Gettin’ Mary-ed

A thing that is weird is: nearly every single day someone stumbles upon this blog by searching for some variant of “is dallas braden gay.” Sure enough, if you search for that, the first hit is this post I made awhile back after Braden threw his perfect game and I for some reason decided to make a post connecting all that to gay marriage. I wonder, is a small collection of disparate people out there, each wondering if Braden is gay? Or is it one guy who typed it in once, and now that’s just the way he accesses the blog on a daily basis? Or is that guy – or gal – hoping for some sort of daily news on the subject? I also get “is dallas braden married,” which leads to the same post.

Ah, the internet. So young. Its whole life ahead of it. Reminds me of when I was a wee lad, constantly wondering if my favorite sports stars were gay and/or married.

ANYWAY* my wonderfully great college chum Mary is tying the knot on Fishers Island, a little isle of under 300 people at the eastern end of Long Island Sound. The wedding is taking place on that most romantic of days, September 11th, which always raises eyebrows but also lowers cost, so we have a sort of “raise-lower” equilibrium going on there. Jessica and I just bought our tickets, and since she’s a teacher we could really only take one day off, which means a Thursday night red-eye and a Sunday evening return – a whirlwind mini-vacation.

*[It dawned on me that many of my posts begin with something, then I say “anyway” or some such thing, and then I get to the meat of the post, which is generally unrelated. I have therefore tasked Drew with creating an ANYWAY emblem, which I will display proudly as I awkwardly segue from one topic to another.]

Mary is one of those people that everyone likes, because she’s kind and gentle and has a transparent warmth around her that is impossible to miss. She is one of my most favorite friends. In college, we lived on the same hall together as “sponsors” – sophomores living on a hallway of freshmen, sort of like an RA but without any of the responsibilities. Some funny things about Mary are that she used to study naked in her room with the door locked, and she used to ask me to go through her voicemails and jot down important details because she had so many that she couldn’t bear to listen to them herself.

Here is a decently cute photo of me and Mary on a trip Jessica and I took to New York awhile ago. Isn't she just the loveliest.

It’s been a lot of fun discussing wedding planning with Mary; aside from Suzanne, she’s the only friend I have who is also currently planning one. Unless I’m forgetting someone obvious? I have a nagging feeling that I am. If so, speak up! Let yourself be known! Your silence only incriminates you further. Also, I’m talking about IRL* friends, not my new e-chums like Angie and Lizzie and the rest of those great ladies.

*[Since I know my mom is going to ask, IRL means “In Real Life.” With the advent of internet friends and in fact entire communities, the need for a snappy acronym – a snapronym – has arisen.]

Mary organized her wedding in a lot less time than I have, and still is managing to throw a huge awesome party on an island. To get there, I’m flying into the Hartford, CT airport – actually located in Windsor Locks – and renting a car and driving to New London, where I’ll hop a ferry to the island.

Mary and her betrothed Dominic. Mary appears to be sneezing into her elbow, which is good sneezing etiquette. Great job, Mary!

Her enfianced Dominic is a great dude who I thoroughly approve of as Mary’s husband-to-be. I’m not sure if he knows this, but when the two of them were in the wooing stages (before I’d ever met him), I used to make cutesy little variations of his name just to annoy Mary; I’d ask, “Hey, How’s Dommy-Wommy doing?” or “Tell me about the Domster! The Dominizer! The Dommity Ding Dong Dombelino!” She’d laugh, but it was a nervous laugh. The laugh of thieves. Not that Mary is a thief. But I think they probably laugh nervously. Right?

ANYWAY (there it is again), the entire point of all this is: Mary asked me to play guitar during her ceremony. Isn’t that nice? I think it’s nice. I’m very excited. This will actually be my third time playing during a ceremony, which might be enough to put it on my resume. The first time was at an aviary where one cage of birds didn’t like a particular guitar piece and let me know it by squawking horribly and causing me to improvise mid-ceremony, which I like to think happened seamlessly. The second was at the Sierra Nevada wedding I’ve blogged about a few times. I seem to have no photos of me playing during the actual ceremony – I swear I really did – but here’s one of me practicing in a field by the lake:


So: that’s pretty cool. I have some ideas of what to play – something pretty and flowy and sparkly and acoustic-y and fingerpicky – and I’m sure I’ll talk it over with Mary a bunch in the coming weeks. Over the summer I’ll post some of my music, which I need to do more often anyway.

It’s an honor to be asked to be part of the wedding, and I can’t wait.


13 responses to “Gettin’ Mary-ed

  1. Sounds great. Say hi to Mary and her family. Anyway is a fine word, but my nomination for the most useful segue-type word is Meanwhile.

  2. I’m pretty sure that like 90% of my blog posts begin with “Okay,” as though I’m trying to get myself psyched up for what I’m about to write. I need a better filter between brain and fingers on the keyboard. Today as you can see, I started with the less formal and much more rebellious “Mkay”

    • I’m a So’er. “So, here’s what I really want to say and what I’ve wasted minutes of your life for” and “So, I’m going to pretend to be funny now.” Haha… an emblem would rock.

  3. Ya! Shout outs! I can tell you how many “I’m so pissed/happy/crazy I could rip my hair out” emails I’ve sent Lizzie lately. She’s a doll. Forreal. A doll. And she’s a quitter!!! WHOOO!!!

    But yes, you should get in on these emails. We spit and curse and it’s all kinds of fun. Kidding. We don’t spit. Oh, and I just found out a few weeks ago the the little thing we call “real life” is also referred to as “the meat space.” Who knew! Anyways, blog friends that can totally be meat space friends is a HUGE bonus in my book.*

    And you can TOTALLY put Ceremony Guitarer on the resume.

    *Josh and I have a hard time making new couple-friends. We even considered putting an ad on Craigslist, but thought that may attract the wrong type of attention.

  4. I love this post. So much love for your friend.

    I’m a combo platter of awkward transitions: “so anyway…”

  5. i use the word “so” a bit too much. after i write my posts i got back in and delete most of them. but i do love the word “anyway.” don’t lose it. but my favorite new word is “snapronym.” what a fabulous and funny writer you are. let me know if you try the strawberry butter. or maybe let dash know.

  6. It’s weird. In French there are several variants of “anyways”, at least when I’m writing or blabbing away in that tongue: en tout cas, de toute façon, de toute(s) manière(s), en tous les cas… Hmmm. There must be more but I’m too tired at zee moment. And yes, Mary of Pomona/Mary the Sponsor is one of the most likable, intelligent, beautiful young women I’ve ever met. Happy wedding to her. There!

  7. Yay! I feel like I just got a beautiful e-hug from Bret! It’s amazing how you can string together a few odd facts and build a beautiful picture! Fyi-when I get overwhelmed I still have other people listen to my voicemails. Maybe when I grow up I will act like an adult. I remember fondly sitting in your room for HOURS AND HOURS making up songs and singing about nonsence. And laughing and laughing . Some of my best memories!

    Re the wedding Muzak: I’m so excited that you’re going to be our troubadour. We can talk more in detail later but my dream is for you to be dressed river as a wood nymph or in one of those man sized fruit/veggie costumes you see at farmer’s markets while you play. I can’t wait!

    • We made up the greatest songs. The only one I remember off the top of my head was “The Ballad Of Can And Will.” Do you still have those casettes somewhere?

      I’m not sure my wood nymph/life-sized-fruit costume will fit in my carry-on luggage. But I’ll try my damnedest.

  8. So:
    That transparent warmth? I can see it. For sure.

    Congrats on the gig! It’s going to go swimmingly, I know it. Not to jinx you, but I have this story…of this one time I was my cousin’s MOH and she asked me to play piano and sing “The Way You Look Tonight” for her reception.

    So the PA equipment that I spent the whole previous day driving around to get, which was ASSURED to work. Didn’t work. Not in the venue. So they ended up having a drumset, and I knew a drummer, and he played drums and I sang a Capella while she danced with her hubby for their first dance. Ouch. Supposedly it went really well. It’s all a blur to me, I think we rushed a bit.

    Have a great time and thanks for the shout, yo.

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