Why I’m Getting Married at Dave & Buster’s


$5 margaritas, Big Bass Pro lottery wheels and enough fiat money to make our American dollar feel obsolete. In essence, Dave & Buster’s is a late-stage capitalist’s paradise. Maybe my strange obsession with game plazas started with my continual exposure to Chuck E. Cheese and its trademark E. coli. The vicious battle between inhaling $20 subpar pizza and my lactose intolerance probably led to my Freudian fanaticism for overpriced food and gambling. 

But why Dave & Buster’s for a wedding (and inevitable divorce)? It’s a cure-all. I’ve seen enough ‘90s rom-com movies to understand the vital connection of playing Dance Dance Revolution with your bride to be. Or when you lock eyes as you unlock the next Deal or No Deal case. Maybe enough tickets will cover the dowry. What if we kissed in the Jurassic Park ride simulator? Hahaha jk…unless?

I have the entire event planned out like a Nashville bachelorette Pinterest board. The reception will be held in the main party room. Only 20 of my closest friends will be allowed (plus my bride, I guess). Families just aren’t as fun in a high adrenaline gaming atmosphere. Main course you ask? Shirley Temples and barbecue wings. Not every day can you live out a mildly depressing adult-child fantasy. Remember, I’ll be younger than 21 at this point. It is a shotgun wedding after all (if everything goes according to plan). Ideally, the wedding registry will only be things won from the ticket center. For 15 years, that off-brand PlayStation 2 has eluded me. This time, it’ll only cost me the entirety of my credit score.

Now, obviously, before the main event, the bachelors will splinter off to have the time of our lives. I’m talking about that weird motorcycle game, the token ski jump thing, even air hockey if we’re feeling a little wild. It’s an open bar tab for virgin daiquiris and cheese fries. And if the missus doesn’t mind, we might even play Haunted House 4 to see the cute blue-gun girl. Heretics say, “Bachelor parties aren’t supposed to be on the same day as the wedding!” but sometimes you have to flip the world upside down, or in this case, topple the Stack It!™ machine for depriving me of the iPod Nano. The potential for arcade-related metaphors indicating anarchy is pretty broad.

At the end of the night, when the prenup has been filed and my net assets have been transferred to the D&B credit card, I will be ready to say my vows. With the tickets collected throughout this tumultuous night, I will buy my wife-to-be a ring pop to seal the deal, because the society we live in has such demanding gender norms. It is the ceremonial packaging of what can be described as a lucid fever dream.

Some might say, “Kyle, you’re going to get divorced” or “Kyle, I told you to stop stealing my mail!” but these people don’t understand the magic of sports-bar-arcade hybrids. Cynics nowadays will claim that tradition is dead, but simultaneously rebuke me for trying something novel. This is the hill that I will die on. Give me matrimony in an adult arcade or give me death.

  • February 16, 2021