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Worth a Few Words

In a lovely, rose-tinted alternate universe, I spent the few weeks since my last post lying on a beach in Fiji with the Manly Fireplug, a blissfully unplugged honeymoon.  I’ve never been to Fiji, and I don’t even know if it’s a nice place to go these days, but the poet in me liked the alliteration of Fiji and Fireplug.

But in real life the honeymoon had to wait, and after ten days going from Philly to the Catskills back to Philly then to Brooklyn and Manhattan before returning to Philly on our extended wedding/ Fireplug family reunion tour, we actually had to, you know, work for a living.

I’m writing this on company time, having picked up another weekday of office work, which now puts me somewhere around 50 hours a week between my various jobs. When your health insurance eats up a quarter of your salary, you do what you can.

So a long-winded, carefully-composed narrative of our wedding won’t be forthcoming today.  Besides, this is the internet; who has the attention span for narratives? How about a couple of pics instead…


Since the Fireplug had something like 12 or 13 family members making the trip from Philly to Brooklyn bright and early the morning of the ceremony, the Fireplug’s mom decided to rent an entire bus. What showed up was a stretch limo – the kind with an interior neon ceiling that changed colors, with tiny artificial stars shimmering overhead. I could almost pretend like we were kicking off a Saturday night trip to our junior prom, but really it was Wednesday morning,  and we were heading up the Pennsylvania turnpike.

MikeFrettingLimoThe driver had some trouble navigating the limo through the narrow streets of Brooklyn Heights, and we arrived at the promenade with only a few minutes to spare. The wedding photographer snapped this as I emerged from the limo, fretting:

There’s a few other photos here. (Thanks again to Jonathan Gati for the great shots.) Various friends and family converged on our location but I continued to fret. The judge was late. No judge, no wedding. There’s a reason I shy away from event planning. I fret.

But the judge arrived with seconds to spare.


I believe our ceremony lasted about six minutes. It included the exchange of vows we’d written together, which I later posted here.

I made it about two words in before this happened to me:


Yeah, I totally cried. Sue me.


My friend Norman Brannon snapped this photo. That’s the Fireplug’s mother beside him; his best man, Joel; and his niece, the flower girl I mentioned in that other post. Beside me stands my father, my best man that day.

I don’t remember what we were laughing at. In fact, I can’t be certain the ceremony lasted six minutes, because a fierce case of tunnel vision overtook me. Beneath the promenade ran the East River, and beyond that stretched the skyline of Manhattan. Somewhere in there stood the Brooklyn Bridge. I saw none of it.

I only remember one thing from the ceremony.  The thing I tried to focus on during our vows. This face:


And I’ll think I’ll just leave it at that.

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