At my best friend’s house (m), the boys and I got ready. As I started to get ready, I found two of the tuxedo shirts had come off their hangers and lay in a heap at the bottom of the bag. It was a harbinger of things to come. Nobody told me I’d have to iron at the last second.
But I can do that and I did just that, making the shirts so crisp, they could have cut tomatoes. Then we worked on connecting the slide projector to the computer. I’d spent the last 3 days making the world’s greatest slide show, so it was super important that people actually, uhm see it.
It should have been easy, but it was the day of my wedding and nothing was coming easily. We downloaded videos to show us how to get the projector to work and all we did failed. In the end, we switched out cords and it worked.
Nobody said, I’d have to deal with stupid projectors.
Then we drove off to the wedding, the boys dressed and looking amazing!
I’d been told not to stress out too much about having to meet everyone and direct them to their seats. The wedding advisor would be there. The officiant would be there. I’d have help. Don’t worry, they said. It’ll all be fine, they said.
Instead, none of those things happened – it was just me and my brother and no clue what to do, where people had to go or what THEY were supposed to do until the wedding kind of started.
Plus, I had the boys with me. In tuxes.
Give The-Youngest 5 min unsupervised and he’ll find a way to get mud on his shoes, a frog in his shirt pocket and jello stuffed into pants. How could I leave them alone?
Nobody told me I’d have to deal with having to leave the kids! (My brother stepped in here and kept an eye on them).
So, my sincere apologies to everyone who arrived and didn’t know where they had to go and didn’t have someone in a logical place saying hi, thanks for coming.
Then, with me running around trying to find the wedding advisor, with people coming in and trying to figure out what’s what, a friend told me that some of the signs put out about the wedding are wrong.
Some said a 4 start, some a 5.
What the hell? No one told me I’d have to deal with wrong signage, the one thing that should have provided a bit of vital information in case, you know, the groom wasn’t greeting anyone.
So now I am really on a hunt for our wedding coordinator. I even enlisted the aid of our photographer. And the staff at the bar. And someone clearing the tables in the reception area. Everyone tried to help. They saw the panic on my face. The twitch in my eye. the look of someone about to run far, far away.
But no one had seen her.
Nor had any of my help arrived.
People arriving at this point saw a chubby guy in a tux blur by a lot, moving just under the speed of light. If you got a hug or a welcome, hey, hi, thanks for coming, then that was the Christmas miracle of the decade cuz I was in high panic.
But what about the wrong time on the signs, what about no wedding coordinator, what about the fact most of the arrivals had gone to the bar, what about the projector and my slideshow, what about Trump as president, what about …????
He said it would be fine, but we needed to do pictures. Now. Before we lost good light. Before, you know, the ceremony started.
I came back to find The-Oldest had managed to untuck his suit pocket square and then stuffed it back in like some sort of softball. The-Youngest, however, was still in perfect condition. Like a miniature 007.
I fixed the pocket square. Praised The-Youngest (and God), and roared off with the kids in tow. Off we marched to have our pictures taken, wading through the chaos of people wanting to say hi, or wish me well or ask what was up with the signs.
After taking 2000 pictures, some of them actually fun, I came back in and was politely informed by my brother that I had squished a spider with my back and my suit was now covered in spider goo.
F*ing spider goo.
Heroically, he set out to find a wet cloth while I tried to find my friend who had the projector and slideshow. Of course, the bride had arrived and the computer which held the slides was in that bridal room.
And that little part of my brain still working said, hey, joe, listen, man, going into that room might not be the best idea.
However, I still had options so I asked my other best friend, (f) to get my backpack out of that room, please. (though, in hindsight, I might not have said please, I might have said, oh my f*ing god, the slides are in the bridesroom. Go up there now. Get it now. Now. Fast. I need that laptop. arg! ack! grurg!)
What I really needed was a drink at this moment.
Nobody told me I’d have to deal with all of this without a drink.
I’d wanted this to be the most perfect wedding of all time and it seemed to be teetering on disaster.
In the end, people made their own way to the conservatory lit by the bright sunlight, framed by wondrous fall colors, found their own seats and were ready for the ceremony to begin.
I waved at a few people, said hi to a few, shook hands with several and tried not to look like a guy on the verge of a complete mental collapse.
Then I finally found the coordinator. She gathered the mothers and fathers, the junior bridesmaids, and one Great Baba in the hallway. When the music began, my heart still pounding in my chest from all the adrenaline, I followed the parents in, escorting Great Baba to her chair.
I joined the officiant, the bride’s mother, at the front, turned to face the room and waited.
Then I saw the Prettiest-Girl-in-the-World come in, her boys escorting her.
At that moment, I knew none of that other stuff had mattered at all.
She was here. She was so, so beautiful.
And it was all I could do not to let happy tears flow down my face.
Nobody told me that I’d have to deal with tears.
But I was ok with that.