Jul 14th, 2004

Lucky Thirteen

Today is my anniversary. The RLA and I have been married for thirteen years.

Thirteen years ago, right about this time of day, we stood under a chuppah, held up by our friends, in the courtyard of the temple where the RLA had grown up, and pledged our troth. It was a magnificent summer Sunday morning in Rochester, New York. There were little birds chirping, and the grass was soft and green. The sky was blue. The RLA's hands were cold as ice, and I thought "Better you than me, being scared as shit."
The chuppah we used, I had made in graduate school, before I was kicked out. It was woven on an antique loom, with pearls and tea-dyed lace and all sorts of ivory and white threads. I was at the nadir of my life, and I imbued that piece with all the hopes for love and happiness that I could muster. The temple in Miami shipped it up to Rochester. The poles were lost in transit, so the RLA and I went off the local Home Depot equivalent and bought poles. The only things we could find that fit the holes in the corner grommets were tomato stakes. Metal, coated in green rubber, and with thorns, to help the tomatoes cling.

We had a reception at the Faculty Club on the University of Rochester campus, where the incomparable Father-In-Law had been a professor. The wedding cake was chocolate, with a dark chocolate ganache icing, and mocha buttercream swiss dots. I wanted the baker to put silver non-parielles, like chrome studs, on the dots, but there wasn't enough time (or money, one suspects) for her to do that. Our little cake topper was a pair of old gnarly gnomes, so dark and brown that people thought they were also chocolate.

Of all the people there, only one was a friend and not a relative, of mine. There were friends of ours, but only Andy was there for me, alone. He (Andy) immediately figured that out, and went around all day introducing himself thusly:

"Hello. I'm Andy. I'm L's ONLY friend." This is still how we refer to each other. Even the secretaries at his office know who I am when I say I'm Andy's only friend.

Tonight we'll go out to a French restaurant. It was all part of my plan, when I chose this date. Bastille Day. I always get a decent French meal, once a year. There's usually champagne flowing like water, and a few times during the evening I get to stand up and pretend to know the words to La Marseillaise. Depending on where you are, there may be fireworks. Sooner or later, I'll even get to spend an anniversary in France.

Magic happens. Happy anniversary.