Not every groom gets a threatened with a gun on his wedding day. My guy is just lucky, I guess. Since I was obliviously awaiting tequila the entire time, here's the story in his own words:
Bang-BangHow does that saying go? A good friend will bail you out of jail. A really good friend will be sitting next to you in cell saying, "Dang that was fun!", or something like that? I'm going to tag on the end, "A great friend will protect you with a gun." Apparently.
The closest I came to holding a gun was through my daughter. The Older Gal had earned sharpshooter certification at Camp Ho Mita Koda in northern Ohio, east of Cleveland. Former Army sergeant, William Keckert was her instructor over several summers and he appreciated the care and no-messing-aroundness that the Older Gal showed. Given my distant relationship with guns, it was a surprise that I would be threatened with a gun, by a woman, at my wedding, to Jill.
The ceremony was over. The first dance had come to a close. I had had a couple of Shiners to fortify myself before the crowd arrived and was feeling right proud of myself for not finding some screwball, thoughtless way of deep-sixing up what looked to be about the smartest thing I had done in years. The relatives on Jill’s mother’s side of the family whose name I was inordinately proud of remembering were talking about the newness of their own marriage, colleagues were marveling at that little hat I was wearing. ("Brenda" had asked me that week if I was going to wear one of those little hat things that Jews wear. Well, I said to her, since I am Jewish and it is a Jewish wedding I will be wearing a yarmulke. Funny … I have never asked a Christian whether there was going to be one of those funky torture devices used by the Romans and other pagan cultures on display while they pledged eternal loyalty and love to another.) As I said, the ceremony was over, we had danced, I had kissed the bride, and I was on my way to get Jill a shot of tequila.
I thought it an unsaid rule that women in low cut green dresses do not pigeonhole the newly minted husband at the wedding much less the reception bar. Introductions done and my grasping to remember the outlines of "Trudy’s" relationship to Jill all the while dancing around the great tragedy experienced 15 years ago and the gravesite Jill and I had visited. I remembered that her mother had helped Jill find her first apartment in Houston.
She said, “I know how to handle a gun.” Now, in Texas this can be a challenge or just a way of starting a conversation on a common subject, sort of like, lawns or plumbing, normal opening gambits in 95% of the middle class, thing-besotted world. Remember, I had two tequila’s in my hand and a bride strapped into a bony corset designed to do that which corsets do well and whose unexpected and unexplained side-effects were to restrict Jill’s ability to breathe; which is a long way to say that Jill needed her tequila right quick. I was happy that "Trudy" knew how to handle a gun and that she was so overcome with joy in her skill that she wanted to share this with me on my wedding day and made noises to such effect that her skill was right and proper and I would never impinge on her Second Amendment rights as I was now a Texan and felt as close to guns as I felt to the right of the federal government to impose a tax on income and require all good citizens to purchase health insurance.
As I said, I was feeling pleasant and sure I wouldn’t irritate or otherwise deliberately provoke anyone. The conversation progressed in its normal and very ordinary way with her making it clear that were I ever to wrong Jill in any way, that she loved Jill like a sister, and if I were to cheat on her or beat her that she would have no compunction to come after me with her gun - we had already established her gun-handling skill bona-fides – and that her husband was a member in good standing with the local constabulary and that he too had developed fine gun handling skills over a long period and he too would be more than happy to share his gun handling skills on my face were I to wrong Jill in any way whatsoever.
I thanked her for letting me know that she cared and assured her that I was a fine upstanding citizen of Texas and these United States and that I loved my new wife with a passion and that I would never give her cause to demonstrate her gun handling skills on or near my person and that I sorely needed to get these shots to Jill else she might expire from longing or thirst. I am pleased to say that the shots revived Jill so that she could continue to enjoy our wedding. On later days, she invited me to guest post about how much her friends care for her and how they would bring all the knowledge and skills they have to bear in order to preserve the state of our new, marital union.
We're honeymooning people now - see you in a little while!
I didn't have a picture of a gun, because it wasn't that kind of a shotgun wedding. Photo is courtesy of Dollar Photo Club.com.