Off the Wall
Couple late for own wedding
November 22, 1999
“She’s not coming,” Johnny says, pacing back and forth.
“She’s coming,” I say, calmly chewing off a nail.
“It’s 15 till!” he says, frantically tapping his watch.
“In Melody time,” Allison says as she primps at the dressing table mirror, “that’s tomorrow.”
In exactly 15 minutes, Melody and Johnny are supposed to walk down the aisle. The candles are lit, the organist is tickling the ivories, and it’s standing-room-only in the chapel.
“I can’t believe this,” Johnny says, rubbing his temples. Johnny seems to be the only one who’s surprised that Melody is running late for her own wedding. Everyone on the bride’s side brought reading material.
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Melody has never been on time in her life. If we want her to meet us for dinner, we tell her we’re meeting for lunch. She’ll still be late, but at least she’ll get there in time to split the check.
“You never really know a person until the wedding,” Kat says sympathetically as she sensuously kneads the knots out of Johnny’s shoulders. Leave it to Kat to try and pick up the groom.
Al, Maxine, Kat and I have the honor of being bridesmaids. It goes without saying that you’ve never seen such gawdawful dresses in your life. Besides the fact that we look like Christmas ornaments, there’s absolutely no way you can go to the bathroom in them.
“If I don’t get out of this thing pretty soon,” Max mutters as she waddles across the room, hoop skirt swinging like a bell, “I’m going to straddle the champagne bucket and let the chips fall as they may!”
You can dress Max up, but you still have to muffle her.
“Kat,” Al says, lowering her narrowed eyes, “your cups runneth over.”
Grabbing the front of her strapless dress, Kat does a little wiggle-hop and puts her puppies back in their pen.
Melody’s church is perfect for a wedding. Train dragging behind her, the bride will float down a long curving staircase to her waiting father at the foot of the stairs. There’s only one little snag the only way up to
the bride’s dressing room is also the only way down – right through the chapel.
At exactly 15 minutes after, Melody’s Mustang screeches into the parking lot. Muttering to herself like the rabbit in “Alice in Wonderland,” Mel rushes down the aisle in cutoffs and curlers loaded down with shopping bags.
“Something old, something new and a little something from the deli,” I say as Melody drops her cutoffs and kicks them across the room.
”Mel,” Kat says analytically as Melody steps into her wedding dress, “I think that being late for your wedding means that, subconsciously, you don’t want to get married.”
There hasn’t been a self-help book written that Kat hasn’t read. Now, along with being well read, she’s totally screwed up.
“Kat, cork it!” Max hisses, hopping from one satin slipper to the other.
Al zips her up, Max pins on her veil, Kat hands her the bouquet, I signal the organist, and the groomemen line up like pallbearers. Just as we’re about to get the show on the road, Melody hesitates.
“Am I making the biggest mistake of my life?” Mel asks.
One might say it’s a little late to be asking this question.
“No! No!” we assure her in unison.
There’s no doubt in anyone’s mind that sooner or, more likely, later, Mel will make mistakes much bigger than this one. (Copyright 1999 P.S. Wall. Distributed by Universal Press Syndicate.)