We Need Professional Help

As opposed to previous years, New Year's Eve 2000 started out as a pretty quiet, relaxing evening. We'd decided not to host a party this year. Instead, Teresa lit a fire in the fireplace, and I put on some new CD's we'd received as christmas gifts. About the most exciting event of the evening was playing a game of Pokeman with my Best Man George and his 6-year-old son Max who'd dropped by for a short visit. We had a few beers and watched the new year roll in around the world, creaping closer and closer to the east coast of the US.

As midnight approached, Teresa and I put on our party hats, and readied the champagne. As the ball dropped in Times Square, we toasted the new year, and shared a kiss. We then called Teresa's Wedding Slave Nita in California to brag that we were already living in the year 2000.

By about 12:10 am, things got pretty quiet. Then, with hands held to her head, Teresa looked at me with an exaggerated grimace on her face.

"Aaaaaaaaah! We're getting married in less than 15 weeks!"

To which I replied, "Aaaaaaaaaah! We're not ready!"

During the hustle and bustle of the holidays, we'd pretty much ignored the fact that our wedding day was quickly approaching. And, we'd done very little to prepare for it. But now, minutes into the new year, we realized just how serious the situation was becoming.

Teresa then proposed a temporary remedy for our delima.

"I think it's time for some sink drinkin'", she told me.

"Oh god", I replied, shaking my head.

Now, for those of you unfamiliar with "sink drinkin'", there's really not much to it: You just grab two shot glasses, a bottle of liquor, and stand over the kitchen sink. The sink's job is to catch any spillage, and to stand guard in case someone's stomach rebels. You can probably guess what the shot glasses and liquor are for.

Teresa started out easy on me. She poured two brimming shots of peppermint schnapps. We knocked them back in one gulp, clanking the glasses on the kitchen countertop to signal that they'd been emptied.

"I start a new job on Monday!", she told me. "There's no way I'm going to be able to take time off to handle wedding stuff!"

She poured two more shots, and they were gone in a flash.

Wipping my mouth on my sleeve, I said, "I'll do what I can, but I just lost one of my business partners. So, I'm going to be working my ass off over the next few months."

With that, Teresa slid the schnapps bottle aside and grapped a bottle of vodka. I came to the clear realization that I was in for a serious sink drinking session.

Now, I'm kind of fuzzy on exactly what transpired over the next several minutes (or, maybe it was hours). But, I do remember Teresa finally reaching a conclusion.

"We've gotta hire Frank!", she told me.

"Uh-kay.", I said. (At least I think that's what was said.)

We'd met Frank Brown of Creative Weddings several days earlier while shopping for wedding cakes. He's a professional wedding coordinator and floral designer. Teresa and I took an instant liking to him. And boy, this guy knows his wedding stuff! A few days after New Year's, we contracted him to handle our wedding.

So, if you're at our wedding and see some guy flittering all around the room, diddling with the flowers, giving instructions to the musicians, and arranging the wedding cake just so, that's Frank. Our wedding day fate rests in his capable hands. And, I'm already glad we decided to hire him.

To the army of other folks we've hired for our wedding day, I can only offer this warning: Don't let Frank's soft voice and gentle demeanor fool you. If need be, he can bark orders like a Marine drill instructor. It would be wise to follow his instructions. I'd hate to see Frank have to bitch-slap someone.