By now we all know, or at least have probably heard about, someone who has fallen in love on the internet. With the myriad of dating services available online and computer-assisted matchmaking, finding love in this great sea of humanity is more possible than ever before.
Back in the summer of 1994, I and my closest friend Steve Corona founded the first commercially-focused wedding planning website in the history of the internet. We named it Weddings Online, and though there were already wedding newsgroups at that time, no one had yet envisioned and actualized the things that we did: an index of vendors available all over the US, with sample portfolios and even walking virtual tours of facilities. Suffice to say, we were way ahead of our time, and spent most of our hours educating people about what the internet was, let alone why they had to advertise there. To put it in perspective, we were doing this when Yahoo just started and eBay, Amazon and Google were way off in the future, and I hand-coded every single page of the html (2.0) myself! Funny enough, only now are some of the things we thought of back then coming to life. We both look back on those days fondly and laugh at how audacious it was for the two of us to be out there trying to change the way the world was doing business!
Well, anyway, here we are in 2009.
A client of ours named Catherine, a very sweet woman who used to work with us as a facility special events coordinator, came in to the office the other day to pay her balance because she is getting married on Sunday at Peachwood’s in Santa Cruz. One of our other friends who still works at that facility is going to be the Maid Of Honor, and we though that that was pretty neat, but it turns out that there is more to the story: she is actually just standing in for the “real” Maid Of Honor. You see, Catherine is from England, and her best friend/sister-in-law can’t get to the US due to visa issues. At our meeting, Catherine was barely able to contain her tears when she came in and told me the story.
Catherine looked up at me with an incredulous gaze… and as the realization that this was possible hit her, she was overcome with happiness.
She already used Skype! With her best friend in the UK – that’s how they talk to each other! She has the camera setup already and everything!
So I had her sit while I called Kevin to explain and then called the facility to check connectivity capabilities.
It looked good! Kevin would need to borrow my personal laptop to make it happen, but Peachwood’s has a router right in the banquet room. We’ll tie the audio right in to the sound system…
But, because I had to be sure, as soon as Catherine got done crying in my arms with joy right there in the office, I got into my car, zipped up to the facility and tested the whole system live.
And now an already awesome wedding was going to be just *that* much better : )
As I told Catherine and my Mom (who was there doing her bookkeeping for us – thanks Mom!) in the office, isn’t it wonderful when a DJ can make a bride cry about her wedding, but not for the usual reasons that DJ’s make brides cry about their weddings? LOL!!!!
Cut to today, May 24,2009:
Well, it went off tonight and couldn’t have been better: the entire crowd got up and crowded around the screen to see and be seen! The girls in the UK were in nice dresses and had champagne. We let the first toasts go and then ran the whole crowd through the process LIVE: the dial out, the answer, the opening of video, the click to full-screen. By sharing the process and not just cutting to an already-live “reveal”, it created excitement and anticipation and became a moment. Tears flowing, glasses in the air. It gets no better.
And, let me add that it is all the sweeter that it wasn’t me who presided over that moment and shepherded it to fruition. In the end, it was Kevin, a guy who I hired and have known since he was a sophomore in college and who we have trained and nurtured to become the outstanding professional that he is today, six years later. Kevin is just one example of what makes Sound In Motion DJs & Video the different and special company that it is.
And that, dear readers, is reason #4,372 why I have the best job in the world.