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Tuesday, 28 September

This weekend's big marriage-related event was our friends G. and M. holding a party to renew their vows. It was all very fun and all, but I still wonder who fucked it so badly as to precipitate the event. Besides which, if I may nitpick, they didn't really renew their vows so much as write a couple of goddam new vows, which for me stank a bit of false advertising. I wanted dull, rote recitation of the old vows, with maybe a "And this time, we mean it!" stuck in at the end. But maybe it was for the best, and the old vows blew or were terribly embarrassing or something. "I promise never to watch John MacEnroe TV shows." "And I promise to stop clandestinely burying my face in your underwear drawer when you're out." "WHAT?"

G. and M. were resplendent in their finery, even if some of the guests were not. The theme was simple: wear red. Friend J. never got that message and showed up in earth tones; he rectified the situation by raiding the costume shop (for this took place at a previously described dingy theater) and coming up with a perfectly horrifying suit jacket whose crimson-paisley lining sort of fit the theme; it certainly red, and leered out from beneath the folds like some awful psychedelic tongue. [Disclosure: the suit jacket used to be mine, and I long ago donated the wretched thing to the theater. Distressingly, they actually used the fucking thing.]

K., for his part, appeared in a newly-purchased jumpsuit of confusing origin; it was far too small for him, and seemed to showcase his genitals in a frankly disturbing way, particularly when he sat down. (At one point, I saw his girlfriend K. reach over and give his member a companionable squeeze, causing me to refresh my drink.) The overall effect of the garment--and K.'s hair, which he had sculpted into a deliberately eerie Dennis the Menace tribute--was really quite arresting, especially considering that K.'s body type is something like one of those Punching Nun puppets: a central skinny stick sporting two wildly flailing arms. He looked like an inmate escaped from Prop Comedy Penitentiary.

And then of course there was A., who simply shoved himself into a red t-shirt and denim overalls, and stood around placidly, missing only a strand of wheat to chew on. One expects this sort of thing from A.--sartorial inexuberance being the least of it--which is reliably charming. One of my favorite stories about A. involves him noisily vomiting in some bushes; when friend E. tells the story, he employs some really terriffic sound effects, something like: HRRRrrrRRRR! HRRRrrrrRRR!

After a while, we settled down with our drinks and the show got underway. It was a pretty simple affair, if, at times, baffling. Limericks seemed to be a running joke, as many were told (none particularly funny or even Nantucket-y); a version of "White Wedding" was enthusiastically howled; and our friend L. delivered quite a lovely reading of Lear's "The Owl and the Pussycat," diligently emphasizing the word PUSSY whenever it came up, which was, happily, often.

Then we got to the vows. M. delivered hers to G. pretty much straight, and they were sweet as all vows are--standard "Awwww!" stuff. (Not to demean them. "Awwww!" is a perfectly valid tone to strike.) Then G. came up, prefacing his comments with the observation: "I can tend to be a little geeky." This elicited some laughter of agreement: G. is a forensic toxicologist. We waited to see how geeky G. could possibly be. We didn't have to wait long. Here's what he got out before the entire room erupted into laughter for thirty seconds:

"A molecule . . . "

Pandemonium. I clamored for G. to stop right there, as it couldn't possibly get any better than that, but in the chaos, I was ignored. You have to give it up to anyone who start his renewal vows this way, but G. wasn't done. After a while, the laughter subsided, and G. gave a very lovely speech likening marriage to paired nucleotides, saying at one point, "Your adenine perfectly matches my guanine."

Everyone is going to think I made that up, but I did not. It made me so happy and into the spirit of the thing, I wanted right there to joyously run around and give everyone a celebratory fine needle aspirate for pathological analysis. "Hurrah! Hurrah! G. incorporated genetic dorkery into his renewal vows!" I would shout. "Oh, and Mrs. Bandersnatch, I'm afraid you have pharyngeal cancer. Anyway, huzzzah!"

Finally, the ceremony gave way to the post-vow celebration, and tragically, there was karaoke involved. I have written before about how my friends are horribly skilled at the art of karaoke subversion--in fact, I'm assuming this was the intent of having it--and this was no exception. I'll say it again: there is nothing that you have ever witnessed that can prepare you for malicious, shameless actors bent on completely strafing your favorite pop songs with deliberately ghastly renderings.

V., who may be the queen of this foul art, was the first to act, and she re-enacted a legendary crime by tackling "Bette Davis Eyes," which I have also previously wrote about. In true form, she waved her arms witchily about while her vocals screamed and whooped about the small space, like attacking harpies. It's truly beyond description what the woman can do: at one moment she evokes LeAnne Rimes suffering a debilitating inner ear disability, and then before you can recover, she's intoning the next line as an earnest Rod Steiger piece of dialogue. It's impossible to reproduce in print. Not that that ever stopped me from trying.

"Alllll the BOOOOOYYS think she's a [swoop into gutteral hiss] spyyyyyyyyy/ She's got [Borgninian pause. then an evangelical CALL TO GAWD] BETTE DAVIS EEEEEYYYYYYES!" Put that all together with some Stevie Nicks twirls and a couple hiii-ya! leg kicks and you've got . . . something. Birds have been seen to die when V. does karaoke.

K. and E. of course had to enter into things, and performed a simply murderous version of, God help everyone, "Gangsta's Paradise." K. took on the unglorious rap duties--this is, after all, Coolio--and acquainted himself with the typical misery of a Boston white guy attempting to take on even the lamest rap lyrics. However, his orange jumpsuited resplendence helped distract from his skillz, while E. growled out the chorus in a baffling, gruff accent of unknown origin--perhaps E. was paying tribute to the rich contributions of the Basque people to rap music. At any rate, the whole thing ended with an alarming scene where E. mounted the prone K. and simulated anal sex, which, let's face it, is a pretty stale act when it comes to dingy-theater-situated-vow-renewal-ceremonies. It's just played.

A good time had by all. I do wish G. and M. the very best, and since they continue to hang out with people like, well, us . . . they will need it. See you in ten years or so. We've got plenty of jumpsuits.

Note: Comments are closed on old entries.


You are uniformly charming, and your posts make my coffee taste better in the morning.

That is all.

Comment number: 004243   Posted by: Joshilyn on September 28, 2004 03:30 AM from IP:

Huzzah Huzzah Nice move working an anal sex reference in, that's sure to get you some google hits.

Nice read!

Comment number: 004244   Posted by: DLFP on September 28, 2004 05:10 AM from IP:

G. M. J. K. A. V. K. ?????

For fucks sake, please substitute fictitious names and spare us this alphabet soup, assuming you're so worried that posting GMJKAVEK's collective real names will somehow allow some Googling fiend to track them down and berate them for poor taste in apparel.

This Victorian-fiction use of initials is annoying. It distracts from an otherwise pleasant post.

Comment number: 004247   Posted by: Linda on September 28, 2004 02:59 PM from IP:

Go back to your hole, you shrew!

Uh, seriously, initials have been the IP convention since the beginning, and as you note, Real Authors have used initials for a long, long, time in that way. So why can't S. pretend to be a Real Author too?

So, uh, stuff it, L.

Comment number: 004248   Posted by: norm on September 28, 2004 03:29 PM from IP:

L., you probably don't realize this, but S. is a Victorian fiction writer. Literally. He just looks so damned cute in his bustle and hoop skirts, swooning over his consonant-laden prose, fondly thinking of the queen.

As for you, L., you seem a bit tense. Suffering from the DTs? Not had a BM in a while? May I suggest a few CCs of MDMA? Or perhaps working out your aggression a bit at the YMCA? If you feel you need a Ph.D. from UCLA to sort out this site, I suggest either not reading or, perhaps, writing a letter to the CEO of ABC or MSNBC. Demand that they air a PSA calling S. to task for this BS, ASAP. (Don't forget to dot your Is and cross your Ts, and enclose a SASE for a reply!)

Otherwise, you're SOL.

Comment number: 004249   Posted by: B on September 28, 2004 03:36 PM from IP:

B - I don't think you should be funnier than Skot on his own site.

Comment number: 004250   Posted by: C on September 28, 2004 03:48 PM from IP:

C: STFU. Heh.

Comment number: 004251   Posted by: B on September 28, 2004 03:51 PM from IP:

"Your adenine perfectly matches my guanine."

But that's not good at all! Adenine matches with thymine and guanine matches with cytosine!

Comment number: 004270   Posted by: Eva on October 2, 2004 07:57 AM from IP:

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