Sunday, March 04, 2007

Love is in the air... and headaches

Went to a kick-ass wedding yesterday. Hung over today. Can’t really have one without the other. I convinced my parents to pick me up on the way to the ceremony and to drop me off again afterwards – which made sense. The grotto is on the way from Caledon to Burlington. Add an open bar to the formula…

X = infinite drinkies + 0 KM driving


… carry the 1…

X = hangover.

The bride and groom are both 27 and have been dating for more than ten years – since grade 10! Isn’t that something? If you’re still looking for purity and spirituality in love - this might just be a starting point.

Here’s my outfit: Black pants and shoes; a tweed jacket ostensibly grayish-brown at a glance but upon close inspection, built of threads of navy and peacock blues, olive green and orange; a multi-grey toned shirt patterned like a mosaic of stone; and a bold, deeply-textured tie resembling tire treads filled with blood. Having trouble imagining such an ensemble? Good. Don’t. It wasn’t my finest fashion moment. I discovered too late that much of my favorite dress-up clothes have shrunk since my last wedding-and-or-funeral.

(Okay - they’ve shrunk or I’ve grown. Same difference.)

You know I once had two funerals to attend on the same day? And at the same funeral home to boot. I wouldn’t kid you. A coworker and the mother of a friend. I’m sure the funeral home people thought I was some kind of freak.

“Look! Him again! He’s a funeral crasher. I’m sure of it. Wow. I’ve only read about such people…”




'Kay, back to the wedding.


Upon arrival at the big modern church I made sure to use the lavatory. I know first hand how Catholics can drag out an event to exasperating unfathomable lengths. However this wasn’t the case. This was a simple 12-step wedding ceremony.

The steps, you ask? Voila:

1. Admit powerlessness over addiction.

2. Believe in a greater pow– oops. Wrong program.

Here we go:

1. Prelude. Excellent music by the pianist, flutist and canter. Yes. Canter. That’s what it said in the program. I was very disappointed, expecting a live horse to be present – until I heard the canter’s voice – which was truly heavenly. I was later informed that ‘canter’ is the new modern term for one that was once – in ancient times – known as a ‘singer.’ That’s right. Singer. Say it with me everyone: Sing-er…

2. Processional: Parents of the groom and bride; six groomsmen; six maids of milking; one maid of honour, one best man, one groom and of course – one bride. Oh – and somewhere in there was a ring bearer who was maybe three months old and was carried in Mom’s left arm while the pillow and rings rode in the right arm. And oddly enough the kid’s name was Frodo. No! No, it wasn’t. I jest.

3. Opening prayer

4. First and second readings

5. Responsorial Psalm. Yes. Responsorial. My personal responsorialities included involuntary nodding and blinking.

6. Rite of Marriage. This is where the priest, Father Bob said, “I, William… Take you, Deanna… To be my wife…” and moments later said, “I, Deanna… Take you, William… To be my wife…” much to the amusement of all present. Odd that he knew so much about lesbian weddings despite his church’s official poo-pooing of such vile sacrilege. Later he attributed the gaff to a ‘senior moment’.

7. Much sitting, standing, sitting, standing, kneeling, sitting, standing, kneeling, putting in of left leg, shaking all about etc. I just sat still the whole time. Father Bob never once said “Simon sez.”

8. Litany of the Eucharist (oops! I mean – Liturgy)

9. Presentation of gifts – by the very teary and huggy mamas of the bride and of the groom.

10. Signing of the register

11. Final blessing

12. Group photo of all the party and guests gathered on and around the big alter while Father Bob scampered about in great consternation, worried we’d upset the holy order of things – that we’d knock over his magic candles or his holy-but-fake flowers or his bowl of pixie dust or otherwise upset the Savior to such degree that He’d turn His back on mankind and leave us to our own sinful devices. Luckily for us all, no hocus-pocusry were harmed even when one of the guests fell backwards down the three steps from the alter while his hands were buried in his jacket pockets - prompting many to utter, “My gosh! And he hasn’t even started drinking yet!”

Ah, but how can you be sure, my friends? How can you be sure?


Next: Off to East Side Marios for a half litre of cheap wine and the worst calamari I’ve had since the Kelsey’s debacle when an alien burst out the chest of my android friend.


And finally – the reception.

I slipped my card through the slot in the long low box that had a mirrored top on which stood magnificent decorative horse-and-carriage pieces.

I then signed the registry: ‘Fantasy Writer Guy – I hope I win the horse and carriage! I stuffed the ballot box!’

Off to the bar where I threw a hefty bill into the tip basket just to get things started right. Big mistake. The barkeep was all over me the rest of the night. He’d track me down at my table or half-way across the hall.

“Here’s another vodka and tonic, sir. I noticed you were getting low.”

Getting sloshed is more like it.

I only spoke briefly to the B and G. They were rather popular for some reason and hard to corner.

But I twice enjoyed long conversations with the mom of the groom – a kind and delightful lady and long-time family friend. I felt it my duty to warn her:

“You realize your son’s going to lose his virginity tonight.”

“Oh!” she chortled, waving her hand in dismissal. “I’m sure he lost that a long time ago!”




It really was a great wedding and more than a few guests commented such. I haven’t demonstrated why though. In reality there were no details that made it stand apart. Just this. The bride and groom are both the kind of people you love to be around. The kind who are always ‘up’. Who are happy and kind and enthusiastic but who not only speak with intensity but listen with intensity. They’re the very rare kind of extroverts who actually give more energy to a room than they take. Very rare. Very special.

Like Advil. Advil is very special at times like this. Come Advil! Come to Papa.

FWG

7 comments:

Flumadiddle said...

Oh the pain! Thank you for the laugh. My brother had a Catholic wedding - the first I'd been to. Unfortunately, the canter at their wedding sounded like a horse. A horse trembling out Ave Maria. But the reception made up for it in many, many ways.

Dave said...

Such a nice looking wedding party. Such a shame the four girls on the outside all seem to suffer from either osteoporosis or spina bifida.
So are you sober yet?

Kathleen said...

I think the word cantor is used officially at religious functions for the people who sing the responsorial psalm and the congregation is to respond (hence, responsorial). If they're just singing the opening song or whatever, we just call them singers - and I'm Catholic, so I know these things.

We Catholics have all the sitting, kneeling, standing just to confuse the non-Catholics, then we laugh behind their backs. Same with the Sign of Peace, it's always fun to watch the newcomers with the looks on their faces that say WTF? ;-)

Fantasy Writer Guy said...

Davey-boy: Shame indeed. Shame the photographer wasn't slightly more competent. She ended up sitting beside me during dinner. This is the second wedding that a spot beside me was cleared for the photographer. Seems to be standard practice to overlook that photographers eat. Also in the doubles category - I twice (at consecutive weddings even) had the server spill soup on my lap. True, I swear. I'm a magnet for soup tossers and photographers.

Kats: Bravo to you and your Catholic buddies for your excellent sense of humor. You got me good!

Fantasy Writer Guy said...

Davey-boy: Shame indeed. Shame the photographer wasn't slightly more competent. She ended up sitting beside me during dinner. This is the second wedding that a spot beside me was cleared for the photographer. Seems to be standard practice to overlook that photographers eat. Also in the doubles category - I twice (at consecutive weddings even) had the server spill soup on my lap. True, I swear. I'm a magnet for soup tossers and photographers.

Kats: Bravo to you and your Catholic buddies for your excellent sense of humor. You got me good!

Kathleen said...

Thanks, we try. ;-)

Nerine said...

Thanks for writing this.