Well it’s been a few days, hasn’t it? Been busy with family, a wedding and running down the Jersey shore whenever possible. The last thing I wanted to do is sit in front of a computer and write, but here I am now, doing just that. Last time I signed in was Friday with a fuzzy picture of Patti LaBelle in Bryant Park. Thanks to Harpy pointing out that it wasn’t in focus. I don’t know what I would do without the expert eye of good ol’ Harpy. Annemarie, Rex and Earl made it in safe and sound on Friday and have been parking properly since I got them the proper parking pass.
We had a nice little dinner at Grimaldi’s since Friday June 29 was Bill’s birthday. Pizza for everyone. All in all very mellow. We hung out a bit after that, had some cake and then the California trio were a bit jet lagged so they turned in and back in our apartment, I gave Bill his gifts, five ties, five sets of cuff links, two braces and a ticket to see a show at the Public Theater on Sunday July 1. Then Bill was off to bed, and I stayed up a little while before I too turned in for the night. Slept well despite some excitement, looking forward to Meghan and Rob’s wedding.
The next morning I woke up and got some bagels. Much like when Julio and Stine are in town, I asked the California trio whether they would like some bagels, they did and I left them on the doorknob. Annemarie ran out to get her hair done and everyone else started getting ready. Soon enough we were driving to the chapel in two separate cars. Bill and I in one, Annemarie, Rex and Earl in the other. Not a convoy, a few minutes between them and us.
We got to the chapel, saw brother Brian and his wife Karen with their three kids. Everyone was dressed up quite nicely. We settled in our pew and there was a bit of a fiasco with the priest telling Brian and Karen they had to move from their seats since they were for the family. I don’t know why they didn’t say they were family but they didn’t so they had to move. It was hot in the chapel when the service finally started. Rob looked great in his tuxedo as did his groomsmen. My niece Cory looked great as Maid of Honor as well as the other bridesmaids looking nearly as good.
Then we all turned to see brother Frank able to walk down the aisle with his daughter Meghan. After all he has been through the past month or so this was a major accomplishment. He achieved one of his goals, an important, symbolic goal at that. We sat there as the priest said his peace and we all arose for communion. I took the Eucharist since I was a bit hungry and needed to remind myself to say Amen, instead of thank you. Bill, Annemarie and Rex all received blessings which is what I should have done, but like I said, I was hungry.
Then we stood around outside the chapel, taking photos of each other and meeting the bridal party. Like I said, everyone looked great. Then it was a trek down to Saddle Brook from Ramsey. Down Route 17 to the Garden State Parkway. We mingled in the bar waiting for the cocktail hour to begin. I let Rex have some of my beer since he hasn’t had any beer in quite a while. I invited Cory’s boyfriend Jonathan to join us since he was sitting in the lobby by himself. Nice kid, everyone liked him. Then cocktail hour started.
During the cocktail hour when the hor d’oeuvres never made it to our corner of the room a fire alarm went off and we all had to evacuate the premises so we all stood in the parking lot while the Saddle Brook Fire Department checked out the scene, and gave a green light since there really wasn’t a fire at all. That was a definite relief since it is bad luck to have a fire at your reception. Go and check Emily Post if you don’t believe me.
We all sat at our proper tables, eating and drinking and doing more dancing than I usually do. There are incriminating photos of course. Shots with my niece and my brother contributed to a good time as well as excellent dance moves, or so I thought. Time flew by fairly fast and before I knew it I was home waking up the next morning not believing that the big event had come and gone. Everyone looked great and I think my sister in law Elaine deserves a big round of applause for all that’s she’s been through and all the work she has done.
Sunday was spent recuperating and trying to fill in some memory gaps. I was reassured by Bill that I didn’t embarrass myself or my family, didn’t start any fights or anything like that. Not my style anyhow. We just laid low. Bill was up and went to church. I hung out with the Arcata Three. Eventually Bill and I made it into the city and saw Passing Strange at the Public Theater on Lafayette Street. It got great reviews and we both really enjoyed it. It was the last night of the play and if it comes around again I highly recommend it. Touching and funny and filled with rock and roll. It should come back, it was that good and that successful. After that, Bill and I came home just talking about how good the play was. Susan and Lois from Farfetched recommended it over buying tickets for another show and for that I say thank you.
Monday came along and the Arcataians and I made it to Sandy Hook. Following my lousy suggestion we went to the beach where the restaurant, the Seagulls Nest is. Too crowded and overrun by families. I’m sure that’s fun if you have children, but Earl being 16 doesn’t really count as a young child anymore. It was breezy and the water was a bit too cold to go in. We sat there for a few hours, before driving through Rumson to get some ice cream. That was nice. We came back to Hoboken at a decent time and had a very nice meal at the Karma Kafe, Indian food. Last time I ate there it was with Anne and Earl.
Tuesday was another beach day only this time we went all the way to the North beach at Sandy Hook which was pretty much secluded and deserted. We bought our food on the way and sat there and ate. Afterwards while tossing a Frisbee with Earl I pulled something in my shoulder which hurt a lot and curtailed any Frisbee throwing for the rest of the day. Earl and I did jump in the water, but after fully submerging myself I broke the surface teeth chattering and body shivering from the cold water. That was enough for me so I sat and read Andrew Loog Oldham’s memoir some more.
More ice cream before we headed up for an eggplant parmigiana dinner with the Hillsdale contingent. This was the first time in 31 years that I had eggplant since someone made it all the way back then following a not so good recipe. I remember it was October 1976 since Elton John released his first single, ‘Ego’ since coming out as bisexual and it went nowhere. So that was frightening enough to avoid eggplant for three decades, but my sister in law Karen came through and now I am no longer afraid to eat eggplant again. A major accomplishment for me at least.
Independence Day was Wednesday and we stayed around Hoboken for most of the day, planning on heading out to Garfield for a barbecue. We were a little late since Rex was getting a ride from his friend to spend a few days on Long Island. Annemarie, Earl and I made it in time for some grub before it started to rain. Meg and Rob made some excellent burgers and fries and we watched some TV before heading back to Hoboken. The three of us watched the fireworks in the drizzle at the top of Sixth Street by Stevens Tech. It was worth the wait.
Today we got brother Frank up and out of the house since there are no tubes or lines going in or out of his body. We saw Live Free or Die Hard which was fun. My mood had changed for the better since I have been wrestling with the blues the past couple of days. Not one of Annemarie’s type of films to see but she enjoyed the explosions and the implausibility of the plot. We all liked it very much. We got presents for brother Brian’s surprise birthday tomorrow. Anne picked up the new Nick Lowe CD and I got the Traveling Wilbury’s re release. After dropping off Frank, we had an excellent meal at Mision Burrito and now I am caught up relatively. Ta da!
Just got back from walking around Hoboken with Annemarie and Earl. Felt better than I had in days, and I think it’s because I’ve written for the first time in days. I obviously have difficulty writing things from a few days ago. I guess it might be better to write when I’m three sheets to the wind rather than try to remember things.
Irregardless, here are some incriminating pics from the wedding.
On the way to the wedding Bill and I were listening to Ian Dury and the Blockheads. I thought this was a good omen.
Meghan and brother Frank
Robert and Meghan
Cassie, brother Brian, Brian, sister in law Karen, Hillary
Earl, Annemarie and Rex
Me and Bill
An appearance by the Saddle Brook Fire Department?
What? Who me?
My buddy and I
Sister in law Elaine (and amazing woman) and Bill
John Ozed will endorse Corona if given a chance
The Dancing Queens
More Dancing Queens
No More pictures! Ok just one more…