My great friend is getting married.
I’m sorry, that’s wrong. He got married a few weeks ago, with only the principals present. Tomorrow he is throwing a fete to celebrate it. It’s a marvelous development and Mr. and Mrs. Sippican will surely attend.
As you might have gathered, I am not a teenager. Neither is Steve, the man in question. He was married before and was divorced and is engaging now in what is generally termed by the waggish as “The triumph of hope over experience.”
Not really. He was always a good husband. He was always a good friend, as I can attest. He is certainly a good father to his children, who we have mentioned here before many times. Flapdoodle and Mr. Pom Pom. I’m proud to count him as my friend, and happy for him in his new nuptials. His bride is most charming, and he has known her since Jimmy Carter was president. She won’t make a face if he plays Peter Frampton. She knows all the words, too.
They’ll throw an awesome party, I’m sure. Steve is like a sun that many different kinds of people orbit. But his universe doesn’t seem to have any people without sunny dispositions in it. Bad things happen to people in that solar system, as we are all at the mercy of events and our humanity, but the attitude stays the same. That is the rub. There have been times when we have been working together, and I have flirted with a dark mood that lingers, as my gregarious personality is a kind of veneer, really. Steve has sort of electro-shocked me back to health by looking at me or talking or just taking the handle on the other side of the heavy thing when everybody else was finding a really good reason not to. He never says anything in particular, really. He just is whatever the hell he is.
We have performed music together for a very long time. Steve has sent me a list of music he wishes us to perform at the party, and in his foolishness he’s included way too many things that I am required to sing. I stink, so he is not wise; but really, it doesn’t matter. Lots of people, including the groom and his children, will perform music right there in front of their friends and family, and it will have that piquant flavor that only buskers have. It’s real, and it’s right in front of you. I am amazed at how few people can entertain others any more. Many people used to be able to sit down at a piano or grab a guitar and bash out a song, or just sing something unaccompanied that the assembled knew and could sing along with. Steve himself has been doing just that and more since he could shave. A born entertainer. Karaoke and Guitar Hero are like vampires feeding on the expiring carcass of that shared experience. They represent the urge without the effort.
I’ll do it, of course, because I love the guy. Just like everybody else does. Even his brand new wife, I gather.