I was recently ask to be a Groomsman at a freinds wedding. It threatend to be a cool windy day in a park preserve located in the Mississippi River bottom, at least for October. Bow season had been in for 3 full days and the topic of conversation among all the younger males in the wedding party were the about the deer that had already walk by or the ones they had already bagged for the cooler. Beer flowed like rain before the ceremony. My wife commented on the way home how we live In a different generation. The groom wore his camo sunglasses and rumpled felt hat through the wedding and the bride read her vows from her cell phone. What a juxtaposition of cultures.
After spending the night before with groom and a fellow groomsman and listening to their phones go off incessantly I took care to remind us all to at least mute our phones prior to the march. It wasn’t necessary though. The brides mother warned me we might hear such and such uncle’s alert go off to I believe Jimmy Hendrix. So I was expecting a chorus of Lynard Skinard to ZZ Top through the ceremony. The 16 mph wind coming down the river valley spared us all that although in reality it wouldn’t have mattered.
Life was perfect this day. I was reminded of a celebration from medieval times where town folk celebrated with abandon, and very little inhibitions. This was very good thing also because apparently the DNR had removed the out houses for the season for which we all agreed was dumb. It was the hunting season and where were hunters to go bathroom not to mention us. No problem the park we were at had ample supply of trees and wooded areas to sneak off to which we all did so frequently. I even took my wife for a stroll so she could moon the dry oak tree swamp. Life is good and life is simple if you let it be.
I am fairly certain that no one in attendance had great amount of money or owned more than a modest house. Most rented and worked for little more than minimum wage. Many of the older men where on disability for actual broken bodies after a lifetime of hard repetitive laborer. One older veteran celebrated finally getting his VA retirement and three years back pay. He did a little dance
These are do what they can, do what they have to people – who show up after a full days work and help you move or fix something broken at your house type people. Salt of the earth really does apply here and I use it with out shame.
Short of my own daughters wedding and my own wedding it was the most joyous wedding I had ever been too. There were some hurt family feelings floating around, I’m not blind and stupid. And a few teetotalers floating around but they were not to have the day. Like an inefficient preacher they could not influence or smother the celebration. This was the joining of two people in marriage, and it was a celebration as well as standing before God and Christ asking for his blessing upon their life.
Celebration without pretense without inhibitions or limitations. I left early because of my own pain but I am sure that there were Rebel Yells echoing through the rented hall before the night was over and all made it home safe and the couple began the first day of the rest of their life.