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JWR 3.31 - Jeff & Vony
A few weeks back I was part of a wedding for my friend Jeff and his new bride Vony. All in all, it was a good time, a lovely ceremony and evening...however, I wouldn’t be me if I didn’t put my own unique way of seeing things on the table.
Well, I suppose it started off at the rehearsal ceremony the day before the actual wedding when I flipped off the bride’s father in the church. The wedding party was taking a rehearsal walk down the aisle of the church just like we’d do on the day of the wedding. All joking aside, I took this portion seriously and was walking straight and tall when someone from behind said, “Loosen up, John.” My inclination was that it was Jeff’s brother, the best man, who was directly behind me in queue. I don’t think a lot of the time, apparently, plus, I’m not used to being in a church. I don’t know what the rules are. It’s just a building. God is everywhere. So, I threw up my arm and gave the bird off behind me. My bridesmaid seemed shocked so I told her I was just waving. Something like three hours later at the rehearsal dinner (which I find strange because I eat nearly every day and I’m twenty-five, so I know how to eat almost as well as I know how to piss) Jeff asks me if I realized that I flipped off Vony’s dad. I did not. He told me that her father took it well and was actually laughing so hard, he had to leave the room. Frankly, I was shocked and embarrassed. He’s an extremely nice man who had been very personable and courteous, and funny, each time I’d seen him. I went up to him a short time later as I was leaving and apologized, most likely sounding like a moron.
So, the day of the wedding arrives and we all get to the church and change into our tuxedos and then play the waiting game. The groomsmen and I were walking around before things got started, going out to say hello to some people we know, walking around to get the blood flowing, and I kept touching base back in the acolytes room where the groom, Jeff, had positioned himself...like a rock. I began to notice, as the time inched nearer and nearer to THE time, the look of shock and the draining of color from his face. In a way it was funny to see because of all the pressure of a wedding and how everything had to go perfectly and the drama of a wedding all weighing down at that moment when the groomsmen are joking around and your wife-to-be is not to be seen...you are alone with those stereotypical thoughts of ball and chain and the end of fun and no more random vagina...ever, when the truth is, you’re there because you want it more than anything and she’s everything you want. She’s the caulk for your bathtub. She’s the peanut butter in your peanut butter and jelly sammich. She’s the sun to your solar system. Whatever metaphor you choose, she’s that to you. But, nonetheless, there was Jeff, looking more scared by the second. I tried to provide some levity by talking about my dick and making various other obscene comments which I only wanted to help bring a bit of calm. Then came the moment when we all had to leave him to take our place at the back with the chicas.
When we assembled in the back of the church, I spotted Vony and rushed over to her and told her she looked beautiful and gave her a hug, gaining some brownie points, for sure. Of course, she reads these and I have to say it is true, a woman radiates beauty on her wedding day and Vony more so than many. A true vision.
Well, the process began and I pulled up alongside my bridesmaid and just before we walked out I told her: “Baby, I’m gonna butter yo’ bread.” See, everyone was SO serious. I agree it’s a serious thing, but it is not a solemn occasion. Fortunately she thought it was pretty funny and laughed. You may wonder what silly-willy things I did during the ceremony and maybe you’re nervous about what tale I’m going to spin. Nothing. I said not a fucking word throughout the entire ceremony. No, it wasn’t difficult for me. I know when to act proper, usually. Just forget about the finger flipping incident.
I have to say it was a little difficult to say absolutely nothing because another of Jeff’s groomsmen and his cousin, Ryan, was standing behind me on the stage, or alter, I guess, and I could scarcely hear a tiny murmur ever now and then that was directed at me and no one else could have possibly heard it. He was not speaking, making little more than vague throat clearing noises, but I knew it was referencing Old School when Vince Vaughn was telling his friend who was getting married that this was his last chance, he had the car running, do you see my wife, constantly judging, look at me, look at the baby.
This kid, man, he’s in school in Indiana, he’s twenty, and he was just cracking the shit out of me all weekend long. I was trying to bring levity to anyone around me, but he was just making my day. You know, I don’t have a younger sibling, only two older ones. This kid, I’d adopt him. My brothers and I have major differences, but this kid was like another me in a lot of ways. Guys bond by repeating movie lines to each other and that was what we did all weekend long. We had each other cracking up constantly. He kept my sanity intact and we had fun yucking it up, talking shit, drinking; oh yeah, we got him all the beer he wanted. All the beer, champagne, liquor, whatever. He earned it. I went to the gift opening the next day and he and I were sitting next to each other along with another groomsman, Brian, and his wife-to-be, Tiffany (who, by the way, shakes your hand like a man. When I met her, I extended my hand and waited for the usual limp girl shake. She stepped right in, snatched my hand and pumped hard. I fell in love right there). Jeff and Vony were opening these presents and someone said, “Ooh, that’s handmade.” Ryan turned to me and said “As opposed to being footmade.” Nobody thought it was funny and we were all like, yeah-yeah. About ten minutes later another gift was opened that caused someone to say, “Ooh, that’s handmade.” I don’t know if it was the same person or not as the first time, but I couldn’t let it go, because I see potential, and I said, “As opposed to being footmade.” Ryan started cracking up and Tiffany turned in her seat and looked me square in the eyes and said “Shut up” nice and loud, which was funnier than anything Ryan or I could say. I wonder if there’s anymore like her back on that farm she comes from.
My gift, some kitchen stuff from the registry, I put in a Corona box. I thought it was a good idea, they’re handy boxes, sturdy, original, and stylish. Of course, people gave me some shit about it, but I have thick skin and can take it. Fuck ‘em. The card, let me say, I don’t like giving cards. I think they’re lame. I generally don’t. I am more inclined to send a letter than a card. But I understand some things you just don’ screw with and while I was in line with my kitchen gifts, I spotted that the lady ahead of he had a card she was buying and, realizing I must buy a card, I left the line and went to the card aisle. The first wedding card I picked up was a thick em’effer. It was about twenty pages long and each page had a different quote about true love. I really liked it. It was subtle and simple as well as elegant. It was also eight bucks. (It says on the back.) You may be thinking, “Fool! Put that card back and go to the card outlet!” I wish I could tell you I fought the good fight and put that card back, but, without hesitation, I went to check out.
Jeff’s brother and the maid of honor gave speeches at the reception. They were both very nice and appropriate. I looked at the microphone there and thought about picking it up and making a speech, but instead I just told Ryan, “It smells like sex in here,” which made him giggle as he drank champagne. If I ever have a wedding, I’m going to ask that each of my groomsmen to say something. I say “if.”
But I though about it and here’s the speech I would have made, more or less.
“I’d like to thank Jeff and Vony for inviting me to be a part of this very special day, one which they will never forget and I’m proud to say, neither will I. I’d also like to thank each and every one of you for joining Vony and Jeff today, friends and family from near and far. I’ve met a lot of truly good people these past couple days, new friends (at which point, I would stick a finger in Ryan’s ear) and even some old ones (I’d look at
Brian, then find Scott and Dan in the audience and mouth “brown pie”). Having you all here, I know means the world to Vony and Jeff, because a day like today is infinitely more special when it can be shared with so many that you love. Please raise your glasses, apple juice for the boy here (I point at Ryan), as we toast to the bride and groom.”
Copyright © 2003 John Lemut