I’m a science nerd. I like hanging out in lab even when I’m not there to really do anything. So, I guess it came as no surprise to anyone that I worked for the entire week prior to my wedding, including the day of the rehearsal dinner. Hell, I would’ve worked the morning of the wedding (I wasn’t getting hitched until anyway) if I hadn’t been staying in Philly Thursday night. Family eventually wins out over sweet, sweet biology though, so I hung up my sciencing shoes and The Sciencette’s dad, The Engineer, and I picked up our tuxedos.
I’m just going to come right out and say it; even James Bond doesn’t look as good in a tux as we do.
The customers at Men’s Warehouse seemed to agree because at least one dude there started hitting on us immediately. All I wanted to do was pay for the stuff and get out of there before someone tried to hammer my butthole. I think The Engineer felt the same way because we didn’t even stop for ice cream like usual.
Thinly veiled homoerotic interludes aside, we started packing stuff up for the hotel. People didn’t take this much crap with them on the
Oregon Trail. Four people filled a Ford Escape and a van to capacity with wedding accouterments. And no surprise, but the gift bags we made in Chapter 1 came back to bite me in the taint too because they took up so much room.
Thankfully, the hotel was less than 30 minutes away, and the traffic was light (kill you Philly traffic!). We got there at the same time as The Sciencette’s sister Womanimal and brother-in-law Terminator Target. I can’t remember if her other sister Katata Fish and her boyfriend Fireman Soup were there at this point, but they’ll make their entrance eventually. Regardless, it was party time.
It was colder than a yeti’s nipple outside, so I left The Sciencette in the car while I attempted to check in early. To my delight and surprise, The Teacher and Hairy Parry were checking in right in front of me. It’s a good thing too; our room wasn’t ready, so we shacked up with them for a half hour or so while Housekeeping made sure there were only two towels in our suite, no hot water, and forgot to put mints on our pillows.
When we did go back to the lobby to get that all squared away, the rest of my family came pouring in. I attempted to help my mom bring in cookies for the famous western
cookie table (more later) by grabbing one of the luggage carts, but I promptly broke the hotel door that's supposed to automatically slide open when someone approaches. I knocked it squaw off the track, and it stayed open, letting Arctic blasts of air into the lobby for all to enjoy. Oopsies! Pennsylvania
The rest of our time leading up to the actual rehearsal is a bit of a blur, but at least one thing we did was arrange the cookie trays. For those of you not lucky enough to have been born in the Cradle of Civilization known as southwestern PA, we traditionally have a cookie table at weddings. Members of the family (and close family friends) bake cookies, bring them to the wedding, and then make a veritable cookie buffet for everyone to graze at. Most families also bring small boxes so people can take some cookies home with them. We decided not to do this at our wedding because: 1) it wasn’t in the
Fertile Crescent of ; 2) everyone would have had to drive a lot of cookies across the great state of Pittsburgh ; and 3) our wedding catering package already included enough desserts to choke a donkey. Instead we set up a small cookie table at the rehearsal dinner, and my mom and grandmother did most of the baking. My mom makes these cookies with fork holes in them (I call them fork hole cookies), and they were totally badass, but I digress… Pennsylvania
Eventually, we all caravanned over to the Glen Foerd to practice getting married. It’s a good thing we had a practice too because as soon as we showed up everyone was running around the place like a bunch of spider monkeys. Otherwise, the practice was pretty nondescript and only notable as the time that Shan-Diesel and Bran-Diesel were able to finally fight their way through filthy Philly traffic and join our band of merry mayhem makers.
To get back to the hotel from Glen Foerd, you have to drive straight on one road for 4-5 miles and hang a left after the Dunkin Donuts when you see the hotel. My dad, The Old Man, failed at this task, and he failed hard. He turned instead of going straight and ended up driving past some prison. After several phone calls to me and several wrong turns a the wrong Dunkin Donuts, he finally made it back to home base, but I imagine he was about ready to stab someone in the face with a soldering iron while he was lost.
We hate being lost.
Regardless, The Old Man’s rage was quickly soothed by drinking Yuengling Lager, Sam Adams Winter Lager, and Dogfish Head’s 90 Minute IPA at the rehearsal dinner. I guess the food was ok, but let’s face it, people were there for the booze and cookies (see above). In fact, The Engineer personally tested every variety of cookie and declared them all national treasures. One of the servers working that night was like Batman too. As soon as you finished your beer, he would materialize beside you with a fresh one ready to go. Sure, his magic act cost us an extra $400 to assault everyone’s liver, but like Jesus said, "sometimes you’ve gotta ignore the big bar tab and keep drinking."
In the midst of this revelry, The Sciencette and I gave some gifts to our parents and bridal party. The Sciencette was very classy about the whole affair. She had monogrammed bags with snowflake necklaces and various other chick products in them for her bridesmaids. Not to be outdone, I wrote the names of my groomsmen in black Sharpie marker on the outside of used beer cases and filled them with the manliest things on Earth:
- A flask (empty of course; this wasn’t x-mas);
- Two DVDs that will instantly turn you into a man (“Vision Quest” and “Jeremiah Johnson”);
- The book that no white guy needs - “How to Live with a Huge Penis: Advice, Meditations, and Wisdom for Men Who Have Too Much”; and
- Various other personalized prizes and trinkets (e.g., Rogue beer, hard liquor, the Green Man, etc).
Ranting and raving aside, it was time to head to the hotel lounge to drink and drink hard. I figured I’d have a few beers and then go to sleep early, but it turns out that I figured wrong. Everyone was buying, and at most points in the evening, I had at least two beers in my hands. To my delight and The Sciencette’s chagrin, most of these beers were Flying Dog’s Gonzo Imperial Porter. I’ll let this blurb from their website describe it for you:
Needless to say, I didn’t show the beer proper respect. I drank it with impunity, told meandering, loud, inappropriate, and often incomprehensible stories about people and places from college, and managed to act like a taint fister in general.Like Hunter S. Thompson... Gonzo Imperial Porter is deep and complex. This turbo charged version of the Road Dog Porter is mysteriously dark with a rich and malty body, intense roasted flavors, and a surprisingly unique hop kick. With Gonzo weighing in at 7.8% ABV, it will bite you in the ass if you don't show it the proper respect.
Like The Yeti later told me, if he and I are at a party, at least one of us is going to end up as the drunkest asshole there. I guess it was my turn (see Chapter 4 for The Yeti's turn).
Anyway, this post is now overly long, and I’m craving beer just writing about it, so I’ll just finish by saying that The Sciencette finally convinced me to retire to the bridal suite. She gave me socks so that my feet wouldn’t get cold (ya git it?), a flask (because she’s an enabler), and cuff links with my initials on them (so I would look like a fly white guy on my wedding day). I gave her diamonds, specifically earrings and a necklace. It’s amazing how a few thousand dollars of carbon will help a woman get over your drunken shenanigans…but there are more to come!
Stay tuned for Chapter 3 only on http://dryeti.blogspot.com.