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« After The Wedding | Main | The Wedding...is happening »
Friday
Mar292002

The Wedding, Part 2

I can't think of many things more vulgar than a wedding. Nor can I see any real purpose for marriage - it has to be one of the most pointless endeavors that mankind invented and continues to involve itself in unquestioningly. Unlike breeding, marriage is certainly not a natural instinct or even - arguably - a natural state.

The only reason that marriage exists is that 'love', or that initial giddiness and euphoria, is the most powerful intoxicant known to man and, as Hunter S. said in 'Fear and Loathing', "When you get locked into a serious drug binge, your tendency is to push it as far as it will go." So somebody invented 'marriage' as a way to push it further and it became a societal norm.

Doug presents Renee with a symbol of his love and commitment- a platinum card

People in love are like drunk chicks at Mardi Gras who expose their tits to proudly show everyone how embarrassingly drunk they are. Weddings are the terri-cloth tube top of love, waiting to be yanked down in front all your closest friends who now have to act amused. 

Weddings are like having to watch two people make out on a bus all day, only now you have to dress up, bring gifts and pretend you're not bored and disgusted.


It is a gross, ego-fueled imposition on your friends and is everything I am against.

I got married three days ago, March 26th, 2002.


I had scheduled a show at Tommy Rockers for my birthday (which is the 25th but Tommy always likes to do the shows on Tuesday for some reason). A few weeks before, I saw my friend Father Luke online and thought it would be fun to fly him out to marry us after the show. He is a former priest who left the church once he actually took a look at the whole thing logically and now does what he can to get by.

I asked Renee if she really wanted to do it and she said she did. She knew I was already legally married to a girl I'd known 14 years prior. I'd known her for a couple weeks when I was working phone rooms in Vegas in '87. We got drunk and got married one night just cuz it sounded like a funny thing to do. A year and a half later we moved to Idaho because I thought it sounded like a funny place to move. Then she left me for my best friend which wasn't nearly as funny but at least she went away. Sometimes the people who go along with what I think is funny are just insane people.


I bought Father Luke a ticket to Vegas immediately and told Renee it was on.

"It won't be legal, though, will it?" she asked.

"Baby," I said ( I too often begin sentences with 'Baby" and should try to avoid that), "We'll be doing drugs in Alaska on New Years. That won't be legal either but we're still gonna be high."

I didn't need to say anything else. She gets it. That's why we're together.

The only thing more pointless than marriage is "legal' marriage. (Remember, when I write "legal" to read it with a sarcastic, mocking tone that drags it out to sound 'leeegal' with a sneer.) What is the benefit in bringing law and government into your love life? What is it any business of theirs? When have you ever had to go to a courthouse and it was good? And when a relationship goes bad (no, it couldn't possibly happen to us), do you really need a lawyer to make it official? Good fuck, think about it.

The institution of marriage is a fictional union, like joining a gang or a fraternity. It is what you want from it personally, but unlike a corporation or the military, it holds no obligations to those outside the agreement. As much as a marriage might mean to you, the simple fact is that you cannot commit to an emotion. You can't force yourself to love someone as much as you can't force yourself to be sad or afraid. "Legally" marrying someone is like signing a contract promising to be 'lucky'. Forever.

"So it's not a 'real' marriage" I am told, over and over. 

But it is real. Far more real than anything 'legal'.

A 'legal' marriage is necessary when you are marrying someone to get them citizenship. It is necessary when you are marrying an 80 year old terminal cancer patient for his money. It's certainly necessary for the Appalachian hillbilly who takes a 14-year-old wife he'd have gone to jail for fucking without the arbitrary title, one word and a 10 dollar license the difference between husband and child molester. It is necessary for tax breaks and insurance or if you just want to join a club where homos aren't allowed.

If your marriage is legal, your motives should be suspect. If you believe marriage to be strictly about love and commitment then the law shouldn't be invited to the party. Besides, marriage is simply a word.

 

Extreme Elvis and Doug

So why would I involve myself in something that I seem so violently against? Because we are in love and wanted everyone to watch us make out on a bus all day. But instead of gifts and your nicest clothes, we had comedy, booze, drugs and a mad rocking band with a fat, naked Elvis impersonator who ran most of the people out before they could even see him swill a warm glass of his own urine.

If we are going to impose on our friends, we'll try like hell to make it worth their while, not act like it's very important for them to share in a 'celebration of our love'. We are simply stealing your word and taking the piss out of it. We left most of the gunky sentiment out of it. It's boring and gross to listen to people pine on in public about what their love means to each other. If I'm going to privy to the most intimate and personal details of someones relationship, frankly I'd rather just watch you fuck.

The Wedding


Fortunately someone had the good common sense to give Renee $10 says this picture was taken 20 minutes after Doug promised he was starting his closing bitsome ecstasy halfway thru the comedy show so she could stand up under the weight of the champagne she'd been drinking since noon. I'd suggested earlier that she drop a hit when she was staggering but she got a bit surly and told me that it was her wedding day and she didnt want to be all fucked up. She then stumbled again as the waitress brought her another bottle of Cook's.

Friends, family and fans were there from New York, New Jersey, Colorado Oregon, Washington, California, Massachusetts, Florida and from under rocks and highway underpasses. Vegas is the only city where you can make these events work comfortably since everyone has shit to do, rather than hanging around waiting for you to find time to socialize. They have hookers to find, wagers to lay, shit to pawn. 

The Extreme Elvis band kicked off the show at 8:15 or so, sans EE himself, and jammed for a bit before the comedy. This band absolutely rocks. I was a bit fucked up myself and trying to keep it chaotic while also attempting to make normal with the in-laws. Grandma was a no-show but the Mom/Step-Dad, Dad/Step-Mom contingents were there and seemed to be able to hang with everything ok. 

 

Andy Andrist

I started the show, rambling on and dealing with hecklers, before bringing up the line-up of Ralphie May, Sean RouseHenry Phillips and Andy Andrist. They all killed anyone who was listening, which wasn't as many as the night went on and people were getting twisted. Renee's bride's maid faculty was full of liquor and ecstasy and went from loud to outright obnoxious heckling. Good thing Rogan wasn't there was all I could think, or too bad he wasn't, depending on how you look at it.

As the crowd got shitty, so did I and I really couldn't tell you half of what i did for a set. My friends Erica and Steve came out with their sound guy Kelly and filmed it documentary-style so one day I'll be able to see how sloppy it all was.

Father Luke came up after the comedy to do the ceremony and I remember it dragged on loud with hecklers and Father Luke taking his beautiful, sweet-ass time. Chaos. We were married and the hard parts were over. Joe Vernon, my number one fan won the high-hand best man poker competition with a king-high flush earlier and gave a great toast while Renee heaved her wedding bouquet at a table, knocking their drink over in their laps. 

 

Extreme Elvis

But the night was far from over. Let's face it, this night, for al the stories that will be told, was about Extreme Elvis. The seven-piece band drove down nine hours from San Francisco and absolutely ruined the place. I will always be indebted to Tommy Rocker, and hopefully not in a 'legal' way. He didn't have any idea what to expect and I didn't know how far it would go so I just opted to say nothing. By the time the shit hit the fan, I was too drunk to say anything anyway. 

Most of the later recollections of the night are in still-photo memories or simply from re-tellings of more sober witnesses. I remember that around the third song, EE was already naked and pissing in a 16 ounce beer glass. He then swilled it, slobbering half of it down his sweating, death-white, bloated torso and passed it to Ann, a singer in the band. She took a swig herself and it was around then that Renee's parents decided that maybe it was time to head out. In fact I was surprised at how many of the younger, more bent members of the audience left with them. Pussies. No appreciation for art.

I also remember EE having two fingers jammed in his pock-marked ass but didn't notice when he sauntered thru the crowd afterwards fingering things on peoples tables with the same hand, at one point picking up someones cell phone and using it like a bar of soap in his steamy armpit. I heard all of that second-hand and not always in a tone of gushing adoration like I would have.

I was out saying my goodbyes to the parents when it got ugly. Evidently EE was up naked on the bar hurling cocktail olives and whatnot at the crowd. The whole band was naked when I walked back in and Tommy was shitting his pants wondering how to pull the plug on the whole thing. EE had evidently pulled Ann's tampon out with his teeth, paraded it around all blood n crusty like a dead mouse before chewing it up and spitting it out. Not the regular fare for Tommy Rockers, a usually stayed place for 30 somethings who like Jimmy Buffet and the occasional one-drink-too-many.

Tanyalee, (how could I call it a wedding if I didn't have a midget there) cruised passed at some point and I tossed her on the stage where she fit quite perfectly under EE's hairy egg-bag. Again, still-photo memories, nothing streaming.

He played "Suspicious Minds" as the last song of the evening and I felt obligated to get naked myself, I often do regardless. I disrobed, leaving the suit that I'd be wearing the rest of the night and into the next day in a large puddle of urine and danced around in socks on a floor now littered in broken glass. I vaguely remember Father Luke dropping his pants and dancing with me. Then I'm with Renee, rolling in piss, beer and splintered glass on the floor as the show, to Tommy's relief, brought us a perfect ending.

I was hustled off into a waiting stretch limo that already had some 15 people in it, leaving the rest behind, unable to even try at goodbyes and thank you's. It felt like the scene from Pink Floyd's "The Wall" at the end of "Comfortably Numb", save for I couldn't find any drugs. Erica had drummed up the limo from somewhere and we headed for the Venetian. Joe Vernon and his friends Jaime and Mike (or was it Jim? oh fuck) had scored a 3,000 square foot suite on the 34th floor, complete with seperate bedrooms, jacuzzis, a gym and one hell of a view of Las Vegas. Only rule for partying there was - No Extreme Elvis. Elvis was on his way, however, as I tried to play the middle without luck and EE & Co never got past the lobby. They instead began doing guerilla performances in the casino, getting tossed out of a few on the strip and having an outrageous time that i would have liked to join up with were it not my wedding night and if I were 15 drinks less blotto. Instead, Renee and I took a long, hot jacuzzi and fell quickly asleep in the master bedroom as the party drove on and died out.

Whover had to sleep on the couch for giving up that bedroom, I am indebted to you as well. In fact, all of you. It was quite a time. 

I apologize that I am not more succinct on most of the details, for obvious reasons, and that I am surely leaving out many of the funnier details. So, for those who attended and spot any glaring omissions from the night - PLEASE - email doug@dougstanhope.com and add your two cents from the wedding, whatever they may be, and I will put them on the site. Photos would be great as well, since we didn't think to bring a camera. Thanks.


Renee and I got to Phoenix last night. Did a seedy barroom show, drank little or nothing and went back to the hotel and crashed. We were tired. Today I worked on catching up with bills and emails while she went out and found a grocery store. She bought lots of fresh vegetables, cheese, juice and some roasted turkey and we had a picnic out by the hotel pool. She was wearing a sheer floral top and worn Levi's and was more beautiful than anything I'd ever seen. We read the paper and made quiet plans for the day, the weekend and for down the road. We smiled a lot. She brought flowers to the room and bought us vitamins. 

I tell you this so that you see why I never tell you this. It really has no business on the site. It's of little or no entertainment value. Just didn't want you to think my whole life is drunk and rolling in other people's piss.

Check out all the wedding pictures. Read an online review of the wedding at sincity.com

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