Peacocks at Joanna’s Wedding

 Peacocks

Mebane, North Carolina, Friday October 4, 2013, 4:45 AM, the day of Joanna’s rehearsal dinner at Merry Hill Farm where the wedding will take place with peacocks and the rest of us in attendance.

The wedding invitation says that Merry Hill Farm is located in Mebane, NC, which strictly speaking is not true. Yes, it is in Alamance County.

Merry Hill Farm is located outside city of Mebane ( its “historic downtown” has 11,000 inhabitants—a really neat place just next to the railroad tracks where its 19th Century prosperity began and where….[Not all my adventures since I arrived are relevant, fascinated though they are.]

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Under the terms of an agreement reached on Tuesday with Joanna, I am permitted one toast at the wedding during the period after I give away the bride, the vows are exchanged; then we eat.

[I have to double-checked the memo attached to the wedding instructions, Diana, mother of the bride, sent out in the first of two detailed emails.]

Including the toast, my remarks are not permitted to exceed five minutes. The toast, of course, is to Joanna and Jade’s happiness.

The theme of my remarks is: “We shall be one person.”

This is a Pueblo Indian saying accompanying the section on marriage in The Family of Man, Edward Steichen’s landmark photography exhibit in the 1950’s at the Museum of Modern Art in New York. The book version contains a prologue by Carl Sandburg.

The Family of Man is the most influential book in my life. My father’s friend from Cornell Hyman Yudewitz gave me a copy when I was 12. The photographs have been incorporated into my consciousness consistently ever since.

Here is a photograph from the section on Love which precedes marriage (at least in the book).

England, Ralph Morse, Life, Copyright 1955 Museum of Modern Art, New York
England, Ralph Morse, Life, Copyright 1955 Museum of Modern Art, New York

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In return for reducing my number of toasts from three to one and the length of my remarks from 7 minutes to “no more than five minutes,”  Joanna rules, “You can give as many toasts as you like at the Rehearsal Dinner.”

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I have not yet decided whether unlimited toasts mean I can toast Good Will Industries of Greater Mebane, a short power chair ride away from the Headquarters Hotel, where I purchased for $1.75 the t-shirt:

TRUST ME I AM THE DAD

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Here is a photograph of Jade.

Jade, cool as a cucumber. I took this photo two days ago when he and Joanna picked me up at the Raleigh Durham (RDE) airport and drove me 45 minutes to my Mebane motel room.
Jade, cool as a cucumber. I took this photo two days ago after he and Joanna picked me up at the  Raleigh Durham (RDU) airport and drove me 45 minutes to my Mebane motel room. 
Sitting across from Jade is my magazine model daughter Joanna, uncharacteristically freaking out with pre-bridal jitters. Until death do us part. Until death do us part..
Sitting across from Jade is my magazine model daughter Joanna uncharacteristically freaking out with pre-bridal jitters. Until death do us part. Until death do us part.

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On another occasion, I will describe my flight from State College, PA to Detroit [Detroit!] to RDU. This is the view from my seat at State College watching my fellow passengers board on the ramp on which I had just been wheeled to my seat.

plane

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Here is a photograph of the sun rising today at 7:38 taken from my motel room.

IMG_0847

It is now time for me to participate rather than observe.

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In closing:

As is the case with all motel rooms costing $85 or more, USA Today is provided to all inmates.

Today’s paper features on page one a profile of Miley Cyrus with the headline: “Miley’s showbiz plan–twerk it.” The subhead reads, “Crass or calculated, she has us all looking, listening and reading.”

I sampled the Twerk videos which are inappropriate here. I conclude with Miley Cyrus discussing her wedding plans with Ellen DeGeneres.

–Joel Solkoff

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Copyright 2013 by Joel Solkoff. All rights reserved.

One thought on “Peacocks at Joanna’s Wedding”

  1. Johanna is so much prettier and important than Miley. Why bother.

    when my brother made a toast at the rehearsal dinner of my niece, he said that he wanted them both to know that 95% of the time it is about your family not just you. At the end he did that Mr Spock hand thing and wished them “long life and prosper.”

    You will do great! I’ll be thinkin’ of ya.

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