This was the beginning of the wedding celebrations.
Friday night was the aufraf– a Jewish celebration of our marriage before the marriage– kind of a dry run, if you will– it was at our synagogue– there was much eating and drinking and singing and even a little dancing (which S did not prepare me for, and I managed to do a little of anyway– I’m not a big fan of the dance) The aufruf is traditionally on Saturday morning, and you get called to the Torah then, but we are more Friday night synagogue goers, so we chose to do it on Friday night.
Anyway, people afterwards hung around and gave us advice– one very good friend of ours had a book that people had made for her from her wedding shower with written in advice– that sounded like a very good idea! She read from her book, and it was very sweet and nice. Other people spoke from the heart. It was touching.
I think the best advice of the night came from a couple that had been married for fifty years. The husband said “Our biggest secret– two bathrooms and two tv’s.”
Since we have 2 1/2 baths and two tivo’s, I think we are well on our way to success (fifty years is pushing it though– if I make it that long I’ll be 93, and S will be 90– this couple was in their 70’s.)
Although I wasn’t particularly into it when it started, by the end of the night even I can admit that it was a very nice night. (Just don’t tell S I said that– she might think I’ve gone soft.)
Last night was my bachelor party– a debacle of debauchery unparalleled in human history. While we were doing this, S and a bunch of girlfriends and gayfriends were having an upscale tea party at an upper West side tea place (I wasn’t there, so she’ll have to fill you in on all the particulars. If she dares)
It started with drinks at my brother’s cool new Phillipe Starck designed apartment in the city, and then 12 of us– my brothers, cousins, and friends, hopped in our pimp-daddy white Hummer Limo to East Rutherford NJ for the main event–the VFW beefsteak. (Took us hour and a half to get from 23rd st to east rutherford– Saturday night traffic– but traffic looks a lot different in a Hummer Stretch limo!)
I’d been wanting to go to a beefsteak since I read the article in the NY Times about two months ago, And I thought it would be the perfect bachelor party thing– especially after I read the quote from the Times explaining why a lot of them are stag affairs…
â€œA man isnâ€™t inclined to eat as much if his wife or girlfriend is watching,â€ Rob Nightingale explained. â€œAfter their 15th or 18th slice, she kind of gives him the look and makes him stop.â€ (Mr. Mitchell put it more succinctly: â€œWomen do not esteem a glutton.â€)
The menu was classic– beef dipped in butter, fries, a ziti dish, an ice cream roll for dessert, and a whole lot of beer. It was completely the VFW I expected– cheesy door prizes, biker dudes and their chicks, and 60 year old drunk guys with huge pot bellies who made amazing bread sculptures with their discarded bread. Ours was a co-ed one, which was fine, but at some point, I think the stag one might be fun too… Ziti may have made it a little too feminine.
On the way back went to a couple of different bars– I had requested that we not go to any strip clubs- (not that I don’t like t and a– I do, and appreciate the nude feminine pulchritude as much as the next guy (and I think a little bit more!) but what I don’t like is mercenary t and a.
For me, It is like so NOT a turnon knowing that pretty miss thang only likes the color green, and has no interest in me at all. T and A like that I don’t need, no matter how shapely. I can’t help thinking about the economics, and at least for me, it makes it sad and definitely not worth it.
My brothers mostly respected my wishes– we played pool and darts at one bar, then went to an Irish bar for more drinking. I was ready to go home, but my brothers insisted on taking me to one more bar, where
(unbeknownst to me), was supposed to be an upscale place with naked women. I was kind of resigned when I found out (apparently, the bachelor party is not for the bachelor, but for the bachelor’s friends, or so I was told repeatedly last night) However, the magic of urban revitalization had done its thing, and the upscale strip club in Chelsea had been replaced by an even more upscale luxury condo.
By that time, I had to catch my train back to Yonkers– the last train of
the night out of Grand Central, the 1:50 am– which was full of puking, drunken suburban college students who were on their way back to wherever they were going after a night out on the city. The train was stopped twice due to drunken domestic disputes, the bathroom car stunk, and the woman behind us puked something clear onto the floor. Lovely!
Woke up today with a mild hangover and the sweats. And I’m sore all over. I don’t normally drink very much at all.
One week to go before our wedding! Next sunday we will have been married a full day– perhaps it’s time to start freaking out.