Saturday, June 27, 2015

Betting On Ring-Bearers

      My wife and I recently returned from St. Louis where our youngest son Scott just got married.  Both our boys are married now.  It was a wonderful, memorable wedding with all the trimmings you could imagine.  I got together family members to entertain a family tradition . . . there must be polkas.  I played the accordion, my brother and nephew played sax, while my nephews played drums and guitar.

     But as an aside, what’s this world coming to when there are more people on the wedding dance floor for a Taylor Swift number than for a chorus of the Beer Barrel Polka?

     That was somewhat stressful organizing my Polka Monsters to play a few numbers.  But the wedding itself held a few other stressful moments too.  My grandsons Grant and Luke, ages four and two, were supposed to play a large role in the ceremony as ring-bearers.

     I know from personal experience that being a ring-bearer is not as easy as it may seem.  I was a ring- bearer myself for the wedding of an aunt and from what I hear, since I'm too young to remember myself, it didn’t go well.  I got tangled up in the bride’s dress and on my trip up the church aisle I decided to bail, heading instead to a pew where I spotted someone I knew, leaving my young female accomplice to walk up alone.

     As you can see from the formal wedding photo, it was not a happy time for me.

     So how would our own grandsons perform?  Family who know them were laying odds, and the odds weren’t too good on them completing their task. 

     Grant is old enough to follow directions but he’s subject to a four-year-old’s version of a panic attack.  And he absolutely hates to be part of anything that puts him in the spotlight.  Even taking formal pictures can produce a meltdown, tears and all.  And Luke?  He’s two.  ‘Nuf said.  See him pictured below at the church prior to the ceremony.  Would you bet on this little guy?

     The rehearsal actually went okay.  But Luke refused to walk and had to be carried by his mother Lindsay, who also took Grant’s hand, escorting him up the aisle where he gave the box with the rings to his dad, the best man in all this.  Grant acted like it was no big deal.

     So the wedding day came.  Luke and Grant looked dapper in their tuxes.  But as they stood at the back of the church waiting for the ceremony to begin, Grant realized that this would be no simple walk up the aisle of an empty church.  He refused to wear his boutonniere and forcing him to put it on could send him over the edge.  So they didn’t.

    Then the wedding procession began, bridesmaids walking slowly up the aisle to be met at the front by their appointed groomsmen.  After the last bridesmaid had walked there was a pause.  Then Lindsay came up the aisle holding Luke in one arm while taking Grant by the hand.

    That worked until they were almost halfway.  Then Grant fell into tears, holding onto his mother, seemingly refusing to take another step.  This is partly why Lindsay said she was more stressed out for this wedding than she was for her own.  Lindsay quickly improvised, getting on one knee to put Luke down and telling him to take the ringbox to his dad.

    And he did, very quickly proceeding up the aisle and delivering the box to his dad who held his arms out for him.  A collective “Awwwww” emanated from the onlookers.  Success!  Kinda.  With his deed done, Luke flopped onto his back there on the altar.  That brought a little laugh from the congregation.

    All in all, what happened wasn’t really too predictable.  But I wonder who won the wager.