Thursday, July 30, 2009

Meet the Schaibles Part I

I believe this is the first Internet draft of the Schaible Nuptials. Not sure why the couple has not transcribed the events yet ... too busy? No Internet in the United Kingdom? As usual, leave it to me to be the responsible one.

Here goes ...

Home from New York, I spent a few quiet days in Cranston at the home of Jelly Sears. Funny thing about our plump canine friend: She loves going upstairs but she hates going down them. So she will wait at the top of the steps, make her sad face and wait for someone to come up just to carry her down. She sure lives the life.

Anyway, the main reason I made the trip when I did was to attend the Big Marriage in swanky, foggy and crowded Newport, Rhode Island. A short rehearsal was scheduled early Friday afternoon, just to run through the actual ceremony. Within minutes of my arriving, I was able to chip off a toe nail of the maid of honor. I still got the skillz.

With a giant circus tent for bumper boats in the background, the pastor raced through the readings and we did all the lineups before the women ran off for nail appointments that probably lasted longer than Ken Burns' Civil War documentary.

Then Zach, Jeff and I huddled into my sister's spiffy Honda Accord (with Sirius!) and drove down to back Cranston to pick up Zach's tux. From there we promptly drove back to Narragansett, where I dropped Zach off and then to Newport to drop Jeff off then back to Narragansett to pick up Zach. So by that time I felt as if I had entered and left Newport that day more than I have my entire life. That could really be true, by the way.

Zach took over the driving part and did some nifty maneuvering past packed Newport traffic to get to Pop! Kitchen where the rehearsal dinner was being held. The whole place was reserved just for us for three hours with free booze and appetizers. Pretty sweet. Then the gauntlet of intros to family members and some long-lost Northeastern acquaintances.

For the first time in years I saw Jeff's parents and probably had my first ever conversation with the bride's mother. She immediately brought up the sore subject of me beating her daughter for the English Award in high school. After hearing that, I decided I had to include something about that in my wedding speech the next day. It can be dangerous to make such last minute changes to a speech I had down pat by that point, but I had to do it.

The night culminated in some very tasty Red Sox-Yankees cake and sweet toast by Jeff's mother before the crowd dispersed. But Mike Grimala had just arrived and was not ready to hit the hay just yet. So Zach, Mike and I hauled off to one of Zach's favorite restaurants, the Brick Alley Pub. Grimey and I ordered the same thing. So what? Wanna fight about it??

I woke up that Friday with a sore throat that only got worse throughout the day. My throat burning and drier than a BBC comedy, I slept maybe three or four hours that night.

We got up early because Jeff was treating the groomsman, Grimey and his dad to some golf in Jamestown. However, to Jeff's consternation, a tournament was scheduled and the golf course basically told us to fuck off. The Schaible Face erupted and I was worried. I didn't want Jeff pissed off like this on his wedding day. Thankfully, we found a more secluded golf course close by. It worked out well. No Schiable face.

I don't golf. I suck at it. I swing and miss when teeing off. I can't get any lift on the ball. I can't pull off the golf shirt. I started out well, hitting a 25-yard tee shot that resembled a grounder to shortstop. I just wanted to keep the ball straight and out of the water or woods. This strategy worked for about three holes. Then some ponds came into play and I self-destructed. So paranoid about hitting into the water, I could barely hit the ball 10 yards and when I did, it went straight into the drink or into some tough rough.

To top it off, I did not wear a hat or sunblock, so the sun fried my forehead. So if I look really red in wedding photos, you know why. I ended up shooting a 60 ... on nine holes. And that 60 is a generous score. Nonetheless, we all enjoyed ourselves (when we were not swearing or tossing clubs around).

From there, the men retreated to dress up time and met a few hours later at the groom's hotel. Looking sharp and damn sexy, we passed the time playing the name game while waiting to take our pre-wedding photos. The photographers took us to the beach where the wedding would be held. On our way, we narrowly avoided a bombing of bird poop. And I'm not kidding when I say narrowly. Whew! That would have been a story to tell ... and a disaster.

I can say I had never been on the beach in a full tux until that day. The whole process was bit weird since I'm not used to being photographed quite like that. We were jumping in the air, contorting out bodies in some strange ways, like "lean to the left, put your right hand in your pocket and look out into the ocean!" or "Jump up and down and do something with your arms!" or "make a cool shadow!"

OK, you're the boss, I thought. I'm sure some of these photos will look quite ridiculous, but that's the point.

The hour of reckoning crept up on us. The chairs were set up. The keyboardist practiced. People started showing up. The wedding arbor, after some strenuous manual labor, was set up. The groom, nice and calm for most of the weekend, started to feel the nerves. I could spot the bride staring down at us from the rotunda window. The pastor arrived. The time was at hand.

The weather could not have been better, by the way. A bright, sunny day. A nice beach breeze. About 80 degrees. They couldn't have asked for better conditions, especially considering the Seattle-type weather the previous week.

Six o'clock came and the men lined up on a concrete platform facing the ocean and waited ...

And we'll have to leave it at that right now before this post turns into a Bill Simmons summer NBA column. Would Jeff's true love Vishal make an appearance and ruin everything? How many stupid faces could I make in the ceremony photographs? Would my Schaibleburg Address be a rousing success or would it meet and awkward, silent, British Office-style death? Would Grimey do "The Grimey" on the dance floor?

Tune in for the shocking season finale.

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