Smile Politely

“Opposite” marriage includes fun, love, and drinking in the day

So there were a lot of things going on last week, Artists Against AIDS, Ebertfest, and that freaking marathon. Of course, I participated in none of the ones you’re supposed to, but I’m just fine with that. Still, it was swell to see my friend Paula who came in from Michigan for the Artist Against Aids. She promised to start reading my column if I promised to stop being so much of a dick. This, my friends, is what you call an impasse. Anyway, let’s get started on my little segmented look at the wedding, which I attended this past weekend.


The fellows getting married were my friends Bob and Greg. They’ve only known each other about fourteen years, so they were obviously jumping into the whole “gay” thing just like they were jumping into the whole “marriage” thing. They are two genuinely great guys. Bob is a caterer and Greg manages a restaurant. Before I met them, because of the Village People, I assumed all gays had to be policemen, or sailors or, strangely, Native Americans.

I should also point out that neither one of them is particularly flamboyant, which, you know, makes me wonder just how committed they are to the whole idea of the gayness. I truly don’t understand why they have to make it all so complicated by being relatively normal.


Well, I have to tell you, my first gay wedding was exactly what all those people who are against gay weddings said it would be. As we exited the car we were met by a large group of men dressed as Roman Centurions. They were outfitted like warriors, of course, and if you didn’t look close enough to see all the feathers and bangles attached to their uniforms, they might have even been scary. They held spears to our necks and forced us to strip naked. After this, they attempted to lure us into the gay lifestyle for a solid hour by making us watch Will and Grace reruns and listen to Lady Gaga.

Obviously, almost all of the guests rapidly became gay because, you know, that’s why they have to be stopped, because, you know, straight people can be turned gay really easily. All a gay person has to do is stare at you with those eyes and give you a wink and the next thing you know you’re dancing around with a fruit bowl on your head and talking like Truman Capote. It’s sort of like how that chick casts spells on Bewitched, except, you know, gayer.


Strangely, but not really, nothing happened, except that two people got married, just like two people often do. It was really beautiful and made me smile. It’s nice to see your friends happy.

The ceremony took place at the home of our friends, Sharon and Clarence Shelly. As an interesting side note, Clarence is the same guy who performed the ceremony for my lovely wife and I when we got hitched. Apparently he has no quality control in place whatsoever. Either way, they had their house looking spiffy and also had the good sense to serve drinks before the ceremony began at about 2:15 on Sunday afternoon. Hell, I would have been just fine with the drinking alone, but you throw a floorshow in there and I couldn’t wait to get started.

It was raining off and on, but that’s supposed to be good luck, at least if you are to believe that completely ignorant Alanis Morissette song. The only problem I had was when a big dollop of rain landed in the candle I was standing by outside and splashed wax all over my suit coat. In all honesty though, it was nice to have a stain that didn’t involve some sort of barbeque sauce on my clothes.


After a few pre-game cocktails, we all came inside for the wedding itself. The grooms wore matching saddle shoes and cleaned up very nicely. Clarence said a few things and then the fellas talked about why they love each other and were getting married. After that the Apache Wedding Prayer was read.

Now you will feel no rain,
For each of you will be shelter to the other.
Now you will feel no cold,
For each of you will be warmth to the other.
Now there is no more loneliness,
For each of you will be companion to the other.
Now you are two bodies,
But there is only one life before you.
Go now to your dwelling place
To enter into the days of your togetherness
And may your days be good and long upon the earth.

The whole thing took about 15 minutes, which is a little long for me, but what can you do. After a few Manhattans were guzzled, I even got a kiss from one of the grooms, Bob. As you can see from the picture, he really got up in there.


So just in case there are any unanswered questions, I’ll clear them up. Do they love each other? They sure do. Was it a beautiful wedding? It sure was. Did I cry like a little bitch? I sure did. I don’t really care if it’s two guys or two girls or a guy and a girl; it’s pretty rare to find someone you love in this weird little world. When you find that person you love, the most important thing you can do is celebrate it. They can call this celebration whatever, marriage or a civil union, but it’s really all the same. If any two people can find love, I think the only decent thing the rest of us can do is be happy for them, We should all be as lucky as Greg and Bob.

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