreme. Some have even compared it as akin to prostitution.
Personally, I always enjoyed it. It was a great chance to give a few final words to the happy couple, as well as give them one last gift. And the idea of calling it “prostitution” or “taxi dancing” and demeaning to the bride bugs me, in particular because the ones I’ve been to included the groom as well.
I remember one in particular, when I attended the wedding of my college roommate. I paid my dollar and gave the bride a twirl, whispering a few things that got her to giggle and blush prettily.
Then I paid five bucks and grabbed my roommate.
It was a bit awkward at first, as we both tried to lead. But he quickly acquiesced and let me spin him around the floor.
However, I think I nearly gave a couple of his old biddy aunts strokes when I dipped him…