I’m giving you a do-over. We’ll try to keep this on the lighter side because the last thing we all need is someone writing about how they regret never marrying their high school sweetheart and living the rest of their life in a charade filled with unfulfilled dreams and voodoo dolls.

No…not like that.

Last Monday was our 13th Anniversary. We celebrated in typical fashion: JewelrySlut and ChurchBomber (who happened to be visiting) took Shmuppie to swimming while I scampered about the house preparing a better-than-average dinner. Fairly boring.

However, later in the week, I thought it would be fun to show Shmuppie the scrapbook we had made before the wedding and after the honeymoon.

Holy crap. Throw that little red flag on the field, call a mulligan, flip the Monopoly board. Do something, because I’m calling for a do-over.

I’m not asking for a do-over on the marriage. I mean, I found me a comely lass who seems to enjoy my company and isn’t so repulsed by me that she’s (allegedly) fathered 2 of my children. No…I’m talking about the wedding.

Sweet Jesus. What a mess. This is what you get when you let a young woman who used to read Cosmo and a 22-year old idiot plan a wedding. You get too much.

In the summer of 1995 (or so), JewelrySlut’s father offered us a deal. He was staring at a rather large bill for the wedding. Being the ever-frugal curmudgeon that he is, he made us a deal: I’ll pay you several thousand dollars NOT to have a reception. We’d all go up to their house in NY and have a barbeque or something. Anything to save a buck.

We looked at him like he had 4 heads, and in all likelihood, my mother-in-law slapped him, and told him he was senile. Dammit! We wanted a wedding!

You know…tables with centerpieces, people dressed up, and all our friends!

Right…then we started planning it. And, then we realized that we both come from small families and that neither of us had too many friends. The 100-person minimum was going to be hard to meet (in fact, we had 98 and had to buy 2 place settings).

So, we bounced all around northwest NJ looking for a place to hold the reception. I was still in school at the time, JewelrySlut’s parents made multiple trips down from NY, and we all had a miserable time.

But, in the end, we found a nice place to have the reception. Last week, we saw the brochure and the menu options and remarked to each other “I hope people enjoyed it.” Because, we saw very little of anything.

What did we (the bride, groom and wedding party) get? Well, the limo drivers tried to hold us up for extra money while we were doing pictures at a nearby park. This was before cell phones so none of us could call El Bob to come to the rescue. I believe at one point, JewelrySlut asked the driver “Where the hell do you think I could possibly have a wallet to pay you?”

When we finally got to the reception (near the end of the cocktail hour), the highlight was seeing the birth of the now-famous Clap-collapse that El Bob gave the limo drivers. Classic…

But, did we enjoy the dinner? Don’t know. I don’t remember nay of it. I was partially drunk and still recovering from a day that consisted of vomiting and helping the dopey groomsmen into their tuxes. I was also still recovering from missing watching JewelrySlut walk down the aisle. (A different story for a different time).

What I do remember is finally being able to leave. That was nice. The honeymoon was great, but what the hell were we thinking? A week in Disney? Really? Oh yea…let’s get up early every day and run around like lunatics for 18 hours before passing out and doing it again. This was meant to be relaxing? Childbirth, I suspect, is more relaxing than our honeymoon.

Now…I’m not complaining…just looking back and saying “Why didn’t we listen?” We could have had a small party and a fat check. We should have been smart enough to know what the Caribbean was (St John in particular) and have gone there for a week.

So, if I had a do-over, I’d take the money and do it low-key. Because, in the end, it’s a rented tux and a dress that the Shmuppie and Chicken are going get one look at and then decide they want anything but that dress.

So, last week, while looking all this over, we told Shmuppie outright: Go get married on a beach. Get married in your bare feet. Because, none of it really matters in the end. Pick someone you want to be with and do what you want.

Of course, both girls are going to want huge-ass weddings at the Biltmore or something. Then, I will cry. Because, as parents, we’ll do whatever the hell the kids want. By the time Chicken gets married, she’s probably going to want the reception to be on Mars or something.

If she gets married at 25 (an arbitrary number), I’ll be 60. That ought to be fun. There I’ll be…bald, senile, drooling… It will make for a nice album.

But…happy belated anniversary to the one I love. I still don’t know what she’s been thinking all these years.

Back to the topic at hand. What would you do differently?

Of course, other than the wedding thing, I’d never have knocked on that hotel room door that night in July.

Who am I kidding…of course I would have!

Yea…I shuld be nicer

(from behind us)

Me: (hangs head because it’s been one of those weekends)
Shmuppie: I think she’s awake
Me: Really? You think she’s awake?
Shmuppie: I meant to say…
Me: What? What could you have meant to say?
Shmuppie: ummmmm
Me: Come here. I’m going to stab you.
Shmuppie: I meant to say
Me: No. Come here. I will stab you.

I’m not very nice.

Of course, a few hours earlier, I had grabbed Shmuppie’s arm and threatened to cut her with the paring knife I had in my other hand. This was because she decided to babble when I was asking her to help me cook dinner. afternoon, one threatened stabbing, one threatened slashing