We now continue the ongoing saga of planning the October wedding of my daughter Casey and her fiancé Alex.
As I mentioned way back in Part IV of this Wedding Blog, the ceremony is going to be performed by Casey’s long-time friend Jim, who was perfectly willing to do whatever it took to become an ordained something-or-other for the occasion.
However, a quirk in Connecticut law requires him to continue “in the work of the ministry” after the wedding. This, Jim thought, was beyond the call of duty. Or maybe beyond the calling.
The good news was that Jim could still perform the ceremony as long as there was something called an officiant there to do the paperwork.
This struck me as being reminiscent of the scene in The Wizard of Oz when the wizard gives everyone what they’ve been seeking. “As for you, my galvanized friend,” he tells The Tin Man, “back where I come from, there are men who do nothing all day but good deeds. They are called good-deed-doers and their hearts are no bigger than yours. But they have one thing you haven’t got: A testimonial!”
Casey and Alex needed a testimonial.
So now I’ve concluded the “previously, in The Wedding Blog” segment of this post. A few months later, we decided to meet the guy who was going to officiate. So we were off to see the Wizard.
Casey had made arrangements to meet him in a diner in Norwalk one Saturday morning. “Do we have to buy him breakfast?” I ask my wife Barbara on the way. “I don’t know,” she replies.
Evidently there is no established protocol for such a thing.
So Barb and I show up at this diner, and we wait in the front for Casey, who’s coming separately. There’s no one else hanging around who looks likes he’s waiting for someone, but there is a guy sitting alone in the first booth munching on an English muffin.
“You think that’s him?” I ask Barbara. “I don’t know,” she replies.
“Is there something we’re supposed to look for?” I ask. “Like will he be wearing a flower in his lapel?”
“I. Don’t. Know.” It seems Barbara would like me to stop asking her questions.
Finally, Casey walks in. “Is he here?” she asks. “How should we know?” I reply as Barb just glowers. “Do you know what he looks like?”
“Are you the officiant?” she inquires. He nods while brushing crumbs from his mustache. Casey waves us over.
Although the booth seats four, the man is sitting on the outside, and it becomes quickly apparent that none of us is going to ask him to slide over. So I motion for Casey and Barb to sit opposite while I hover over their shoulders.
Fortunately, the meeting lasts only about 10 minutes, during which time he informs us that he will sign the appropriate forms right after the ceremony and file them with the state the next day. We ask if there’s a reason why he can’t do this earlier in the day, and he mumbles something like “I have to be there.” Or maybe he’s saying “I have diabeetus.” It’s hard to make out though his crumby mustache.
I couldn’t imagine, though, why this guy had to be at the ceremony, or why the paperwork had to be done right at that time. All that mattered to the state was the documents, which was the only reason we were talking to this fellow in the first place. I mean, if Connecticut wasn’t going to recognize the ceremony just because Jim was a little reluctant to become a missionary, how could the ceremony have anything to do with making it official?
We would have asked the officiant all those questions, but we really just wanted to get out of there. The three of us actually went to a different diner for breakfast.
And the whole time I was thinking, maybe he just wanted to be at the ceremony for the hors d’oeuvres.
See you soon.
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