What a crazy past few days. I just got back from taking myself out to dinner at Pompei for a chopped chicken salad and bread… was going to stop off at the straight Caribou Coffee and write but there were no tables and was going to go to the Cariboi but figured I’ll be there enough this week once the Ronster gets back in.
I was apprehensive about spending three days in the maelstrom of Alan and Jessi’s wedding – part of me was sort of bitter about the whole thing – I mean how dare two of my best friends interrupt the 24-7 partay that is My Life with their piddly lifetime commitment of love to eachother. I seem so out of time for everything lately that I was and wasn’t looking forward to it. But, I had a wonderful time. I was also nervous about not knowing any of the other groomsmen, his two brothers and his best friend from high school Tavis. I didn’t want to feel like I didn’t belong or anything like that… but thank God for Tavis and like Tavis said, thank God for Andy. We had a great time. I didn’t realize that the best man is really the groom’s bitch for the wedding. And Alan was pushing it too – in jest of course but still I hadn’t thought about all the stuff the best man has to do. I helped Tavis out as much as I could since Alan’s two brothers were a little random – one had a hyper 2-year old son and the other was a little random just by himself. As Alan said with all of us up there we had two ADD cases and an anxiety-freak – I told him if this was a Catholic wedding we’d need to spike the communion wafers with Ritalin and Xanax. Thursday I carpooled with Alan and Tavis to the tux place to get fitted – I do look so goddamned hot in a tux – and I can put them on pretty quick from my theatre experience of having to change from 1930s suit to complete formal wear in a matter of minutes. Then we met up with Alan’s brothers and one of them went with us to a steak house that served – no joke – 48 oz fucking steaks. It was insane. Talk about beef. I contend the pillars of masculinity are booze, beef and breasts (substitute cocks as necessary). Alan’s brother David had a two-year old that really got my Daddy-hormones a-raging. This little boy was so cute and when he was crawling on me and I was running around Alan’s house the next day carrying him a la Superman I had the uncontrollable urge to go to the nearest mall and steal children. Anyone that has known me for a while knows that I used to really hate children. Mainly because many of the great grandchildren in our family are little twats. But I have since met and enjoyed some truly great kids and I already imagine myself with one kid strapped to my chest and one on my back. I am gonna be such a soccer dad – or stage mom – we’ll see. But this little boy was so cute. So we had our big-ass beef fest. Then we went bowling where I bowled really really bad – worse than usual.
My first game totally sucked ass – I was actually surprised – I’m a little better than that usually. As I got more inebriated I bowled better. I gutter-ed many a ball. But a strike or two kept me going… then we went to a strip club called All Stars.
I have always admired the gentlemen’s club industry. It is pure capitalism. Who can’t admire an industry that separates men from their money cleanly and consistently and with such great speed. Though admission was only $11 – methinks since it was a Thursday. Drinks weren’s that bad either. The girls had to wear pasties though since they served alcohol in the club (Illinois law). The music was pretty good – over-loud… it was funny to hear songs I’d danced to at the boy-bars and hear them in this context. One stripper did some good pole riding and another managed to fit her buttocks on either side of the cool smooth shiny metal pole. I either envy or pity the janitor that has to clean those poles each night.
The craziest part about strip clubs is the predatory aspect. If you make eye-contact with any of the girls they are immediately on you to get a table dance or a private dance. I was trying not to be overt about staring but eventually a girl sat on my arm and then tumbled backward into my lap… her face close to mine, hair draped on my shoulder… her name was Elaine and would I like a lapdance for $10? Shit – that’s a bargain. I agreed and she pushed my chair back to make enough room for her bootyliciousness and then began her strip. Girl could move. I always amazed at the isolation of the hips to grind like that. Da-yumn. Her dress slipped off and draped around my neck and her tits bounced in my face. I always forget how individual a woman’s breasts are… she grinded her g-stringed crotch in my face and plunged her hair into my lap… wooo…. hee hee hee…. then she dragged her chest up my face… a nipple brushing my mouth… my eyebrow. She turned around and her ass cheeks pushed close to my face and she smacked her right thigh in a spank that shook her whole frame. Then back to me with more of the same… the best of the handful of lapdances I’ve had in my life. I drew a twenty out of my wallet and told her to keep the change and told her: ‘You dance almost as good as my boyfriend.’ She giggled and took the money and went on to her next customer.
Alan had his share of dances and Tavis had managed to wedge himself into an alcove so none of the girls could get to him. One highlight was when one of the girls did a pole dance to the techno mix of Carl Orrf’s Carminia Burana. I wanted to go up to her and ask her if she knew that she was dancing to 11th Century Benedictine monk wet-dream poetry?
I swear to God I saw a guy that used to work in Corporate Finance there as well as one of the personal trainers from my gym. Wide age range of customers there… no couples though. The guy that tracked the girl’s time in the private rooms was really cute – Thai maybe… he was tall with a tuxedo shirt un-buttoned at the collar and I tried making eyes at him all night but couldn’t tell if it was working or not (I mean, I guess if it was I would have gotten a number right?). We closed the strip club at 2am (trashy, ain’t it?). And made the ride back to the ass-end of the burbs to Alan’s house where we all went to bed. I remain amazed at some of the enhanced tits we saw. Some of the girls had perfect, succulent globes of glory that just begged for a suckle. I tried imagining Ron’s insistence that when we go to San Francisco we do an amateur strip night – he says there’s a big asian party where the white boys make lots of tips.
Alan had asked why Ron didn’t attend and I said he had to work and that even if he could have I would have been leery of that – both families are pretty conservative and I wouldn’t want to upstage the events or cause any disharmony I said, ‘not like we’d be butt-fucking on the table at the reception or anything…’ Alan assured me it would have been alright with him that if he wanted butt-fucking at his reception then goddammit so be it. I said I want to have a double penetration fisting wedding. We always seem to drive any humor into the ground, don’t we? But, I didn’t think of Ron as serious enough to merit taking to a wedding until recently so it was all okay in the long run.
A few phone calls from hurried relatives woke us up as well as one of Alan and Jessi’s cats doing that familiar pre-ralphing sound (not pre-Raphaelite)… hoowech… hoowech! We got up and cleaned up – the two families were all converging on Alan and Jessi’s house for what seemed like a summit at Reykjavik. Tavis and I jumped in the land-yacht Lincoln they’d rented for the weekend and went on a Krispy Kreme run. As I said, I was so glad to meet Tavis and that he is such a cool guy – he and Alan and I were a fun team for the weekend. We got two dozen. One for us and one for everybody else. We then jetted to Midway to pick up their high school chum Christine who was to sing in the service the next day. I ate 6 (count ’em!) donuts in the space of a half hour. Yeah – I know. I’m a pig. Once the relatives found this out I was the Guy that Was the Krispy Kreme Hog. And they all marveled at my ‘girlish figure’ as (Carla) Ruble (that’s her maiden name) called it. She couldn’t believe how skinny I was. It was funny – I hadn’t pal-ed with her since Jason and Lingo’s wedding a year before. The families met and the mothers were very nervous about meeting eachother. It was very funny.
Tavis and I did our best to keep Alan out of Jessi’s hair – a minor scuffle over where’s the check book and our hourly Where’s the Rings alerts kept things pretty tame. I’m amazed at how little there is for the guys to do at a wedding. We had the rehearsal which everyone was late to but we got up there and ran through it and were on our way to the rehearsal dinner at a pizza place called… shit – I can’t remember… Lou Malnati’s.
I was glad to be with more people I knew and the usual gang of idiots that is the kids I went to school with. Alan’s mother gave a toast at the rehearsal dinner… she said that since she was pregnant with Alan she prayed to the Lord everyday that He would send someone special to Alan – someone just like Jessica. And that there is a picture of Jessi in Hawaii out on some bluff on the coast and that there is a picture of Alan there as well and that their paths were meeting even before before they did. It was a great toast. Lingo (the matron of honor – we all loved that one – that since she was married she wasn’t the maid – she was the matron) toasted that she had known Alan and Jessi as individuals and that they were both so fantastic apart that they are going to be even more wonderful (wonderfull-er?) together. Tavis gave a brief toast since he was to give a more involved one the next day at the reception. We all came home – or at least the guys did – while the girls went on to their night before party. We watched most of A Bug’s Life and then got to bed.
Got up the next morning and showered and got ready to go to the guys lunch – it is funny how little there is for the men to do in this whole process. Basically keep the groom from fidgeting too much. We sat around at the house and watched the bonus footage on the Phantom Menace DVD and argued about all the events that have to happen in the next two Star Wars films and if there were only two Siths at any given time and if any of the Jedi high council was were spies for the Dark Side. Once or twice conversation stopped as we all realized: Christ, we’re nerds! Made our way to Maggiano’s for an abbreviated lunch with the brothers and us – we got there late and managed to hork down three entrees and three appetizers in a half hour and make our way to the tux place to change – that was a really good decision I thought – to have the men change in to their tuxes at the tux place – that way, we didn’t have to carry it around or anything like that. We suited up and ready to go.
Alan gave the groomsmen a little bag of gifts – the best was a sterling flask – half was a flash and then the other half had a lid that flipped up to put cigars. And they were monogrammed. Totally fucking cool. Such an awesome guy-gift. I stashed my Xanax in one side and the small bottle of scotch he gave us filled the other half. The card that Alan had written to me was amazing. Wonderful sentiments – here’s a sample: I have always thought of you as a twin. I pray you will consider yourself a part of my family, because you are, and always have been, a trust-worthy joy in my life. Thank you for being my friend. I love you. Alan. My nose ran a little bit and a tear welled up but I inhaled and kept it under control. I felt like an asshole for my feelings of seeing this wedding as an interruption in the daily grind of my life when really the daily grind of my life is the interruption in these precious moments where the people you love come together and Things Happen. Perspective. World War III maybe coming to a boil and the skies may fall – but times like this and moments like that make you not give a fucking shit about anything else in this world besides the people you love and their safety and well-being.
Got to the church and did some quick pics with the groomsmen outside. Twas fun. Then we had to usher. I tried to usher most of the Wright State mafia myself… even took Brigitte and Karen down the aisle – one of each arm – the collective soggy wet dream our parents have for us. It was not a huge wedding by any means but the people that needed to be there were there. Two Xanax kept me pretty cool – an initial flopsweat once we got up there but I cooled off eventually. The wedding was wonderfully brief and I didn’t even tear up at all – I was surprised. We made it down the aisle and then on our way to the reception. I checked with Tavis every half hour or so to see if he needed help with anything.
Got to the reception. Hung out in the bridal suite which is a cool concept – a place for us to chill if it all just becomes too much. This was my first time seeing a wedding from the inside… I still think it is funny how brief the wedding was – I was telling Ruble how in my family, we have these three hour Catholic extravaganzas where you bless everything that isn’t nailed down to the floor. Just the pre-show (!) is half an hour or so. Then you wrap the whole thing in a Catholic mass and it is an epic event. That is why I think it is hysterical to have a 20 minute wedding – 20 minutes for a lifetime bond? Not in my family, you gotta suffer up there!
The food was good and the music began. Gunnels and I took dibs on the DJ – he was awfully clean cut and those blond streaks in his hair did seem to be a little too perfect.. but he was occupied trying to fend off _____ who was drunkenly asking Gunnels if he’d like to eat her pussy. Ah, the midwest. You can put us in formal wear but we’ll still revert to overalls and bare feet!
The highlight of the reception was when the DJ played a medley of tunes from Grease. Hello: you’ve got a hall full of soused up theatre freaks and dancers… guys on one side as Alan was Danny Zucko and girls on the other as Jessi sang Sandra Dee’s part. Rocking through You’re the One that I Want and Greased Lightning and then the apex – Summer Nights. It was so much fun. So much fucking fun – with the precision of when it’s over… we’ll still be friends… Summer dreams… ripped at the seams… and then… (and we all know that sigh – that sigh from the movie and the album that we all over-do and we all over-did) oooohhhh!!! Those summer (immediately we all instinctively split into precise harmony) niiiii-ghts! (background vocals of) Tell me more! TELL ME MORE!!!! The hall erupted into applause. Put that up there as one of the singular best moments of 2001. Things quiet down as Tavis and I packed the limo for them to leave (Alan and Jessi left for Puerto Vallarta this morning) and then rest of us went to Lingo and Jason’s for an after-party party. When I woke up in their recliner the third time I decided it was time for me to head home. I hailed a cab and came home and fell into bed. I imagine my wedding – to someone – sometime… when? I think of the people I want at my wedding and different ideas for it. I think it’d be a ball to have performances by all my friends since so many of them are perfomers… Brian cranking out a tune from his album. Brigitte and Karen doing a duet or something…
Brigitte called my cellphone and Karen called my house phone at the exact same time this morning and we met for breakfast at Ann Sather. Came home and then went to bed for five hours and then here we are.
This has to be one of my longest posts in a long time.